1/30/2007

The LBB Virtues

NOTE TO THE READER: This entry is the conclusion of Benjamin Franklin Virtues, a previous post.

As I promised, here is a list of the LBB Virtues, with discussions and/or precepts following each.

Irreverence: match sanctimony with irreverence measure for measure.

In a world of deceit, irreverence is a virtue. There's a lot of bullshit out there and politicians, social activists, educators and advertisers are all bulldozing a mound of their particular brand into our homes and minds. Stay skeptical. Ask questions. Don't take anything too seriously. Remember: as a rule, the more sanctimonious the advocate, the more irreverence you should muster. Sanctimonious people are usually full of crap and their causes celebres as hollow as Nicole Ritchie's stomach.

One must distinguish irreverence from disrespect and resolve never to dabble in the latter. Irreverence is the hallmark of mental acuity. Disrespect is the refuge of twits. For example, I once attended a girl's bat mitzvah. A man (the Jewish version of a deacon. I think they call him a Deaconowitz) handed me a yarmulke which I dutifully donned. Watching the sermon (sermonitzvah?), I suppressed the urge to fling my yarmulke to my brother as a makeshift frisbee. Sure I was bored and the skull cap was messing my cool hairdo. But yarmulke frisbee in a synagogue would have disrespectful. So instead, I broke the stuffy atmosphere by telling the rabbi I would convert to Judaism because after seeing the dessert table as it would be worth all the chanting just for all those luscious patries! Those Jews know desserts (and a bargain)! Then I suggested to the rabbi that there'd be more Jews if you could get a yarmulke with your favorite sports team's logo embroidered on it. That would be really cool. The point is, I showed a religious ceremony the proper irreverence without being a douchebag. Irreverence is a fine and nuanced art.

Intemperance: if you're going to eat wrong, do it right.

With regard to food and drink, you can't get a little bit pregnant. You either have to eat until satiation, or else abstain, which is out of the question. Abstinence is for nuns and men still struggling against their gay urges.

If you try to eat “reasonable” portions of junk food, you'll either nibble and graze your way to obesity, or you'll drive yourself insane with abnegation. You know what I'm talking about. You start with “just three” Oreo cookies. Then you place the bag in the cupboard and pat yourself on the back for being “good.” You finish, but the residual flavor in your mouth tortures you. You can't think straight. You want more. Soon, your resolve fails and you sneak just a couple more. Bliss, but still not enough. It's like Chinese water torture. Alright, two more. Mmmmmm. One more. Ok, now three more, but that's it! OK, fine. I'll skip dinner tonight. The Oreos will be my dinner...

The next think you know, you've demolished the entire bag of Oreos, your teeth look like tree bark and your convulsing in the throes of insulin shock. The tragedy here is, had you given yourself permission to enjoy as many Oreos as you pleased from the onset, you would have enjoyed the experience much more. And in the end, you pump the same calories down your gullet either way.

The “serving size” on the bag is a ploy to present the food in the best possible light; that is, with the fewest calories, fat and sugar. Personally, I disregard the nutritional label. I don't care if they're putting shards of glass and plutonium in Breyer's Mint & Chip ice cream. I'm still eating the whole carton. I'll hit the gym when I must, but I'm eating what I want, when I want, as much as I want. No guilt, no anxiety, no self-loathing, no torture. No problem.

With regard to alcohol, I remind you that unless you drink to elevation, you shouldn't drink at all. Admit it, the best ideas you have are when you're “elevated.” Most of the fun you have, too, is while elevated on hooch. Only a great fool drinks alcohol in moderation. That's like having sex in moderation (I do it, but not often, and never to orgasm). Well then, what's the point?

Uninhibitedness: when you do it, let it all hang out.

Psychologists and neuroscientists teach us that the brain is very similar to a computer. My own observations confirm this. Unfortunately, our brains' operating system is a Windows-like clusterfuck instead of a smooth-running Mac. You have to use your mind in the same manner as your PC. To wit, keep as few programs as possible running. The brain is NOT a good multitasking processor. System resources are limited. The more processes running, the less quickly and efficiently each runs and the more likely a system freeze-up.

Inhibitions are psychological processes competing with one another. Close down any superfluous or competing programs. For example, let's consider the task of dancing. Everybody has a dancing “program.” Some people's run smoothly, others produce results similar to transient cerebral palsy. The problem isn't the dancing program. The problem is, the OS (brain) can't run it smoothly because a huge amount of system resources are running the “Everybody's Watching Me and I Suck” program. Often, one can close EWMAIS with sufficient amounts of alcohol. However, this launches another program called “Alcohol Countermeasures,” which works to prevent the biological hardware from stumbling, passing out, mumbling incoherent drink orders, or servicing the bar restroom's “glory hole.” The more alcohol consumed, the more system resources AC commands, and the dancing program performance degrades. I once had a friend whose AC was working so hard that his dancing program had him mount an imaginary bull on the dance floor. He proceeded to ride the imaginary bull, cowboy-style, for 7 seconds, whereupon the bull bucked him laterally and he collided with a group of several African American patrons, who dragged my friend into the parking where they performed a “hard-switch reset.”

Stay vigilant. Whatever task you're performing, keep your system clear of competing programs. Be on the lookout for the following resource-hog applications: “If I Do That, They'll Fire Me,” “I Look So Fat Today,” “Musn't Offend Anybody,” “Is This Legal?” “I'm Not Good Enough/Smart Enough,” and the biggest resource-hog of all, “Earn Others' Approval.” Should you discover any of these programs running in the background, Control-Alt-Delete those motherfuckers at once.

Finally, “reboot” your mind often. Sleep, eat and play often. You just won't be at your best if the “SYSTEM MUST REST AND REBOOT” dialogue box keeps popping up.

Here are some other Virtues I've identified. They're self-explanatory. Each has a little precept annexed to clarify the Virtue:

Deniability: do your dirty work in the dark; always have a rock-solid excuse cooked up ahead of time.

Suspiciousness: Nobody is more honest or selfless than they seem, and they're lives are more jacked-up than they first appear.

Impatience: waiting is for gentlemen foolish enough to date Catholic girls. Now is all that matters.

Looseliptitude: Say what you feel at once and without reservation. Ninety percent of our regrets are things we should have said and didn't.

Complacency: Ambition is the playground of the Devil. Consider that most of what you attempt will either fail, backfire or underwhelm, whereupon you'll spend precious time undoing whatever you did that was such a great idea at first andhttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.bold.gif now just a mess. Better find contentment in your current situation, however pathetic.

Frugality (also a Franklin Virtue): it's probably a piece of crap so don't buy it. Plus, they'll renege on the warranty. Finally every dollar you spend is a dollar-sixty you'll have to earn at work (yuck!) and paying Uncle Sugar. Frugality is freedom.

Immodesty: you're headed for a fall anyway, so live it up. Nobody else is going to toot your horn. And those breasts are going to sag when you hit your late thirties, so shake those money-makers while they're still at eye-level.

Anonymity: remain anonymous to upper-management, your neighbors, law enforcement, creditors, government agencies and the IRS. None of them are “here to help.”

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good advice. I've rebooted into the commode more than a few times and there are some looslipititude events that I would rather forget.

But yeah no sense in just having a little fun...go for the gusto.

Raggedy said...

I really enjoyed the "BF" series.
Well done!
I love the ctrl,alt,del the mf's.
The series was full of great advice.
We like the same brand and kind of ice cream. You have great taste!

Have a wonderful day!
*^_^
(=':'=) hugs
(")_ (")Š from
the Cool Raggedy one

Anonymous said...

Great virtues LBB, I especially liked the intemperance with regard to alcohol and the analogy to sex in moderation, very true.

Anonymous said...

Right on about the suspiciousness. Also the frugality and the anonymity. Funny alcohol/sex comparison.

Anonymous said...

Looseliptitude is my favorite. That's a sexual thing, right?

Anonymous said...

Let's hear it for intemperance. You had to do it, didn't you? Using Oreos as an example. The only way to control the intake of Oreos is to leave them on the shelf at the store. Cold turkey is the only way.

However, they can be replaced with Dove Promise dark chocolate pieces. I have been able to limit my intake of them to one or two pieces after lunch and dinner. The nice thing about them is the cute little homilies that are included on the inside of each individual wrapper.

As for alcohol and sex, one has to draw the line someplace. So Oreos are gone. Now let's take time out for a Black Russian and some erotic exotica. ttfn

Anonymous said...

You need to write another book. No doubt about it.

Anonymous said...

Lotsa good stuff to live by! Where were you when I was young? Oh yeah - you weren't born yet.

Anonymous said...

LOVED IT!!!

I actually think you are on to something with team logos and desserts :)

You should seriously consider a book!!

Anonymous said...

That's what I like about you lighting...you just tell it...
wow I loved it....

Anonymous said...

I dance beautifully drunk or otherwise, the problem is more about how much clothing I have on and whether or not I have hopped up onto the bar or stayed on the dancefloor.

Anonymous said...

"Chastity is no more a virtue than malnutrition." (or something to that effect)~ Dorothy Parker

But yeah, the whole moderation thing is carob. It says, I don't want to actually have chocolate, just something that reminds me of chocolate in an unpleasant way. No estoy.

Anonymous said...

I once dated a guy who personified the
"Deniabililty" virtue. His motto in life: "You got videotape? Then it didn't happen." Usually this was the excuse when I happened to find, oh, another woman's panties in his bedroom, or looooong dark hair in the shower (I'm a blonde). Yeah, he was a winner.

And thanks for the advice on the anonymity. Coulda used that one about a year or so ago before I got dooced. Oh, well...

Anonymous said...

I like the list...but what's with the negative prefix? Ir- Im- etc?

I was once accused of deniability...but really, it was only because I absolutely detest the person and trying hard not to let them know because he happens to be my ass of a father in law.

In retrospect, I should have been as rude as I could, then maybe he wouldn't have hang around long enough to terrorize my children...may the donkey's ass roast in his own filth.

deep breath...we're talking virtues here.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I got all those. Are we kin?

Anonymous said...

"Only a great fool drinks alcohol in moderation."

WORD TO LIVE BY, MY FRIEND!

Anonymous said...

Oh BB, I know I've said this a hundred jillion times but if I lived there or you lived here we'd be best friends. I have all your virtues except I must confess, I recently jumped on the healthy food bandwagon. I want Jessica Alba's stomach by summer, but without the sperm of that guy she's dating in it.

I will however, throw myself off a cliff before I attempt to limit the quantity of liquor I consume when fucking around with my friends.

Oh great One said...

Sag by my late thirties? I better start livin it up! Times ticking!

Jack K. said...

Thanks for the change in templates. This one is much easier for me to read.

CP said...

I am past 30. 40, in fact. And I will have you know that my breasts are still at eye level.

Eye level for a dwarf...but hey, at least someone will appreciate my legwarmers.

CP.

Anonymous said...

I like the new look!
Have a wonderful day!
*^_^
(=':'=) hugs
(")_ (")Š from
the Cool Raggedy one

Miss Cellania said...

Your virtues are a lot more fun than Ben's. Easier to acheive, too!

Spinning Girl said...

Can I have these on a poster?

Ari said...

Ooo! I want a poster too!

Ari said...

"Only a great fool drinks alcohol in moderation. That's like having sex in moderation (I do it, but not often, and never to orgasm). Well then, what's the point?"

This part made me shout, "TELL IT, TELL IT!" right out loud.