Neurotic Life: Part III
April 18, 2016
Yakov Smirnoff and me
April 25, 2016

Low Expectations

The bitter cold aggravating most of the country was of sufficient schadenfreude value that my wife and I decided to watch the Weather Channel. While we were experiencing our two days of winter here in Miami, with temperatures in the low sixties, we reminisced of our days in Canada when we were young and stupid to live in the prairies.

Meanwhile, the host of the Weather Channel invited a veterinarian to comment on the well-being of pets during the stormy weather. Dr. Chow said that all pets are different, and that some of them are more tolerant of cold than others. She told viewers that “St. Bernard dogs cope better than Chihuahuas with cold.” Wow, really! I would have never guessed!
That was the moment when it all came together for me. Dr. Chow epitomized all that is wrong with this country: Low expectations. If you are going to go on national TV, don’t you want to say something a little smarter?

I’ve been on TV to talk about serious stuff only very few times, but every time I went on I studied the topic in great depth. In contrast, my co-panelists invented answers that had zero empirical evidence and absolutely no grounding in research. Like Dr. Chow, they had very low expectations of themselves. Donald Trump, who gets his foreign policy insights from the Weather Channel, is about to name Dr. Chow as his running mate.

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