There's no polite way of saying this, so I'm just gonna say it, even though it will make me sound more of a jerk than I already am.
Okay I'll try to sugarcoat it a bit.
People with less knowledge tend to rub it in when they know something someone else doesn't.
Why do I say this? Why even talk about this?
Because its annoying when they do it to me, and I have to be the nice guy and keep quiet.
(Although I may have done some things to annoy them as well.)
When I ask someone something, the all-too common reply would be "Seriously, you don't know?"
Here are some of the replies that run through my head:
"Pssh, no... I just asked so that you would ask me that condescending question which would ultimately make me feel stupider than I did when I asked the question."
"NO I DON'T KNOW. WHY THE HELL WOULD I ASK IF I DID."
"Yeah I don't know, coz well, only uncivilized people would"
In the end, I just bite my tongue and go with the last one. I am seriously trying to be a nice person.
Honestly, when someone asks me something, I just tell them.
I don't ask them stupid condescending questions because I do not expect everyone to know what I know, and neither can I know what everyone knows. No one person can know everything, you know?
And also, I don't want people to feel bad. I do enough of that already.
(even when they should feel bad for not knowing such a basic / general bit of information / knowledge!)
I seriously should get a medal for trying to be a nice person.
Anyways, I've deduced a reasoning for these responses.
The people that say these kinds of things, aren't very clever, they probably have self-esteem issues and will take any opportunity to show how clever they are.
Or they're just mean.
Before you go and call me an jerk, an A-hole, a sunnavabeech and all that, think back.
When you did your studies, or when you're at work, has a Professor / Teacher / Senior colleague / generally someone you consider to be smart or smarter than you, ever asked you that question?
"Excuse me Professor, what is the purpose of life?"
"Dude, like seriously you don't know?!"
Ignore the dude part. Think back. Think really REALLY hard.
If the answer is no, then that proves my point.
If the answer is yes, then ask yourself another question : Was that person an annoying jerk?
If the answer is yes again, then my point is proven again.
If the answer is no, then we agree to disagree.
Even though I'm right. But its cool, I don't mind.
Another reason why I wanted to talk about this, is because, smart people can be asses as well.
I, generally speaking can understand things faster than some people.
Generally speaking. I'm not saying I'm a genius or anything, its just that I feel that I pick up things at a faster rate.
I may or may not remember it afterwards, but at that time, I can understand it.
Call me a show-off, but its true.
To me, sometimes, a seemingly average question about something might sound like a silly question.
And an actually silly question, would immediately kick my sarcasticness to high gear.
It takes every ounce of self-control I have to not be mean at this point.
Example : I was telling people at work about this video I saw on Youtube. It was a video of a modern-day Samurai. He was so badass, that they shot a pellet straight at him, (a wee pellet, the size of a regular bead), and he could cut the pellet in half! I shit you not. Go look for him on Youtube.
So here comes this blurry colleague, asking silly things about the video.
"Diorang tembak dia dari jauh ke dekat?"
"Kenapa orang tembak dia?"
"Kenapa dia nak potong peluru tu?"
Patiently, seeing as how this was an old friend, and I was already aware of how blur she can be sometimes (well not sometimes but most of the time), carefully explained and answered each silly question as calm and as unsarcastically as can be.
But the last question she had was the kicker.
"Oh.... OK OK... so..."
"Siapa yang hebat nye? Orang yang tembak ke orang yang potong peluru tu?"
OMFG, I so wanted to jump off the 19th floor of the Menara HLA at that moment.
All the frustration and pent-up sarcasticness just burst out into an unnaturally loud laughter.
I just laughed out loud and left her before I could say anything.
"HOW IS IT SO DIFFICULT TO UNDERSTAND!"
See, this is what my brain tells me all the time.
And in order to not be alienated, I repress this thought.
It's mean, I know it is. But sometimes I cannot help it.
Sarcasm, in a way, is my brain's compromise. Not too mean, but not too nice either.
At least I take an effort in not being mean. Other people just laugh at silly questions. Or just go sarcastically mean.
There's a difference, being sarcastic and being sarcastically mean. Most people can't tell which from which.
But enough about my brain.
Long story short, as Albert Einstein aptly put it :
"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a
tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
Every single human being on this planet is superior to someone else in at least one way. And by that basis everyone is also inferior to everyone else in at least one way.
So try not to patronize someone simply because you know something they don't, or you can do something they can't.