In Defense of Florida [NOT 18/6/21]

State motto: Hold my beer

All of you know by now that I’m a Floridian, a true Florida Man, born in Gainesville and living here for most of my life (except for a time when I lived in Georgia and about which the less said the better). And you also all know about the regrettable Florida Man meme that’s been circulating … well, forever. You don’t? Well, let’s review some examples:

Drunk man steals floating tiki hut in Key West

“Once aboard, law enforcement found a person who showed signs of intoxication.” I mean, who among us hasn’t found themselves in this exact situation?

Tampa man hospitalized after setting himself on fire while allegedly trying to burn down home, police say

Scott Massa tried to throw a bucket of accelerant into a home but it ignited and set him on fire. The home was undamaged. Okay, the obvious idiocy here is not the truly remarkable thing. No, they buried the lede. The real story is: “Canine units tried to find Massa, but police say the trail was lost after he got into a vehicle and drove away.” A dude who was on fire and was presumably still smoldering managed to elude police. Who’s the dummy here? Not the Human Torch. Police did pick him up when he sought medical attention, but it hardly requires CSI to identify someone who looks like he slept in a campfire.

Fake teen doctor known as ‘Dr. Love’ arrested again on fraud charges in Florida

Let’s recap:

  1. Dude’s name is actually Love. I thought for sure … well, never mind what I thought.
  2. He was arrested at age 18 for illegally operating a medical practice, including an office. Who rents an office to an 18-year-old with fake credentials? See, the really amazing thing about Florida Man is that he literally couldn’t exist without a Florida Man ecosystem that aids and abets him.
  3. Patients didn’t realize he was only 18 at the time. Who needs medical school, amirite? I guess his patients thought Doogie Howser, MD was a documentary. See #2.
  4. After serving his sentence, he was arrested again for getting clients of the shipping company he worked for to send over $10,000 to his personal account. He would like the company to know, though, that he’d prefer to not go to jail again. Setting aside the fact that he has no shot at Employee of the Month, if his goal is to avoid jail, maybe don’t commit crimes. Just a thought.

There are very few Florida Men who manage to make the list twice.

Naked Florida man stole, crashed police car

For the moment, we’re going to set aside the fact that naked men run around Florida doing stupid shit all the time. It’s pretty much its own sub-meme at this point. No, this was a naked mastermind. Officers responded to reports of a naked man running along Interstate 10 in western Jacksonville, as you do in western Jacksonville. Seriously, it’s western Jacksonville. You might as well be in Palatka.

The naked man, Joshua Shenker, was lying in the road when an officer stopped on the other side. After luring the officer to a stop, Shenker ran across the roadway toward the officer. The redacted report didn’t reveal how Shenker stole the vehicle, presumably because the police didn’t want to give all the other naked Florida men any ideas. Or maybe the officer didn’t want to admit he was outsmarted by a naked man who jogs along I-10.


So why am I telling you all this? Because I need your help, dear DeadSplinterati (DeadSplinterazzi? DeadSplinterites?). When I try to defend my beloved home, I say things like “Eighty percent of the population is from somewhere else” but that doesn’t cut it. I need evidence that other places have just as many idiots. Tell me your tales of stupidity from your own home states. Or states that you want to mock. Or just stories of stupidity from people you know personally. Just don’t involve Florida, okay?



  1. Dude, I live in Kentucky. I thank God for Florida, y’all make us look good. Except for this guy.

    Number 4 on the list. I can’t post pics but you have to look at it on the link. You’ll feel a little better about your state.


    This brilliant robber we’ll deem, “Duct Tape Bandit”, in Ashland decided he was going to rob Shamrock Liquors. He wrapped his face in duct tape (shown below), entered the establishment and made his demands. However, his demands were met by the owner with a bat, and he was subdued in the parking lot until police could arrive. After a photo shoot, they removed the duct tape, but Kazee claims no memory of the incident.

    One of my favorite podcasts is Dumb People Town, comedians reading crime stories. It couldn’t exist with Florida.

    • I remember that one!😆😂🤣🤣🤣
      Didn’t remember him being in/from KY, buuuuuut I remember him making national/international headlines!😉

      • Hell of an exfoliant, tho!😉🤣😈
        And fab, as a depiliatory, to take care of any stray brow hairs, or “peach fuzz,” too!😉

      • If you’re a guy who’s shaved relatively recently, it’s not too painful.  Nothing like pulling it off of a hairy arm.
        Or, um, that’s what some guy I know told me…

        • Definitely “some guy”😉😁
          Because you’ve definitely told us in the past, that your skin is as smoooooth as a baby’s, and exactly as hairless!😉😆😂🤣

          • Also… not that you would ever need it–but you *might* wanna let that guy in on a small secret….
            Goo Gone *GEL* in the spray bottle works wonders to quickly & easily remove some really sticky stuff!😉
            Learned this, irl, *last* spring during the shutdowns, when a bunch of us school staff made PECS books and did *other* sorts of odd jobs for the ECSE program, so that our boss could justify keeping us all on the payroll. 
            Velcro residue had my scissors almost bonded SHUT, but the GG-gel cleared ALL the adhesive off in less than 2 minutes!😉

  2. The closest I’ve come have included:
    1. Passing out drunk on Daytona Beach. I’m lucky I didn’t drown.
    2. Transporting an upright piano in the back of a pickup truck while my friend played it. This was a light pickup and the piano kept lifting the front wheels off the ground. 
    Either of this situations could have ended badly. There, but for the grace of God, yada, yada. 

  3. …I think I remember there being a story a few years back of a guy who objected to the photo the police used on an APB & contacted them with one he felt made him look better…might have been in ohio?

    …& although not technically my story I used to know someone who (along with their flatmates at the time) got so wasted at a celebratory dinner while students in edinburgh that they decided to let off fireworks from the window…& fired a rocket into the bonnet of a police car

    …the police came up & “knocked” on the door & most of them tried to hide…badly…so when the one who drew the short straw opened the door the police could see feet sticking out from behind a curtain & behind a couch…& notably from under what was left of the dinner table which had had two legs broken earlier in the evening so the rains of dinner was in a heap where the top hit the floor…also a case of clearly-now-empty whisky bottles

    …they surveyed the scene…looked at the one guy stood in front of them & literally just said, “ach…just dinnae dae it agin” before leaving them to it

    …oh…& anytime you’re really feeling bad about florida you can always just remember the brits votes for brexit?

      • …fair…but if you hunt about a bit there’s some premium but-I-didn’t-think-the-leopards-would-eat-MY-face stuff from people who voted for the brexit thing

        …sad to say but most of the trump voters seem to have been voting for what they got…whereas the brexit voters (or at least a lot of them) voted to make a kind of fuck-you statement that’s fucked them over a lot more than a home they’re mad at

        …not to trivialize the damage mr art of the serially-bankrupt deal did…but it’s possible that on points the brexit thing has the edge in the dumbassery stakes?

  4. @bryanlsplinter I just finished Best State Ever by Dave Barry which is all about Florida.  I learned so much about your state I didn’t know, like the Weeki Wachee Mermaid show, Spongeorama, the Skunk Ape, and all about the naked bar in Key West.   One of his key points though was that most of the stupid people in Florida came from somewhere else to be stupid in Florida.  This is definitely the case in Hawaii but they are not as often people that relocated as people that are visiting and give no fucks!  I grew up hanging out at the beach that has the worlds record for the most broken necks.  The life guards warn everyone that doesn’t look local to stay out of the water.  We have signs everywhere that show people getting slammed by waves, red flags warning not to go in water.  So these idiots will walk right into the water and either get swept out or slammed on their heads.  My lifeguard friends would yell at them w/ a megaphone before they could get wet that if he had to rescue them it would be $50.  This was when $50 actually bought something.  Right next to this beach is something called the blow hole, a cave that connects the ocean to a hole in the rocks that errupts like a geyser when waves enter the cave.  It has signs everywhere saying don’t go near and even a fence but idiots go stick their heads right in there to look and end up either getting blasted and cut up or getting sucked in and not living to tell what the inside looks like.  Needless to say, I have seen more than my share of morons and even had to rescue a few.  I also saw two people break their necks in one day which was traumatic.  Highlight though was seeing Prince Charles go over the falls on a wave at said neck breaking beach.  Can you imagine if he got killed or handicapped while visiting Hawaii?

  5. When it comes to Tennessee, there is no shortage of stupid, but I will say that this one ranks right at the top:

    That ugly ass, gold and silver colored statue on I-65, which I passed way more times than I care to remember.  Here are some of my favorite lines from the Wikipedia article:

    It is generally considered aesthetically unappealing due to its abnormal facial features, which bear little resemblance to Forrest himself, and more resemble a screaming deformed man.

    The monument was designed by Jack Kershaw…a former lawyer to James Earl Ray…In the face of public criticism of the installation, Kershaw defended the statue by saying, “Somebody needs to say a good word for slavery.”

    Dorris died on November 24, 2020.

    • I will say one thing about the article (not Dunning-Kruger specifically). The author mentions televised talent shows and how shocked the awful contestants are. A friend of mine is a scriptwriter, and he told me that shows like America’s Got Talent or American Idol very quickly exhausted their supply of overconfident amateurs. After season 2 or so, producers hired local comedians and community theater actors to “audition” and then pitch fits when they weren’t selected. You can clearly see that many of them are wildly overacting if you watch any of the clips. This does not speak well of the intelligence of American TV audiences. 

  6. The words “Florida Man” always bring this story to the front of my mind, when I hear them…
    Because the last thing I’d heard on it was that they suspected “bath salts,” I fell down a rabbit hole, and discovered that the toxicology reports showed nothing outside of some weed…. 
    And that, shockingly enough, the victim survived!!!
    He ended up in a long-term care facility, and was surprisingly chill–and amazingly gracious when speaking about his attacker!
    Some follow up stories on him;


    • Actually, I knew the victim survived, but I was still under the impression it was bath salts. Somehow, the fact that he wasn’t under the influence of something major makes it all … worse. 

      • It really does!!!
        Sad, too, for the perpetrator’s family, because on top of losing a loved one, and wondering why, there *isn’t* a science-grounded reason for any of it.
        And i can only imagine that the pain of also knowing your lost loved one is the butt/origin of so many memes & jokes has to be incredibly painful.😕💔

    • I knew some people who were doing some fairly cutting edge toxicology research when this event happened.  Like, they were working with various new, trendy street drugs, running them through a mass spectrometer, and then comparing them to human blood/urine samples…
      And, there was no quick-turnaround test for “bath salts” at the time.   The only way to test for it, would be to run it through a liquid-chromatography/mass spectrometer, and there are only a handful of places in the U.S. that can do that, with any degree of accuracy, on demand, and are properly cleared/vetted to handle all the chain-of-custody type stuff. 
      So, to actually test this person for “bath salts” would involve collecting the samples, (which would take a while, plus time to transport to a lab, plus extra time for chain-of-custody stuff, and we are already up to a day or two, minimum), and now that they’ve been received at the testing lab, they have to do their chain-of-custody stuff,  prepare the samples, blanks, and calibrations, which will take anywhere from an hour or so to most of the day, depending on whether things are already prepped or not, what test was last run on the machine, etc.  so we are already up to 2-4 days, and the samples are just now starting to run through the machine.  Depending on the specific test, the time per sample is going to vary, but I think ~5minutes per test is on the low end.  Even so, you are likely going to have to run a couple blanks, ~5+ calibrations, minimum, a couple more blanks to make sure the calibrations don’t carry over and contaminate the sample, and then the sample (and maybe repeat the calibrations and blanks, depending on how certain the results need to be), so we are looking at an hour, absolute minimum, best-case scenario, plus warm-up and such, so odds are it’s going to be a couple hours before there are any results.  And then it will be another hour or two, minimum, to go through the results, and make sure the calibration curve checks out, that the blanks are actually blank, and then to compare the sample to those calibrations and blanks.  And then another hour or more, easy, to write up the results, put in the charts and figures, all the caveats, etc., and send off the results.
      So we are somewhere in the range of 3-5 days, assuming best-case scenario, and that the testing lab is overstaffed (ha!) and has a completely free schedule (HA!), with all people, computers, equipment, and machines readily available (motherfuckinha…)
      Also, didn’t the medical report for the victim also indicate he had two(?) puncture wounds that could be possible GSW (gunshotwounds)?  I feel like I read that someplace, but in the police gladhanding and “bathsaltzombiecannibal” sensationalism, it kinda got lost in the churn that he was shot by the cop that was supposed to be “rescuing” him… 

      • I don’t know about the puncture wounds, but THANKS(😉😁😃) for the science background on this!!💖💞💗
        I was talking with boy-roommate about this earlier (after our talk)  and was wondering out loud, what would happen if they somehow had a sample they could re-run with *today’s* tech & specimen/ chemical knowledge…

  7. I grew up with Rural Ontario Man (stories abbreviated due to time) from my yout’
    1. A bunch of kids (not me) decided to play paintball, but with BB guns.  The only shocking part was no one lost an eye.
    2. We used to blow up things in a nearby quarry.  One of the biggest explosions we made was with a Molotov Cocktail.  It went boom and we giggled.  Then my friend’s younger brother decided to run up to the still burning bottle and stuck his face right into it.  Burned off most of his hair, all his eyebrows and eye lashes.  Looked like Uncle Fester till it grew back.

  8. MN doesn’t typically end up in ☝this☝ sort of “guy” situation–that’s typically more of a Wisconsin thing😉😂🤣
    But we DO occasionally end up with “soon-to-be” Florida Men….
    And when it comes to “former” Crackhead, who act like Florida Men, we currently have this asshole😉
    And let’s face it, Lindell is basically just a cold, lost, Florida Man🤔

    • Oh, and this is gold:

      A dude who was on fire and was presumably still smoldering managed to elude police. Who’s the dummy here? Not the Human Torch. Police did pick him up when he sought medical attention, but it hardly requires CSI to identify someone who looks like he slept in a campfire.

      Please continue to contribute!

  9. I’m from Illinois. We have a prison wing dedicated to former governors. You’re either from Chicago or you’re from a part of the state that wants to secede from Chicago.

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