Since Descartes’ cogito ergo sum, philosophers have thought that the content of our own conscious experience is the most indubitable thing each of us knows. Based on some recent experiences, however, I am willing to risk adding at least two more more things to the list.

  • Whether the Taxi is outside my house. My house is hard to find. I have had several conversations that go like this:

    Dispatcher: The driver says he’s outside your house now. Me: Well, he’s not. Dispatcher: He says he’s right there on Plumer. Me: I’m right outside my house at the moment. He’s not here. Believe me.

  • Whether you have the Wrong Number. I recently had the following conversation.

    Me: Hello? Caller: Yeah, is Marty there? Me: You’ve got the wrong number. Caller: What? Me: You’ve got the wrong number. Caller: (irritably) Are you sure? Me: Yes! Of course I’m sure! Caller (annoyed): Well I know I dialed the right number. Me: Well I’m telling you you didn’t.

    The inevitable followup, of course, comes 15 seconds later when they phone again.

I’m trying to think whether there are any other interactions that are candidates for this category. Any suggestions?