Monday, September 14, 2015

"I'm List Ending"

Earlier today I had the privilege of perusing a list: "25 things men over 30 shouldn't do". How nice is that? Since I'm over 30 I finally have a rule book to live by. Thank goodness, I don't know how I've managed for the last 13 years without this. 
And that got me thinking. Why haven't I looked for these rule books before? All that time in book stores and I keep forgetting the Self Help Section. I shudder to think that my life could've been so much better had I only thought to seek rules on social etiquette sooner. So let's take a look at a few of these rules, shall we? C'mon, it'll be fun. 

First off. It's in the title that this is a list of things we shouldn't do. So I'll start off by examining that aspect. A list. This denotes organization, a weak point of mine. Is this guy an accountant? Or is he Santa Clause? Is he making his list and checking it twice? Here's a list of things I don't like: 1. Lists. 
I don't even write down a grocery list. I work from memory. If this guy needs a list to remember what he's not supposed to do then the first item on his list should be a book on mnemonics. When a ship is listing it's a bad thing. Usually a precursor to sinking. Therefore, loose lips don't sink ships, lists do. 
Now I'm not saying it's not ok for you guys to make lists. Sure, have at it. I'm just saying I'm wired slightly different. That and I don't feel like employing elves or feeding reindeer. 

On this "list" of things not to do: 
"wear clothes that aren't ironed". Well, I'm sunk there. My job doesn't allow me time to get up and iron my uniform every morning. I've got 2 drawers and 2 milk crates full of neatly folded t shirts, shorts, pants, socks and underwear. I don't have room in my truck for an ironing board. According to this guy I should be ashamed of myself. For having a job that involves manual labor I assume. I imagine that when he asks men why they don't iron they just look at him and say, "because of these calloused hands, Nancy. Now shouldn't you go home and cook your boyfriend some dinner?"
I'll be honest, I tried ironing my clothes after I read this article. The biggest challenge was that I wasn't sure how much starch to use for my socks and underwear. I can report, through trial and error, that a full can for each is too much if you plan on bending your ankles or sitting. 6 cans of starch later and I'm walking around like Iron Man. 

"Lifted trucks". Yep, on your 30th birthday the rule book requires you to sell that big 4x4. Obviously the guy that wrote that list did not do so while sitting at a diner in Alabama. If he did, he certainly didn't ask any locals to proofread. 
I find this interesting. So is he saying those 26" rims are perfectly acceptable after the age of 30? You can't be a redneck after 30 but you can be a "gangsta". So I guess I need to go get me some gold teeth and a Tupac cd now that I'm a big boy. 

"Earrings or any body piercings". Well this one strikes a chord with me. For obvious reasons. I wear an earring. Just one. I used to have about 12 in my ears. I did that as an act of defiance when I was younger but now it's just the one. Why one? Because I like rum. I'm a pirate and shit, matey. 
Ok, so I'm not really a pirate. I don't have any real reason for wearing one other than "because I do what I want."  However, in a discussion the other day it was mentioned I knew a police officer who wears an earring as well. The response was "well being a cop doesn't necessarily mean he's not a bad person." Oh. Well I didn't know an earring made you a bad guy. 
I decided to test that theory and took my earring out. As it turns out, without it in, I can now do good. It's not guns that we need to control, it's jewelry. Ban male ear piercing and there will be less crime. 

"Drinking games". I rarely drink. I don't need alcohol to relax or to have fun. And I hate hangovers. So I don't drink much. But I'm familiar with drinking games, I've seen them and read about them. Looks to me like people having fun. 
Clearly this efficiency expert has it down. Drinking shouldn't be enjoyable. There should be no comradery. According to this guy drinking should be strictly about getting wasted. You should sit in your easy chair and upend a bottle of Jack. Alone in your living room, with your microwave dinner in front of you.
He specifically mentions beer pong, which I've seen but never played. My reason for not playing is simple: I have no interest. I'm fairly certain, though, that he's disparaging it because no one would pick him to be on their team. "No, Mr Etiquette, you throw like a girl. Now why don't you be a dear and go fetch us a drink?" 

"Don't argue online". Well that's a subjective statement. An argument to one person is a perfectly sensible debate to another. My understanding is that an "argument" is two people raising voices and calling names. I'm snarky and sarcastic but I don't generally call people names. 
I could yell at my computer but I don't see that doing much good so I don't do it. I do yell at the tv during football season though. I don't know if that counts. I do, however, run a blog wherein I will sometimes post sociopolitical articles or theopolitical articles that people will want to discuss or debate. 
According to this guy I shouldn't engage with my readers. By that thinking you guys are arguing with me online and you should cease and desist immediately. No disagreeing allowed anymore. We are all shiny, happy people. I guess REM had it right decades ago. 
Looking at his way of thinking, it's online that we shouldn't argue. He was clear about that. But it's apparently ok if we fight in public. Disagree with someone's post? Obviously the only answer is to meet up at the convenience store and "rumble" or have a dance off. If you're over 30 then knifing someone is ok by his standards. Even fist fighting I suppose. Which leads us to the next 2:

"Tap Out shirts". You can't wear those if you're over 30. Any of you MMA fighters, you've gotta find a different sponsor. Sorry, it's his rules not mine. (But you MMA guys, you can't disagree with him online. You've gotta disagree with him in person. That should work out well for him.) And I didn't read anything about a grey area so all the shirts I have from my old dojo are still in fashion. In fact, it looks like it's ok to walk around wearing a gi. So we know what I'll be wearing to the beach from now on. Of course, I'll have to take my earring out or all the good guys will want to fight and we already know the villain always loses. 

"Watching wrestling" is verboten if you're over 30. This may cripple the WWE and WWF as far as marketing and ticket sales. But it could make for a different reality show. Just imagine all those kids that like wrestling. Now they have to go to events unchaperoned. They can just point the cameras at the audience of preteen and teenage kids and watch them fight amongst themselves. Yeah, there'll probably be "20 somethings" there in the crowd but they aren't held to the same rules as us grown ups I reckon. 
It'll be like "Mortal Kombat" in real life. Kids kicking the crap out of each other in the "no parents allowed" wrestling arena. Fun times. Pay up your kids' insurance. 

"A bachelor pad. Even if you're a bachelor". Interesting. I'm a single father so I'm a bachelor by default. Not my fault. Quick, someone marry me so I'm not breaking the rules. Do I have stop signs and shit on my walls? No. I have oil paintings and pictures of my kids. Aside from that, my walls are pretty bare. Not because I'm all "bachelory" but because I'm too lazy to decorate. That and I'm still kinda caveman ish. If I start painting the walls then I'll probably end up with stick figure mammoths and stick figure guys with spears. Little hieroglyphs of fire and stuff. 
Nor do I have animal heads as trophies, bear skin rugs or taxidermied animals. The only stuffed animals in my house are the ones the boys sleep with. I do all my hunting at the grocery store. I'm lazy that way. 

I'm not going to list all of the "25 things that are no no's for guys over 30". This article would be way too long and boring. Not that being over 30 has to be boring according to "Mr Etiquette". For instance, there were plenty of things NOT on his list. Like...

Video games. Video games didn't make his list. I rarely play video games but I have kids so I can't say I never play. I beat "Lego Marvel Superheroes" so that my boys can use any character they want. 
I don't play "Call of Duty" or "World of Warcraft" but I guess Mr Etiquette does. At home alone drunk. He probably even has a character name like "Lone Wolf" or some shit. I'm not saying he's friendless. According to his article there's a dress code that should be strictly adhered to when playing golf. So maybe he has some golf buddies somewhere. Exciting. 
Now he does also strictly forbid paintball which is something I've never done. Not that it doesn't look like fun but because I'm just too lazy. Or intense. I'd probably rip the sleeves off my gi (acceptable wear per his article), tie a bandana around my head (he forbids knit caps or flat brimmed hats but bandanas seem to be ok) and run around in my go cart (I saw nothing forbidding those) screaming "Cobra Kai" and shoot anything moving or not. 

Ya know, looking back on this guy's article, I'm not entirely certain that Caitlin Jenner and Ru Paul didn't get together, drain a few bottles of wine and write that piece. They probably thought none of those things on the list were ladylike and wanted to speak out. Of course, a lot of guys wrote in outraged at the article. Fortunately, the writer wasn't able to disagree with them without violating his own code of ethics. I'm not outraged at all. I'm thankful I've finally got a rule book I can follow so that I can be perfect. 
Knowing me, though, there's a pretty good chance I'll look at the loopholes and work from there.