Advice to Young People

I was asked to write down some advice to give to young people. The motif was something about "new year, new beginnings," and not a graduation speech where you'd sort of assume this sort of thing would go over. I sort of blew it off until the editor called me and screamed at me that it's February now and the article is worthless.

"Joke's on you," I laughed into the phone, "I already cashed the check!" But he pointed out that they had not in fact sent a check. Eventually I pieced together that I had agreed to write the whole thing for exposure, and that I had accidentally cashed one of those transfer checks your credit card company sends you and was now $30,000 in debt to Discover.

It is in that spirt that I now share with you my wisdom for the young people of 2015, be they graduates or not:

  • You'll meet all kinds of people in your life. Very few of them are necessary.
  • Stretch. I know, stretching is dumb and you don't need to. Yet. But you'll hit 30 eventually and you're gonna have to start doing shit like stretching when you wake up every day so you might as well get used to it now. 
  • Smile more. No, more. Bigger. No, bigger. Good, like that. Now, hold that smile all the time. Literally every second you should be smiling. Train your muscles to hold the pose in your sleep. Give it six years and the tissue should atrophy to the point where you literally can't do anything but smile. That'll really help your outlook.
  • Buy a lot of guns. A lot of angry people on television seem pretty convinced that we're gonna need a lot of guns in the near future. 
  • Learn to shoot those guns. Just hanging them on your wall isn't enough. Train yourself on human-shaped targets. Spring the extra $1.50 and get the kind that bleed. If they make any that scream and wail in agony, buy those too. Deaden yourself to the agony of man. You will be stronger for it.
  • Dance. Don't be so self conscious that you don't cut loose once in awhile. But don't let your dancing regimen affect your firearms training. STAY FOCUSED.
  • Don't look wistfully out of the office window and sigh heavily every 12 minutes. It upsets people. It is better for society as a whole that we maintain the illusion that work gives us purpose. If you want to frolic in a goddamn field your whole life you should've remained a child or been born into a society that values expression and joy over money.
  • If you're a woman, I'm sorry. That's it. Shit just sucks for women sometimes. I'll be honest, I'm not really sure what to do about it. And if you're already trying to figure out how to email me to explain how shit doesn't actually suck and it's all just PC overcorrection or some other nonsense, stop it. Stop it right now. Go read a goddamn book and don't bother me. You're the one reading my goddamn list.
  • "Starting a podcast" is the new "writing a novel." Are you actually doing something, or are you jerking off and hoping other people will take the time to notice? Yes I'm aware of the irony.
  • Become proficient at knife fighting. Your guns will eventually fail, or you will deplete your stores of ammunition. At this point, knife fighting will be your only marketable skill. Try to find knife fighting rec leagues at your local YMCA to get started.
  • Take an improv class. Just don't be that weird asshole who starts telling everyone how improv "pertains to all aspects of life." It's just fun and silly. Do fun and stilly stuff more often. 
  • Exercise if you want to. It's your body, I don't give a shit. If you're happy being unfit, I say be unfit. Just don't delude yourself into thinking you're fit. Yes you should feel good about yourself no matter your shape. No, being 350 lbs and walking to the mailbox once a week does not count as an exercise regimen.
  • Call your folks. Unless if they're dickheads. Mine aren't; I feel the need to clarify that. I just hate talking on the phone and so I put it off and then I talk to my family and I miss them and I feel like a big dick and wonder why I didn't call sooner. Really the crux of this list is basically just "don't do the shit I do and do more of the shit I wish I did." But if your family are dickheads then don't bother. No one should waste time on dickheads.
  • I really, honestly, can't overstress the importance of guns. Seriously. These old white men in suits really seem to know their stuff.
  • Develop some sort of serum. Maybe super strength. Maybe invisibility. Maybe one of those chimera deals where you get the flight of a stork and the healing powers of a starfish. I don't know. Life would be more interesting if people were running around with awesome serums.
  • Don't assume everyone knows where you're coming from. People live different lives and have different experiences. If you can't understand that you're dumb. Everybody knows that. We all grew up being taught that.
  • Plant a tree. Let it grow for a few years. Now hack it down in a fit of rage. Feel better, Mr. Big Bad Killer? You snuffed out a life. See how hollow that makes you feel? What a big, tough guy you are, killing a living being because some asshole on the internet told you to. Dummy.
  • Take up professional wrestling. I always wanted to. You get to bounce around and throw people like you're kids in the living room on the couch! Plus I bet you develop a pretty good resistance to staph.
  • Don't take advice from pretentious twats with blogs. Seriously. I get like, 16 hits a day on this thing. I think half of those are my dad just refreshing the page to see if I've written anything new. He worries because I don't call home enough.

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