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Monday, September 28, 2015

5 Easy Steps to Becoming Awesome

I FINALLY got my computer back up and running (shout out to the awesome resident computer tech).

Pictured:  NOT the resident computer tech.  I just think Homer's hilarious.

... I have to interrupt my post here, since my train of thought is being derailed by the sound of a car alarm going off for twenty minutes straight at a quarter til midnight and for the love of God and all that is holy there is a f*cking button on your keys that makes it stop.

....OR.  I'm just sayin.'

This is actually perfect timing, because there are some of you out there staring at that gif, horrified that I might actually take a baseball bat to someone's personal property just because it's annoying the hell out of me and dammit I'm the one who has to wake up cranky kids for school in 6 hours.

STEP 1 to Becoming Awesome:  GROW A SENSE OF HUMOR.


If you have a Facebook page, you're probably one of four types of people:

  1. The person who rarely logs in and only logs in long enough to check messages and check out recipes and the occasional funny cat video;
  2. The person who logs into Facebook solely to play games, which results in the rest of us being spammed to death with game invites that you probably didn't even send;
  3. The person who loyally likes and shares all the cool stuff your friends post but rarely posts anything yourself; or
  4. The person who uses Facebook as a platform for all your family updates, rants, jokes, opinions, and photos of really cool shit you write/draw/craft, etc.
Anywho, Facebook houses all kinds of snarky, smart ass memes that garner everything from the typical "lol" to the infuriating "OMGEEE WHY WOULD YOU SAY THAT?"  That's sexist!  That's racist! How insensitive!  You're promoting unnecessary violence and I really want to punch you in the face right now! 

It's not just Facebook, it's any forum, discussion board, or random life encounter.  Most people have properly-functioning funny bones and understand that sociopaths only make up a small percentage of the population, and they're generally not wasting their time cracking jokes.  



...and then he said, "that's not an eggplant - he's just retarded!"  *snort*  "Fava beans?"


Things like satire and sarcasm are foreign concepts to these types of people.  Quips elude them.  They live in a sad little world where there are no interrupting cows knocking on their doors (*gasp* I'm a vegan!) and Little Johnny should be in a group home with lots of therapy by now.

But Sandra, you can't grow a sense of humor - you either have one or you don't.  Yes, yes you can. And I'm going to tell you how:

  1. Take a seed.  Any kind of seed, it doesn't really matter.  
  2. Put that seed into a container with soil.  Poke your finger into the soil and spin it around until there's a hole big enough to drop that seed into.  Bury that seed.  Bury it good.
  3. Now sing to that seed.  This step is important.  I recommend "I'm a Little Tea Pot" or "I Feel Pretty."  Sing it with love and fervor.  Sing it loud enough that the neighbors send the police to do a wellness check.
  4. Water that seed.  With vodka.  Soak it 'til it runneth over.  Inebriate the hell out of that seed.  
  5. Now spin in a circle, and focus your attention directly behind you.
  6. Locate the stick that's been cemented in your ass and give it a good pull until it's removed.
  7. Take a deep breath, that probably hurt a little.  You probably don't want to sit down at this point, though.
  8. Now repeat after me:  I am one in a collective of over 7 billion people on this Earth.  No one gives a shit if they offend me, nor should they.  I am entitled to my thoughts and feelings, but not to act like a giant baby and demand that everyone cater to my irrational and quite frankly infuriating demands.  I can laugh at dick and fart jokes among adults without deeming them inappropriate.  I can laugh at that photo of the baby cow and baby pig laying together with the caption that says, "Best Friends Forever" atop another photo of a bacon cheeseburger, because that shit's funny.  And delicious.  I CAN, AND I WILL.

Congratulations!  You've just taken the first steps to growing a healthy sense of humor!  Be proud, and hold on tight - you're in for a hell of a ride.


Also, look how many more friends you'll have when you're NOT offended by absolutely everything!

STEP 2 to Becoming Awesome:  AVOID BEING A DOUCHE.


Okay, "don't be a douche" leaves a lot open to interpretation.  Of course no one wants to believe that they're a douche or acting in a douche-like manner, but hey - it happens.

If we break this down into much-needed sub-categories, there are 7 classes of douche:

1.  The Liar.

This should be a simple enough concept, but the reality is that we all lie sometimes, whether it's telling our BFF that her new haircut isn't that bad or we're trying to convince our boss that we need a day off because our Grandmother just passed away.  For the 7th time.

No, the liar in this context is the person who can't seem to give a straight answer, ever, no matter how big or small the situation.  This is the person who's smarter, stronger, more experienced, and just all-around better than anyone they encounter in life.  The person who stabs you in the back and then says that they were framed when you catch them still holding the ice pick.

Don't be the person holding the ice pick.

2.  The Manipulator.  

This is the person who always manages to get their way, no matter how crazy the situation.  Methods of manipulation can vary from subtle hints to outright temper tantrums, followed by epic guilt trips whether they've ultimately gotten their way or not.  

Don't be the person who has to have their way all the time, or else.

3.  The Drama Queen.

The Drama Queen, quite simply, cannot function in a world without chaos.  There MUST be conflict, whether it's real, imagined, or contrived.  THEY must be at the center of the drama, whether they are the victim (see number 4), or the person pretending to try to help solve the conflict.

...just don't.

4.  The Victim.  

Not to be confused with the Drama Queen, the Victim never has anything good going on in their life, and no matter how many shitty things they've done to others during the course of events, they are automatically the person who demands that everyone rally around them and them alone when the shit hits the proverbial fan.

For God's sake, don't be a victim.  It's pathetic.

5.  The Narcissistic Asshole.

This is the person who pretty much embodies numbers 1-4, but still manages to have people that actually want to have them around.  I don't know how this works exactly, but f*ck that.

6.  The Bigot.

This can be the person who outright declares their hatred and disgust with all things outside their personal comfort zones or belief systems, or the person who throws a disclaimer in front of everything they say.  "I'm not trying to sound racist, but..." "Don't take this the wrong way, but..."

...don't be the "but" guy.

7.  The Total Fake.
  
"You're my favorite person ever!," this person will declare, 5 minutes before they're telling someone else what a complete and total shitbag you are.  You can totally trust this person... to twist every personal thing you tell them into a weapon to use against you at some point in the future - but it won't be a personal attack - rather, it will be an attempt to convince someone else that they are the superior person.  "Compliments" from this person come in the form of vague statements that sound nice until you've actually had time to break down what they've said.  Confessions come in the form of some story about how they were sooo uncomfortable because everyone was hitting on them or someone super-important gave them the most awesome compliments.  This person is so insecure that they momentarily bristle at the sight of their own reflection in the mirror.

What. The. Ever-loving. F*ck.


Me, on any given day.


Avoiding all of this is as simple as, oh I don't know, being you.  I know, you're asking yourself, "but what if I'm just a natural asshole?"  And you know what?  That's cool too - as long as you're an honest natural asshole.   At least then people know what the f*ck to expect.


STEP 3 to Becoming Awesome:  BE A GOOD LISTENER.


This is another one that people seem to think is either naturally there or not.  That is both colossally untrue and also a giant, steaming excuse to not want to allow someone else to have the spotlight for a couple minutes.  So again, Sandra's step-by-step system for being a good listener:


  1. Shut your face hole.  Shut it.  
  2. Look at the person who is speaking to you;
  3. Engage with the person who is speaking with you.  None of that auto-pilot bullshit where you throw out a "yeah" or "uh-huh" or "you don't say?"  Use complete sentences.  Validate the other person.  
See?  Isn't that so much more fun than listening to tv show theme songs in your head and waiting for an opening to butt in and talk about yourself?

 Uh-huh.  Uh-huh.  In West Philadelphia, born and raised.  What were we talking about again?

STEP 4: QUIT BEING SO F*CKING WORRIED ABOUT WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK.


Welp, there it is.  I don't mean be a selfish douchetard (see Step 2), what I'm saying is that being a carbon copy of what you think is cool or acceptable is a quick way to jump straight into Wannabe Land, Captain of the Miserable, Living Each Day Just to Make it Through to Another Day.  Yes, the world loves its rebels - but the unexpected, amazing side effect of doing things the way you want to do them without worrying about who's going to be talking shit about it is that it makes you happy.

Another amazing side effect of not being miserable in your own life?  You're too busy being happy to give two shits about judging someone else about theirs.   Miserable people see someone smiling and want to punch them in the throat because what the f*ck do they have to be so happy about?  Life sucks.  Happy people see someone smiling and think, "well, look at that.  Rock on brother.  Rock on."

...and all is good with the world.


And that, dear readers, after this epically long-winded brain shart of a blog post, brings me to my final point:

STEP 5 to Becoming Awesome:  RELEARN TO APPRECIATE PASSION.


Quick question:  have you ever had a child run up to you so excited about something that they're almost literally exploding, hopping up and down, arm-flailing, barely able to form coherent sentences because OH MY GOSH A BUTTERFLY JUST LANDED ON MY NOSE and it seems mundane but it was the COOLEST. THING. EVER!

Or what about that friend who, when a conversation leads into something they're really into, gets super-excited for a minute and starts animatedly gushing about it, hands swinging, eyes twinkling, before they suddenly get embarrassed and say something like, "oh, but that's stupid.  Sorry. Never mind."   

No, it's NOT stupid, you beautiful mother, tell me.  

Because, dear readers, we see enough people dragging themselves half-dead along through their day-to-day lives; tired, depressed, crestfallen.  Who the hell mandated that, as adults, we can't get arm-flailingly, squeally, incoherently excited about things?  Why does life have to be soul-crushing to seem productive?

Take a cue from that 4 year old who's been laughing his ass off for the last 20 minutes watching the dog chase his tail.  Lighten up.  Get excited, even if it seems silly.  Hell, especially if it seems silly. And give others the courtesy of getting silly-stupid excited, too.


Googled "silly-stupid excited."  Was not disappointed.

Freakin' Elmo, man.  Bahahahaha.

Anyway.

So, being awesome is more about being true to yourself - but if your idea of awesome has to do with how much other people love you - you kind of have to love yourself first to accomplish that, too.

That's... that's a little too much self love.  Get a room.


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