Stuff you figure out only after it is too late

Posted: July 1, 2011 in nostalgia is a dirty word

1) School supply lists are a suckers game – Every year from grade 1 to grade 12 my parents spent hard earned money to buy me a box of page reinforcements for school. Every year I found the flattened box of them at the bottom of a locker when I cleaned up on the last day of school. Every year I used up the whole damn thing sticking it to my face or the faces of other people.

The only reason to buy pencil crayons after elementary school was to colour in the borders of one map as an assignment for Social Studies class. Any Social teacher worth a damn had a box of pencil crayon stubs at hand just for this waste of an assignment anyway.

Everyone needs a miniature ruler to carry around all year for that one week of measurements in elementary math class. If your child doesn’t have access to a protractor at all times they will never make it in the real world. I always had binder dividers but since I never used page reinforcements they fell out halfway through the year. Somehow I managed to graduate, but I imagine it was a close thing.

Speaking of graduation.

2) Your entire life up to grade 12 can be summed up in 2 pieces of paper, your diploma and your grade transcripts from your last year. Unless you were the top of the class, all the rest of the time, energy, effort and anxiety you had every day before that is as meaningful to your future academics or career as the bowel movement you had this morning. No one cares about the experiences you had, only the marks you came out of it with. A little humbling to think 12 years of your life could be replaced by a 30 second montage in the movie that is your life. On the plus side, I am sure some perky 80’s theme would be playing.

3) Watching TV will not get you anywhere in life – I wasted hours a day on TV that I could have spent studying, reading, drawing, masturbating, or learning the accordion. Any one of those would have had a more significant impact on my current life than such brilliant shows as Perfect Strangers, Family Matters, Full House, ALF and the whole TGIF line up. Why, for the love of all that is holy, did I ever need to see the daily tribulations of Danny Tanner and his idiot children? I am depressed by my apparent lack of good taste more than anything else. I want someone to give me those hours back damn it, the only thing standing between me and a mountain of horny single women is my lack of accordion skills.

4) Most of your mortal enemies aren’t sitting at home worrying about you – The boss that fired you, the boss that drove you to quit, the women who rejected you, the people who stabbed you in the back. You probably didn’t make enough of an impact on them for it to even register that you hate them. It is sort of like writing angry letters to the editor. Be as pissed as you want, no one ever reads that page anyway.

5) Politics is another suckers game – It takes massive amounts of time and energy to become well versed in the political landscape in my country, province or city. It is way easier to go with my gut instincts or my general party alignment or even just vote for the incumbent. In the end it is surprising how little it effects my life who is actually running the show. My taxes are still high, the services I get for them are still lacking, my government still takes the opportunity to screw me over when it can. I can’t help but feel knowing all the ins and outs, knowledge of all the major players and their stance on the issues would only lead to frustration over how little everyone else really cared.

6) The toys you get from a fast food place are as cheap and disposable as the food – When I was a kid we never got McDonalds. My Dad had spent too many years eating this junk as my grandmother had this weird need to buy it in bulk whenever there was a sale. She would would tootle on over and buy a couple bags worth then freeze them. I cannot for the life of me imagine how gross reheated McDonalds was, but thinking about it now makes me pretty queasy.

Long story short, McDonalds always had the best toy lines to tie in with whatever the summer blockbuster was and I was always pissed about missing out. I was too young to know any better. Now I watch my nephews get excited by the same crap for the same reasons. Sorry kids, but in the scheme of life, your bobblehead Green Lantern is not worth my eating mechanically separated proto meat. You’ll only break it in a week anyway.

Rancid Monke

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