Proverbs 18:13

The one who gives an answer before he listens—
that is his folly and his shame.

For some reason, I seem to have been “blessed” with lots of people over the course of my life who think they’re really smart. The key word there is, think… Pretty much everywhere I’ve been there have been people who think they know all the answers to anyone’s question.

It’s a real pain!

How is it that people think they know the answer to every question someone might have? I just can’t fathom thinking I know the answers to all your questions. There are lots of things I don’t know about, and I won’t pretend to know about them either.

But, even worse than the person who thinks they know everything is the person who answers your question before you even finish asking it…now that’s a person you shouldn’t listen to.

In fact, if I could, I would carry around a cone of shame for these folks. The only reason I wouldn’t do that is because they’re kind of awkward to carry around. Perhaps I could come up with a smaller version that could fold up and fit in my back pocket. It would be kind of fun to just pull out a cone of shame from my back pocket and put it on the person who gives an answer without listening.

“You must wear the cone of shame.”

But, seriously, how do you deal with these people? Since it’s not that practical, and I guess not all that polite, to force a cone of shame on someone, we do need a way to handle them.

First, if you are one of these people, for the sake of all humanity – stop annoying us with your brilliant stupidity. Just because you can answer everyone’s question doesn’t make you right. It also doesn’t mean your answer is the best answer. So, learn to shut your mouth.

Second, if you encounter one of these people – you’re just going to have to find a way to politely leave the conversation. Just wait for a lul and change the subject or leave.

Third, if you know one of these people – and you feel like you can help them see what they’re doing, then you might be the person who needs confront this bad habit in them. For some reason, some of them don’t even know that they are doing it. But, if you have the kind of relationship where you can help them see what they’re doing – help them see it. You’re not just helping them you’re helping everyone they talk to.