Editorial: Jamie Beckett Gives Advice

Apropos of Nothing: Advice from a Guy Who’s Been There
An Editorial by Jamie Beckett

It’s been said that with age comes wisdom. I’d like to think that’s true. So I did some research and found a report that details a study done by Dr. Kevin Festerlene of the Sokol Institute in Cincinnati, Nevada. Apparently, this is a very prestigious joint, located right behind Chick’s Ritzy Casino and Dry Cleaners in the heart of downtown.

Using the algorithm Dr. Festerlene and his cohorts devised, I have been able to surmise that I am currently three times smarter than the average college student, eight times more enlightened than Miley Cyrus, and seven to the third power more intelligent than Danny Pimento, the United States Congressman from Maryland’s 62nd district.

With the confidence that comes from being able to prove with actual scientific methods that I am not an idiot, no matter what my sophomore algebra teacher says at the reunions, I would like to share some of the wisdom I’ve acquired over the seven decades I have been walking, crawling, or reclining with a cold beverage on this planet. Consider this my gift to you.

You’re welcome.

First, stay in school. I mean really, stay in school. Stay forever. As long as you’re in school you at least have a shot at living with your folks. Even if that means sleeping on a cot in the unused parking space of a two-car garage, do it.

Real life is expensive. It’s stressful, and there’s never enough pizza to go around, even if you thought you ordered an extra one. So hide out for as long as you can. And don’t worry about people calling you names or soaping your car when you’re not looking. Society will respect you for pursuing an education. Besides you can always tell your friends and neighbors that you’re majoring in nuclear seismology with a double minor in accounting and primitive progressive studies. If you throw enough big words together everyone will be impressed. Believe me. I know.

Number two, wear a tie now and then. It may seem counterintuitive, but wearing a tie suggests you have status and power, or a job. Either of which is considered to be desirable for an adult. So bite the bullet and wear a tie now and then. If nothing else it will throw your detractors for a loop and keep them guessing about what you’re really up to. Pick your wardrobe carefully, however. Wearing a tastefully designed tie with a well-pressed shirt and a pair of stylish slacks will get you noticed. Wearing the same tie with a bathing suit and flip-flops will get you noticed, too – but the comments that fly around the room right after you leave will tend to be a lot less flattering.

Third, and most importantly, resist the urge to have children at all costs. I know it’s part of the evolutionary cycle of life and all that. And yes, at some point your hormones or your partner’s hormones or your parents will start making noises about having children. Don’t do it. Children are nothing but trouble. They make a lot of noise. They smell funny, eat weird stuff, and fall asleep at the most peculiar times in the most unexpected places. Amazingly enough, they also have the ability to spend colossal sums of money on things that will either break by next Tuesday or disappear entirely. Also, young children have tiny little pockets in their jeans, so you have to carry all their accessories and accumulated stuff yourself. That may not seem so bad at first, but by the time you find yourself wandering around the mall toting a half eaten box of chicken nuggets, a wad of used tissues, and a lollipop that’s been licked by at least three kids, only two of which are yours, you’ll see that having kids is not a business you want to get into. Ugh.

I sincerely hope you’ve found these tidbits of advice to be as helpful and life affirming as I intended them to be. However, my lawyer requires that I point out the following: If you follow my advice and it doesn’t work out for you, or if you find yourself in jail because you refused to accept your kids back from the daycare after reading this article, you cannot sue me for giving you bad advice. It’s not my fault. You should sue Dr. Festerlene at the Sokol Institute instead. You’ll find him easy enough to recognize. He’s the guy with the bad comb over standing by the Keno girl’s dressing room.

Good luck!