Some Kind of Man

“For a species that evolved from apes it’s no real surprise that most people show no true signs of intelligence,” Eve read aloud. “Bashing rocks together and throwing poo seems about as complex a task as the average human being can manage.”

She paused and lowered the notes with her mouth hanging open. “Jesus Christ, Jack! You can’t say any of this.”

Jack snatched the pages from her and crossed out the opening two lines before sliding it back across the table. “How about the rest?”

Eve quickly skimmed the presentation, shaking her head more vigorously as she read further down. She didn’t even make it to the second page before she scrunched the entire thing into a ball and lobbed it at Jack’s face.

“Are you trying to get into trouble?” she asked animatedly.

“No, I’m just trying to be accurate,” Jack replied and pointed across the library at the tenth grader shoving a pencil into his nose. “If Mrs Jefford wants an accurate oral presentation then that’s what she’s going to get from me.”

“Well this isn’t going to work. Have you written anything else?”

“How about this?” Jack mused and flipped through his notebook to one of his earlier drafts. “In my short time on Earth I have learned that there is one absolute truth in life. Above all else the human race succeeds at ensuring there is no task too simple for a human to mess up. Be it opening a door that is labelled push or pull or walking by placing one foot in front of the other. If-”

“That’s enough,” Eve interrupted as she roughly rubbed her brow. “If you’re not going to take this seriously I’m not going to help you.”

“How am I not taking this seriously? Is there any part of what I’ve said that is untrue?”

“It’s not the facts that I’m disputing. It’s the way you’re presenting them. Sure people have their moments of stupidity but you should focus on the positive aspects of human evolution and the modern day man.”

“Like what? Name me one way that the population as a whole doesn’t still exhibit signs of caveman like behaviour. Let alone that of a monkey.”

“Well you’ve got the…” Eve began and realised that off the top of her head she couldn’t name a single way that humanity had shown definite signs of evolution. Speech, clothing and even intelligence were not a given and common factors across the world.

“See,” Jack said smugly, picking up on her loss for words. “I can’t write and talk about the positives when there aren’t any. But I sure as hell can go on about the negatives for three minutes and fifteen seconds and get some kind of a passing grade just for completing the task.”

“You do realise that doing the bare minimum is one of those things that makes you have no faith in humanity, right?”

Jack rocked back in his chair and placed his feet on the table as he interlaced his fingers behind his head. “If you can’t beat them join them. Isn’t that how the saying goes.”


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