What SHOULD you know

I’ve been a bit amazed by the things people have been admitting to not knowing recently. I’m flabberghasted that they manage to get through life, just as they’re probably mystified by my apparent inability to do as they do.

What are the basic practical skills you think everyone should possess in order to lead an independent existence?

Is it necessary to be able to strip an engine down to its component parts? Or to be able to put it back together? Or is it enough to be able to put oil in and change a wheel. Or is even that much necessary.

Is it enough to be able to add hot water to instant noodle? Or is the minimum standard a three-course meal?

How about fixing stuff at home? How many people can put a plug on a new appliance? Fix a leaking tap? Install a washing machine? Repaint that apartment?


What’s important to you? What skills are necessary to get through life with the minimum trouble?

How do you put a plug on an appliance? All the ones I have are sealed units.
I can shave a sax reed, though, and gauge the thickness by pressing it with my tongue.

In reality, though, you don’t need any real skills at all if you have a copy of this
I’ve fixed roofs, put in a damp proof course, laid an asphalt driveway, planted a lawn, plumbed in a new toilet, put in a fireplace and done all kinds of other stuff just by following the instructions in this book.

I know how to do all kinds of stuff that I never do here.
Mostly because I grew up in a place where things are made of completely different stuff than they are here, and where, even if you’re broke, a dwelling normally provides SPACE in which to do those things.
I did, however, recently amaze myself at quite handily dealing with rotted-out tuning head screw holes on my guitar.
I’d say at least knowing HOW things work and WHY they work is essential.

Yeah I noticed. That IS a nice new guitar you’ve got. I was wondering why you’d bought it. :wink:

Yeah I noticed. That IS a nice new guitar you’ve got. I was wondering why you’d bought it. :wink:[/quote]

Hnyuk, hnyuk…at least I didn’t use my tongue…

taiwan tooth picks are glorious things

Coupled with a glob of white glue – ‘aint nuthin’ ya cain’t fix with that combination, eh?

Good comunication skills and the ability to make good money should be able to take care of all the things that I can’t personally do. :slight_smile:

I can do some woodworking, paint, and can actually fix a leaky faucet, change the oil in a car, but I usually refuse to TRY to do things that I could seriously muck up and end up costly a bundle…like plumbing! :fume:


Coupled with a glob of white glue – ‘aint nuthin’ ya cain’t fix with that combination, eh?[/quote]

Yeah, obviously, I know it’s a monkey-simple fix, as I mentioned to AWOL at the time, my point isn’t that I’m Christian Fucking Martin, but rather that I actually did something. Because here, you never fix stuff, for the reasons I mentioned previously, or because it’s often exponentially more expensive to repair things than to replace them.

A human baby has almost no skills but somehow gets things done for it quite easily. What skills does a human baby have? is he question.


i have used toothpicks to fix vintage guitars so i aint arguing yr skills bro… chill.

The only thing required is the willingness to learn how to do things. Without that, I would never have learned how to change my own alternator or RAM, how to mash and brew, or how to make chainmail.

Anyone can (and should) learn to cook a two course meal, sew on a button, hem a pair of pants, fix a flat bicycle tire, bake cookies and cakes, put together DIY furniture (etc.) kits from IKEA, and speak a second language well enough to get by on vacation. That’s the bare minimum to be a competent human being, IMO.

Little babies get everything done for them pretty much the way most girlfriends get everything done for them:
Looking cute (or appealing, anyway)
Being (or acting) helpless enough to imbue a sense of responsibility for their well-being in others
Rewarding their benefactor with affection and devotion
Pooping in their pants

Erm, well, that last one, OK, maybe not EVERY girl I’ve ever gone out with…just the ones I met in The Zone…

Hooray! I’ve attained basic competence . . . but I wish that list included saving money, and that I’d managed that too.



Bake cookies and cakes???

Psychiatrist: “So Mr. Bones, after 2 hours of deliberation we have come to the conclusion that you are a danger to yourself and we recommend to the courts that you be locked up in a padded sell for your own protection. We believe you are incompetent as a human being and cannot look after yourself.
We are going to give you a final chance to plead your case. Is there anything else you would like us to consider?”

Dragonbones: “Erm, well yes. I can bake cookies and cakes.”

Psychiatrist: “Well why didn’t you say so?”

Aye! :cookie:

If you can’t make a chocolate chip cookie, you’re a total loss as a human being! :stuck_out_tongue:

Babies cry when wet, cold, afraid and hungry…communictaion skills
babies can turn themselves over, and or raise their head when having trouble breathing (not newborns, but after a few weeks they can)
they can follow things with their eyes (again after a few weeks)
they can grip things from birth
they can swallow and hold their breath

Keep mouth shut when nothing to say.

I am useless…

Since I was young, I always looked up to people with good “people” skills. It seems like the people with good social skills are always happier. Or maybe that’s just what people skills is about…Looking happy and content all the time. Maybe people skills comes with happiness and not the other way around…

Anyways, I say people skills is what you need because “it’s not what you know but who you know” that matters. We all know that.


My vote goes toward a fine-tuned intuition (trust that 1st gut feeling), a solid dose of old-fashioned common sense, and a vigorous appreciation of the March of Time, and All That That Entails…

Time, The Avenger! :grandpa: