Autopilot Agreement
Agreeing without paying attention to what you're agreeing to
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(permanent link) added: 2012-12-05 17:58:34 sponsor: mythbuster edited by: bulmabriefs144 (last reply: 2013-04-04 21:54:12)

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When trying to shut up a questioner or impress a date, a common tactic is to just agree with everything they say. This quickly turns into a problem when one then realizes one agreed to something that has no basis whatsoever in reality.

Examples:

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[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
  • Seina from Tenchi Muyo GXP gets so engrossed in his dinner table conversation with his family that he doesn't even notice that his sister and mother were physically writing out an application form for the Galaxy Police with his own hand. By the time he notices the pen in his hand, the application form has already been filled out and given his signature.
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[[folder:Comics]]
  • One Calvin and Hobbes strip has Calvin ask his mom (while she's reading a book) what time it is ("Go look at the clock and see"), if it's cold outside ("Go step outside and see"), and how fast their car can go ("Go... nice try.").
  • In The Wizard of Id, Spook is pestering a tired Turnkey again. Having been in jail for a long time after insulting the king[[note]]calling him a two bit, four flushing, dirty, lowdown, indiscriminate clod, to be precise[[/note]], he asks questions like "Is the grass still growing?" and "Does the brook still babble?". This is followed by wondering "Is the king still a fink?", to which Turnkey responds "Yep.". They are then both seen hanging in chains.
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[[folder:Film]]
  • In Menace II Society, Caine is interrogated by a cop and asked wether he was at one specific place while the robbery the cop investigates took place, to which he hesitantly replies "yes" (a lie). Later, he is asked wether he was in some other place, and confused he also replies "yes" (another lie), and at this point the cop tells him he's screwed.
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[[folder:Literature]]
  • Discworld has an example in The Fifth Elephant, where Sybil chacks to see if her husband is listening to her list of things they need to take to Uberwald instead of concentrating on the murder (that he can't work on, being sent to Uberwald). She adds a stuffed alligator to the list, he distantly agrees, but a few seconds later he frowns and asks why an alligator.
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[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
  • Charlie on Two and a Half Men lampshaded this by explaining to Alan that he doesn't always mean he "understands" when he says "I understand" in a conversation -- that he often says that as a way to get through a boring conversation with someone while pretending to listen, usually with a woman he's dating, but sometimes with Alan as well.
  • One ''Seinfeld episode uses this with the Girl of the Week, who speaks such that nobody can understand her.
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[[folder:Videogames]]
  • Dawnof War II: Retribution presents this when Ork leader Kaptin Bluddflagg comes to a conclusion about the big bad's location. His first mate Mister Nailbrain nods, agreeing with the captain but not quite getting what he is getting at.
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[[folder:Western Animation]]
  • In All Grown Up!, Tommy hits it off with a Jewish girl by noting how much they and their families have in common, but then accidentally said that his (Christian) father was a rabbi.
  • There's been many a variation where a husband (henpecked or not not) leaves a recording of his going "yes dear" and generally agreeing to his chattering wife while he flees rapidly. Donald Duck did it to Daisy talking about a social gathering on the phone, but she quickly figured out he'd gone in the hammock.
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