This is an entry for the blogathong, which I heard about from Scary Scary Quite Contrary. I don't know many details about it other than people are expected to write a blog a day, Monday to Friday, for the next 19 days. I like that idea. I've been too lazy lately.
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Always be nice to strangers.
There’s a reason why the adjective developed from the noun stranger, because you never know of what someone you don’t know is capable, which makes sense because if you know their capabilities they wouldn’t be a stranger unless you are the possessor of some kind of magic superpowers.
Strangers are liable to snap at any moment and, at least in America - the only country I’ve ever seen where you can buy guns and liquor at the same store - there’s a pretty good chance their outburst will prove lethal to anyone foolish enough to give them guff.
I think about the way I would like to die all the time, and being shot or beaten to death by someone I don’t know because I was too busy to hold a door, or feign interest in pictures of someone’s estranged children, is at the bottom of that list right after being eaten alive by a sloth and being jazzercised to death.
To your friends, you can be a complete and total douche bag.
That’s why people make friends, because they’re so tired of being nice to all the potentially lethal strangers that they need someone around whom they can relax, be themselves, and relentlessly torment with an unending barrage of insults and practical jokes.
That may seem harsh, but… yo’ mamma.
For most of us, our friends are the only people for whom we don’t have to pretend to be something we’re not; namely, upstanding citizens with morals, a sense of decency, and the ability to handle our liquor.
That time you and your best friend woke up in a pool of your own vomit and smelling of Vaseline jelly aside, our friends are there, not as people in front of whom we must comport ourselves as we do with the rest of the world, but to watch our backs when we, as we invariably do, get ourselves into trouble.
There’s a great scene in a lackluster movie where a quiet, sensitive guy picks up a telephone and bashes Tim Robbins in the face just because the aforementioned actor was boning a friend’s girlfriend and acting smug about it. That’s true friendship.
The world is such a disingenuous place that we need friends if only to tell us when we’re being stupid, because, most of the time, other people aren’t going to do it for you.
Sure, there are a lot of outspoken folks out there who will stand up to certain, obvious behaviors, but we’re generally at our worst in private, no matter how annoyingly visible all those public assholes may seem.
Your friends know you as you are, and not what you want to be, which is an important element in staying grounded. You’ll notice that in the novel, Jesus befriends a bunch of strangers in his 30s, tells them he’s the son of god, and not one of those fools thought to question him about it, even after his walking on water in stilts gag, and when he tried to fool all those people into thinking that water, poured into wine jugs, is actually wine.
Not only will friends keep you from becoming an asshole yourself, but they oftentimes prevent you from surrounding yourself with assholes. Should you shack up with a domestically abusive, relapsed junkie because he bought you a sno-cone, read you poems about your pretty eyes, and has a cock like a tree trunk, your friends should be there to douse flame retardant on your burning genitals and bring you back down to reality. Of course, if you’re already friends with a bunch of assholes then they’ll probably just use you for their own selfish ends, but they will protect you from other predators that come sniffing around their mark; the same way that your prison boyfriend will keep your asshole safe so he can make good use of it at night.
Perhaps the most important aspect of friendship is in that we can choose our friends, and they teach us how and who we want to be at a time when your family’s ability to socialize you wanes.
Home schooling children is one of the worst things you can do for a kid.
I feel sorry for children whose parents hermit them away during the years when they should mix with kids their age; sure, it’s a dangerous time when your twelve year old son or daughter could come home high as a kite or with interesting stories about not-so-fun activities that take place in the local ice cream truck owner’s basement, but those are necessary risks taken to ensure that your children don’t grow up into maladjusted, socially awkward, crying little pussies.
The most recent year for which I can get data is 2003, at which time, 2.2% of Americans home schooled their children for various reasons, but, if anecdotal evidence (aka the best kind of evidence) will suffice, let me take a minute to tell you about an old friend who was home schooled until university. The last time anyone saw him, he was running naked down the street in February, screaming about being a contestant on America’s Next Top Model.
Let your children get mixed up with a bad crowd at school; I won’t lie to you, a lot of them will end up degenerate alcoholics and drug addicts with underweight babies and parole officers, but that’s probably going to happen to them anyway; at least, this way, the ones that make it out will be tougher, stronger, and better equipped to handle the kind of shit a friend like me dishes out to the people foolish enough to get close to him.
Plus, they’ll know to be nice to strangers.
Sex Mahoney for President
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The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society
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