More Excerpts from: "Life Tips For The Young (What Stuff Really Means)"

The Elderly:
Once they get to a certain age, usually within plain sight of retirement from the job that has held them prisoner for their entire adult life, older people begin to do things differently. They take their time about things. Not because they are slow themselves but because they realise that no matter how fast you try to do things you will never beat time itself. Time marches on. The elderly, finally, know this. That is why they spend an inordinate amount of time in gardens and sipping tea. Gardens consistently provide proof that time is the boss of us all. That is also why the elderly drive their cars as if they were boats. When near elderly people who are driving always give them extra space and time to turn, to park, to do a u-turn, to respond to a signal, to brake. Give them an extra wide berth as you pass them by because who knows what sort of choppy current they are traversing, or whether the tides are coming in or going out. Nobody knows, but the elderly at least suspect.

Rain:
Rain is nice. Rain gives us water. Water keeps us alive. Without water we die with surprising speed and finality. Appreciate the rain. Revel in it’s majesty. In every falling drop there exist tear-shaped 360 degree reflections of the world that those drops are falling into.
Warm rain is better than cold rain. Luke warm rain is best of all because you don’t feel the temperature of it, it’s just wet.

Love:
Love is different things to different people. People who are shallow think about love as a kind of abstract possession – something to acquire by following a certain formula. Of course this road does not lead to love, it leads to baking and gardening, perhaps caring for an obedient pet.
Love is usually coolest when both people feel that same sense of love at the same time. If the timing is off it only leads to heartache, misery and pain. Sometimes it leads to either a) murder, b) suicide, or c) both, in that exact order.

Landlord:
Is someone who’s dead aunt left them an awkward looking apartment block in an awkward part of town and failed to reveal all details of the property in her last will and testament.

Will:
The will is the final hand in the lifelong game of tag comprised of pettiness, in-fighting, jealousy, envy, rage, cheating, double-dealing, deception, complicity and manipulation that runs through the centre of everyone’s life.

Food:
Food is a cruel and heartless master. It will kill you in the end, but in the meantime it will keep you alive. Food is now considered a kind of psychological accessory to the way you decorate your inner life.
Different food products have their logos, their advertised associations. They promise you not just succulent thrills but whole new sets of friends, feelings, insights and personality traits. Eating packaged food especially is like going to a movie in which you are the only viewer. It is marketed as a total experience which does not need any connection to reality. Indeed packaged foodstuff is advertised as a sure-fire way to make good your escape from the here and now and to become the kind of wondrous being you’ve always dreamed of becoming. And all for just $2.95 - with coupon…

Snacks:
A privilege of the comparatively well-off. The poor do not snack. The starving do not eat, let alone snack. Only those with already enough food are snackers.

Public Service:
A misnomer of gigantic and oftentimes hilarious proportions. The public service is the easiest line of work to get into. The Public Service normally holds exams every year and often more than once per year in your city. All you have to do is find out when and where, register your interest in doing the exam, and then turn up and blaze it.

The Environment:
A collection of plants, animals, microbes, gases, minerals, liquids and chemical reactions which combine to allow the continuing existence and sustenance of carbon-based life-forms. A scale model of the environment will be buried six feet under the surface of the real environment so that in 100 years our ancestors can look at it and go “what were they thinking?”

Alternatives:
These are the things which you will never really be made aware of. To know what your true alternatives are is tantamount to being given the keys to your own freedom and independence. And this can never happen.

Value-Oriented Intellectuals:
Described by Noam Chomsky (see Noam Chomsky) as an assortment of tertiary level professors, teachers and mentors who’s moral code and behaviour found it’s centre of gravity clustered around such values as truth, justice, democracy, fairness and freedom. This group usually arises as a threat to the powerful elite in the wake of unnecessary and costly wars and other national and international trauma.

Thumbs-Up:
Recognised throughout the planet and possibly the universe as a hand signal meaning “Okay”. The question-form and the answer-form of this signal are identical and further clarification can only be given by the simultaneous raising of the eyebrows or pressing together of the lips.

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