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Dimthar
07-25-2008, 09:26 PM
How Literate are your worlds? according to a graph in wikipedia the World's Illiteracy was around 37% in 1970. ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:World-Literacy-Rate-1970to2015.TC.png )

Historically the lower classes were/are illiterate, and giving the masses the ability to read/write has been associated with "Rebellion against the Status Quo".

As a GM, do you actually emphasize this aspect of your society?

Are specific races (e.g. Elves) more "Educated" than others (e.g. Humans or Orcs). Does an "Elf Hunter" has more Common Knowledge than a Human Farmer? Better Math Skills?

Do you have geniuses of the size of Archimedes?

.

agoraderek
07-25-2008, 09:45 PM
in my homebrew, literacy is generally limited to the nobiity and clergy, with wizards being an obvious exception. most elves and gnomes are literate in their own languages, dwarves follow the patern for humans, but more artisans are literate in their society. halflings follow human norms, and orcs, with some exceptions, are mostly illiterate, and follow the oral traditions of lore and storytelling. hobgoblins, interestingly enough, tend to mostly be literate.

some human cultures have higher percentages of literacy, but even the most educated society only boasts about 50% literacy.

in gaming terms, only clerics, paladins, bards and wizards are automatically literate, other classes have to either come from a backround that would logically have had formal education (raised in a monastary, 5th son of a petty noble family) or have to burn a skill point to gain literacy in their native tongue. for bonus languages, one point gets you conversational literacy, another gets you written literacy. if you get bonus languages for racial or intelligence reasons, it is spoken only unless you burn the point for reading as well. this doesn't apply to languages that use the same alphabet (i learned to speak spanish without reading it - just talking - but i can read spanish fairly well anyway, for example).

so, that's the basics.

DMMike
07-25-2008, 10:21 PM
Obviously it depends on personal taste, but I cracked open a random Forgotten Realms book and almost threw up in disgust when a traveler & farmer conversation went:

"Haven't seen you in a while! What have you been up to!?"
"Oh, just reading the latest So And So novel. I really think the series is going well. I'm so glad to add it to my home library!"

Ugh. Literacy for me is an upper class, middle class, and wizards thing. If that sounds like a lot of people, you haven't seen my peasant classes. My elves are tribal and mostly oral-based, so they have pretty low literacy. Otherwise, any race integrated into a city-state has a decent amount of literacy.

Engar
07-26-2008, 12:27 AM
I much prefered when speaking and literacy were separate costs. I liked the idea of an oral tradition (hence multiple spoken languages in a fantasy setting, bards, storytelling around a campfire, etc.) vs. a written tradition in my game worlds.

tesral
07-26-2008, 01:27 AM
Literacy must be bought in my world. It is not a freebie. So the default state is illiterate. Some racial skill packs have literacy as part of the racial skill pack.

nijineko
07-27-2008, 09:10 PM
to be honest, most of the campaigns i have run have been in what i call my "for-the-heck-of-it" campaign world. i have two main worlds... the other is the serious in-continuity-only campaign world. in the first, i don't really bother, unless it is a plot point or something equally important. in the latter, it must usually be bought seperately, and costs more for some languages.

tesral
07-27-2008, 10:01 PM
I much prefered when speaking and literacy were separate costs. I liked the idea of an oral tradition (hence multiple spoken languages in a fantasy setting, bards, storytelling around a campfire, etc.) vs. a written tradition in my game worlds.
I have everyone speak three or even more languages. A decidedly polyglot world.

Engar
07-27-2008, 11:09 PM
I have everyone speak three or even more languages. A decidedly polyglot world.

That seems practical and logical in a world where many characters grow up aquainted with native speakers of a wide variety of languages. I just cannot wrap my head around them stopping same speakers to sit them down with a chalk board and review their written alphabet. I know logic has a limited application to roleplaying, but come on.

At the risk of the whip, in 4e it is even worse since linguistics is a repeatable feat granting three additional languages both written and spoken. 3.x was a degradation with the bonding of fluency with literacy, but it was easy to house rule.

4e makes fixing it with a house rule much more complicated. First, it bundled more than one issue. I dislike the three pack and I dislike the literacy component. Unbundling it makes taking the feat(s) self-sacrifice on the part of the PC. 3.x and before you could tweek it without tossing or remaking the system for language. 4e may force the disolution of the feat in exchange for a whole new "side system" just for language. Doing anything outside the box or customized with 4e seems a heck of a lot more challenging and complicating than ever before. Anyone reminded of that old SNL diner skit? Cheeseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger! You want steak? Okay, I make you cheesebuger!

*crack* Okay, okay, 4e is great...

Aidan
07-27-2008, 11:36 PM
For 4e I'd just tie literacy with skill knowledge. Anyone with training in Arcana, Religion or History is literate, anyone else isn't. Perhaps some exceptions for various NPC trades or professions.

Dimthar
07-28-2008, 01:19 PM
I don't have any trouble with the PCs being able to "Read & Write", they are special in so many ways that having these skills as standard doesn't seem important.

On the other hand, if a particular Player wants to role-play an illiterate PC, I guess it would be fair from my side to compensate him by giving him something else in exchange.

It was my impression from the Cormyr "Excerpt" that the Forgotten Realms are slowly getting political correct (I wonder if still there are slaves) .. you know with all this "Trial by a Jury of Peers (which by the way is not even a standard practice around our world) ..

Personally I still like to present a world with the Dark Side of Illiteracy, Slavery, Racism or Classism since it gives the opportunity to make the PCs bite their lips and not being able to do anything about it, or on the opposite side, try to do something about it, free the Slaves (Spartacus!), remove a Monarchy, so on and so forth.... .... and fail!! muahahaha! (Did I said that aloud?)

.

Valdar
07-28-2008, 01:51 PM
Illiteracy would add a lot to the simulationism of a game, but in my experience, all players are going to make sure they can read, so whatever game mechanic you're going to use to require people to be literate, the players will jump through that hoop, so there's really no point to imposing it. Illiteracy has such a stigma of unintelligence in our modern world that players I've encountered won't sympathize with an illiterate character.

Personally, I've let the tail wag the dog here, and said that if everyone's functionally literate, then that means that the printing press exists, and there's cheap access to paper. Scrolls and magic spells can't be printed, because there's something involved with creating them that the press can't duplicate, but it did mean that I could write up a newspaper complete with sidequest adventure hooks for sessions that started in town...

Engar
07-28-2008, 04:04 PM
I don't have any trouble with the PCs being able to "Read & Write", they are special in so many ways that having these skills as standard doesn't seem important.

That is fair, especially if literacy never comes into play. I like these little factors though. I can think of no reasonable (and DnD reasonable really stretches) cover for a character reading and writing a dozen languages, let alone picking them up in any blocks of three. Today I am fluent and literate in common. Tomorrow I know three more. It is not even practical to pick only languages the party members know since a block of three probably goes beyond their abilities too.


Illiteracy would add a lot to the simulationism of a game...

Please define simulationism. It may be a typo or I just do not understand.


...all players are going to make sure they can read...

I have always been a little... "different". Nothing like having to trust the wizard to honestly tell you which is the men's room at the castle.


Illiteracy has such a stigma of unintelligence in our modern world that players I've encountered won't sympathize with an illiterate character.

I recommend sensitivity training. They sound stubborn and probably will not retain much, but the threat of having to repeat the torture should force some improvement. Failing that, maybe an acting class. Try telling them how equating literacy with intelligence or roleplaying with real life has the same stigma as illiteracy. Just do not explain, let them figure out what that means on their own.

fmitchell
07-28-2008, 04:37 PM
Allowing all PCs to read is like having all intelligent creatures speak "Common" ... while it removes a lot of tedious (implied) translation, it can also prevent some interesting plots.

If only nobles can read, the PCs might have a message they can't understand ... but which might read "kill the bearers of this message". Or they might be in a foreign city which uses different illustrated signs than back home, and they must distinguish a tavern from the magistrate's office.

Also, consider not all languages have the same script, or the same type of script. Someone who can read and write English can read or write French or German fairly easily after learning either of those languages; Greek and Russian have less familiar letters, but they're still an alphabet. Reading and writing Arabic is tougher even though it's an alphabet, reading Japanese kana even harder because each character is a syllable ... and reading Chinese or full Japanese (kana and kanji) requires years of memorization just to understand at the level of a school child.

Actually ... perhaps the best of both worlds would be to allow PCs to read Common ... but many peasants can't read at all, and the nobility and other powerful groups communicate in their own, almost impenetrable ideographs. (Medieval Japan was a little like this.) Or, the nation next door has its own written language so different from Common that only someone who spent years there could read it. And then there's the classic "ancient script of a long-dead people".

Engar
07-28-2008, 08:01 PM
In Darksun knowing how to read and write was a capital offense. Traders had a special written math system for record keeping which was accepted. Mages did not carry spellbooks they had rune etched spell sticks or various hide in plain sight or concealable items.

I agree not all races/creatures need speak common either.

boulet
07-28-2008, 09:20 PM
Fantasy settings go through different levels of similarity with European medieval history. If one wants to embrace verisimilitude with medieval atmosphere I think it makes sense to use lack of literacy as a common denominator of a huge majority of society, nobles included. It coincides with a rarefaction of a "classic" literature that may exist only sporadically in the hands of a few erudite (Arab scholars for examples). One could argue that this lack of literacy is related to a strong centralized religion like Catholicism. The uniform and exclusive religion explains why some texts survived (the designed canon, plus accepted thinkers like St Augustin or Plato) while others almost disappeared because they didn't support dogma.

On the positive side, illiteracy is responsible for beautiful art forms like bas-relief, stained glass windows, icons or one of my favorite : Bosch's painting...

Dimthar
07-28-2008, 09:53 PM
Actually, I just saw on the Cable "The Professional" movie. Leon does not know how to read, later I realized that he did not know "How to read English".

Multilingual Persons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bilingual) are rare in our world. In the "Regular" Fantasy setting we are even forcing almost everyone to speak 2 languages (Common + Mother Tongue").


Residents in border areas between two countries of mixed languages where each language is seen of equal prestige, efforts may be made by both language communities to acquire an L2. Yet, in areas where one language is more prestigious than the other, speakers of the less prestigious language may acquire the dominant language as an L2. In time, however, the different language communities may likely become one, as one language becomes extinct in that area.

It happen to me in Monaco, that in a souvenir store, the lady did not speak English, Spanish or Italian, only French, and Italy was less than 50 Km from there. And this is the Age of Schools.

I guess, it is a matter of deciding if we want the players to come up with creative ideas to overcome the "language barrier".

.

fmitchell
07-29-2008, 12:51 AM
On the other hand, some areas are explicitly bi-lingual or multi-lingual:

In Germany, I know that about half of the population speaks English. I dialed a wrong number and tried to explain my mistake in crappy German before the man at the other end realized I was American and switched to English.

India has a number of "common languages". Hindi is the language of the dominant ethnic group, and the "official" language, but other groups retain their own regional languages. Especially in the tech industry, English is a "lingua franca" among the various ethnic groups.

If I recall correctly, children in Iceland learn Icelandic, English, French, and German by the time they leave school.

A friend of mine in college knew Spanish, Portuguese, and French in addition to English. He dismissed this feat, saying that once you learned on Romance language, the rest were easy. Similarly, Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish are supposed to be very similar.

So, in a human-dominated fantasy world, most peasants might know only "Common", or a local dialect of Common. Travelers and educated people, however, will know multiple languages, and adapt to different dialects easily.

BTW, The distinction between a "dialect" and a "language" is partly political. Chinese supposedly only has "dialects", but they're more like independent but related language with a single ideographic writing system. On the other hand, Catalan is now recognized as a separate language, but in the past was simply thought of as "weird French" or "weird Spanish"; there's a movement to recognize "Scots" as a different language from English, although much of the vocabulary is simply English words spelled phonetically with a strong Scottish accent.

tesral
07-29-2008, 02:12 AM
The familiar languages of Thindacarulle. Not all have a literate part. Some can be written several ways.

Table P40 -- Common Languages and Their Alphabets
Language -- Typical Speakers -- Alphabet
Human
Ameridian -- Amerid people -- none
Anorian -- Frankessa -- Latinate
Arabic -- Hundred Kingdoms -- Arabic
Arailanese -- Arailaners -- Tegwar
Catilanese -- The Domains -- Latinate
Celtic -- North-west Humans -- Latinate
Common -- Everyone -- Trade argot, Tegwar or Lainate
Egyptain -- Eyptians -- ieratic, Hieroglyphic
Germanic -- North Inner Sea -- Runic
Greek -- Greeks and others in the Inner sea -- Greek
Hindusaii -- Hindi -- Sanskirt
Markian -- Markia -- Kanji
Norse -- Nordic People -- Runic
Nubian -- Central Humans -- Nubian
Persian -- Morland -- Hieratic
Pictish -- Picts -- none


"Racial"
Avian -- Avains -- Tegwar
Centauran -- Centaurs -- Tegwar, Greek
Draconic -- Kobolds, dragons -- none
Dwarven -- Dwarves -- Runic
Giant -- Ogres, giants -- Runic (if any)
Gnoll -- Gnolls -- none
Gnome -- Gnomes -- Runic
Goblin -- Goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears -- Runic (if any)
Leoman -- Leomans -- Tegwar
Orcish -- Orcs -- none
Quenya -- Elves, fey -- Tegwar
Sindarin -- Grey Elves, Scholars -- Tegwar


Planer Tongues
Abyssal -- Demons -- Infernal
Aquian -- Water Planer creatures -- Aquian
Auran -- Air Planer creatures -- Auran
Celestial -- Angels -- Celestial
Coveriss -- Devas -- Covern
Ignan -- Fire Planer creatures -- Ignan
Lucarian -- Devils -- Lucarian
Terran -- Earth Planer creatures -- Terran


Magical
Aij'h -- Sects of Eecreeana -- Tegwar
Arcane -- Magicians -- Arcane
Druidic -- Tutha Da Dannan Clerics (Druids) --Ogma
Finnish -- Melikki -- Ogma
Hebin -- Angleic Sects -- Hebin
Kellin -- Fellowship of Plenty -- Latinate
Latun -- Church of Mephistopheles -- Latinate
Quintana -- Elven Priests, scholars -- Tegwar
Russian -- Church of Creation -- Crylic
Sindril -- Centaur Sects -- Tegwar

Engar
07-29-2008, 08:37 AM
So, in a human-dominated fantasy world, most peasants might know only "Common", or a local dialect of Common. Travelers and educated people, however, will know multiple languages, and adapt to different dialects easily.

And there is the rub. Even a non-human area may have "common" which might be a dialect. It is a neat work around that may not be realistic, but solves many problems in the system.

Without being in an actual classroom it becomes much less likely that any character would read and write. Speaking may be prevalent, but literacy is much different and not something most would need often enough to learn it on their own. The educated ones are likely to be literate in one language, but without a strong influence (church, government, whatever) I see no reason to learn a second. I do not understand how or why all PC's went to a diverse and multi-linguistical college. Perhaps all games should begin with the commencement speech?

"So jock, nerd, class clown and religious guy are all in the bar together when you hear a loud crash and a fight ensues. You all just got your diplomas and no one found a job yet, what do you do?"

Valdar
07-29-2008, 09:58 AM
Please define simulationism. It may be a typo or I just do not understand.


Verisimilitude, assisting with suspension of disbelief, realisticness- usually opposes "gamism", which is running things in a way that makes for a better game, at the expense of realism or believabiliity, but doesn't always oppose it.



I recommend sensitivity training. They sound stubborn and probably will not retain much, but the threat of having to repeat the torture should force some improvement. Failing that, maybe an acting class. Try telling them how equating literacy with intelligence or roleplaying with real life has the same stigma as illiteracy. Just do not explain, let them figure out what that means on their own.

Or, you could just run the game the players would enjoy and stop trying to make them miserable out of spite :D That would depend on your goals as a DM, though.

fmitchell
07-29-2008, 11:04 AM
Without being in an actual classroom it becomes much less likely that any character would read and write. Speaking may be prevalent, but literacy is much different and not something most would need often enough to learn it on their own. The educated ones are likely to be literate in one language, but without a strong influence (church, government, whatever) I see no reason to learn a second. I do not understand how or why all PC's went to a diverse and multi-linguistical college. Perhaps all games should begin with the commencement speech?

A PC who comes from the nobility or clergy would be literate, unless he/she came from some backwater village province, or "scribes" hold a monopoly on literacy (esp. if the written language is horrendously complex). Merchants would learn how to read if illiteracy meant losing money. Other PCs might learn to read from the village priest (maybe he runs a Sunday school), or take the time to learn from a scribe or other literate person. Much as college is considered a gateway to advancement today, literacy could be considered the key to success.

Also, you could flip my argument around: many disparate languages could use the same script: all European languages use the Roman script (with variations), for example. So multiple human languages in the same region could use the same phonetic writing system; if you know how to read Saxic, you can read Kymric once you know how to pronounce all those 'W's. Nonhumans could use the same system, especially if humans originally learned it from the elves or some similar ancient race. Learning another alphabetic or even syllabic system is harder, but once you know the base trick of reading it just requires practice. (Ideographic systems, on the other hand, are impenetrable unless someone tells you what all 3000 characters mean. Hieroglyphics made no sense until the Rosetta Stone provided the same text in Greek and two Egyptian writing systems, one of which turned out to be alphabetic.)

EDIT: Oh, and learning different alphabets might also have a commercial reason: if your major trading partners are the squiggle-letter people, you'd learn how to read squiggles pretty darn fast.

tesral
07-29-2008, 11:31 AM
It's not an issue of what is right or wrong. It is an issue of what is the flavor of the world.

Mine depends largely on where did you grow up. Some areas have public education and printing presses. Reading is common. In other areas the do not have these luxuries and reading is uncommon. "Common" is the lingua franca of the world and will vary from major area to major area to some degree. For example traders along the Storm Coast do not have the same common as found along the Inner sea. There is little contact between the two areas. It is never a first language.

If you are looking for a Dark Ages flavor literacy should be near unheard of. Iron Age, might not even exist. Egyptian, fairly common. Roman, again moderately common.

Vary the commonness of literacy to the flavor of your game. I will point out that literacy is still not a universal condition in the 21st century. It should be, but that is a different subject.

I don't agree that the system should default to a state of universal literacy. It should describe several states of literacy and tell you how to allocate skill points in each case.


The various terms do have scientific meanings in the linguistic community.

Dialect (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dialect)
Pidgin (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pigin)
Creole (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creole_language)

squidyak
08-04-2008, 12:23 AM
In my campaigns not all characters can read and write, literacy is a skill. One rank allows a character to make out simple words. Two ranks allows basic literacy in the character's primary language. Four ranks allows literacy in all known spoken languages that have a written language. Any points beyond that is mainly used by academics and as a profession.

Bearfoot_Adam
08-04-2008, 06:16 PM
Is it reasonable for differant races to have the same language? Or does that take away from the races culture too much. I'm just thinking that say language and written word was handed down by one god to the mortals of the land be they dwarf or elf or fuzzy little chatting mongooses. If they have the ability to speak it's all the same.

Valdar
08-04-2008, 11:33 PM
Is it reasonable for differant races to have the same language? Or does that take away from the races culture too much. I'm just thinking that say language and written word was handed down by one god to the mortals of the land be they dwarf or elf or fuzzy little chatting mongooses. If they have the ability to speak it's all the same.

I'd say it would work to have races with an ancestral language that they don't use anymore- much the same way that there are languages like Irish and Navajo, but most Irish and Navajo speak English natively. So, there could be a Gnomish language, but due to certain events, all gnomes speak Elvish by default...

fmitchell
08-05-2008, 03:07 AM
Is it reasonable for differant races to have the same language? Or does that take away from the races culture too much. I'm just thinking that say language and written word was handed down by one god to the mortals of the land be they dwarf or elf or fuzzy little chatting mongooses. If they have the ability to speak it's all the same.

That definitely works. Or, if multiple "races" have cooperated since time immemorial (perhaps until a century or two ago), they might have a shared language. In the real world, different languages develop as a result of physical or sometimes social barriers. If the dwarves stick to their mines and the elves to their forest, they might develop two different languages (perhaps based off an extinct tongue), just as two human populations separated by a mountain range or large forest might. However, if Westron humans, halflings, cat people, and flumpfs all mingle more-or-less freely, they'd probably speak the same tongue natively, even if the halflings still use their all-but-forgotten ancestral tongue for names and slang terms, the cat-people say 'nya' at the end of every sentence, and the flumpfs still use their unique tendril-sign among themselves.

Getting back to literacy, though, peoples with multiple (related) spoken language could have the same written language. Chinese is a prime example, with its multiple "dialects" that all use the same ideographic language. In medieval Europe, Latin was the language of educated people, notably clergy, and most texts were written in Latin. Muslim nations generally write using Arabic letters, although the Turks switched to Roman letters in the 20th century. And so forth.

So I can imagine that, in a fantasy world, the elves or some other stable culture could have developed written language first, and adapted its alphabet to the myriad spoken languages of their world. Perhaps, even, most spoken languages were offshoots or dialects of elvish.

(Actually, I'd love to see -- or GM -- a world where spoken languages were one to three simple levels of fluency ... but reading the dominant multi-lingual ideographic language was a skill test against the difficulty of the inscription. Although, to keep from getting lynched, I might also add "demotic" forms of writing that most semi-literate people use for personal letters, but which require knowledge of a specific language to read.)

Valdar
08-06-2008, 02:27 AM
However, if Westron humans, halflings, cat people, and flumpfs all mingle more-or-less freely, they'd probably speak the same tongue natively, even if the halflings still use their all-but-forgotten ancestral tongue for names and slang terms, the cat-people say 'nya' at the end of every sentence, and the flumpfs still use their unique tendril-sign among themselves.


Nice- Someday I may hand out an important document written in Ancient Flumpf, which will require a significant effort to find a scholar who can read/ interpretive dance it.

Actual flumpfs will of course be extinct at that point. Don't want to make it too easy.

Holocron
09-21-2008, 01:10 AM
I always used GURPS for Fantasy gaming, and literacy was an ability you had to spend points on because most of the world was illiterate. Usually only the nobility or people in government were literate. You wouldn't necessarily be surprised to find a non-noble being literate, it was just a lot less comon.

Since it cost 10 pts to get literacy, and we usually only got 100 pts to make characters with, most people opted to stay illiterate and use the 10 pts on something else. The people that bought literacy were usually the serious magic users, because in theory they could do some research and eventually learn new spells through reading, although in my memory nobody ever learned new spells that way, they always had someone else teach them something if they knew a spell the person was interested in.

Curiously, I can only think of one instance where literacy ever came up as a useful trait in our campaigns, one of my characters found a letter that revealed he had been following a wild goose chase for almost a year...

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
09-21-2008, 10:39 AM
In my world, literacy, is a very rare thing. Only Wizards, scribes, a few nobles, officers of a few religions, and professors know the written language. So, i'd say about 1 percent of society are literate.

I also run my games with 5% of the world being sociopaths. I rarely comes up, but it does every once in a while.

Now, if you have been adventuring with other races and you tell me you wish to learn the others language and vise versa, then i find no problem with that.

Yep, i run the literacy level of around 6th century Europe, diseases and all.

tesral
09-21-2008, 10:42 AM
Now, if you have been adventuring with other races and you tell me you wish to learn the others language and vise versa, then i find no problem with that.

Yep, i run the literacy level of around 6th century Europe, diseases and all.

Literacy is a disease?

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
09-21-2008, 10:43 AM
I could have been more clear, but i believe folks here know what i meant.

nijineko
09-21-2008, 04:06 PM
my wife would claim it is.... ^^ but then i'm a bookoholic from way way back. it doesn't help that my concentration when reading is intense enough that i don't hear what's being said around me.

Grumpy Old Man
09-23-2008, 11:30 AM
Most of my fighters and all of my Orc types have been illiterate. But I am playing a fighter character right now who is not only literate but searches out libraries. It fits for him because of his back story; his fathers best friend was a priest and my fighters best friend, (and now wife) was the clerics daughter so he was schooled by the cleric, (an inquisitor), and influenced heavily by the tales of his Halfling uncle, a literate rogue. Plus his mother who died at his birth was minor nobility and left him a small library so reading is his connection to her. This character is not the strong silent type but a motor mouth so it helped to have a literate background to account for his I know almost everything personality. His party spends a lot of time bailing him out of jail. He's been a fun character for me to play and the DM has given me more rope for this character than he probably should because he wants to see what kind of trouble he is going to get into next. Good IQ but common sense of a lobotomized puppy on drugs.

tesral
09-23-2008, 11:39 AM
Good IQ but common sense of a lobotomized puppy on drugs.]

Snerk! I'm going to remember that one.