Wednesday, November 21, 2012

How Not To Be an Ass

One doesn't become an ass. One either intrinsically is or is not an ass. Sometimes, circumstances can exacerbate one's assness, but, in order to ever become an ass, first-class, one needs to have had the propensity. In other words, you either are or are not an ass. But beware the propensity -- be aware of it before, say, you come into a lot of money.

There are those out there who will say "rich" people are asses. I say that those who act like asses always were asses, but that becoming rich simply "spread compost on the weeds to make them ranker."

For instance, there are people who drive high-end automobiles. These people, by logical extrapolation, must have a goodly amount of money. (Or, they are car thieves, but that is another post.) To drive an Bugatti does not automatically make one an ass. How one adorns that Bugatti, however, might make all the difference...

I would have taken a picture, yesternight, as I drove to rehearsal with my band, but it was dark and traffic was not conducive to photographic driving. I found myself waiting behind an Audi. The driver of this particular high-end machine had taken time to purchase a license plate frame that read: "Life is a Chardonnay." I did not make this up. This happened.

Imagine the moment at which this decision was made... I can't even try to reconstruct it, but it must have involved a Cape Cod wine shop, a sweater loosely tied around the shoulders by its sleeves, a covered tennis racket and an angular girlfriend named Muffy. [Spoken like Thurston Howell the Third:]  "Oh, look, Muffy...I simply must have this for the Audi...'Life is a Chardonnay'...a-how-how-how...what a hoot." [Muffy:] "Oh, Spaulding [light slap on the arm] you scamp."

I'm not a violent man, but I would be lying if I said I didn't consider ramming this Audi, however brief the consideration might have been. If you, my rich friend, take the time to purchase and install a license plate frame that says "Life is a Chardonnay," you might well be an ass -- or might have allowed your innate assness to come out as a result of your circumstances.

On the flip side, as the record-spinning DJs of the past used to say, there is the common working chap. People who live check-to-check are neither automatic asses nor are they guaranteed some kind of Tom Joadish exemption from the condition.

If you drive a battered pick up truck, you are not an ass by association. You are a person who needed a pick up truck. This is just as permissible as being rich and purchasing an Audi. But (and I don't know if this hideous trend has made its way to the countries of my readers from distant lands) if you adorn the back bumper of your truck with gigantic, dangling plastic or rubber testicles, you are an ass of the most grand proportions.

A: I am not kidding -- this is a current trend in my part of the country.

B: God save me from all of the unwholesome search references the mere mention of plastic testicles is going to get me.

What happens with this one? -- a guy is driving home from work in his F-950 and he sees the guy in front of him turn a corner and he happens to notice an incongruent swinging about of reproductive organs and he says: "Dude, I have to get me a pair of those.."? And imagine the work it must take to track down truck...accouterments of this sort. It has to be hard work that at least requires a Google search... I don't think you can get those in Walmart. You have to seek these out -- to be driven to find...them. What does that say about such a mind? Hmm? I can't go on.

Beware, my friends. The test is at hand. One rash decision can expose you. If your vehicle is just a vehicle, you are safe. If that vehicle has been aesthetically modified to scream: "Behold! I revel in my pompousness/classlessness" then, sadly, you are an ass.


  1. A few years ago a Maryland legislator introduced a bill into the General Assembly to outlaw the sale of truck testicles in the state. The individual in question was, if I remember correctly, a gentleman from the rural western part of the state who'd had the unfortunate experience of following a vehicle so adorned while his young granddaughter was riding in the car with him. "Poppop, what's hanging off that man's truck?" was not a conversation he wanted to have that day.

    The bill failed, mostly on concerns about free speech. I was sympathetic to the man who introduced it, but figured it was for the best that the item in question remain unregulated. It's rare that people voluntarily flag themselves as asses for their fellow citizens, but it's certainly useful to know.

    As for "Life is a Chardonnay" ... I don't even have words. Though again, voluntary flagging of assitude is certainly useful.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  2. Happy belated Thanksgiving, 'nora!

    Yeah -- I don't think I would support a bill against it,myself. But you're right: the sooner these people identify themselves, the sooner we can steer away from them. That should do the trick.

  3. I was inspired to read this post to my boyfriend just now... he told me he saw a dude a work with a license plate frame that read: "Cash Money" Oiy.

    1. Well, it IS the best kind of money. Nothing better than "cash" money. Monopoly money and checks just don't stack up to "cash money."