Zen Guide to Dealing with Traffic for the Fully Realized Individual

Traffic for fully realized conscious people like us can be a real drag. Who are these peasants in metal land ships delaying our important progress toward our destination? It’s uncivilized to say the least, we know. But sometimes when our driver has some pedestrian personal folly needing his attention we’re kind enough to allow him to attend his mother’s funeral as long as he makes it snappy or a child’s graduation if we’re feeling particularly charitable.

During these giving times we’ve noticed many things the average worker bee never considered. Don’t worry. We are going to grace you with our observation of traffic, and perhaps teach you how to deal.

First of all class is everything, and as such we’ve classified drivers for you so you can better gauge your own position in society.

  1. Old people. I rarely look at old people except on accident and then I usually try to wash the image from my brain by throwing fruit at them, but they drive with their windows up so it’s harder to do while on the road. Instead what you need to do when you see an old person drive is honk insanely and swerve toward them. In this way while they are going 25 mph on the freeway you will succeed in either giving them a heart attack or scaring them off the road so others can drive in a more reasonable fashion.
  2. Trucks. There are only two reasons to drive a truck in a city, a very small penis or to put shit in the back. There’s never shit in the back so all of you have small penises. The thing about small penises is that proximity is essential, which is why you tailgate. You need to be smashed right up against the object for any sensation at all. If there is a truck behind you they will try to fuck you in the ass, and probably with their brights on. It’s not because they’re dicks but rather because their dicks are so small. You won’t feel anything of course, but you will see it and it will be disturbing.
  3. Teenagers. These kids have it down actually. The proper way to drive is while texting and with total disregard for life. YOLO right kids? Just pretend it’s a video game. Some people complain that more teenagers die in car wrecks in civilized countries than from every disease and other type of accident combined. We call those buzz kills n00bs right kids? Keep up the good work.
  4. Asians. Some people consider it racist to point out the fact that Asians can’t drive. That’s just dumb because the proof is in the pudding people, or in this case the proof is in the fact that it takes approximately 15 minutes to parallel park into a spot that isn’t even fucking parallel (just pull into the spot goddamnit! NOOOO! Why the fuck are you turning the wheel that way?! What mythical laws of physics are you operating under?!)
  5. Turn signal snobs. We all know that turn signals are just decorative items, something festive for the holidays. That person deciding if he/she has time to pull into traffic? Don’t worry, the fact that you didn’t use your turn signal and so they missed their opportunity doesn’t bother them at all. It’s totally not an inconvenient-ass move that makes everyone else on the road hate your guts and hope you spontaneously burst into flames. Everyone realizes you’re too busy texting or being old or being Asian or having a small penis to be bothered with common human fucking decency. I mean, it takes .05 seconds to hit the turn signal, and most of us do it as natural instinct without even thinking about it because for most humans there is a thing called muscle memory and a brain. But totally don’t worry about it.
  6. Cab drivers. Everyone knows that the goal of driving is to be as unpredictable as humanly possible. Keep ‘em on their toes. This means that it is very important at all times to either be going 10 mph under the speed limit or 10 mph over the speed limit and to fluctuate wildly in between. Also everyone knows that turn signals have been removed from all cabs and if your vision is better than 20/200 you can’t get your cab license. Put down the fucking tuna melt, quit trying to be conversational, and get from point A to point B.
  7. Women. Ahahahahahaha! Lolz. Women can’t drive silly.
  8. Ambulances. Seriously, who the fuck do you think you are?
  9. Exhaust. Like most fashion, thick plumes of toxic waste go in and out of style. 2014? Black smog hurled directly into neighboring vehicle windows is totes in.
  10. Red light naps. Don’t worry, people drive for fun, not to get someplace. Take your sweetass time waking up from that red light, just enough time so that you’re the only one who can get through it and everyone behind you is stuck there for another 5 minutes until the light changes again.
  11. “OMG I have no fucking idea what all these lanes are for it’s so exciting!” Just because something is not a law does not mean it does not serve a purpose. For example, there is no law against collecting your own feces and using it as a bed comforter to keep you warm in the winter. But people don’t do that usually because of diseases and shit, and it’s disgusting. You know what else is disgusting? Slow drivers in the fast lane, or the passing lane. Look at the speed limit, observe the speed of others around you, then choose your lane based on that instead of roll of the dice or your fucking horoscope or whatever other random thing is compelling you to fuck up traffic flow.
  12. Ragers. If you get so blood-curdling mad at any of the previous drivers that you begin driving recklessly, flipping people off, shouting, and generally acting like a two-year old who lost their pacifier, grow the fuck up asshole.

I say all of that to say this, we all drive like asses sometimes and we all observe others driving like asses sometimes. If you think you drive perfect all the time, all it probably means is that you can never get better at it since you haven’t acknowledged your own faults. Me too. And that’s how everything in the world works, driving included.

Asians aren’t really worse drivers statistically, but we see a white person, brown, red, green, male, female, hipster, whatever driving poorly, well that pre-existing stereotype is not there, so it’s less memorable. There’s a bigger stereotype behind the wheel though, it encompasses all other drivers on earth. They’re all old blind Asian women assholes with small penises, and I’m the only one on the road who knows what the fuck he’s doing.

Some people are better at driving than others. Some probably really are worthless asses who shouldn’t be allowed to drive, but probably not as many as we think because you forget your turn signal sometimes, you are slow on the light sometimes, you at some time in your life had an old junker that shot plumes of smoke now and then. Me too.

And of the 20 to 50 cars in rush hour traffic sardined in between this red light and the previous all waiting to go, well 1 of them is you, but at that point in your life when you were the one who forgot their turn signal.

Most likely. But some people are just asses as we’ve established so let’s talk about the real problem.

I’ve encountered 3 true ragers in my 2.5 decades of driving. I don’t mean the guy who makes an ass of himself, I mean “my life is in legitimate danger” ragers.

  1. I was at the spaghetti bowl going south on the 95 at 7:30 a.m. in Las Vegas NV when I had to swerve out of my lane and into the next to avoid someone else who swerved into my lane. I don’t know why the other person swerved but had I not reacted there would have been an accident and no doubt there would have been more subsequent carnage since few it seems at 7:30 a.m. on the freeway observe the three second rule. I swerved without turn signal less than a car length in front of a large SUV with a middle-aged man in a suit and tie driving it. Now in that split second I did see I had room in the next lane and I did see the original swerver’s rear tire get about an inch from my front tire in their hurry to get into my lane. There was no other escape route. But perhaps to the middle-aged man in suit and tie and SUV it just looked like I cut in front of him because for the next 15-20 miles he tailgated, honked, cut-off,  slammed breaks, opened windows, cursed, repeated. That for 15-20 miles on a busy freeway. Some people would say to exit early or pull over, and that is what I thought I should do at first, but then I thought, “Assholes who are brave enough to act this retarded are usually assholes with guns.” So I decided not to. I did slowdown in the meantime to about 10 under the speed limit and left emergency blinkers on hoping a highway patrol might see and pull me or him over. That would have been great.
  2. I thought of guns at the time and mentioned it there because of an incident of rage from years before which involved a young gentleman in an Escalade with very loud rap music who didn’t like the way I was driving it seemed, and pulled up next to me on Maryland Parkway and Tropicana and pointed a gun at me. I’m not sure what I did to this person. I had no recollection of them in traffic, which yeah, probably means I wasn’t paying attention and maybe cut him off?  When I saw the gun I made a right on red onto a street I had not planned on driving on and went well over the speed limit until I was satisfied they had not followed me. Getting pulled over in that instance would have been nice as well. It made me pretty wary, like in the case of the SUV above, I always think to myself “Assholes brave enough to act like this are probably assholes with guns.”
  3. My first run in with pure murderous rage in another driver though was about 1 year before that. I was driving it on a bit of a dilapidated street in Las Vegas called Industrial and what I can only describe as a mountain man who’d stumbled into a time machine and a very old pickup truck sped up next to me and started shouting at me to go back to CA you fucking faggot liberal, honking and trying to drive me off the road. I had a little red car at the time, guess that’s a tell? Literally, I had to go off the road in order to avoid getting hit. As to his psychic abilities, my plates were clearly NV, I’ve never lived in CA, and despite my sometimes effeminate writing style I have no idea how to dress myself, can’t hold a conversation or remember stuff that’s important to other people, and have only ever been attracted to boobs and vagina, so those super powers of observation stopped at moderate political leaning apparently? This however did nothing to quell his rage, or maybe his insanity who knows.

Which brings us to puppies and how the self-realized Zen individual handles traffic.

I’m neither self-realized nor Zen. I now and then can let traffic, or anything really, get to me.

But one day it occurred to me that people are not really people behind the wheel. We’re more primitive. We are balancing our sense of invulnerability incased in steel with fear and distrust and trust and pack mentality which somehow magically dictates just about everyone follows the rules almost all of the time no matter how pissed, in a hurry, or distracted they get. We’re mute animals who can only communicate via sharp loud honks and body language operating on instinct and holding simultaneously conflicting thoughts of both primal fear and immortality we evolved out of hundreds of thousands of years ago. We are cavemen and women who need each other to act accordingly for our own survival carrying clubs and ready to use them for self-gain despite it all.

Then I started thinking about puppies naturally, maybe unnaturally, anyway. I think we think they are awesome not because they are awesome but because they are pack animals just like us and we recognize that and it’s what makes them awesome and why we love them. We give them human feelings and emotions and thoughts despite their limited capacity for that, so we only see the good no matter what. Puppies are always blameless unless you’re a sociopath, because it’s our nature not theirs.

I hate spiders, but if spiders always had looked like puppies and puppies had always looked like spiders our perception would have been different and it would be tiny puppy-looking web spinners that sent so many of us into terror and eight-legged exoskeleton dogs who would be our best friend.

Maybe fur has more to do with it than that, but that’s my thought on it.

Back to the thought I had that helped me, these people aren’t acting like assholes.

They’re acting like puppies.

Cars are like big metal puppies. Yes more dangerous I know, but it helps to think about it if traffic sometimes bothers you.

Puppies sometimes piss on your carpet. Sometimes they chew up your PS3 controller. But they’re just puppies. You can’t stay mad at them.

Feel free to share your traffic nightmares, stories, or advice.

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Smart Business Advice for Smart Minded Business Go-Getters, Movers and Shakers. Go Get ‘Em Tiger!

As an important marketer at an important internet marketing company I’m often required to write important advice pieces for less important non-marketing businesses who are our lucky clients. These insightful articles to insignificant businesses consist of our research and development department’s newsletter about technical stuff I don’t read and taking inspiration from headlines I don’t see because it gets deleted from my mail box. I play a game and time how long it stays in my inbox before I notice it and delete it. For every 30 minutes it remains in my inbox that is one less drink of alcohol I’m allowed to take at lunch. It’s fun. You should try it, but no cheating.

When it comes time write one of these I think to myself, “What the fuck am I going to write about now? If only there was some inner office newsletter that covered the highly technical aspects of online marketing I could break down into something useful for our clients…” But by then I’m too drunk to make any relevant connections so I sip on the vodka in my water bottle instead and just make up some bullshit brilliant art based on some bullshit  fascinating advice some other marketer already wrote and they were probably drunker than me when they wrote this because wtf you managed to say nothing in like 1,000 words amazing!

To expand the number of topics I’ve begun including business advice pieces. And as a marketer who knows and cares nothing about business and the idiots insightful individuals who write advice columns about it, (insipid shit-eating brown-nosed sycophants)–Damn turrets. Ignore that… Anyway I feel I’m singularly qualified to tell people what to do in this area and call them stupid misguided when they don’t listen to me.

With that established I’d like to get to the crux of this post, why I’ve called you all into my office today <flushes toilet, leaves stall, begins washing hands, turns on that air blower thingy> please take a seat, it’s still warm.

Okay one piece of business advice that never gets old is to make a list of your goals, and an action plan. Action plan is important because as we all know a plain jane plan never implies action, you have to call it an action plan for it to work. If you call it a fucking plan you’ll get fucking fired. It’s an action plan drink the Kool-Aid bitches.

As an example I’ve written some action plans. Action being the operative word.

  1. Make one billion dollars
  2. Become Batman

Did you catch the action there? Batman. That motherfucker is all about action. I have more.

  1. Invent a light saber
  2. Learn the force
  3. Kick some ass

Few things imply as much action as kicking ass and you can’t kick ass any harder than with a light saber and some force.

  1. Find a hobbit
  2. Go on some adventures with wizards and shit

Another common denominator here, other than action, is simplicity. Simple is essential because no one likes to be confused and it’s really easy to get confused in the business world. To avoid confusion I like to make thought diagrams. Here’s one to go with our first action plan.

Image

Simplicity is key. Next time your boss asks for an action plan feel free to use this one. It’s all yours… but only if you give it to your boss as an action plan. You can’t repost this anywhere for any reason except as an action plan to be handed to your boss unless full credit is given along with a link back to this website.

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Brown Trout Only Swim Down Stream – Hint, there may be murder rakes involved.

In High School during the summers I had an interesting job. You might call it a dirty job, even a… shitty job.

I was really bad at it. It involved waking up about an hour before first tide, putting on heavy rubber hip waiters, layers of heavy clothing, and going either to the dock to take a boat to one of the clam beds, or straight to the shore.

We’d wait for the tide to go out, take our heavy steel tools which I can only describe as a short murder rakes, and for four nonstop hours that felt like 24 hours, stab into a gravely mix of sand, pull back, toss clams into bags, move forward four inches, repeat until every muscle was cramped and neck kinked permanently into the most uncomfortable position possible. Necks are meant to swivel not dislocate, fyi.

Occasionally you’d find a crab instead of a clam. You might imagine that a mammal weighing 100 times more armed with a murder rake and a relatively giant brain would be able to fend off this tiny beast. You’d be wrong. Crabs are fearless bastard creatures, ugly as they are angry, and they’ll kill you if you’re not on your toes. This is going to sound harsh but the only way to survive is to stab it as hard as you can with your murder rake until it is dead. Repeated stabs. It won’t stop trying to kill you until it is dead and sometimes you will think it is dead, you’ll turn your back, and it will try to kill you again. This is survival of the fittest bitches. It’s you or the crab and you have a murder rake. You might think to yourself, “Ah cute nature and I invaded its home I should try to go around it…” No motherfucker. You will die. Kill it.

It was nice though, overall. Beautiful really except for the trout.

I worked with a Goliath of an ex semi driver who laughed like that green dude from those cans of vegetables. And a science journal-reading modern pirate prankster with an excellent sense of humor… usually. More about that in a second. There was an old man. Old like facial recognition tools would not have been able to unravel the maze of lines and wrinkles to identify who this relic had once been, how he could manage this job I had no idea, but he did quite well. The boss/owner was probably one of the nicest guys anyone could work for. I was by far the least interesting person of the group.

I had youth though. I was in better shape by decades, faster, more agile, there was less distance in between me and the clams. According to every law of nature and physics I should have been a clam-digging machine. The pirate and the giant always had more at the end of the day though. When the boss dug, he always got more. The relic usually dug on a different plot of land, but when it came time to weigh in, sure enough he had more. I was not very good at it, never did figure out how they pulled it off.

Normally I slept on the boat while waiting for the tide. The pirate liked to tell fish tales. They were usually pretty funny. He told a story about brown trout over a period of weeks.

“Brown Trout are rare, but valuable. If you see one David, try to get it.”

“They love salty water and fresh water, really any water. You can tell they love it because you just feel so much better after.”

“Sure you can grab it if you ever see one. No need for bait and poll and all that. You see the trick is to pin it to the bottom of shallow water and gently… very gently lift it back to the surface. Don’t worry they’re slow, and dumb. Why do you think they’re so rare?”

“Brown Trout aren’t like other trout, they swim downstream only. It’s weird but true.” (Remember he read science journals, these things interest him.)

“They are an acquired taste David, but believe it or not some people will eat anything,” and maybe the giant or the boss would chime in, “Dogs love it.” And the pirate would give them a look like they had gone too far with it which was weird.

“David, wake up. Think I saw a brown trout… ah too late ya just missed it.”

One early morning as the receding tide lulled me back to sleep I noticed something odd going on in the corner of the boat between the three, something about trout and grizzled middle-aged men giggling, too tired to be interested it just served to lead my dreams to this mythical creature when I heard the pirate shout at me, “David it’s right by you damnit, get that bastard!”

My eyes snapped open. There it was, barely visible beneath the murky water, brown, long with ample girth floating with the tide. I stabbed my whole arm into the sandy 12 inches left of receding water, nearly falling out of the boat onto my prey but saved by some hand on my leg, I pinning that brown trout to the bottom with the agility of youth, pulling it back to the surface gently, lovingly—my mind not quite awake enough to identify the problem, slowly realizing in that split second this trout truly does not act like a trout, delicate as it is rare it seemed as parts were literally disintegrating as I lifted the mushy beast to the surface.

The laughter of the giant, pirate, and boss first registered to me as victory until my mind fully bridged the gap in between semi-conscious and awake, with the prize in hand. I in that moment realized finally what they’d been baiting me for.

Well, shit.

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