No, this is not something from The Onion, David Zetland, or even The Economist. It's a legitimate essay by Martin A. Schwartz who is now at the Yale School of Medicine. He published it in 2008 when he was at the University of Virginia, hardly a second-rate institution.
I personally would have opted for 'inadequacy' or 'humility' had I written it, but I didn't write it because I like to think I suffer from the 'My kid could've done that!' syndrome. Suffice it to say that when you're a professor at UVA en route to Yale you can publish essays with such titles and not fear snickers or guffaws at scientific conventions. And if people do snicker or guffaw, you can then toss your collected publications at them and inflict some serious bodily harm.
Humor aside, this is worthwhile reading. If nothing else, you'll feel smarter (not to mention more smug) right after you finish it. I sure did!
Rumor has it that Schwartz is working on a follow-up: 'The Importance of Stupidity in Faculty Meetings'.
Thanks to Jeremiah Osborne-Gowey (aka JeremiahOsGo) for being smart enough to send this around.
I know - you're reading the title and saying, 'Well, if anyone should know...'
Back to work now.
"One of the beautiful things about science is that it allows us to bumble along, getting it wrong time after time, and feel perfectly fine as long as we learn something each time. " - Martin A. Schwartz