May 092002

I want a new job.

I have the job in mind. It’s a job that needs doing. My job would be to smack people.

Not everyone. Just the people who need smacking. A lot of people need smacking. Like these people, who are petitioning Peter Jackson to rename the second movie in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Apparently, in light of the events that took place last September 11, they find it offensive that fifty years ago J.R.R. Tolkien named the book The Two Towers.

These are people who need a good smacking. They need to be aware that not everything that refers to a tower is referring to what happened last September. They need to be stopped before they start insisting that we dismantle all the other towers in the country, because they are obviously a reference to the ones destroyed last year. They need to be clued that not everything in the world is a deliberate attempt to make them, personally, feel bad.

Most of all, they need to get over this growing notion that if you don’t like something, the correct response is to make it disappear. This legion of the professionally offended is increasingly active in trying to take down web sites, television shows, and anything else that they feel isn’t pure and good. For them, the solution to their upset always lies in what someone else should be doing about it. Evidently they have so little self-control that they are not capable of simply turning off the TV, shutting down the browser, or–in the above example–simply not going to see the movie they find objectionable. They can’t control themselves, so they seek to control everyone else. How dare anyone want to see, hear, or think things that they disapprove of?

A good smacking is clearly called for. It probably wouldn’t help–a two megaton clue-bomb probably wouldn’t even ruffle their hair–but it might make the self-regulated people of the world feel a bit better.

Someone else who needs smacking is the woman who wants us all to have a grumpiness banned day. The idea is proposed by an alleged “stress management expert,” who “wants people to be fined for frowning and to wear special hats when they’re caught being unhappy.” So not only did Joe Schmoe have a fight with the wife last night, now he has to pretend to be happy or he’ll have to wear the funny hat. Oh yeah, that’ll reduce stress. I think a better stress reliever would be a task force of people assigned to smack self-righteous cows who want to force everyone else to feign cheer to avoid making anyone else feel uncomfortable.

She’s declared May 22 to be official “Grump Out Day.” I personally plan to scowl and mutter all day long in honor of the occasion. It’s not as personal as a smack, but it’ll have to do. Won’t you all join me? We can call it the “Emotional Freedom Day.”

 Posted by at 9:24 pm

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