"You say you want diamonds and rings
A recent trip to an optometrist, who would not agree that there
is a contact lens made specifically for lazy Americans, has proved
two things to you over the course of two days.
First, you can't judge a personality from a website. Yes, she was
hot. She was even more stunning in person. You should be aware by
this point that fantasy consistently fails to live up to reality
because, at the end of the day, she was still a doctor. Try to forget
her good advice and hectoring and take it to the shower.
The second thing she convinced you of was your need to buy prescription
sunglasses. Prescription sunglasses are only good for things that
are right in front of you and don't wander into your peripheral
view, which excludes such activities as driving, fly-fishing, playing
golf or making sense of the conversation around you. $279 later,
you have a pair of sunglasses that allow you to see what's directly
in front of you and don't allow you to judge anything that strays
outside of your direct vision.
In that spirit, here is a list of other things you should try out
before committing yourself to purchase:
1. Ski boots - Whatever size you think your foot is, no matter
how many different sorts of shoes you've purchased in your life,
ski boots are the one shoe you will want to second-guess what your
size is before accepting them. By the time you realize ski boots
are the wrong size, you're crippled. This is because ski boots are
about as comfortable as getting your foot stuck in plumbing.
2. Religion - They're all smiles 'til you're slipping on a pair
of athletic shoes and waiting for death to spirit you off on the
tail of a comet or giving up 10% of your salary and wearing funny
3. Military service - They're not all the same. Each branch may
have over 100 different and exciting careers but at the end of the
day, you're not really in a position to choose and there are only
a few slots open for the jobs that may transfer to the civilian
world. Think about it - if everybody in the army was a communications
specialist, artillery would fire cell phones and nobody would die.
There's a very dire difference between troubleshooting and shooting
4. International Space Station - It sounds noble. Several hundred
miles of atmosphere allow us to put aside our political differences
and work to explore the final frontier together, as a team, just
as Hollywood has imagined it. But let's make sure our sanitary habits
are in line. Some people aren't bothered by a broken toilet. They
would just as soon drill a hole in the bottom of the space station
and squat over it. These are the kind of people you take camping,
which is never done in a zero gravity environment.
5. Volunteering in general - Before you give up every Saturday,
figure out why they're homeless to begin with. Some people don't
want homes. Remember how you used to love hunting for snakes and
turtles? Some people feel the same way about bottles and cans.
6. Anti-depressants - There are a lot of them out there and they
have different side-effects, so ask your doctor how bad the withdrawal
symptoms are. The last thing you want is to take an anti-depressant
that makes you fat and then gives you a raging case of the heebie-jeebies
trying to get off of it. It's bad enough being depressed - trying
to get back to depression from fat and edgy can be a very bad year.
7. Girlfriends - They all have vaginas, true, but they have different
personalities. Eventually that interferes with the ultimate ambition
of having sex when you feel like it. This is especially true with
women of Irish descent. If you haven't already made this mistake,
let's make it simple. When you insult, belittle or just plain say
something thoughtless to an Irish girl, your life will be a shallow
hell that you could have dug with a plastic spoon. Perhaps you said
something minor yet you accidentally gave birth to a grudge. Irish
women hold grudges the same way most women carry infants. The grudge
will last for 18-24 years and your job will be to admit culpability
and just tend to it. Trust that there is very little you can do
about having given an Irish woman a grudge outside of consistently
admitting it and keeping her out of your liquor cabinet.
8. Cellular Phone Providers - Not checking out a cellular provider
before locking in to a two year contract is a very bad idea. They
may have plans you like but you may not have coverage in your area,
no matter what the brochure says. It's annoying waking up every
Saturday to find that your free minutes are available somewhere
other than your own home, even more so when you live next to a cell
phone tower that you could hit blindfolded with a softball. Your
property values are depressed because it looks like a piece of the
Death Star fell in your neighborhood and is currently irradiating
everybody within a half-mile radius and you can't even call a good
friend to complain.
9. Tattoos - You can't really try them out beforehand but you should
carry a picture of what you want inked on your body for a full year
before committing to having it put on your body. That cartoon character
that you love and identify so much with? The artist behind that
cartoon is downloading child pornography right now and will lose
syndication as soon as the FBI arrests him.
-William Cadillac Donovan
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