In an incredible feat of incomprehension, it is reported that earlier today Chicago tourist Riley Krupnik managed to process a set of verbal directions exactly zero percent, or 0%.
Despite the fact that Riley solicited the directions and then prepared their brain to receive them, witnesses report that the moment the directions began to be spoken aloud, Riley’s eyes glazed over, their soul leaving their body, ceasing to be a cognizant person for ten full seconds.
“I have no lingual memory of what happened after I asked for the directions,” said Riley. “I do have a slight physical memory of trying to make a face that said, ‘I am listening to and understanding your words,’ but I truly heard nothing.”
It’s almost hard to believe that a grown person who speaks English as a first language could hear a couple of sentences also in English and process them merely as the opaque and isolating miscommunication of an underwater scream.
“I just told them to keep heading this way for two blocks, then turn right on Milwaukee, and left on Spaulding,” said the direction giver, Hilda Wayne. “That’s a two-step direction.”
Despite this insistence that the instructions were brief and clear, Riley maintains that they were set up to fail.
“What the fuck is Spaulding supposed to mean?” Riley asked. “You can’t just tell me about things I don’t know. When I hear unfamiliar words, they are nothing to me. My brain will not store them.”
After the directions were first imparted, Hilda ran through them once more for clarity, during which time Riley is reported to have been thinking about the Teletubbies and, specifically, trying to remember what Laa Laa’s signature accessory was.
Their brain returned to the situation at hand when Hilda confirmed that they were clear on the route ahead.
“Obviously I said I was all good,” said Riley. “I couldn’t bear to draw out this disorienting interaction.”
At press time, Riley was still lost within a three-block radius of their destination.