How To Deal With Jerks

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I think everyone has to deal with run ins with jerks, be they friends, acquaintances, or total strangers. Due to the strict murder laws enforced in most countries most of us can only hope that karma is real and these assholes have their own assholes to deal with. Not everyone however is equipped to handle the situation. I personally consider myself something of an expert. I come to you as both someone who has to deal with assholes on a regular basis and someone that is something of an asshole herself. I can be a real bitch. Luckily I’ve chosen to use that power for good as a defender of the polite and likeable.

Time and time again I see my co-workers and complete strangers fold under the imposing pressure of a grade A dip shit who’s using an accidental bump of the shoulder, a mis-marked piece of merchandise, or the wrong number of sugars in their coffee as an excuse to relieve some frustration from their personal lives. Their wife left them for a younger man, or the guy they like has friendzoned them despite the fact that they’re “such a nice girl”; so they’re using your mistake or the mistake of someone around you as a punching bag for their feelings. These people have no right to talk to anyone in such a way much less a total stranger.

There are a few ways to deal with these people. None of these ways are to cry. Tears means they’ve won. Never let them win. One of the key differences in the work place between the higher ups and the foot soldiers is that management doesn’t get hurt feelings, they just get burning rage headaches in the place right behind their eyes.

While we’re establishing guidelines, apologies are also a no-no. Apologies are a sign of weakness and you can’t afford to show anything but the determination and ferocity of a mongolian warlord. Of course if you did fuck up you should definitely say you’re sorry; don’t be a dick. Never apologize for something that isn’t your fault like say a policy. It is however important to be diplomatic. Feel free to utilize my go to response to complaints that are completely out of my hands, “I’m sorry you feel that way.”

"I'm sorry you feel that way" - Genghis Khan after invading china.
“I’m sorry you feel that way” – Genghis Khan the the Western Xia Dynasty (probably).

I personally implement five different methods when dealing with pieces of human garbage in my daily life which I will happily share with you now. Each are specific to the place, situation, and the offending party be careful in assessing the situation and choosing a tactic. All methods are intended to be followed up with a cooling down period, a bout of cursing and bitching, and a stiff drink.

Pretend to Involve A Hire Up
The Place: Work.
The Jerk: A high maintenance customer with an inflated sense of self worth and misunderstanding of the word “no”.
The Problem: Unreasonable demands have been made or there is an insistence of non-existing goods or services.

One of the easiest ways to deal with someone who just refuses to bow out gracefully after a mistake of their own is to pass off the blame they’ve placed on you to an imaginary figure head. Maybe this person wants to return used underwear or wants you to get them a medicinal lotion that’s long since been discontinued. Simply excuse yourself to the back or to make a phone call. Pretend to converse with your boss about the matter for an appropriate amount of the time than return and tell them the exact same thing you’ve explained to them three times already. In some cases they may demand to speak to said pretend manager at which point this is no longer your problem anyway. Nice job!

Call Them Out
The Place: Pretty much anywhere besides work and maybe school.
The Jerk: Mostly friends and family, but out of line strangers are eligible as well.
The Problem: Someone is generally acting like an irate asshat towards you or others.

Getting to calling people out when their being a dick is a rare thing but it’s by far the most satisfying way to address the situation. This approach requires lots of guts and few fucks. Most will only use this when their buddy is being a prick or when someone tries to start arguments with them over parking spaces, but I know for me some of my proudest moments are standing up for other people who don’t have the confidence to stand up for themselves or are in service positions and are unable to say anything. You don’t even have to get confrontational with it. Having an outside party step in to tell you to calm the fuck down is usually enough for most people to rein in their rage or attitudes. As much as we don’t like people sticking their nose in other people’s business most of us care about how we look to other people.

Be Unfalteringly Friendly
The Place: Work or other public spaces.
The Jerk: A stranger or acquaintance with a short temper and little self awareness who may honestly just be having a bad day.
The Problem: Overreaction to a minor/imaged slight, or accident.

Be warned the patience level for this technique is advanced. The concept is simply, defuse the explosive asshole by being disgustingly pleasant. No matter what they say or do you cannot react with anything other than a heart warming smile. The method is meant to shame your enemies into seeing the error of their dickish ways by realizing what a nice person you are. If done right you may even end up with a genuine apology.

Tell A Parent
The Place: At home, family outings, or holiday festivities.
The Jerk: Siblings, cousins, and neighbour kids.
The Problem: Sharing of goods and services, touching of personal property or stealing of seats.

A tired and true solution that has withstood the test of time. A shout of “MOM!” is sure to stop any wet willies, pillow tossing, or unwarranted channel changes in their tracks. If being told on doesn’t strike fear into your bullying older sibling or annoying little cousin, at the very least they’ll be distracted by your audacity to involve your mother in petty squabbles. Mom or dad will come into mediate the situation at which time it’s important to tell your side of the story first and the loudest in order to gain favour. You’re offender will be apprehended or your parent will simply tell you both to grow the fuck up. Either way any further arguing from your jerkoff relative will not be tolerated.

Resort To Physical Violence
The Place: Anywhere.
The Jerk: Incorrigible douche-nozzles.
The Problem: Appropriate method sited above has been executed and failed.

If all other options have been exhausted please resort to the fail safe procedure: punch them in their stupid face. Be mindful of witnesses.

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The Cure For Loneliness: 6 Things To Do Alone

My roommate is out of province (that’s non-american for state) right now visiting family so I am all alone for another week and typing this free of the tyrannical constraints of pants.

Freedom!
Freedom!

This has given me a lot of time to do… absolutely nothing. I work for fuck’s sake. But I now have two days off which I’m forced to spend utterly alone. I could make some calls but who are we kidding? I’m not gonna call anyone. I don’t have the social skills. Once we’ve gone a week without talking I’m convinced you just aren’t interested in talking to me and I have no idea how to go about re-establishing a friendship. So I’ll just hang out with me, myself, and I. That’s where all the best conversations are at anyways.

Oh me, no one understands me like you do.
Oh me, no one understands me like you do.

I feel that for a lot of people being alone is one of the hardest things to do. To just sit in a room with yourself can be kind of scary because there’s nothing to distract you from self reflection and being honest can be hard, especially to yourself. It’s a self esteem thing really. I’ve been unpopular enough my entire life that I’m used to being by myself. I even relish in it. When I’m around other people there’s all this pressure to be likeable and not offend anyone, both of which I suck at. When I’m alone I’m at my most productive. Plus I’m able to conserve my make up because I have no one else to impress and I couldn’t impress myself anymore if I tried.

For those of you who aren’t used to spending your days alone  it might seem boring and a little pathetic but it doesn’t have to be that way. Boring that is. Anytime you spend a week cut off from human interaction is a little pathetic. What is there to do alone? Can I really have fun without friends? Welp, I’ve given this some thought and as I’m sure some of you might be in the same predicament as yours truly I’m going to share some of my wisdom. Here’s the secret to warding off loneliness.

#1 Netflix.

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Did you know they have the animated X-Men Series from the 90’s? They totally do and it’s giving me the chance to relive a little piece of my childhood. It’s proven to be one of those weird cases where it’s actually even better than I remember, you know, in that campy pre-2000’s kind of way.

Done so much better than Last Stand in every single way.
And in a ‘way batter than Last Stand’ kind of way.

Maybe X-Men isn’t your thing? Then there’s something deeply wrong with you and you need to find someone to clean that black mark off your soul. I understand finding the right witch doctor takes time and effort so in the mean time you can check out the catalogue of horror films of questionable quality or rediscover the cluster fuck acid trip that was Power Rangers. They’re always a good time killer. No? I guess you could just binge watch Orange is the New Black. Everyone loves OTNB. Even if you’ve seen it you know you want to watch it again. You’ve just been looking for an excuse and I’m giving it to you now.

#2 Be Naked.

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For the record I’m talking about being nude in a completely non-sexual way. Pervert. There’s nothing more liberating than going about your business in the buff. It just makes the most undesirable things fun. Everyone hates doing dishes, but doing dishes NAKED, that’s just a good time. There is literally nothing that can’t be made better by nudity and mundane everyday activities are no exception. Studying? Yes sir. Cooking? Yes, but proceed with caution. Laundry? Not wearing clothes really just helps you do a more thorough job. You’re already gaming in your underwear why not take the next step? You also get the added benefit of airing everything out if you know what I’m getting at. Plus learning to be comfortable just being naked does wonders for your body image.

#3 Read A Book.

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When was the last time you even read a book? If it has pictures it doesn’t count. I know a lot of people don’t like reading but you must. You’re reading right the fuck now. Maybe a novel seems daunting. That’s your first problem. School’s made reading seem like a chore but it doesn’t have to be. If you find the right book all you need is a little effort to get started before you realize what an injustice your teachers did you by villainizing reading with all those boring short stories and unoffending novels they made you read in high school. Learning can be fun damn it!

You could even implement #2 at the same time.
You could even implement #2 at the same time.

Now go expand your vocabulary and word view so you can grow as a person. If you don’t know where to start go ask one of your better educated friends to suggest something for you.

#4 Go For Dinner or a Drink.

This was the least sad looking photo I could find.
This was the least sad looking photo I could find.

Just because you don’t have someone to go with doesn’t mean you can’t do it. Treat yourself and enjoy your solitude while rubbing it in other people’s faces. Sure some people are gonna think you’re lonely and pathetic but they’re strangers who the fuck cares what they think? They’re just projecting on to you anyway. They’re jealous of your confidence. You can even bring that book you’re enjoying so much and just enjoy someone cooking or serving you while you sit back and relax. You don’t have to make conversation or worry about keeping the party going. You don’t have to worry about figuring out the bill. You can enjoy a relaxing outing instead of a rowdy one. I might not do the naked thing for this one though.

Bar seating is filthy.
Bar seating is filthy. You never know who’s ass was on them last.

#5 Be Disgusting.

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The best thing about being free of other people is you don’t have to dodge their judging eyes. All the gross shit you’d never admit to doing are fair game. Fart with abandon, pick your nose, pop that weird zit that’s been on your back for the last week. No one ever has to know. You can slack on personal grooming, gorge yourself of garlic and ice-cream, and watch day time talk shows.

Gross.
Gross.

There’s nothing wrong with being a slob once in a while so long as your able to rein it in when you have to. When people are looking. We might all be secretly gross (or in my case not so secretly) but we keep it a secret for a reason. Sometimes it’s hard to look someone in the eye after watching them dig for lint in their belly button for the better part of an hour.

#6 Orchestrate an Elaborate Prank.

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There’s few things more satisfying in this world than fucking with the people you love for shits and giggles. If you’ve ever pulled some dumb shit on a friend or family member than you know this joy. If you haven’t you owe it to yourself to find out what that feels like.

Even though I haven’t done anything in a while I still plot. When my roommate leaves me on my own for an extended period of time I like to take the opportunity to make her life a little more funny, even whimsical, and  a whole lot less convenient. One of my earlier pranks was wrapping up every exposed item in her bedroom with cellophane. Collectively it took 2 days, 6 hours, and over 550 meters (for my U.S. readers that’s metric system for 1805 feet) of plastic wrap but it was worth it.

There are few things I'm prouder of.
There are few things I’ve ever been prouder of.

I’ve also sealed items in jello and filled her room with balloons and glitter. She’s tied my shit to the ceiling and lined my floor with cups of water. All and all it’s really just brought us closer. I’ve definitely been told by some more mature individuals that it’s all a waste of time and money but those people don’t know the joy and self fulfilment that comes with acting like a insensitive frat boy.

Making Friends: A Guide for The Socially Bankrupt

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Connecting with other human beings can be hard for some of us. When you’re the kind of person who is intimidated by social interaction you find yourself saying nothing or saying the wrong things. People in the real world are way harder to understand than any of the fictional characters you relate to and it’s nearly impossible to know whether or not they would like to be your friend.

People tend to like me. For the most part anyway. It may take a few conversations but a lot of people enjoy my company if not for nothing more than as the occasional novelty. Why? I couldn’t tell you exactly but I have my theories. Most of these theories revolve around the idea that most people have deeper seeded emotional issues than they think that result in them lashing out against themselves by choosing to hang out with socially oblivious assholes. That or I’m charming as fuck.

We're talking Westly level Charming ya'll.
We’re talking Westley level Charming ya’ll.

I joke that I only have four friends but that’s an exaggeration. I’m up at least six now even if I only see one of them on a regular basis and that’s because I live with her. Ok, I may not be the most popular girl on the block but I like to think that’s at least partially my choice. I could have more friends if I wanted to. I could. And so could you!

I know everyone can’t be as trouser dropping charming  as yours truly, but believe me you can learn to fake it. Tricking people into hanging out with you isn’t as hard as people think and I’m here to help you. What do you say? Let’s make some friends!


Pretend To Be Interested In What They’re Saying.

People are dull, I know, but the thing you have to understand about people is that they think their opinions matter. One of their opinions will no doubt be that you give a fuck about their cat’s antics, what they had for breakfast yesterday morning, or their cousin’s wife’s bosses’s wedding and how crazy drunk all those complete strangers got. It’s important to humour them. You don’t really have to listen to what they’re saying just nod when it feels right and give a little laugh when they pause. Don’t worry about remembering anything from these stories, people love to tell them over and over. Chances are you’ll hear it again in a week.

Did I ever tell you about that story I tell at ever party?
“Hey, have I ever told you the story of how I saw one of The Real Housewives at Starbucks? You know, the one I tell every chance I get?”


Gage Their Pop-Culture Knowledge Before Going Hard On Reference Jokes.

To be truthful I myself have yet to master this. I know you’re understanding of social interaction is based almost entirely on what you’ve seen on television and in movies but many people you’ll encounter in the real world will have had actual hands on social development and they wont be able to link real world occurrences to fictional happenings as easily as you. They also probably only watch a few of the same series as you do and sometimes you even run into those pompous jerks who “don’t watch TV”.

You're a asshole AND a liar.
You sir are a douchebag and a liar.

You’ve gotta feel them out and slowly introduce the real you so as not to scare them off.

Engage In Small Talk.

Small talk is a delicate art. You want to construct a launch pad for your potential friend-ship but remain clear of all hazardous materials and obstacles to assure for a smooth take off. You have to develop common interests and positive interfacings through conversation.

Now, what you want to do is begin with a few open ended questions to get the spacecraft powered up. If you do this successfully the other person will hopefully take over command of the vessel and the conversation can find a steady rate of acceleration that will allow the shuttle to leave earth’s atmosphere without blowing a gasket. Does this metaphor still make sense?

Then once you've destroyed the Death Star you have to make you way back to earth carful not to burn up in the atmosphere.
Then once you’ve destroyed the Death Star you have to make your way back to earth without burning up in the atmosphere.

I don’t know. How about some examples of small talk?

-Where did you get that shirt?

-Do you follow any sports and/or teams?

-Do you prefer cats or dogs? Why?

-What’s Vladmir Putin’s deal?

-Would you rather fight Godzilla or a giant robot?

-What do you think would be the best method of murder if you wanted to get away with it?

Can you ever really know a man without knowing how he'd kill you?
You can never really know a man without knowing his Modus Operandi.

Stuff like that. You can also use small talk as an opportunity to figure out what kind of media they partake in as discussed above.

Refrain From Making Racial/Holocaust/Dead Baby Jokes Until At Least Your Third Hang out. 

As much as you and I appreciate a good ethnic infant genocide joke not everyone feels the same, especially not with people they don’t know. Humour is important. People are drawn to funny people but they also don’t like having their morals challenged by strangers. Try to stick to lighter joke topics when first meeting new people. Instead make jokes about your own short comings (people love it when you’re self deprecating) and take jabs at a celebrity’s weight.

But punching a hypothetical baby is too far?
This is ok, but punching a purely hypothetical baby is too far.

Provide Compliments and Ass Kissing.

People love to be liked, that’s why you’re reading this now. You can make someone think you admire them by offering up simple compliments and gestures of kindness. Things like telling them they have great shoes, or offering them your pen when appropriate. Human’s are naturally narcissistic beings and confirming their delusions of how amazing they are is sure to win them over. Honestly the fastest way to make a new friend is to let your interactions be all about them (refer back to the first tip).

Remember They Can Smell Fear.

We may be more detail oriented, better at puzzles, and have total recall of the works of Joss Whedon as lone wolves, but when dropped into a collaborative ecosystem it’s the social butterfly who has the advantage.

Whatever you do, don't make direct eye contact.
Whatever you do, don’t make direct eye contact.

They’re popular, they’re masters of subtly and more importantly they know how to read people, without the help of sound cues and reaction shots.

This is going well right? We're friends now?
This is going well right? We’re friends now right?

You have to be extra careful not to show how nervous you really are at the prospect of being in contact with them lest they think you’re strange and spread the word. You have to make them think they’re fraternizing with an equal. Confidence is essential even if it’s not real.

Act Too Cool For School.

Lets say none of the above has worked. Somehow you can’t manage to make them think you have any real interest in them beyond having someone to send you tickets to get to the next level on Candy Crush. Time for Plan B. As you’ll find some socially competent people are riddled with terribly low self-esteem.

Usually coupled with a mountain of daddy issues.
Usually coupled with a nice case of daddy issues.

These people are likely to gravitate toward friendships with people who don’t give a shit out of a twisted need for approval. In which case all you have to do is act disinterested in them and soon enough you’ll find them trying to impress you. In order for this to work you really have to commit to an act of indifference and be emotionally corrupt enough to be ok stringing them along for an undetermined amount of time.

Buy Their Friendship.

Pretending that you didn’t want to be their friend didn’t work either. Good thing I have a Plan C all worked out for you. It requires only minimal effort and cash. When I say “buy their friendship” I don’t mean walk up to them and tell them you’ll toss them a few hundred dollar bills if they be your friend, that would be pathetic.

...And here's $800 for liking my status on Facebook.
…And here’s $800 for liking my status on Facebook.

What you do is invite them to spend time with you doing activities for which you foot the bill. Dinner? It’s on me. That sweater does match you’re eyes let me buy it for you as a gift. Wanna see a movie tonight? My treat! Who says money can’t buy happiness?

Time to Resort To Good Gold Fashion Blackmail.

By chance lets say you’re friend of choice happens to be the last honourable man in Westeroes (I’m just REALLY excited for season four!). Well, fuck! Have you ever thought about setting your sites lower? Geesh. Fortunately for you I’ve foreseen such failure and have constructed a foolproof Plan D.

So the object of your plutonic affection doesn’t like the idea of being bought huh? Well, it’s a good thing you’ve watched plenty of Veronica Mars, Sherlock, and True Detective to hone your sleuth skills because it is time to dig up some dirt to use against them. Perhaps a stolen inheritance, a drunken make out session with a second cousin, or a string of satanic sacrifices? Maybe just an embarrassing photo pre-nose job or from when their mom made them take ballet.

Unless you want everyone to know about all that gay porn I found on your computer, you'll go
Unless you want everyone to know about all that gay porn I found on your laptop, you’ll show up for brunch on Sunday.

Not good enough? As we learned all the way back in the first season of Game of Thrones there was only one way to make the Lord Eddard Stark confess to false treason and that was a threat on his daughter’s lives. I understand not everyone has a daughter who’s welfare you can endanger but there’s always siblings, parents or pets…

All you had to do was wear my friendship bracelet. You brought this upon yourself.
All you had to do was wear my friendship bracelet! Why didn’t you just wear the bracelet? You’ve brought this upon yourself.

Now that you’re a friend making powerhouse you might be ready to take the next step and find a friend who will let your genitals touch theirs. Need help landing a date? Luck for you, I’ve already written that article. You’re welcome.