Things I’ve Learned From Life: My 18th Birthday Thoughts

1. Nobody is smart enough to vote. In high school, we had a “mock election”, in which everybody nominated candidates and everybody got a say. Of course, some of them already knew who they were going to vote for before the person had ever uttered a word. It was, in essence, a popularity contest. And so I lost. Of course. And afterward I decided to become a speechwriter for the winner (some popular kid named something popular, I can’t remember what), and I’m going to quit. You know why? Because I’m just too tempted to manipulate him. He’s just like Bill McKay from the movie “The Candidate”. His opinions are strong, yet so shallow in content (Oh really, you want affirmative action? Why? Oh! Of course. So yeah, we’re going to change our entire policy because of your opinion, without you compromising at all! Of course) that anybody with a strong, well-informed opinion on an issue can manipulate him.

And I thought that that was isolated. But then I saw more of these shallow yet rock-solid opinions (“The U.N. is gay…” a person says. You ask, “why?” and they respond with an “uh…”) from my friends (“I don’t like Heather Wilson because she comes from another state”) or from my parents and relatives. (And if this sounds like you, don’t worry: so many people are like this it’s hard to single out any one person.) Everybody has an opinion, but many refuse to give it any real validation. Bush supporters are particularly bad about this (“We want tax cuts!” they say; but, you say, they only affect a few hundred people in the entire country. Yet the supporters continue with this argument ad nauseum anyway!)

2. Generally, acting stupid and/or hateful doesn’t work. I thought that I’d get sympathy points by acting like one of my dumber “friends”. Of course, it didn’t work. Some people are just going to get lauded regardless of what they say.

3. You are stupid. But that doesn’t stop me from trying to get it to work.

4. Not having a girlfriend really, really sucks. It’s not even the sex, but rather, the total loneliness of knowing you couldn’t get anyone if you tried.

5. 90% of your friends will suck 100% of the time. They’ll either leave you when you need them the most, or they’ll need you when you want them to leave you alone. This is either God’s practical joke on humanity, or a test. I prefer the former, since it just seems so ironic.

6. People suck. See #s 4 and 5.

Got anymore thoughts you’ve got? Drop me a line, and I might post them.

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