A handful of things better than death

October 6, 2008

Death sucks. My uncle died last week and it caused me to think a little bit more about what I’m doing to make my life more fun before the axe falls on my existence.

Before you dash away from this column to your latte and email, this isn’t going to be a rambling diatribe about the unfairness of the universe and a complete downer. It’s poised to be a celebration of all the things that we do that really don’t matter in the grand scheme. And it makes fun of them all.

For the purposes of bringing a smile to your face, I’m going to use myself in all examples. This will keep me from being killed in my sleep by members of my family and friends who know where I live. But don’t think for a second that the situations I’m about to list ALL apply to my provincial life.

What are we doing being so stressed about email? When you don’t get an email, it’s not as if you lost your luggage, misplaced a child at the NY State Fair or let a dog you were sitting run into the street and get mauled by a doddering woman who should never have been behind the wheel of a blender, much less an Oldsmobile 88.

A recent email snafu almost sent ‘me’ over the deep end when I was unable for 12 hours to send or receive email. Breathing is the best medicine. If you are still breathing, then you can fix almost anything. If you’re not breathing, why does it matter?

Burned or undercooked food. Aside from getting food-borne diseases from the undercooked variety of chicken products (and this COULD lead to death), these are nothing to be worried about when compared to the dirt nap you could be taking.

Fender benders. Car crashes are literally just bumps along the way. Unless you’re maimed or smushed like a Peep on Easter, then you’re likely better off than those in the horizontal wooden condos in the ground.

As I type this, I’m thinking it might fit well as a Things to Worry About piece, GO HERE, but this is about the NOT WORRYING portion of your existence. So let’s move on to a couple more and then you can get back to living.

Hairstyles. While Sarah Palin may have bangs to die for, the lack thereof is really not a death-worthy situation. Bear in mind that her bangs are just the product of an overly managed campaign and I suspect that even her hairdresser appointments, hunting trips with Gorbachev and heart-to-heart talks with her pregnant daughter are all being scripted by John McCain. Before you jump off the bridge or seal up your garage for a little CO2 vacation, compare your life to hers…you’re better off alive.

College or high-school drop-outs. If you’re on the verge of being flushed from the great intellectual institutions in this country, take heart. A great many great people didn’t ever go to college. And some didn’t even finish high school or grade school.

Further, I’m a college grad who has also taken a bunch of graduate courses and I can’t even name these famous people for you. So the education you’re getting right now from this column is worth far more than that Trigonometry class or Business Ethics Symposium. Grab hold of your newfound freedom and make your mark on the world by living a fun, fantastic life.

This pep talk in column form brought to you by the makers of Xanax. They know that if you’re dead, you’re not using their drugs to keep yourself sane.

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