9 (Highbrow) Things You Can Do Now That The Government Has Shut Down

All right, internet listicle trolls. Enough with the lists of lowbrow illegal activities that we “can” do now the government is shut down. First of all, we still can’t smoke pot so stop getting tweenagers and sad dads in trouble with the police (who are still policing, so also, no murdering, but nice try Arnold). Second, why aren’t more people focused on the forbidden highbrow delights we’ve been deprived?

1) Teachers, you can resume assigning Invisible Man to your classes.

Public schools are still in session, but teaching an incredible novel that happens to have a reference to incest will probably fly under the radar for the time being. Oh wait, looks like we already won that fight.

2) Astronaut Wanna-Bes, if you’re dreaming of breaking into NASA to play in the anti-gravity training chamber, now’s your chance. 

97% of NASA is on furlough.

3) Evil Genius Chefs sick of being mocked on reality television, if you’ve been waiting for the right moment to bestow food poisoning upon untold multitudes, revenge is served.

Same goes for anyone trying to go all 12 Monkeys on our planet and release a rapidly spreading, deadly disease.

4) Winery owners, enjoy a leg up on the competition: no new winery permits will be processed during the shut down. 

Who knew that winery permit processors were government workers in the Treasury Department?

5) Still can’t get over the Breaking Bad finale? Stick to fan fiction.

If you were contemplating starting your own meth lab and hoping to get past drug enforcement agents with particular ease, you can thank the Department of Justice. They may not be updating their website, but they haven’t stopped saving you from yourself.

6) Compose an ironic tweet or status about the shutdown causing all national parks to close on Yosemite’s 123rd anniversary.

It’s only funny if you’re already seen someone make the same joke on facebook. And didn’t realize it until the Washington Post spelled it out.

7) Continue campaigning for Obama to reject the Keystone Pipeline XL presidential permit application.

The EPA, the Energy department and the Defense Department are all understaffed and easily overwhelmed at the moment.

8) Sit at home and read a book.

You can’t play outside today, at least not if by play outside, you mean that you intended to visit a national park, monument or zoo. A convenient way to stay inert and finish that novel you keep meaning to finish– unless, of course, you have a non-government job. In that case, go to work.

9) Enroll in Obamacare.

Nothing says highbrow like making a thoughtful, educated decision on a healthcare package for you and your loved ones. Ironically, like most government processes, many Obamacare enrollment websites were not working today, according to reports from the program’s first day in action.

There are no more excuses for tweets like, “Ooh, I’m going to steal some televisions!” or “Sweet! Now I can have sex for drugs!” You’ve got a whole list of activities right here that are much more intellectually stimulating and should keep you pretty busy. But if you really want to use this shutdown for anarchy, at least channel your desire for chaos into something that is actually impacted by the furlough like, you know, starting an enormous forest fire while there are no national park employees. Duh.

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