Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Devil's Advocate

Ex-roomate Ryan and I had alot of good opinions on various issues that we enjoyed being rather vociferous about. One of my main arguments, was using the word "vociferous" in places where it's not entirely necessary (Jeff-1, Ryan-0).

Anyways, aside from placement of superfluous words, we generally agreed on most everything. As you can imagine, that took the fun out of arguing. Eventually, we decided to take up the Devil's Advocate.

Things usually took a turn for the weird. Here's what transpired last time:

Fancy Restaurants Should Present All Patrons With Two Napkins

By: Jeff Israel

Take the average place setting at any restaurant, folks. Plate, fork, knife, spoon, and napkin, or 'lapkin' as I call it, because it goes directly on your lap. See, I'm cool with the lapkin. It makes sense to a fault. It catches all the breadcrumbs, rogue sauce or beverage that could possibly dirty your crotchal region. But what happens when you have to get some debris outside your mouth? You reach all the way towards the lapkin pull it up and wipe off your mouth and put the lapkin back.

I am wholeheartedly against this, as when the lapkin is being utilized by the facial region, you run the risk of spilling crumbs all over you. Furthermore, once the lapkin is back in place, you can no longer place your hands on your lap as that area has since been contaminated by food and other trappings.

I propose ALL restaurants employ a second napkin to be used solely for the face. This would cut down on so many problems. I can't believe this hasn't happened yet.

Fancy Restaurants Should Promote Fancifulness, and not Vagrancy

By: Ryan Lane

Allow me to play devil's advocate for a moment, if you will.

I disagree with the introduction of a second napkin. As a matter of fact, I disagree with napkins altogether. Napkins promote laziness. Napkins promote hastiness. Food is meant to be savored; you should be making sure that it all finds its way into your mouth. There should be no debris on either your mouth or your lap. The napkin is nothing but a slovenly man's parachute.

Think about this logically for a moment. Imagine you're going on a date to a fancy restaurant. This place has the works: candles, flowers, troubadours, everything you could imagine. Why should a napkin be part of that list? That's practically admitting to your date that you're a slob. Sure, it might be a good line to say, "Hey, mind if I take off my pants because I think that liver and onions stain might set," but I doubt one's date would be amenable to that idea, particularly in the Ground Round parking lot. Really, all napkins say is that "I'm a mess." Thus, I say we eliminate the napkins.

Childhood obesity is a major problem in our world today. Why? Because kids eat too fast. Eliminating the napkin would reduce this speed. Think of the ribbing little Jimmy would take on the playground when he went out there with red wine practically tie-dyed across his freshly pressed Dockers. Wouldn't that make him think twice about drinking so fast?

We live in a world full of fall back plans and safety nets. I propose we eliminate napkins altogether because, simply, life's too short.

'Support The Troops' Bumper Stickers Are Too Much

By: Jeff Israel

Every time I pull up at a red light, stop at a Stop sign, or get caught in traffic it's rammed down my throat. That pompous yellow ribbon flaunting the words 'I Support The Troops'.

Well holy fucking shit! Let me process this again. You support the troops? What a novel concept, you nitwit.

Of course you support the fucking troops, you're an American. That's what you're supposed to do! You can be against the war, but that doesn't mean you want American soldiers to die. Everyone wants those kids to live. Some just don't think they belong wherever they are

Unless my gaze drifts downward from your Troop fluffing car adhesive onto a license plate originating from Prince Edward Island, I'm not fucking impressed.

Everyone supports the troops. The fact that you need to flaunt it with 10 bumper stickers just means you're a terrible person that needs to make up for that fact by trying to portray some sort of goodwill.

You make me sick.

Bumpers and Cars Are Too Much

By: Ryan Lane

If you wouldn't mind, I'd like to play devil's advocate for a minute. I simply don't understand the point of bumpers.

On bumper cars, I can see the point. In those instances, the cars just bounce off one another and everyone goes and giggles off into the sunset. But in real life? In the real world? Bumpers don't do anything. When was the last time you rear ended someone and they just scooted ten feet down the highway shouting "wheeeeeee!!!!" No, the other person gets out of their car, walks over to you, tells you to stop putting your make up on (or in Jeff's case, to put more make up on), and then says to give them your insurance information. Bumpers don't do anything on the highways of life.

In fact, cars don't do anything anymore. With our state facing problems with the tunnel system, and our country having so much trouble with oil prices, I think it's time to examine alternative transportation. What am I talking about? Flintstone cars. That's right, we should start building cars that are powered by people. Powered by nothing but someone's own gumption. Imagine a day when you say you're "running late for work" and you can literally mean it. Our society is moving forward far too fast, evolving too fast. Everyone wonders when those Jetson cars will finally come to fruition, but perhaps we've been looking at the wrong chapter in the Hanna Barbara Bible. Perhaps it's time we look to the past to save our future.

Childhood obesity is a major problem in our world today. Why? Because kids don't exercise enough. When you strap your kids into the back seat and tell them to pump their legs because otherwise they'll be late for Grandpa's wake, you can bet that they'll power you forward to greater places and, on the whole, a better tomorrow.

We live in a world of complacency, where we just expect cars to take us where we need to go. Because of that, I suggest we eliminate cars altogether because, simply, we should be in charge of our own destinies.

Finding a Happy Dress Code Medium

By: Ryan Lane

For a long period of time, it was stated how tough it was being a woman in the workplace. Sexual harassment and bias reigned supreme. Women were unable to advance their careers appropriately due to these problems; however, with time and much discussion, women have made great headway in the professional world. And even though those archaic problems still show up now and again, women have passed their gender equivalent when it comes to some areas. Most notably: dress code.

We're stuck currently in the dog days of summers. Sure, my office has air conditioning, but I still have to commute to get there; I still have to suffer through unbearable heat when it comes to toiling on the T. Women? They have it much easier. They can wear skirts, they can wear sandals to the office. Men? We're much less fortunate, it's nothing but pants all year long. Shorts and cut offs are deemed unprofessional. Sandals? Please, what man would you respect who wears open-toed shoes to a board meeting? Unless you're telling me our third quarter prospects on hemp sales, I'm not buying.

So, here's what I suggest. We need to reach a happy dress code medium when it comes to men and women. I'm not saying that women have to wear pants and dress shoes everyday. However, I am suggesting a strict dress code for the working woman. Skirts must be at least three inches below the knee. Capris? No longer allowed; take it to Old Navy, ma'am. Flip flops? No thanks, I don't care if they did cost $200. Shoes can be open backed, but must have closed fronts. These are the stipulations, and I think they are pretty fair.

Women wanted equality in the work place, it's time we gave it to them.

Wait. Do You Happen To Work In My Living Room?

By: Jeff Israel

Wow. Allow me to parlay my ignorance into something I like to call Devil's Advocate. I'm shocked by your depiction of the workplace. Not by your wanting to bridge the gap between men's and women's dress codes, just the fact that there are actually women in the workplace.

Call me old fashioned, but I remember a day when the phrase 'women's rights' pertained to whether dinner was going to be put on the table at 5:10 or 5:15 and the word 'suffrage' was just something the wife and I threw around the bedroom once or twice a month. And usually only on birthday months. Hey, remind me to bring that back!

Anyways, this whole women in the workplace thing freaks me out. Rosie the Riveter? Fine. Give her minimum wage at Jiffy Lube. But everyone else? I don't think they're ready.

Now, don't get me wrong. I love ladies. And if you don't think so, ask my wife and 9 daughters. They seem perfectly OK cleaning dishes and vacuuming the living room to me. Sure, every now and again one kind of acts up and I have to sit her down and tell her that Susan B. Anthony was a Communist. But hey, that's life in today's age. Oh, and my women wear burlap sacks. That OK, Lane?

Your Choice of Kids

By: Ryan Lane

I'm more than pleased that you have nine children, because you've been practicing something people like to call "pro-choice," or as I like to say, "pro-voice," as in, I hear you, brother.

This whole abortion debate has really gained some life, seemingly overnight. Some people are pro-life, others are pro-choice. I'm the latter, and I'm not here to yell at those who are the former. I certainly understand and respect the beliefs that have led you to that decision. All I will say, though, is that I'm anti-you.

Women should be able to choose when they are going to be parents, and an inherent commitment exists with such a loaded word. If a woman becomes pregnant at a time when she is not able to act as a mother, then she should be able to move forward without becoming one. With children, and most notably childhood obesity, running ragged nowadays, it's best for America to allow parents to decide when they are able to appropriately raise children.

Our country was based upon the beliefs of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. And I'll tell you this, being pro-choice applies to at least two of those.

Everyone's A Doctor On This Flight!

By: Jeff Israel

Once again I'd have to defer to a movie featuring Keanu Reeves and Al Pacino, as much as I don't want to. Yup, here comes the Devil's Advocate.

You say "some people are pro-choice", "some people are pro-life". Blah, blah, blah. I say, 'who the fuck needs a medical license to perform surgery'? Do you know how many Cholecystectomies I've done this month? Yeah, I work in a deli. So what? A large Italian sub with no hots and a side of quadruple bypass surgery? Sure thing. Coming up next.

And it's not just surgical procedures. It goes for anything, basically. Who needs a doctorate to check my prostate? Not my mechanic, I'll tell you that for sure!

In all, M.D.'s are pretty lame. Hey you went to school for about 12 years. I went to Nassau Community College for 12 weeks. Want to have a biopsy-off? No? Pussy.
Note: A partial version of "The Devil's Advocate" is featured in a new literary magazine available on your web browser right now.

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Ron Artest was a pussy

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