- Paul Davidson
Fool Me Once, Twice, Three Times A Lady
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
I’ve put a lot of thought into what I’m about to tell you and I know that you know when I say I’ve put a lot of thought into something you know damn well I have indeed probably put way too much thought time into it. But on this particular fooling situation, I have spent the necessary time coming to a very serious, very important conclusion.
If you fool me once, okay, shame on you. I get that. That makes sense. If you fool me once, and you’ve done it to make me look bad in front of all my friends and family and it has involved some kind of hidden-camera thing or something with pies ending up in my face or something about racy photographs or private investigators or a whoopie cushion or whatever — you are an immature bastard who deserves to have shame heaped upon your plate. Personally, I don’t appreciate you making me look like a fool and really, it’s obvious that you don’t have better (more important and intelligent) things to do, which is easily realized by the fact that you go around trying to fool me all the live long day.
Well, it’s damn annoying. And from the point you fooled me once, I’ve decided that I will no longer be talking to you, interacting with you, or even inviting you to this weekend’s dinner party. And that, my friend, should end this horrible little hobby you’ve got going on.
But alas, could I have been wrong?
There you go, fooling me a second time. But see, here’s where I have a serious problem with the saying. If you’ve fooled me a second time, why in the hell should I be shaming myself? You don’t tell the guy who jay-walked two times in a row and got hit by a car two times in a row that he’s the one who’s at fault — do you? Do you tell the woman who has spilled hot coffee on her lap (so hot that it’s really life-threateningly dangerous) two times that the first time was McDonald’s fault and the second time is her fault? Do you tell the guy who got a cavity two times in a row that the first time was Nestlee’s fault and the second was his?
No, no, no, no and no. (Please subtract three no’s.)
The reality of the shaming and the fooling and the ignoring of the fooler by the shamer is this: If you fool me once, I am willing to accept the shame because I was obviously not observant enough to realize that having you as a friend was going to end up annoying the crap out of me. But if you fool me a second time, I will not accept the shame.
The reason you fooled me a second time was because you have nothing better to do with your time than try to fool me a second time. Period. You’re the one who should be looking for a hobby like knitting or action-figure collecting or bobsledding. If you have the time to try and fool me a second time, after already fooling me the first time, then well — you should be ashamed of yourself.
As for fooling me “three times a lady” — this is a totally different scenario that involves three women, fooling me three times, and well — I’d rather not get into the details of that.
You’ll be glad I didn’t.