Advice for the kids I hope never to have

We all want our lives to add up to something, for the knowledge and experience we’ve had to stay on in someway after we die. It’s causes people to have children. Children who hate and resent any advice you give them after the age of 8. People want a do-over in their own lives and want a little version of themselves so they can fix all the mistakes and injustices. I hate those people, and by that I mean all people because that’s a perfectly normal way to feel. So without further ado here is the accumulated knowledge of mine I think is worth passing on to my non-existent children.

What Other People Think Matters

Kid, you’re gonna hear a lot of bullshit about not being judged, being true to yourself, books and covers, invisible traits that are “deep down” and it’s all crap. Everyone is judging everyone all the time based on how they look and act, don’t pretend it isn’t true and don’t convince yourself that you don’t care. Dress in a way that broadcasts your identity and treat people in a way you want to be described. Anyone who says anything like “Only god can judge me” Or “Who are you to judge?” is a stupid asshole and you have daddy’s permission to spit on them.

Loyalty Is Bullshit

You’ll hear loyalty described as a virtue and nice people described as loyal to a fault and you may think ‘I want to be described as loyal, loyal is good.’ It’s not. Loyal is stupid. If you work at a pizza place and get a better offer from a better pizza place take it, life is short, don’t waste any of it holding yourself back with sentimentality. Now in this scenario two things could happen. The new job works out great, you’re happy, and no one questions it. The new job doesn’t work out, you’re unhappy, and everyone sneers “See… shoulda been loyal.” The fact is if you stick by something and it flourish then you’re loyal and that’s good, or if you stick by something and it doesn’t flourish you’re an idiot and people’s daddies will give them permission to spit on you. When you’re making choices, in relationships, careers, anything, ignore loyalty. And never ever hide behind loyalty when you’re actually just scared to make a choice, Daddy hates that.

Life Is About Behavior, Not Answers

After you’re 9 or so you’re going to start wanting to know everything about the whole universe before you judge something right or wrong. This is paralyzing. Like being at the first point of a maze and never going anywhere because you don’t know if it’ll lead to the way that leads you to the way out. 90% of life is a series of decision about how to behave, and you usually have to make a choice and go down a road for a while before making the next choice and adjusting. When you find wondering if something is capitol T “True”, stop, consider all the possibilities and decide if something is true enough to base a behavior on. I don’t see any evidence that there is a god so I don’t behave as if there is. When you’re at that first point in the maze of life there’s equal evidence that left and/or right will lead you out so explore, gather evidence, don’t stay stuck hoping for a map.

Work Toward Your Happiness

Take a moment a form a picture in your mind when I say “Wake up in your perfect life.” Put as much detail in the picture as you can, what are all the elements around you in your perfect life, what do you do after you wake up? Who do you talk to on your perfect day? Work toward that and be careful not to work too much on things that aren’t that. If in your perfect life you’re writing a novel (And I hope you are, kid) don’t decide to become a dentist so that you’ll have time and money to be a writer later, even if that ever worked out for anybody you’d be a terrible writer. Just get busy being a writer all day everyday. And yeah you’ll need jobs and shit but that doesn’t mean you’re not a writer (or whatever, if you dream of being a dentist Daddy loves that too). I am a songwriter. Even when I’m a work, even when I’m hanging out having fun with non-songwriters, even when I’m borrowing money from anyone and anything (especially when I’m borrowing money).

That said, remember to try lots of different things while finding your happiness. You’re a kid so you probably want to be a Dinosaur Doctor or a G.I. Joe when you grow up, and that brings to my next point.

Give Up On Things

Obviously not everything, all the time, but don’t hold on to something just because you’re inundated with messages about not giving up. quitters never win, or all that other bullshit. You can walk away from anything you want, baby. If a job, a relationship, a sport, a religion, suits you for a while and you think your happiness is there just to find out that it isn’t, go elsewhere, stay on the search rather than staying out of fear of being called a quitter. Remember, I had to give up on every relationship I had before your mother for you to be here.

Have An Outcome

In any situation there must be a best case scenario, think about that before you respond. And by that I mean stop lipping off cops and principles and stuff. Emotions can be, and often are, wrong. You maybe angry at a time when getting angry is only going to make things worse, no satisfaction is gained by venting that anger, but trust me you will find a deep satisfaction from figuring out a good resolution to a problem and achieving it.

And my final piece of advice to my kids:

Don’t Have Kids

They’ll never listen to your advice and just go make all the same mistakes you did while blaming you.


Singer/songwriter, jerk.

Posted in Pragmatism

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