You Don’t Care What I Think

Last week, Friday to be exact, I posted about the Problem Thinker. Since then I have been thinking and I have discovered a little more about thinking. The sad truth is that people don’t really care what you think unless you think the same way they do.

Now that is not some great new discovery like finding a diamond ring when you were going through your neighbor’s trashcan. No, this discovery is something you have suspected for some time, but to finally came to the conclusion, to have to accept, to admit to yourself, that no one gives a damn what you think is enough to make you sit down and cry like a baby with a bee sting.

I have also discovered (or concluded if you will) that trying to get you to think the way they do is what the American Way of Life is all about. It starts with parents who send you to a school, or homeschooled you, and if they are strongly religious they send you to a church run school, where at an early age you are indoctrinated to think the way they think. And God help you (though He’s not likely to) if you fall in love with someone who doesn’t think the way they do.

Later on for some fool reason or another that you don’t really understand you start going to some church or another where the cleric, of whatever order, tries to get you to think the way he does and asks you to give him or her your money. That money is supposed to buy your way out of some catastrophe later, way later, later like when you die.

Please, don’t throw rotten tomatoes at me just because I might point out something about the American Dream that you don’t like, but isn’t that what selling and advertising is all about. The man trying to sell you a car doesn’t care what you think. All he cares about is getting you to think the way he does and when you do he takes your money. Now I’ll admit he gives you something; the car, maybe even with a warranty for that money, which is a hell of a lot more than the politician will give you in exchange for your money.

Now the politician wants you to think the way he thinks and he wants you to give him money to think liked him. Unlike the car salesman, he does not give any warranty when you buy what he’s selling.

I think a law should be passed that politicians be forced to give a money-back-guarantee. If he or she doesn’t deliver on what is promise then they have to give back all the donor’s money and stop taking those fat-cat salaries for trying to talk you into agreeing with them. Of course, since politicians make the laws there will never be any kind of law requiring a politician to be honest.

The same should be required of clerics. If after you die you don’t end up in whatever heaven or hell they promised you then they should be required to pay back everything you donated to them. Of course you won’t be alive so what they have to give wont do you any good, but then, it never did.

Oh, dear, I just tried to tell you what to think. No, I didn’t. Well, yes I did but I didn’t charge you anything for agreeing or disagreeing with me.

Now, I don’t care what you think, so there, ha, ha.

But I do wish you a happy, care-free, relaxing day, week, fortnight, or whatever you can grab. – Aloha – pjs/

A Thinking Problem

This not original with me. I don’t know where I found it, but it is so good I just have share it.

It started out innocently enough. I began to think at parties now and then to loosen up. Inevitably though, one thought led to another, and soon I was more than just a social thinker.

I began to think alone – “to relax,” I told myself – but I knew it wasn’t true. Thinking became more and more important to me, and finally I was thinking all the time.

I began to think on the job. I knew that thinking and employment don’t mix, but I couldn’t stop myself.

I began to avoid friends at lunchtime so I could read Thoreau and Kafka.

I would return to the office dizzied and confused, asking, “What is it exactly we are doing here?”

Things weren’t going so great at home either. One evening I had turned off the TV and asked my wife about the meaning of life. She just glared at me and then stalked out and spent that night at her mother’s.

I soon had a reputation as a heavy thinker. One day the boss called me in. He said, “Lin, I like you, and it hurts me to say this, but your thinking has become a real problem. If you don’t stop thinking on the job, you’ll have to find another job.” This gave me a lot to think about.

I came home early after my conversation with the boss. “Honey,” I confessed, “I’ve been thinking…”

“I know you’ve been thinking,” she said, “and I want a divorce!”

“But Honey, surely it’s not that serious.”

“It is serious,” she said, lower lip aquiver. “You think as much as college professors, and college professors don’t make any money, so if you keep on thinking we won’t have any money!”

“That’s a faulty syllogism,” I said impatiently, and she began to cry.

I’d had enough. “I’m going to the library,” I snarled as I stomped out the door.

I headed for the library, in the mood for some Nietzsche. I roared into the parking lot with NPR on the radio and ran up to the big glass doors… they didn’t open. The library was closed.

To this day, I believe that a Higher Power was looking out for me that night.

As I sank to the ground clawing at the unfeeling glass, whimpering for Zarathustra, a poster caught my eye. “Friend, is heavy thinking ruining your life?” it asked. You probably recognize that line. It comes from the standard Thinker’s Anonymous poster.

Which is why I am what I am today: a recovering thinker. I never miss a TA meeting. At each meeting we watch a non-educational video; last week it was “Porky’s.” Then we share experiences about how we avoided thinking since the last meeting.

I still have my job, and things are a lot better at home. Life just seemed… easier, somehow, as soon as I stopped thinking.

<><><>

To that I say, “What the hell, one little thought can’t hurt you.” Careful brother, one little thought can lead to another. OK, let’s keep the thinking to a minimum. Have a pleasant, non-thought encumbered weekend. – Aloha -pjs/