Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Smug Pedant Trap

Watch their jaws /metaphorically/ hit the floor
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We first set up a system of cables and pulleys that is suspended from a gantry, and connected to an oversized pair of reinforced boots. The connection between the pulley system and the boots is quadruple-purchased, connecting at the bottom of the boot. The ends of the cables run up the insides of the boots, terminating in a handsome leather strap at the top of each boot.

To use, you simply stand inside the boots, grab the straps, and utilize mechanical advantage to lift yourself a few inches off the ground (if you can lift one quarter of your body weight a foot high, you can lift yourself three inches off the ground with this system). Once a certain height is reached, a camera is automatically triggered, and the resulting photograph is emailed to you. The trap is now set.

From then on, you can go around telling people that you “literally” pulled yourself up by your bootstraps. Then you just have to wait until some smartass comes back with, “Really, you /literally/ lifted yourself off the ground by yanking on your own bootstraps?” Simply produce the photograph (with appropriate flourish), and savor the look on his face.

ytk, Jun 22 2012

Durn tootin! Bootstrap_20pulling
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Jun 23 2012]

Need help finding your trivial pants? What_20Pants_20Should_20I_20Wear_3f
Sorry, no Windows version. [Alterother, Jun 25 2012]

"Died of states' rights" https://en.wikipedi...states%27_rights%22
Historian Frank Lawrence Owsley [8th of 7, Oct 04 2020]

Not alone https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZgJ3g-9k2Bk
"Governments" are things that people just made up [spidermother, Oct 04 2020]


       I'm guessing that boot-straps attached to a generator, then using that electricity to power a winch might be more successful?
not_morrison_rm, Jun 22 2012

       It'd be harder to communicate what exactly was happening via photograph. You don't need to lift yourself very high—just enough to make your claim technically valid.
ytk, Jun 22 2012

       I wouldn't want to be in your shoes, [ytk].
UnaBubba, Jun 22 2012

       walk a mile in the other guys shoes, then you're a mile away and you have his shoes..Terry Pratchett, I think?
not_morrison_rm, Jun 22 2012

       No, older than that. Still, it's a great tribute to Pratchett that other peoples' achievements are starting to get attributed to him - like Charlemagne.   

       {leaves cheap joke set up for next poster}
pertinax, Jun 22 2012

       There's something very Handey about that quote.
RayfordSteele, Jun 22 2012

       Not a fan of the overmisuse of the term "literally" like "I LITERALLY jumped 300 feet in the air I was so excited." but I wince in silence.   

       Bun, though you can get the same effect by saying "Shut up poindexter." This works surprisingly well.
doctorremulac3, Jun 22 2012

       "I literally said I jumped 300 feet in the air I was so excited."   

       "After climbing Mount McKinley I was so excited I literally jumped 20,320 feet in the air."   

       "Hiking in Death Valley was so exciting I literally jumped -282 feet in the air!"
rcarty, Jun 22 2012

       Though I stand atop a mountain, I am still only the height of a man.
Alterother, Jun 22 2012

       How about a Ninja-team of instant arboriculturalists to cover your ass next time you say "It's literally a jungle out there" ?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 22 2012

       The pulley concept is widely known, but I have to wonder how many people have actually used one.   

       I recall being exposed to one in elementary school, and then fifty years later I used one to pull a stalled car up a slight incline. It felt really strange, because you could see the ton you were moving but it felt like a hundred pounds.
normzone, Jun 22 2012

       We were rather hoping this would be a deep pit with sharpened spikes - and a somewhat perforated [Unabubba] - at the bottom, but we will give a bun anyway.
8th of 7, Jun 22 2012

       Though I post annotation twice, I am still only saying something once.
rcarty, Jun 22 2012

       You can literally say that again!
pocmloc, Jun 22 2012

       How to Create a Smug Pedant Trap.   

       Step 1. Create website where said 'Smug Pedants' will naturally congregate.   

       Step 2. Encourage atmosphere at this website where Users are encouraged to confront other Users about misspellings, trivial breeches of website rules and any technical inaccuracies.   

       Step 3. (I don't know what happens at Step 3, but [jutta] assures me that we will all be surprised and It won't hurt for long.)
AusCan531, Jun 23 2012

       //Encourage atmosphere at this website where Users are encouraged to confront other Users about misspellings, trivial breeches of website rules//   

       Trivial pants? Where do I get a pair?
ytk, Jun 23 2012

       SSSNAAPP!! That's one.   

       (Are you looking for trivial pants to cover your inconsequential gonads [ytk]?)
AusCan531, Jun 23 2012

       I, like, literally halfbaked bootstrap pulling, before it was cool.   

       Oh God, I'm a closet hipster.   

       If the thing that one did was -literally- literal, then it would be merely written about, rather than actually done, Shirley?
pocmloc, Jun 23 2012

       {whew} dodged a bullet there then.   

       If it were _literally_ literally literal it would be written at the letter, rather than the word or sentence, level, and thus incomprehensible.
spidermother, Jun 23 2012

       I cryptoverlaptographically halfbaked that too.   

       Not literally though.   

       //written at the letter ... level, and thus incomprehensible// A? O, I C, U R O K.
pocmloc, Jun 23 2012

       Would it not be simpler to literally pull your socks up, literally turn over a new leaf or literally turn a corner?
marklar, Jun 25 2012

       So far, extensive research has failed to turn up a pedant who is not smug.
8th of 7, Jun 25 2012

       //Would it not be simpler to literally pull your socks up, literally turn over a new leaf or literally turn a corner?//   

       Yeah, but people might reasonably have actually done one of those things and the smug factor isn't nearly as high, so it's less likely to come up, and less awesome when it does.
ytk, Jun 25 2012

       I'm a non-smug pedant, [8th]. Pompous and arrogant, yes, but not smug.
Alterother, Jun 25 2012

       "Pompous and arrogant, yes, but not pedant."
rcarty, Jun 25 2012

       Three for three: bite me.
FlyingToaster, Jun 25 2012

Alterother, Jun 25 2012

       It would take more than a sharpened stake to penetrate my hide, [8th], as you well know.   

       In any case, it's not smugness if you're actually right. For instance, I notice your practically encyclopaedic knowledge of weaponry and violence are often trotted out, without you trying to sound the least bit smug.
UnaBubba, Jun 26 2012

       They've been doing it for so long that they hardly have to _try_ any longer.
Alterother, Jun 26 2012

       The Brits? Yep, possibly the most belligerent (maybe second-most) nation on Earth.
UnaBubba, Jun 26 2012

       Oh yeah ? OH YEAH ? Come over here and say that, we will kick your head in ...
8th of 7, Jun 26 2012

       One of my friends just did a great one. He literally went to greener pastures. He's moving back home to help out with the family farm.
marklar, Jul 01 2012

       Happened across this gem. I already bunned it. Good stuff.
doctorremulac3, Feb 24 2020

       //savor the look on his face.//   

Voice, Feb 24 2020

       When I was a small boy, I had an Action Man figure (or it could have been some other hero) who had a backpack. From the backpack emerged two strings. You tied one string to a door handle or other suspension point, and then you pulled *down* on the other string. Miraculously, the figure would then ascend.   

       This fascinated me until I took it apart to see how it worked, after which it didn't.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 25 2020

       I don't believe it was actually miraculous.
pocmloc, Feb 25 2020

       If it was a little figure of J.C., 97% of catholics would probably deem it "miraculous", 2% would probably say "Huh ? What ? Wait, let me put my spectacles on", and the 1% with no useable vision would pray to it to have their sight restored to them.   

       They're odd, that way ... big chunks of a complex belief system, predicated on a lot of unsubstantiated assertions by individuals who quite possibly either had profound mental health issues, or had been a bit careless about the wild mushrooms that went into their last meal. It may not always be that, of course - Patmos is fairly hot and sunny at times, and it could be that St. John the Divine simply spent too much time outdoors without a hat.   

       It's important to try and distinguish between "stuff that really happened" and "stuff that someone just made up". Pyramids are not natural structures, and exist whether you believe in them or not (try not believing in one and then attempt to walk through the space one allegedly occupies. Hint: wear shin protection). A reasonable conclusion on the basis of observable evidence is that "humans pushed big lumps of rock into a heap".   

       The belief system that persuaded them to do the pushing is ... a bit more flaky. Unlike the pyramids, which are unpleasantly solid.
8th of 7, Feb 25 2020

       Yeah, religious fundamentalists are weird. They can't even decide whether they worship one made-up deity or three - the Federal, the State, and the Local.
spidermother, Oct 04 2020

       Hello [spidey]. Its been literally ages since I last saw you here.
pocmloc, Oct 04 2020

       // Federal, the State, and the Local //   

       Ooooh, watch out for the State thing ... can be very dangerous ...   

8th of 7, Oct 04 2020

       I've literally been staying off the web.   

       It literally scared the shit out of me when I noticed that 1984 and Idiocracy were documentaries, but I used it to fertillise my macadamia and almond trees, so having grown some nuts, I'm back.   

       <link> This guy gets it about right.
spidermother, Oct 04 2020


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