A guide to not being a
AUGUST/2011 – What I really wanted to
write was a guide to being a good person. But, I didn’t think anyone
would read it because everyone already thinks they’re a good person. It
reminds me of a study I read that found that 80 percent of the
population thinks they’ve got above average intelligence (statistically,
that isn’t possible … and if you think it is, chances are you are below
Now, I should probably have some sort of
disclaimer here that the steps below probably won’t cure chronic
jackassery. If you already don’t want to be a jackass, chances are that
you already have the capacity for good. Unlike, say, the person behind you at a
light that honks at you .5 seconds after the light turns green like you
should have already been revving your engine and popped the clutch the
second the light changed. Someone like that probably has to go into some
sort of jackass rehab program.
Here’s my 12-step program that will help you
travel down the road to jackass recovery (patent pending, etc., etc.):
- Whilst in heavy traffic, there is no
need to tailgate. Avoid this behavior. Unless you’re participating
in the Indy 500 and are drafting. Although, if you are participating
in the Indy 500, you’re probably automatically a chronic jackass anyway.
- Checkout at the grocery store takes
time. While you’re waiting for the person in front of you to be rung
up, do not pace around like you’re a caged animal. Also, try
avoiding muttering stuff under your breath. You cannot be in that
much of a hurry unless you’re buying medical supplies to save the
lives of your entire family. If this is the case, you probably
should have driven them to the emergency room instead of leaving
them out in the car while you shop. Also, if you’re in a hurry
because you’re running late, this is your fault. Sub step: Leave
earlier next time.
- Avoid doing anything stupid just so
that you can put it up on YouTube. I can think of a million things
that fall into this category, but there are two that must be
mentioned. Planking is stupid. Don’t do it. It’s not funny. I wish I
could punch your YouTube page in the face. Also, you are not a
daredevil and/or stuntman/stuntwoman. You cannot magically jump your
bike off a two-story roof nor can you suddenly defy gravity because
a camera is pointed at you.
- (Unless you’re my neighbor a couple
blocks over, this step probably doesn’t apply to you. But, one can
never be certain.) Fireworks are for the 4th of July. Not the 3rd,
2nd or 1st of July. Not the 5th, 6th, 7th or 8th of July. And
certainly not the 30th, 29th, 28th, etc. of June. And just because
it’s a holiday weekend, Labor Day is not a day for fireworks. The
fact that you shoot them off after 11 p.m. on a weeknight only adds
to the shear insanity. Stop this.
- If I’m not already a religious
fellow, you will not change my mind. Keep it to yourself Churchhead
- If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s
face, don’t say it in a message board post. The anonymity of the
Internet may have given you keyboard courage, but it certainly
hasn’t curbed your tendencies for shenanigans. If you post whatever
terrible thoughts come to mind, then you, dear sir, are uncouth and
I bid ye “good day.” Uncouthness leads to jackassery which leads to
fear which leads to hate which leads to the blah, blah, blah.
- Get out and see the world. Or, at
the very least, wander around your neighborhood. People that get out
and interact with others tend to be more compassionate and
empathetic (okay, this last statement is wild speculation as I have
no facts or figures to back it up). I think this is why the people
that live out in the middle of nowhere have a higher proclivity for
racism and bigotry. It’s hard to be bigoted against people you
interact with on a daily (or semi-daily) basis.
- Don’t watch Fox News. Now, before
you label me as a commie pinko liberal, I’d like to add: Don’t watch
any, ahem, news program that relies on the opinions of talking heads
over facts and reality. It’s just that, well, Fox News tends to be
the biggest perpetrator of this. Getting your news from talking
heads makes it too easy to weigh opinion move heavily than fact.
- Don’t be a talking head. Under any
circumstance. Seriously. Don’t do it. It’s a one-way ticket on the
douche-bag express speeding to douche-town, U.S.A. (On a related
note, it is okay to be a Talking Head. That band still rocks.)
- Be flexible and realize that it is
okay to change your opinion. If opinions were meant to be permanent
fixtures they’d be called “opinstones” or “concrenions”. Er, maybe.
They’d probably have a cooler sounding name like
“unmovable-mass-thingies”. Or, not. At any rate, if you’re willing
treat your opinions like free-flowing thoughts, then you’re more
likely to have an open mind and are less likely to punch someone in
the head if they disagree with you. Unless you think that kind of
thing is fun.
- Realize that the world is an awesome
place (there’s a rainbow above my head and unicorns frolicking about
as I type this). Take some time to look around. Left. Right. Up.
Down. It’s awesome out there, isn’t it? It’s nearly impossible to
submit to the ways of jackassery if you enjoy the world you live in.
- Don’t be a blogger. Under any
circumstance. Seriously. Don’t do it. (EDITORS NOTE: Caruso Deluxe
is a chronic jackass and cannot be turned good with any 12-, 24- or