The latest issue of the Punch Bowl print magazine is out this week and it is based on the theme of “professionalism.” It will be funny; you should sign up to get a copy of it delivered to you for free. It’s really easy—just click the link to the left labeled “subscribe.” You don’t have to give us your credit card number. We get that by rummaging through your trashcan for bank statements. In the future, please put used condoms in the bathroom garbage.
I find thinking about professionalism stressful, though, and I would rather think about recreationaism. You know…recreationa things…like drug use.
If you are reading this and you have any connection with Bain Consulting, Yale Law, or you’re my mom, please stop reading this right now. And also please note that I attribute my superlative GPA to the inspirational influence of Toby, an adorable Rwandan child that I single-handedly saved from AIDS by founding micro-lending groups that also combat the evil practices of genital mutilation and anti-Semitism.
But I digress—recreational drug use is one of life’s simple pleasures, and getting blazed is further enhanced by trippy thoughts. Being high is useless without something to mull over—but which thoughts? In this column, I explain three thoughts that are often used for tripping out on, but in the cold, harsh light of clean sobriety, really aren’t that trippy. As an alternative, I offer improvements to the original three thoughts. These blow my mind right now, and in other circumstances might grant me transcendence to an entirely new plane of understanding:
First, the bad:
1. Do dogs know they’re dogs?
This is a question of perspective—we’ll never really know. Sometimes people say dogs think they’re the same species as humans because they hump peoples’ legs. I try to have sex with things I know aren’t human all the time. We all do, right? Lord knows how many times I’ve humped a dog’s leg. But I’ve always done it out of love, not confusion. So this argument is moot.
2. Free Will vs. Determinism?
What if determinism were true? Then we wouldn’t even have a choice as to what we believed. But as depressing as that is, consider the ramifications of free will being true: America chose to reelect W. John Travolta, beloved star of Grease, chose to be in Battlefield Earth. And Amy Gutmann chose to pose at her Halloween party with the sorority chick in the absurdly trite and poorly executed Terry Schiavo costume…like Terry Schiavo has smiled in the past fifteen years! If we can’t blame our poor judgment on cosmic destiny, we’re left to ascribe it to our own idiocy, and that’s a total buzz kill.
3. Which came first: the chicken or the egg?
It seems that if this question were taken literally, the answer is very simple: eggs have been laid by fish and reptilians since long before anything we would recognize as a chicken walked the earth. Other interpretations of the original question offer equally uninteresting answers. If we limit analysis to one individual, the egg obviously comes first, as it must hatch to release the chicken. Speciation is a complex phenomenon, but it is ultimately the result of random genetic mutations, once again on the level of the individual. The chicken argument is indefensible—no blowing of minds, just a lesson in logic, semantics, and evolutionary biology.
And here are some better thoughts to blow your mind:
1. Rather than dogs, consider: Do retarded people know they’re retarded? Or what about deaf people? Midgets?
2. Instead of Free Will vs. Determinism, consider: landshark vs. aquatiger? Then watch Jaws and then read Life of Pi.
3. In lieu of chickens and eggs, which came first: hairigami or the scootboard (it’s a what?)