Tag Archives: Twitter

Self-care

There are some terms that you simply cannot help but chuckle when you hear them. Innocent terms like ‘pulled pork’, or common phrases like ‘polishing the Kaiser’s helmet’ contain sublimated double entendres which the brain cannot ignore.  Such is the case with the term ‘self-care’. In fact the first few times I heard the term, I thought the person saying it was literally referring to the onanistic arts without even the smokescreen of a euphemism.  Of course, self-care is only partly about rubbing one off, and or out.

In order to understand the full girth of what self-care is, we must first take a look at where it came from.  Millennials, defined by science as the generation born after drugs became harmful and before computers became cool, are the tallest generation in history.  With all this height comes a lot of stress.  Millennials are thus, not only the tallest generation they are also the most anxious.

Unlike their parents, millennials are raised to see their towering stature as a ‘privilege’ which is why you don’t ever hear millennials complain. So, where as their parents’ generation might have used complaining, alongside ‘buying rental properties’ and ‘The Beatles’ as an outlet to relieve stress, Millennials prefer other outlets.

These outlets might include ‘making short and pointless ‘Vines”, ‘growing a beard’, or ‘talking about being a vegan’.  Stress relief might also might involve doing little things for one’s self that makes one’s day a little bit brighter and thus releases a little of that pent up tension.

Drinking and taking drugs

IMG_1290[1]

Beer.

The most common form of self-care is still ‘getting wasted by yourself.’  Alcohol is probably the most convenient and accessible way to do this, but pretty much any intoxicating substance will do.  As long as said intoxicant moves you from the state of ‘being anxious and/or stressed’ to the state of ‘closing off, or befuddling, the parts of the brain which generate these responses to the point where the brain no longer remembers to be anxious and/or stressed’ it will enable you to do self-care.

I like to incorporate drinking into other activities to enhance the self-care capabilities of alcohol, so I sit in the dark sending cryptic text messages to people.   The sensory deprivation of the darkness, the intoxicating effects of the alcohol, and the delicate mental gymnastics of coming up with bizarre non sequiturs to text to people is like a massage for the soul.

Now, I know what you’re saying “But doesn’t this encourage dangerous behaviour?”

To this I answer: “yes”

I also hear you saying, this time in a silly high-pitched whinny: “But I get high on life”.  Well my answer to this is “No you don’t; that’s not a thing.”

So go ahead and sooth your soul and expand your mind. Expand it so widely that it expands all the way out your mouth and all over the table in KFC.

Irritating people

They say that a trouble shared is a trouble halved. Well, the same Dearest Reader, applies to anxiety and irritation.  What you’ll find is, if you are feeling a bit annoyed yourself, annoying someone will make you feel a bit better and annoying everyone will make you feel great.

Irritating people is actually very easy.  This is because most people have very thin-skins and are basically powder-kegs of explosive rage. This of course, makes it all the more fun.  The best kind of ‘irritating people’ is the sort where it isn’t instantly obvious that it is intentional.  This way, people can’t rage at you and must simply turn the rage in on themselves, seething until they develop an ulcer.  This is the best outcome because no-one punches you.

Try ‘whistling tunelessly’ – whistling is basically the most casually irritating thing you can do without props.

Try ‘making clicking sounds with your tongue on the bus’

If you live in a flat with somewhat priggish house-mates, try ‘going to the toilet with the door open’.

You could even try ‘replying to everything someone says with “really?” but in a funny voice so the person you are speaking to can’t quite work out if you’re mocking them or not’.

Twitter

We’ve already talked about masturbation, but there is actually more than one way to ‘grease the family pig’. Obviously, sexually gratifying oneself manually is a good time and all, but what about the Choking the Chicken…of the mind?

We have discussed Twitter, or ‘cheep-cheep’ as it is often known, in a previous weblog bulletin but not in depth and we didn’t discuss strategies for using it.

Rather than using Twitter to read about important things babyboomers are doing, or keeping abreast of the latest pop music, Millennials seldom look at the ‘timeline’ area of Twitter at all; instead they simply stare at their own profiles while posting things as they come to mind.    This release acts as a type of self-care in both the double and single entendre senses of the term.  These are the three main ways to use Twitter for self care:

Non-specifically Positive Tweets referring to real, imagined or anticipated but equally non-specific achievements. Such as finding a sex partner or swimming with dolphins

Non-specifically Positive Tweets referring to real, imagined or anticipated but equally non-specific achievements. Such as finding a sex partner or swimming with dolphins

Equally non-specific vague and cryptic Tweets designed to hint at menace but not really . Designed to make real or imagined enemies or people who corrected your grammar ask "was it something *I* did?"

Equally non-specific vague and cryptic Tweets designed to hint at menace but not really . Designed to make real or imagined enemies or people who corrected your grammar ask “was it something *I* did?”

Tweets telling everyone still up that you are going to quit Twitter. You have better things to do. Etc. And you'll really do it this time.

Tweets telling everyone still up that you are going to quit Twitter. You have better things to do. Etc. And you’ll really do it this time.

Go to the gym

It’s 4AM, everything is shut, but there’s a vending machine at the gym.  They have those weird biscuits you like. Well, you don’t like them per se, but you will eat them.

 

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Social media

Social media is important.  Quite often you’ll be at a meeting and someone will say “blah, blah, blah social media presence” or “Blah blah, blah, stop arsing about on Facebook we are discussing pivot tables!”

If you don’t understand social media all that conversation will sound like to you is “blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah” and you’ll look like an idiot, even though you are wearing a tie or a nice dress.

But what is social media? Well, it’s similar to computers, which we discussed way back in the mists of time. But it’s not computers. Social media is on computers but it is also on your phone. Whereas computers are on desks and some people take them on the bus, computers aren’t on phones.  It is like the media, but whereas the regular media is on the telly or the newspaper or jostling politicians, social media isn’t on any of those things.  It’s on computers and phones.

I can see you are getting confused.  This is because it is confusing. Then so is knowing what to do with a hot-air balloon and we covered on this weblog. So stay focused because your weblog author is, what the trendy kids say ‘A social media kaiser’.

Learn what the things of social media are and get them.

Social media isn’t actually a thing. You can’t walk into a shop, even a flash one or a technology one, and ask for “one social media please”. You’ll get punched, or at very least sneered at derisively because you are clearly not up with the play about the fact that social media is actually a high level name for Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, Twitter and Google +. You have to ask for those things if you want to ask for some social medias. Don’t be an idiot.

Learn the lingo.

In the spirit of the age I used the term ‘lingo’ instead of ‘language’ or ‘vernacular’.  In the twenty-first century and to a lesser extent the twentieth and the nineteenth, buzz-words are the new knowledge and language.  Social media is full of buzz-words and slang. Saying ‘social media’ itself is a bit ‘square’ – you should call it ‘social meeds’ or ‘s-meeds’ even.  There are literally trilliosn of slang terms and buzzwords in s-meeds but here are the main ones:

Twitter – ‘Twitts’, ‘T-wit’, ‘the Blue Bird of talking’, ‘140 yo’ and ‘cheep-cheep’

Facebook – ‘Facies’ (never call it ‘Facetime’ however, that is another computer thing) ‘F-Bomb’ ‘The Blue Monkey’, ‘Winklevosses Lament’ and ‘FaceMethamphatamine’

Google + – You never have to talk about Google +

LOL – is something you add to insulting statements to passive-aggressively make a person think you were joking

: ) – shows the social media viewer you are a moron or temporary incapacitated

ROFL-copter – is pretty much what it sounds like it is.

Attract acquaintances

The currency of social media is people looking at the stuff you post. The more people doing that, the more social media important you become. In order to get people to look at your social medias on the regular you need them to ‘like’, ‘follow’, ‘friend’ or ‘engorge’ you on one or more of the social media platforms.

“What’s the best way to do this?” hear you ask yourself, shielding your face from view with a manila folder?

Well, I’ll tell you.

Say inflammatory things

The best way to get attention is to say something offensive. It is best because it is far and away the easiest. Being inflammatory actually works best when there is little to no basis to what you are saying because there is no chance anyone else will come along and agree with you and make your point better than you did.

This is why you would say “Adam roots fruit” rather than “I don’t really like Adam’s reductive views on the causes of the Great Depression” – the first point is shorter, catchier and in no way in need of qualification. The latter is longer and probably needs to be explained.

Politics and Religion

Much like saying inflammatory things, making statements on social meeds about politics and religion are polarising, get people’s attention, need little to no qualification and have the added benefit, just by virtue of your venturing an opinion, of sounding clever.

“The thing about the left is they tend to take an over simplified view of the economic mechanisms behind a sophisticated modern economy”

That statement up there, sounds very clever. But get this: I MADE IT UP OFF THE TOP OF MY HEAD. It took LITERALLY three seconds. It took actually longer to TYPE than to think!

“The Republicans have been sliding towards an Armageddon of polarisation since, well, for a generation”

Ditto.

Very personal shares

Sharing way too much of yourself is to social media what car/pug/Hitler pictures are to the internet at large – the ultimate milkshake that brings the sympathy boys and/or girls to the emotional yard.

At its heart social media is about you; your foot-print on the internet. No-one wants to see the self-satisfied, neatly-cobbled brogue-print of shit-togetherness: boooooring!

People want the rubbed red raw barefoot of dysfunction. The break-up, the drunken arse picture, the long diatribe about how no-one respects you at work. How hard university is. That is the stuff of social media legend!

Bragging

Social media however, is a polarised place. On the one hand, no-one wants to know how great your day at work was and how much you love your colleagues; they want to know how much smarter you are than the idiots you work with, how much your job is beneath you, and how much you ate a spider by accident. On the other hand, however, they also want to know about how much better your life is than theirs is. Self-satisfaction is a snore, but self-aggrandisement is a loud, cocaine-lobster-bisque-and-Congac-fuelled cheer.

Flash holidays, photos with celebrities, jewellery, animals you’ve shot, performance cars you don’t actually own, or bags of drugs. Talk about your sexual conquests in great and licentious detail. Always, repeat, always brag about how much you drunk and never, ever talk about being home on a Friday or inside on a day deemed sunny enough to be outside.

So, that is basically it for s-meeds. Go forth and function.

Working hard

IMG_1049[1]Since the 1980s it has been widely accepted that being a hard worker is a virtuous trait. It shows you can be relied on, that you’ll pull your weight and you’ll do your share.

Assuming your name is Phillipa, people will say “Phillipa is a GOOD hard worker. She’s an asset to the team and she always signs for courier packages because she’s always in the office and doesn’t whinge about it, even if they are heavy and clearly nothing to do with work and someone is just getting all their packages couriered to work because its easier.”

Hard work makes you GOOD.

Like a lot of things that are good though, working hard isn’t much fun.  For a start, working hard isn’t usually compatible with the things that people commonly associate with fun: drinking, taking drugs or properly listening to Slowdive records. Working hard isn’t even as much fun as the other sorts of working: ‘working slowly’, ‘working ineptly’, or ‘looking like you are working but you are really just sitting on news websites posting racist comments’.

Working hard actively involves things usually associated with a pretty rubbish time: silently focusing, lifting, spreadsheets, not dancing, and holding in farts because it’s quiet.

it is hardly surprising then, that since 1984 people have been looking for a way to look like they are working hard, so as to receive the credit and accolades, but not actually be working hard at all, so as to continue enjoying themselves.

The problem is, most of the old favourites like “Leaving your jacket over the back of your chair so it looks like you are at work when really you are at the taco shop” and “Going into work on a Sunday to send an email to someone and then leaving” are a bit played out.  Most people see a jacket over the back of a chair nowadays and they think ‘taco shop’.  You send an email from work on a Sunday you are probably more likely to get a “I told you you aren’t allowed to sleep in the office anymore, get an actual flat” response as you are a “You’re working hard, have some stock options” response.   You need to be more original. You idiot.

Always wear work clothes

If you are always at work, you pretty much would only ever need to wear ‘work clothes.’ The fact you never change out of them indicates how little time you have to change. Because you are working.

There are some issues with this as a sole strategy: if you work and a rendering plant you are going to find the smell of your over-alls socially debilitating. Conversely, if you work in an office people might not think you are wearing a suit on a Saturday because you are on your way to the office; they may just think you are the sort of berk that gets up on a Saturday and puts on a suit because they think it makes them look like Don Draper.

Asinine idioms

Candle

A candle: Burning at one end. You burn the candle at both ends.

People who work hard don’t have time to be original or interesting and this reflects in their patterns of speech.  People who work hard talk in silly idioms and dumb sayings because the main part of their brain is thinking about spreadsheets and how to build a garage. These idioms should also usually nod towards the strain of having to work hard.

Try peppering your speech with: “Another day, another dollar”, “Working hard or hardly working?” “Burning the ol’ midnight oil” or “doing more working than twerking these days.”

Humble brags

Asinine idioms are all well and good but occasionally you will have to engage in more specific conversation. All conversation has to have something to do with work, how hard you are working, and relating the trials and tribulations in your life back to work. For instance:

“I am such a bad girlfriend; when the fridge fell on Dustin he had to drive himself to the emergency room because I was in the office burning the ol’ midnight oil.”

or:

“I have been so slack at the gym since the one in the basement of MY OFFICE stopped being open TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY.”

Or even:

“I didn’t come to your daughter’s Christening because I was digging a pool.”

Get a nickname

All hard-working people have nicknames related to their jobs because their job is most of their identity.  You can stand around waiting for someone to give you a nickname, sure, but if you aren’t a hard working person you might end up with a nickname that refers to non-work related aspect of your life. You might, for instance, end up being called “Munty Jim”, Mindy Car-crash” or ‘Phil the Screamer’.

Desk

The desk that Major Desk took his nickname from. Because he’s always sitting at it. Working.

No, you will have to give yourself a nickname to control what it is, and make sure it refers to your work. Try ‘Danny Spreadsheet’, ‘Water-cooler Joan’, ‘Sally Leaf-blower’ or ‘Major Desk’.

LinkedIn

Until 2009 hard working people didn’t use online social media tools unless their job was specifically ‘social media expert’ (which isn’t a real job), ‘professional networker’ (a function of all jobs but not one in and of itself) or ‘Mark Zuckerburg.’  This was evidenced by the number of boring people who used to say ‘I don’t have time for Facebook’ or ‘Twitter? I hear enough twittering around here thank you very much.  Pass me that toner cartridge please.  No, not that one, the other one.”

Then along came LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is a social media tool for people who work hard.  If Facebook is approaching someone at a party and saying “I like that band too, let’s smoke this”, LinkedIn is approaching someone at a party and handing them your business card. To look like you are a hard worker you need a LinkedIn profile, and you need to constantly send everyone who is in your email directory invitations to be a ‘connection.’ Like, all the time.  Never, ever stop.

So now you know how to do it and I have even run the numbers on all of these ‘life hacks’ (actually, that’s another thing – hard workers always say things like ‘life hack’ or ‘TED talk’) and in total, the amount of time you will spend doing all these things is ‘one day’. The rest of the time is yours. Except the LinkedIn stuff. That’s going to take up most of your life.

How to computers

Cat Lime

Awww…

In my lifetime,  I have been given conflicting predictions for, assurances about, and visions of the future involving, computers.

In the 1980s, as a child, I was taught that in the future computers would do cool things like ‘be holograms’ and send faxes.  we were led to believe the next step were robots; both malevolent and violent robots,  and sassy, irreverent ones.  As children we imagined them talking in cute, tinny electrical voices; offering friendship and having their cheekiness be the a catalyst for adventures.  Either that or killing everyone.

By the 1990s the dream had flattened, narrowed, and focused on the practical. Computers and the tube that linked most of them together (which Al Gore had named the internet,) would be useful, but only to do mundane things like ‘typing’, ‘help you shop’ and ‘act as a pornography delivery agent in lieu of a VHS cassette’.

By 2006 the future of the computer was seen as bleak.  In 2007 the US Treasury prophetically declared that computers were ‘pointless’ and would all soon be obsolete.

US Treasury

The US Treasury Building, 147 years before the prophetic 2007 announcement

Now, in this the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand and Thirteen, we have seen that the 2007 proclamation has largely come to pass.  Computers have been surpassed in their once idolised position as the ‘thing of the future’ by DVDs, big televisions, iPhones and serious developments in fabric technology that has made wearing jackets fun for children.

As we all know, with the cold twenty-twenty vision of hindsight, computers have their purpose but that purpose is limited.  Don’t, however, take your computer and throw it in the face of the next person to knock at your door. That would be senselessly violent and there are still five things you can use a computer for:

Social media.

Social media is a trendy word for Facebook and Twitter and texts and stuff. If you are ever actually talking about it, in any technical sense, you call each type of social media by its actual name.  Like you say, “To look at my photos on Facebook first you need to add me as a friend on Facebook because I locked down my Facebook profile to stop that creep Claudius perving at them.”

If, however, you are really proud of the fact you know how to use Facebook and Twitter, you call it ‘social media.’ Say you are going for a job, and you want to tell people that you know how to use Facebook or Twitter or Friendster, you don’t say “I’m good at Facebook, and Twitter, and a bit Friendster” you say “I’m a social media guru” or, even better, “I’m a social media mogul.”

Note, ‘mogul’ in this case doesn’t mean you own a social media company.  If you did, you wouldn’t be applying for a job would you.  No, it just means you know how to use social media.

Toaster-oven

My CV actually lists my interest in toaster-ovens and my excitement about the new opportunities developing in the industry.

The same way if you can work a toaster-oven you always list that as a skill when applying for employment.

Cats

The internet is actually now mainly cats.  No-one knows why this is, or when it changed from being a pornography transfer system to being an archive of cute cat pictures, but I am going to say 8 February, 2002.

There is pretty much no limit to the different breeds, colours and amusing cat facial expressions represented on the internet, and because the internet is often accessed through computers it makes the computer a comprehensive archive of cat pictures.

One of the problems with this is, while we can all forget our troubles in a fug of adorability looking at Maru climbing about in a World War One bi-plane (complete with flying goggles…awww…) none of the information is any use.  If, for instance, your cat accidentally eats some poison and in a fevered hurry you were to type ‘cats’ into Ask Jeeves, chances are you’d only get cute cat pictures.  Even if you typed ‘Claudius left poison lying around and the cat ate it, help’ you’d probably, at best, get Grumpy Cat dressed as the Roman Emperor Claudius.

Adorable, but not much use in a crisis.

Typing

Computers aren’t just used to access the cat/porn database (note: in this case the ‘/’ refers to AND…).  Let no-one tell you your computer is just a forty kilo paper-weight when it is offline; they are almost as good as a typewriter.

It is a little known fact, but deep inside every computer there is a series of programmes designed for typing, number charts, and playing primitive games.

In order to access them first you must locate them.  When you locate the typing programme, which is called Microsoft Word, you work through a series of counter-intuitive riddles and within several years you can produce a typed document that is, for my money, at least eighty per cent as good as a handwritten note.

Arguing 

Once upon a time, arguing was the preserve of Kings and Queens, in fine robes, in Argument Salons in only the finest Capitals of the World.  The internet, as well as giving you access to several different types of information, has democracised the world of arguing.

Nazi Party party

This is a rare picture taken at the exact moment the Nazi Party decided that all internet based arguments would ultimately be won or lost by comparison to them.

The internet means that anyone, regardless of age, rank, creed, intelligence, level of understanding, level of personal hygiene, taste in music, understanding of political process, basic grasp of history, level of realisation as to the severity of what the Nazis actually did, basic human compassion, and understanding of grammar can hold the strongest opinion on anything.

Surely it is a giant step forward in the march of human civilisation that you can raise a reasoned point that over-fishing is the primary reasons why some species of fish have all but disappeared from the Southern Ocean, and get one Facebook ‘like’, and Claudius’ response ‘u dum fuk’ will get fifteen.

Painting your house before you actually have to paint it

This technology has been around for some time, in the 1980s the first computer consoles appeared in home decoration shops which enabled you to choose a colour scheme and see what it looked like on some pre-loaded, generic house designs.  Some programmes even allowed you to match colours for interior rooms as well.

Things have come a long way however.  You now no-longer have to go into the home decoration shop, or use a pre-loaded generic house.  You can access the colour matching programmes from your own computer and some of them even allow you to load a picture of your own house, or rooms, into them.

I actually am not sure how you do this though.

Being funny

One of the things I have learned on this long and badly signposted road that is life is the most important thing you can be is funny.  You could have discovered a cure for cancer, but if the best you could do on Twitter upon your discovery was “Looks like there’s only ELEVEN signs of the Zodiac now… #CuredCancer” then no-one is going to care.

Lance Armstrong might have been the first man to walk on the face of what we now call The Moon, but what he is remembered for is comically knocking a golf ball around up there in a hilarious visual gag.

Being funny is more important than being smart, nice, or even attractive and like all good things, it is easy and requires next to no effort.

Just absorb, by way of your eyes, the following five things and soon you will be as popular as Bill Clinton, without having the brains or the human decency of Hillary Clinton.

Be Loud

The thing about humour is it is 43.76% wit, timing and arm-pit farts and 56.24% volume.  Basically, if you say anything loudly it is funny.  Try it out: yell “Telephone!” right now; people will laugh.  There’s nothing particularly funny about the word ‘telephone’ or even telephones. If you have recently been dumped over the telephone, telephones may hold a certain sadness in your heart.  The reason people laughed was because you yelled it.

Loudness is why people who yell things, even indiscernible things, from cars, in stadiums, in movie theatres, and off construction-site scaffolding are revered for their Paul Rudd-esque wit and reap the carnal benefits accordingly.

The other thing about being louder than everything else is if you hear someone else say something funny, you can repeat it louder and get all the credit for it. What are they going to do about it, pout passive-aggressively? Probably, but now you are the Oscar Wildean Megaphone through which all the great quips pass.

Repetition

Jokes become funnier the more you tell them.  This is why people watch Two and a Half Men and Blackadder re-runs every week and laugh themselves incontinent and why no-one cares about Woody Allen movies.  If you repeat a joke over and over it will become familiar to your audience and people find familiar things comforting and thus, funny.  Why do you think politicians repeat the same ideas over and over: they are part of a global conspiracy to make politics funny and thus, interesting.

It’s science. So don’t argue with it. What are you, some sort of creationist? Read this Richard Dawkins book. Moron.

 Find new avenues

People expect to hear jokes on the television, at the pub, or during sex, so in many ways they are steeled to their penetrative power.  However, if you take people by surprise by being funny in an avenue of their life that they don’t expect to encounter comedy, you disarm them and laughter floweth more easily.  It is why no-one laughs during a Robin Williams stand-up performance, despite the ticket clearly saying ‘an evening of comedy’ but everyone bursts into hysterics if you yell “Bollocks!” during the eulogies at a funeral.

 Sight gags

The problem with word-based comedy is it is hard.  How often have you been down the gastro pub, part way through a hilariously ribald joke involving a sexual encounter culminating in someone crapping themselves only to have your whole thunder stolen by someone making a ‘wanking’ gesture with their hand? Seventeen times at least!

Funny gestures are like the picture that tells a thousand dick jokes.  It is why the funniest people tend to also be the most expressive with their hands.

Everyone knows that the guy in the office who wears a tie embroided with pictures of poo on it is the ‘office card’, and we all love the lady who has mastered nine different shades of sarcasm merely by her eye-rolling and smirking.

Pulling the fingers, the dismissive wank gesture, and putting your index finger through your trouser fly to indicate your penis is out are jokes that transcend language and cultural barriers.  This is why all diplomats have an expressive set of sexually simulating thrusting gestures in their humour repertoire should be called upon to diffuse an international incident with comedy.

Current events

People always think that the person who can impress his or her friends or Twitter feed with side-ways jibes at current events is a special type of sophisticate.

The thing is, it is easy.  For a start, current events are constantly happening.  If you live in New Zealand, when current events stop happening for the day at 5.45PM, they are only just starting in the big important countries.  Its a twenty-four hour cycle and you have a myriad to choose from.

Secondly, you really only have to reference the event to get a laugh.  This is why so many tweets are:

“*insert name of politician/sporting identity/celebrity is a total *insert colloquial name for genitalia*”.

Sometimes you can be even more general than that: See how many retweets you get from tweeting:

“I wish all those clowns in Congress would stop clowning around #Clown”

Easy.  Now you are basically John Stewart. Or at very least the crew of Seven Sharp.

Breaking up

They say ‘breaking up is hard to do’. Whoever said that had never tried to run a marathon, shoot a comrade through the head because he was too badly injured to go on and the Nazis were fast approaching, or maths.  Breaking up is even not all that hard when compared to other stuff that isn’t that hard; dumping someone is easier for instance, than cooking.  It is easier than getting twelve retweets.  It’s easier than understanding an entire series of Deadwood.

Breaking up with someone is so easy I am actually not sure more people don’t do it more often.

I like sitting in bars people watching.  ‘People watching’ being the euphemism I like to use for ‘drinking alone in public’ that, in my mind at least, conjures up an image of me as a dapper-dressed gentleman of leisure and student of the social world, keenly studying the habits, foibles, and characteristics of others.

I am wearing a Stetson in this euphemism.  I don’t actually own a Steston, but that is beside the point.

Anyway, quite often I am doing this and I observe a couple sitting there, sipping their drinks, occasionally looking at one another in barely veiled contempt, saying nothing.  She’ll look up at the muted TV and you’ll watch him sneer in disgust. He’ll mutter something about going off to the bathroom, probably to sob, and she’ll roll her eyes with an almost cartoonish contempt; as if to say “God, you always go to the bathroom” or “Bathroom much?”

You can tell that this relationship is on its last legs, they’ve run out of things to talk about, and they can barely stand look at each other  It is walking wounded.  The Nazis might not be chasing their love, but it is too wounded to go on. Time to pull out the old service revolver.  You have to be cruel to be kind.

Blam.

Just to be clear, I am not sitting alone in a bar looking at two random people fantasising about shooting them…I am of course speaking figuratively about their relationship…Lets just be clear on that…

Maybe they are happy, but I doubt it.  Maybe they have too much at stake, but I doubt it. Maybe they aren’t real, and they are a made up couple I am using to make a ‘man of straw’ argument.  I won’t dignify that with an answer.

I know people stay together longer than they should; I’ve done it and no one ever goes out with me.

Breaking up is hard to do.

Well its not.  You just have to do it right.

Quite often in these weblogs I boast a certain expertise in the subject matter in question.  I am, of course, always telling the truth.  Because I am a truthful, amazing, person, I have to confess I am not an expert on break-ups.  Much of what I impart to you today is theoretical.  Because of this, I want all of you reading this to put these theories to the test.  A sort of experiment.

It could get awkward if say, both of you read this.  Or say, you are in a loving and beautiful relationship where breaking up with the love of your life would hurt beyond all measure, but have a go anyway.

Break-up lines

Everyone knows the best way to have sex with someone is to pull out an amazing ‘pick-up line’. A pick-up line shows that you are not only confident but that you have a sense of humour, at least within the parameters of reading funny things off the internet and passing them off as your own.  Why are there no funny ‘break-up lines’ then?

I mean, there are earnest clichéd ones like “It’s not you; it’s me” or “I’m really into the TV series Firefly right now” but these are almost always lies and earnest things aren’t funny.

There was the old chestnut “Welcome to Dumpsville, population you” but, if I am honest, that’s a bit contrived; its old and there probably actually is a town called Dumpsville so it might be confusing.

Try: “Who has two thumbs and is no longer in love with you?” *points both thumbs towards oneself* “This guy/girl!”

Remember, only do this if you actually have two thumbs. Otherwise you have the whole ‘Dumpsville Confusion Issue’

Try rebooting the old ‘Saying ‘Not’ At the End of a Statement’ joke popularised by the movie Wayne’s World:

“Let’s spend the rest of our lives together, or at least the rest of this party….Not!”

The ‘Not!’ bit has the benefit of being sort of ironic, as it is a hackneyed ‘dad joke’ which is due to come around again in the same way people now like cardigans and typerwriters.

Work on a few of your own; experiment.

A break-up line will add some levity to an otherwise tense situation, put you both at ease, and allow you to get on with your lives. Separately.

Social Media

When I was a young lad I was told that it was bad form to break up with someone over the telephone and that one should always have the guts to do it in person.  I was never really sure why this was, but I think it was because people prefer to be dumped where as many people can see it happening as possible.

Social media came along and allowed us to break-up with someone at a virtual restaurant, party, or poker evening.  By posting ‘I think we, or at least I, should see other people. YOLO’ on someone’s Facebook wall, everyone they know and anyone you have as friends in common, can see it.

Twitter allows 900-odd people you both sort-of know to find out that you think:

‘It’s all over, red rover (our relationship) #Dumped #you’.

Make sure you chuck the full-stop in front of the ‘@’ in their Twitter handle. Rookie mistake.

Get hammered

You should always be wasted whenever you do anything significant.  Chances are you were drunk or on all the ecstasy when you met the soon-to-be-dumped, which may go some way to explaining why it didn’t work out, so make sure you are pure munted when you drop the ‘Ditch Bomb.’

There is a catch here; if you are a person who customarily says things they don’t mean when they’ve had a few, or runs their mouth after a wad of nose-clearer, the person might not take you seriously.  This is why you have to reiterate the point over and over again, also adding that “You are serious this time” and “your penis is smaller than a throat lozenge”.

List reasons

Quite often people are in a state of disbelief when they are dumped.  This is, in part, because most of the standard break-up conversations are peppered with vagaries: “We should see other people” – well, of course, but how does that relate to me.  “We should be friends” – well, we are friends, best friends: boyfriend and girlfriend.  See, confusing.

What needs to happen is for you to list the other person’s faults and how this relates to why you are breaking up with them and definitely do not want to be friends.

Be very specific:

“One of the reasons I can’t stand you is you think you are very funny, and you aren’t.  I find your weblog, which you clearly think is great, boring, over-long, devoid of pictures and above all else not funny.  It makes you painful to be around, you arrogant jerk-off.”

Like that.