(Editor’s Note: this is a satire piece and is not intended to be taken seriously. Just have to throw that out there)
I have always considered myself to be a “people person”. There’s something beautiful about camaraderie and interacting that brings out one’s best. However, having now gone through high school and graduated from college, I would now edit that label and consider myself to be a “people person (who hates people)”. It’s so hard to be a people person when people suck so damn bad. I can completely understand why dog–not man–is man’s best friend. We are an annoying species. An arrogant species. An ignorant species. If you are a “people person”, you, my friend, are a “liar”. At a glance, you would think being a people person would be the easiest thing in the world–but, oh, how false that is. If you can endure a 15 minute conversation pretending to care about how your friends son is doing in his tee-ball league, you deserve a purple heart, in my opinion. To be social, you have to lie. You have to go with the social norms society has set in place for us to interact. When your phone rings, you have to answer it. You have to talk with that person for long enough to hear what they have to say, or until it’s been enough time where you can utilize a planned excuse to get out of there without coming off as rude. When you see somebody you know in public, you’re expected to be overjoyed to see them and catch-up, as if you were hoping to run into them while out and about running your errands. This interaction has been dubbed the “stop and chat”, and my dislike for it has led to a dark, sad epiphany…every day I am becoming more and more like Larry David.
When I first started watching Larry, in Curb Your Enthusiasm, I found it funny how much of an ass he was. As I watched the show more and gained a better understanding of who he is, I began to idolize him. He’s not an ass, he’s got it right. The things he says are the things that we all think–but don’t have the guts to actually say. We stick to our lines and what we’re supposed to say so we don’t upset the other person, while he just comes right out with it. Who would whole-heartedly want to give one of their kidneys to a friend, when somebody else could do it? Who doesn’t want to call out the sample-abuser while you’re waiting in line? Who can honestly say they have never used the handicap stall in the bathroom? I truly believe, our world would be a better place if we all lived by The Rules of Larry.
Around the same time, I began to identify and relate to another TV anti-hero–Karl Pilkington. It genuinely upsets me that majority of my friends and acquaintances have no idea who Karl is. Dubbed by good friend and co-worker, Ricky Gervais as “the funniest man alive” whom he goes on to describe as a “round headed buffoon”, Karl is quietly becoming a household name, to those who value good TV and laughs. You may have seen him on The Ricky Gervais Show or An Idiot Abroad, speaking his mind and releasing the absurd thoughts stored in his globe-shaped head. An Idiot Abroad follows Karl as he explores the world, sent by Gervais and partner Stephen Merchant. Karl is the perfect person to send abroad because he’s no Anthony Bourdain. He is miserable everywhere he goes. He does not like leaving his comfort zone, knowing this Ricky and Stephen send him to places like India and the desert, where he is sure to hate it. He doesn’t hide his displeasure, either–which I love. When his hosts offer him food, he has no shame denying it and refusing to sample it–he’ll be just get by on the Crisps he brought along with him. I gained a new respect for the humor of Ricky Gervais for the way he handles and exploits Karl, it truly is hilarious. Ricky and Stephen know exactly how to press Karl’s buttons, which ultimately brings out the best of Karl. Most of the conversations between the three mates is making fun of Karl for his absurd opinions, and as absurd as they may be…they actually make a lot of sense to me. I can, in fact, see a lot of myself in Karl. He has such grand insights into traveling. In one interview, with Ricky and Stephen, he discusses how traveling is often best when you just close your eyes and imagine you’re doing it, because that way you get all the good, and none of the boring, draining, things you don’t think about when daydreaming about your trip. While talking about one trip into the mountainous jungle to watch gorillas (something beautiful, that most of us would love to do) Karl gives a unique perspective, “I came face-to-face with a gorilla which was quite good, but it was a 10-hour trek in bad weather, up hills, covered in mud, with mosquitoes everywhere and when we got there the gorilla’s just sat there doing nowt”. Another interesting quote Karl says to describe his feelings for travel: “Neil Armstrong, that spaceman, he went to the moon but he ain’t been back. It can’t have been that good”. Brilliant. Karl brings that same insight to more than just traveling. He, like Larry and I, has a lot of problems with the social aspect of life. He describes it “People who live in a glass house have to answer the door”. Sums Karl up in one sentence. It seems so dumb to say, but it is genius!
So, there’s that. At 22 I have become a combination of Larry David and Karl Pilkington. Can’t wait to see what’s next…
With Love and Laughter,