Guide To Eat And Hang out With Friends



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The Last

Cupcake


Your Guide To Eat And Hang out With Friends

Jabu Casey



This is for Keziah Magerman ---

Who never needed to hang up

Chapter 1


Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28

The Last Cupcake, by Jabu Casey


July 5, 2014

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People strike up friendship for so many reasons. These may include having similar interests and backgrounds, sharing common situations at home, studying or working in the same field, having the same hobbies, or circumstances. But we may also be attracted to people who are not like us, but who complement our personalities. Shy people may enjoy being approached by easy-going people or strong individuals may enjoy people who follow their lead. Sometimes friendship is like falling in love. There’s chemistry between you and someone from the start, so you click and the friendship deepens quickly. In most other cases, you may have some mutual interests or a process of increasing disclosure happens – when you tell each other more and more personal things because you trust each other. This mutual sharing is exactly what makes friendship such a crucial part of our lives.

To make Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Yahoo News asked women who had breast cancer or are going through treatment to write about the people in their lives who stood by them and cared for them. Carrie said that she never thought that breast cancer would happen to her. She never would’ve thought that a routine yearly check-up would reveal such ugly results. It didn’t run in her family. She didn’t feel or see a lump during any of her self-exams. So, she was completely shocked when her gynecologist expressed concern and wanted her to get a mammogram. It also didn’t feel comfortable for her to share the news with just anybody. She also couldn’t share her feelings with her family. A few years prior, her sister had cancer, and it put her aging parents on an emotional roller coaster. She just couldn’t do this to them again. But she did have a friend named Melanny who had been through a similar experience with a family member, so one day over lunch, Carrie felt safe to disclose her scariest secret to her friend. And she was glad she did. Melanny was understanding, supportive, and compassionate, and it is what Carrie needed indeed.

She didn’t need a million questions. She didn’t need to hear a reactive response. She didn’t want to hear “Did you try this? Did you do this?,” type of questions. She just wanted to be heard with love and understanding, and that’s what her friend did. And throughout 2007 when Carrie had several mammograms, MRIs, and even a biopsy, Melanny was there with her every step of the way. She went with her to almost every appointment and if she couldn’t make it, she would meet her for lunch or after work. And when Carrie found out that she had to have surgery, Melanny took a week off from work to take care of her. “I remember we would camp out in front of my TV watching Lifetime movies and eating chocolate cupcakes that my friend baked,” said Carrie. And this is what friendship is all about. In times of need, we often see who our friends are truly are – the qualities that make an excellent companion shine through, not only when you’re having fun, but especially when you’re not. Friends motivate you to do better, they give you advice, and they listen to you when you’re tired of listening to yourself, and friends weep at your failures, but dust you off and help you begin all over again.

Friends give us a sense that we are not alone and they are often a wonderful source of support. A friend is someone who you can share all the good times with, now and also in the future, and they can help us to make long-term decisions because they know us so well. Having friends to spend time with is the most beautiful thing in the world because it gives us a sense that we’re both valuable and loved. After all, it’s the little things that keep a unit bonded, such as hanging out and eating together. These activities have many benefits and instill a sense of belonging. Friends are also there for our good and bad times. It’s really important to have a broader base of support and companionship so you can fulfill all aspects of yourself. Having friends to spend time with lies in having a history to reflect back on with someone else, and sharing valued memories and experiences with them.

It’s like having had someone shadow you through your life’s journey like a cameraman, tracking your memorable moments to recall and reflect on later. But what makes some stick with us while others don’t? And how exactly do we choose the right friends? Well, it’s not a happy moment when you lose friendship, but it’s normal to outgrow certain friends. Growth is part of learning who we are and what we will or won’t accept. Every person in your life is there for a reason. When it’s time to move on, you may feel bad about cutting your friends loose, but if you’re not happy with where you are and who you’re spending time with, it’s about time for change. It takes courage but sooner or later it has to be done. You can always look for a comfortable life of complacency, but who really wants that? When you do find a true friend to spend time with, it’s worth it to invest energy into the relationship. You get what you give, as in all areas of life. To be a good friend, you need to know what it is you would expect from a friend, and then do the same in return.

You have to make sure the friendship is reciprocal.

The more you spend time with people, the better you become, and the basic rule of thumb is that a good person to spend time with is someone you can rely on to be honest and trustworthy. Someone who accepts you as you are without expecting you to change for them. A person who will not be afraid to tell you the truth and will support your goals and dreams. So what should you look for in a true friend, and how do you know when to invest time and energy in that person? Trustworthiness, loyalty, acceptance, fun, the ability to care and support another person and being able to relate to their values, even if you are different.

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When it comes to nurturing, strengthening and soldering our relationships with our friends, little things (which are unnoted sometimes) are the most significant. At the end of the day, it’s the little things that we remember the most. The seeable, touchable and the extraordinary don’t often change us but they influence us; while little things influence us and change us at the same time. If you think friendship is always reinforced by prominent and extraordinary togetherness which necessitate what is always top of the line, then think again.

According to my study with the help of relationship coaches and psychologists, most relationships are corded and influenced by the little things we do everyday, whether intentionally or unintentionally. The little things we do in our relationships - whether eating or hanging out - increase our intimacy and elicit more loving connection. It’s actually the little things we do everyday that fortify our relationships. Chivalry used to be a great example of doing little things for people. Even though by the 20th century a watered-down version of chivalry had been translated into the polite behavior expected of a gentleman towards a lady: standing when she enters the room, pulling out her chair for her, paying for her meal, walking on the outside of the pavement and offering her his coat. When people use the word "chivalry" they often mean gentle and courteous behavior, particularly courtesy shown by men to women.

This meaning has come down through the centuries from the true "age of chivalry", which stretched between the 11th and 15th centuries when "chivalerie" was the principal force in war. Brave and noble knights were expected to follow certain rules of conduct. They were to show not only powers in war but also reverence for religion and honor and devotion to their ladies. That's why it’s known that a knight of those days devoted a great part of his life to three things - war, religion and the service of ladies - and all his training from childhood taught him what was the duty of a gentleman according to the ideas of that time. There’s a tenuous difference between doing little things for our friends and chivalry. Sometimes I think that “chivalry” is dead: it takes us back to a world very different to the one we inhabit now. If men try to do what was done in the 11th or 15th century, such as walking on the outside of the pavement and offering a women his coat or paying for her meal, many women will stifle a giggle or even flatly refuse, such as gestures, regarding them with suspicion. It's obvious the rules have changed.

While the principles underpinning chivalry are still valid, I think many chivalrous acts (such as opening the door for women) have become exactly that: publicly performed acts that often hold no substance and no depth of conviction for the underlying principles of courtesy. What is the point of a man letting a woman walk through a door first if, once behind the closed door, he feels free to abuse the woman verbally, emotionally or physically? Acts of chivalry became, over time, protocols that men were obliged to perform, rather than springing from faithfulness to the principles of courtesy and honor. So a revision of the somewhat dated concept of chivalry seems necessary. It can (should) be practiced by – and towards – people of any gender, age, income group, or cultural or ethnic background. It should range from vacating your bus seat for a pregnant woman to defending the bullied, exploited and homeless, or other victims of prejudice. Modern chivalry should be redefined as acts of kindness from one to another.

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Thoughtfulness, respect and politeness should be applied to all, regardless of sexuality. Treating women differently perpetuates patriarchy - it sets up power differences that play out in other ways (perhaps even as far as sexual assault - an act of power over another).If doing little things is the old-style of chivalry, then we will be sorely disappointed - to be veracious - we should think about our changing times and how we need to conduct ourselves in present-day situations. I'd rather teach people to respect all their fellow human beings than teach them that respect can be performed through certain acts reflecting outdated and unnecessary rules of etiquette. I think with true respect come good manners and politeness. If we teach people that respect is merely a matter of a few pointless actions performed every so often, we teach them that they can do what they like behind closed doors provided they conform to a code of behavior in public.

It is attitude, not performance, that matters. And with the right attitude comes the right performance. I genuinely want you to apprehend that by 'doing little things' I'm not asking you to precisely comply to the obsolete medieval principles of knighthood, but to be astute and smartly pick out or practice what is important and will ameliorate your relational relatedness. For knighthood, boys were taught the basic rules of chivalry, such as never to strike a man in the back or attack an unarmed man; never to touch a man who had fallen; never boast, but to give willing praise to others for their achievements. Even though chivalry is outdated and sexist in the traditional sense, I still think there are important things that can change our relational relatedness if they can be picked out, revolutionized and redefined.

Most women are not fond of the old-age chivalry because they think chivalrous behavior doesn't affirm both genders - it makes boys feel courageous, confident and strong, and girls feel more feminine, weak and vulnerable. It also - not my sentiment - stymy equality, perpetuate patriarchy (or even gender hierarchy) in the home or workplace. Wives and mothers carry many hidden pressures for which they are not always given credit - organizing family schedules and meals, keeping the house tidy and giving kids lifts from one engagement to another. Working mothers face a challenging dilemma: how to cope with dual roles of mother and businesswoman. It's not so much about how having employed mother effects the child - in fact, research shows kids with working mothers do quite well. If the mother is happy, usually the child thrives. In contrast, with working mothers it was more of a 'glass half empty' scenario: they saw their lives as more difficult and felt that they faced greater challenges than the previous generation. It's a double-edged sword. Women in the business world feel they are short-changing both their families and their jobs - juggling two roles poses quite a tough challenge.

But because of their feminineness - as I said treating women differently perpetuates patriarchy - even though more women are working, their professional circumstances will not be equal to those of their male counterparts. They will not be given the most important or responsible positions, but supporting and caring roles such as that of nurse, secretary or human resources coordinator. I think women need to be involved in the upper echelons of companies - and, perhaps more importantly, trade unions - in order for positive change to be effectively facilitated. For as long as women continue to be inadequately represented in corporate leadership roles, for as long as their voices are not given a space in which to be properly articulated, it's unlikely that progress will be anything other than minimal. Men and women were created equal in the sight of God, but with distinct differences and complementary; of course we should know that.

Chivalry doesn't or shouldn't - munch, scrumptious - support treating people differently because of power, but love. What primarily distinguish doing little things from "old" chivalry is simply because most knights only carried out its rules in their dealings with men and women of their own class, and were too often overbearing and contemptuous towards people of lower rank. Little things should be done unconditionally with open, loving and caring attitude. By and large, big things in our lives are done with pride, little things are done with heart, and big things make us happy on the outside, while little things make us happy on the inside. The difference between doing little things for our friends and modern chivalry is; even though little things involve chivalric acts, they’re done wholeheartedly, and most importantly, truthfully. So doing little things for our friends - listening to them, making time to eat and hang out with them - means nurturing our relationships and resurrecting the rattling and demise acts of kindness that are unnoted in our modern culture.

Listening is powerful enough that it rules out the mind and arouses the heart which can be expressed freely in silence. When you're broken down, beaten-up and having a hard time, you really need someone who will be willing to listen in as you pour your heart to him. Speaking helps fight down the stress and a good listener helps you outlet the weight, stress and rollercoaster you're going through. The reason why listening to our friends is so important is because: 1) We cannot expect people to listen to us if we ourselves don’t give an ear to other people 2) It helps a person relieve what's buried deep down inside them, and 3) It makes a person feel like somebody cares. I think listening is an act of humbleness and meekness. It is the art of paying attention or hearing with intention. And a good friend/listener 1) listens without distracting 2) listens patiently and attentively 3) listens curiously and meekly, and 4) listens closely and openly.

And this is about active listening. You need to drop your own agenda and preconceptions, and really listen to what the other person is saying. And once they’ve finished talking, show you’ve paid attention by paraphrasing what they said. This allows the other person to rectify any misunderstandings. You’ll be able to respond appropriately and not defensively or based on an assumption. Be honest with yourself and others, and don’t play communication games. Open and honest communication is crucial when it comes to friendship. But what if it leads to an argument or disagreement? Well, that’s not a bad thing. No one is the same and there will be occasions when we don’t see eye to eye. In fact, conflict is good for a relationship; it’s how we fight that should be addressed. Disagreeing with someone can be done respectfully, and it’s also a good opportunity to see matters in a different light. If we present our thoughts and ideas in an articulate way (with no blaming or shaming) our bond is strengthened, we grow together and the depth of our emotional intimacy increases. To do this, you need to be able to recognize your triggers. It seems the people closest to us have the ability to bring out irrational anger or irritation (sometimes intentionally, sometimes unintentionally), and the key is not to impart blame, but rather take responsibility for our own actions.

It’s really important to figure out what your ‘hot spots’ are. This will help you to see them coming and disengage from the raging emotions they create. In doing so, you consciously choose an appropriate response instead of being driven by emotion. It also helps address the cause of the hot spot, and potentially eliminate it altogether. Honest questions are both the paintbrush and palette of Rabbis and Therapists. And they are the building blocks of relational incarnation. If we are going to begin to engage right conversations, healthy and helpful conversations, we must begin with questions. Not the kind of questions that are accusations in disguise, or questions that start with assumptions and are just trying to validate what I already think. I mean real questions, the invitations to know and be known, based on assumption that we do not know yet. It is important to recognize the application of a question in the first place. A question is the verbal equivalent of the incarnation.

It begins a conversation saying, “I am choosing to enter your world, rather than to plant my feet resolutely in my own.” You don’t know anyone until you know them. Until you sit down and ask them questions, all you have are observations and your own judgments. All the word means is that we have opinions and images based on observation separate of relationship. We all do it, and in fact it is impossible not to have judgments if we have not asked questions. The meaning of a question is simply and powerfully this: “I choose to start by allowing you to be the way I know you, instead of any other source. Let me find out what it is like to be in your world” Right conversations begin with questions because this expresses honor and openness. Second, a question says this: “I know that I cannot understand you separate of you, help me understand.” Having declared that the person matters enough to ask, we also make clear that their perspective is valued and a necessary part of understanding their world, experience, and motives. We are telling them that we have set aside pre-conceived ideas until they help form our ideas. When we start with answers and positions, it is an invitation to debate.

When we start with questions, it is an invitation to know and to be known. The first is less personal and therefore less frightening. The second, more difficult, but, it just seems to be more eternal. It’s much easier to declare God’s position about an issue than it is to engage people who struggle with that issue. Incarnation says that God Himself begins by entering our condition before any issues are addressed.

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Perhaps doing little things is not your cup of tea, it's duck soup, as easy as pie - you are genuinely brawny and you need something grueling and it will make you perspire. Not easy pickings or having bubble and squeak - that's for muggins and muggles. You want to be treated with respect - like a real Zulu King.When you grow up in the deep villages of Africa - more especially when you're a boy - there's nothing in your mind except being a 'men'. Somehow - in the obscure hamlets - there's a difference between 'father' and 'daddy'.

I used to see strong and muscular Zulu men who punish their kids for calling them 'daddy'. Crikey Moses! I think it's balmy, but I swear to God, I'm not making it up - it's too crazy. If your tiddler calls you 'daddy', then it means you're not a real ‘men’ but a spineless wimb. 'Daddy' is a fainthearted poor fish - that's what they think, or used to - and 'father' is the Biblical Samson – the Hulk - Captain America and the Spider-man; Father always want his children to be exceptionally docile – precious Olivia Holt - he finish the quarry alone and command that women are not supposed to eat meat but broth. Yes, ‘broth’. But things are changing - women are tardily becoming the head and not the tail - and young African boys are in deep pressure from the elders who perpetually tell them that they're becoming fools - real men should be unbendable, lead the house rigorously and spend most of their time in the jungle hunting, not playing video games.

The old-age chivalry awakens us to the fact that what we're always glued at is not always important and requisite - they're too splashy and invigorate pride and jactitation, not intimacy. In medieval times to become a knight a boy would be sent to the castle of some friendly noble, where he would begin serving as a page - varlet has some weight, pow! - and she would teach him good manners and he would do small services to her. When it comes to friendship, it doesn't cost much to keep your friends happy and reminded that they're appreciated - material things only make us happy in a sense - all that matters is love, time and attention. Small treats enhance the ongoing bonds of love and affection in friendship. But our whole society is dominated by modernists who disregard the importance of coming together. Web 2.0 is efficient; social networks are always more efficient. In medieval times, a knight to be was nurtured by little things, and when he becomes a squire, he would practice with knightly weapons - lance, sword and battle axe, and he had to take care of his knight's amour and help him to put it on and take it off; he also served at table, helped in the stables and took care of his horses. These are little things that made a knight, because no matter how many thousands he could kill, if he didn't show respect, reverence and devotion - that would be nothing. He could be justifiedly censured.

When it comes to friendship, no matter what we do, if we overlook and snub little things, then we're unintentionally scrubbing the mucilage of a fruitful and inviolable relationship. It's really important to have munchies and chin-wag. I'd give my right arm – it’s skookum. Besides, the more you have Brussels biscuits or Johnny cakes together as little whippets, fashion plates or newsmongers - the more you grow together and the level of your intimacy increase. You'll be gobsmacked by how your relationship fructify. I think most of the things that our current generation desolate and disregard as useless and wimpy are actually important when it comes to relationships. We are inordinately innovative and blinded to what's really real and matters; I wish I could use contumelious epithets because what we indulge make us delicate and wilted when it comes to relationships - it's a corroborated truth. But there's nothing wrong with contemporaneity: the preventive of coming together has to do with our thinking over contemporaneity. But you're not a gee-gee for Christ's sake! You should do what will ameliorate your relationship, and don't follow the mainstream if it disregards coming together but perpetuate being a muggins and couch potato that depends on Social Network to nurture friendship.

I sound like a matriarch but don't sweat it - I don't want you to dance holes in your soles to something detrimental. Purge your mind - Jimminy crickets - throwback your shoulders, stick out your chin and become refractory. Society is controlled by contemporaneity because it's the only way to be accepted and people want to be loved and accepted. Coming together is one of the most important things we can do in friendship or any relationship. But I don't think we should wheedle and coerce people to shed their skins and bumble towards little things; people can be wedged to do wrong and evil, but not right and good. The value of anything is when they're done wholeheartedly and willfully. Martin Luther was the first of the Protestant reformers of the 16th century, and in 1517 his ideas caused him to make a strong protest when a fair named Tetzel arrived near Wittenberg selling what were known as indulgences. It was thought at that time that even after God had forgiven a man's sin, the man still had to be punished for them in this world or in purgatory. Indulgences were issued by the Pope and it was claimed that they cancelled out punishment for forgiven sins. Men could obtain indulgences by good works such as giving money to church funds.

But Luther saw that this did not agree at all with his belief about the way in which God saved man - believing, as he did, that it was by forgiveness only. Therefore he posted on a church door in Wittenberg a list of criticisms of the idea of indulgences. But nobody wedged him (perhaps the guy upstairs, I don’t know), but I'm sure as shooting that Luther wasn't out of his tree - he did it willfully and wholeheartedly. I'm genuinely certain you've grasped it already: little things comprise being altruistic, helpful and empathetic. You should be prepared to be a man bereft of his cheap little pride because it is not for those who relish to cock-a-hoop.

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Small courtesies or surprises can make a big difference in your relationship. The most important things in life are really little things; it's the small and simple things that make people happy - like a surprise ticket from a friend or a little note on the pillow when they wake up. It's invaluable and reinvigorates intimacy that is mysterious and incomprehensible - and makes you inviolable and unfaltering. Little things suppress pridefulness and jactitation in friendship and squelch an individual - wring their unhealthy motives. It necessitate truthfulness and sincerity – and they unveil a peeled and inexplicable love; it’s peeled because it’s not rooted on things that are conspicuous, and it’s inexplicable because it’s not enkindled by corporeal things that are top of the line and fancy. Compliments are little things, but they're misunderstood by most people. I think compliments have become trite, trivial and tedious in our relationships, and I'm just hoping they don't become insults.

To compliment is not to conciliate or cajole a person - that's genuinely wussy to be veracious - but to invigorate a person. To invigorate means to impart vigor, strength, or vitality to. When you don't have pelf - give compliments. That's all - it's the little you have. But keep in mind that it means a lot, and it might obliterate someone's suicidal thoughts. Everyone deserves to be loved and told that they're beautiful. We all need that funny lunatic friend that compliments us, and complimenting a friend is expressing gratitude, not being splashy. Nothing is nothing - everything is something and has weight and import: that's what we learn from little things. I'm sure as shooting that those piffling hobnobs you have with your bosom crony mean something - in Molly Roloff's voice - the best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments that you spend smiling with someone who matters to you. You might not see it or feel it - you don't have to anyway because what's important is to love beyond your feelings. Veracity recites that feelings are unstable, they're serial thrillers, and that's why love is not a feeling, but feelings are symptoms of love.

I think everything is nothing when we look at the wrong side of them – like we mostly do, oh God - and everything is worthless when it doesn't befit our criterion; don't expect a friend to meet all your needs and fulfill you – do you need Jesus or Chuck Norris? - that's impossible. You should cook your own food - you can't always have Nutella with Landry Bender (Hello Landry) - and have your own ambiance, because if you don't, then you'll perpetually complain about the seasoning and that will kindle piddling conflicts in a relationship. We spend so much time wrapped up in the excitement of petty drama or mindless relationships that we often forget who and what is important to us. We all know that friendship is jaggy, and it has sharp curves and steep inclines, but when we always have Mickey Mouse arguments and scrape over things that doesn't mean a bag of beans - we tardily subvert love. There's nothing diverting about meaningless contention and piddling pugnacity in a relationship; we should grasp each other like acrobats in the circus, and just live freely and gayly.

We should be careful what we say about and to people. Your words are not decrepit fists, but a double-edged sword or a wimble that can perforate a person. We shouldn't overlook little things - if they can build, strengthen and nurture a relationship, then - put on your seatbelt - they can also disunify or crumble a relationship. What can build us can also destroy us, in a New York minute, God can destroy the whole human race in a simple breath - that's the picture of it. Nicotine is a great synapse enhancer, but it’s killing you at the same time it’s helping you compose. When a relationship is falling apart, it's actually little things that vanish first, You'll find out that there's no greeting, compliments or hanging out anymore. And that's when you realize how little things like ‘greetings’ and ‘compliments’ are very important.

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To paint as clearly and truly as possible exactly what he saw in front of him was the aim of the French painter, Edouard Manet. To do this he experimented with new ways of using light and colour as he tried to catch all the light and movement of everyday life around him and put it down on the canvas. Well, I'm not Edouard Manet, and I'm not a damn painter. But I think it's inordinately rattling to explicate the ineffable - no matter how difficult and baffling it may be - and always use the tools in your toolbox to excavate, nurture and evince your universal thoughts. My name is Jabu Casey. I'm writing the first draft of this part on my laptop with two notebooks right beside me and a conference table with two peanut butter jars, pile of papers, Oatmeal canisters, a pocket flashlight, a dull pair of scissors and a small screwdriver.

And to my right a weight of magazines, guitar pickups I mean to sell soon, leftover waffles, brass plated Lions club paperweight, my favorite guitar on the stand, draft of my novel and a stack of guitar books I plan to get to. I think one of the main grounds why most people don’t have any friends or someone to spend time with is simply because they’re lone wolfs; it is possible to be an undesigned lone wolf, to blame the people around you for not wanting to spend time with you while at the other hand you’re unintentionally pushing them away. So many of us are convulted riddles and avoid the company or assistance of others. We purposefully want to be alone because we’re depleted of strength and energy to coexist with pestering and stonyhearted Jekyll and Hyde's that perpetually perforate our fragile hearts (tranquility genuinely thaw coagulated blood?). Some of us are lone wolfs because we have perpetual scars. In fact, everyone has a scar, and our scars secern, explicate and delineate us.

Our scars conduct our itinerary - a horrendous and grievous itinerary - decelerate our yearning for relationships and impede our progression in our current relationships. It is our scars that makes us not to have anyone to spend time with because they remind us how much we’ve been hurt in the past, and it is our scars that give us fear and respect for the upcoming and make us to predict our downfalls (experience somehow make us seers). Scars are capable of planting a seed of fear to be in a relationship in our hearts. That’s why our scars can either convert us to do the right things, obviate conspicuous routes to ruinations or half-baked snares, and help us not to tumble into the same pitfall over and over again. Or they can withhold us from doing the things we really want to do. It is important to know our scars and to help them heal because time doesn’t. The worst thing you’ll ever do to yourself and others is being engulfed by the spirit of hastiness, almost potent and unassailable that you jump to another relationship without first healing from your past.

I think it's exactly what ruins our relationships these days – we don’t exactly give ourselves a chance to heal. There are scars that heal quickly, but there are some that don’t. As humans, when we get scars on our physique’s flesh we don’t get baffled or distressed because we know we will heal. But when we get scars in our hearts is something else, because it might take months or years for us to heal. Perpetual scars are irremovable, spiritual and everlasting, and for them to heal – one has to forgive (after all, we need pain, we need cuts, we need bruises, because then, we learn to heal).

Sometimes God use pain to mold us and prepare us for the challenges ahead because there are much ceaseless and raging war fares we should combat in our lives, and we can vanquish some of them by faith, prayer, humility and endurance. But the thing is: the greatest battle you’ll ever fight is with yourself, because nobody hates you like you hate yourself, and nobody calls you “ugly” like you call yourself “ugly”. Veracity recites that we’re our own enemies – we bully ourselves. And we discourage and tear ourselves down (did you know that some people don’t drink alcohol because they want to, but they drink alcohol so they can get over themselves?)

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Having someone to spend time with doesn't necessarily mean to randomly meet someone in a coffee shop, hobnob and schmoose about how much you're addicted to coffee and how your dreams came true through a cat and then clinch, perhaps unintentionally, and finally split, not to see each other again. You should always remember that bumping to a hoodad or spinny and have Timmy's doesn't recite you are bosom chums - Bosom chums are made-up and it does not take a New York minute. I should say that any soul you schmooze or have a Poutine with in Winnipeg is not your friend - please, oh, please. I am sure as shooting Madison Chapel agrees with this one - it is a process. It takes a cupcake to enkindle friendship but it takes little things to bond you together.

Being a lone wolf does not always have to do with complacency, damn it, it radical from fear - some people are lone wolfs just for the sake of their fragile hearts. However, you can't stop being afraid, and if you think being courageous is being fearless, then think again. Pow! Fear is part of the human nature - what is important is to go beyond your fears, and that means be afraid of heights, but climb anyway. We will never know our full potential unless we push ourselves beyond our fears. Fear creates insecurity. There is a handful of huffy, peckish and sensitive people pottering and bumping to apathetic souls who don’t care a hang or seem troubled by paradoxes, injustice or anything. You're puritanical - still prefer hobble skirts not AJ's short shorts - and perpetually alert. It takes a piddling report or affair to make you go ballistic. But at the same time you're biffing yourself because you think you make a federal case of anything and a mountain out of a mole hill. You're not a trifler and you think you'll never be happy as a clam. You take care of the hot dogs and the guy upstairs will take care of the orange drinks. Fear regenerate fear; hold it there Benedictus; crippling fear of escalators can regenerate greater fear.

Most of our troubles in life have to do with being afraid, and that’s why most of us don’t dream big – we’re afraid our dreams will never come true. People go to school out of fear of poverty. Our lives are controlled by fear of failure and fear of tomorrow. And it’s the same thing with relationships. We are afraid to commit ourselves because we’re afraid of being hurt, and that’s the reason why most of us don’t have any friends or someone to spend time with. Fear holds us back and it is too protective. It doesn’t want us to do something as long as there’s a possibility to fall. But courage and passion are different, but dangerous too. Because passion sometimes doesn’t show you the booby traps or the falls, it is almost a blind leader; it just wants you to get there, disregarding carefulness and rightness, and most importantly, consequences. That’s why it is important that someone who is led by passion to have self-control and not be overhasty.

According to me, the most fundamental instinct in any relationship including with our friends, is not trust or communication - even though they’re important too - but its endurance. Because no matter how much you trust each other and communicate, if you don’t endure, then you’re vulnerable. When it comes to dreams, aspiration, vision and desire is what makes you to endure. There are greater possibilities to become or archive something in life for those who aspire than those who don’t. Aspiration is a desire or hunger that gives you a reason to live and drives you to your destiny. One of the hardest things in life is to try to inspire someone who doesn’t aspire. Inspiration connects with aspiration. If you aspire, then it will be easy for you to be inspired and empowered to live your dream.

-8-


It's unbelievable how there are more than 7 billion people in the world (the world population began the 21st century at 6.1 billion and grew to about 7 billion within a decade) yet most of us don’t have anyone to discuss important matters with or spend time with. There are several estimates and indicators of loneliness. It has been estimated that approximately 60 million people in the United States, or 20% of the total population, feels lonely.  Another study found that 12% of Americans have no one with whom to spend free time or discuss important matters with. Other research suggests that this rate has been increasing over time. 

A 2006 study in the American Sociological Review found that Americans on average had only two close friends in which to confide, which was down from an average of three in 1985. The percentage of people who noted having no such confidant rose from 10% to almost 25%, and an additional 19% said they had only a single confidant, often their spouse, thus raising the risk of serious loneliness if the relationship ended – that’s why you cannot rely on your current relationship to keep the wolf of loneliness away, more especially with compatibility being replaced by a new doctrine which makes more people in relationships vulnerable to loneliness.

Contrary to what people tell you or what best-selling books and top articles tell you, compatibility matters, and matters big time. Attraction is not the lifeblood of a healthy, long-lasting and loving relationship. Of course I don’t misunderstand attraction - reducing it to a physical attraction which ultimately means a fleeting force based on novelty. I’m talking about attraction that is inexplicable, mysterious, magnetic pull of polar opposites – of the feminine to the masculine, the masculine to the feminine, not sure if it leads to compatibility which people say it is not enough to keep man and woman together for a long haul, thank you very much. I disagree that couples who embark on a lifelong commitment to one another based on compatibility are bound to fail. The insistence on compatibility as opposed to attraction is not what’s making relationships fail these days, but the insistence of attraction as opposed to compatibility is what’s making relationships fail these days.

It is not surprising that in America almost half of the first marriages end in divorce while many relationships that stay together do so with much regret. People are trying to replace compatibility with attraction. They say things like: “there’s no such thing as compatibility”, “compatibility is a weak force” and “being compatible means you don’t get along very well”. But you know what? That’s not true, but the truth is: our generation finds it difficult to face reality. We are really good at turning things around to work our way.



For instance: ignorance is actually not bliss. But people made that saying so they wouldn’t have to face it. And it’s the same thing with compatibility. To be compatible means you’re having similar disposition and tastes. You know what that means? You get along very well. To be compatible also means to exist and perform in harmonious or agreeable combination – that’s what “I do” means when two people get married. Compatibility exists, and it will never be extinct.

But it’s really important to have friendship – a broader base of support and companionship so you can fulfill all aspects of yourself. An American banker and philanthropist who served as chairman and executive of Chase Manhattan bank, David Rockefeller, once said, “I am convinced that material things can contribute a lot to making one’s life pleasant, but basically, if you do not have very good friends and relatives who matter to you, life will really be empty and sad and material things will cease to be important”.



Our relationships with our friends are a fundamental aspect of our lives and will also influence personal growth. Having friends to spend time with contributes to an increased sense of emotional well-being and these positive emotions boost your immune system. Even hormones are programmed to make friends; when woman are having a difficult time and a hell to fight their way through, they look up to other woman for support. We tend to mirror the habits of our close pals on a sub-conscious level – which can lead to a better, or worse, health. If they are healthy, we tend to be too. And people who have friends in the workplace often feel happier and are more productive at work.

-9-
The whole Universe looks like a midget grain of sand in the hand of God. If we genuinely languish to be humble and dependant, then we should first know how small and vulnerable we are. Folks like Felix Baumgartner know it - for Red Bull Stratos, he jumped to Earth from a helium balloon in the stratosphere and set the altitude record for a manned balloon flight, parachute jump from the highest altitude, and greatest free fall velocity. Kudos to Red Bull: they support adventure, embrace risk and empower people to break bones and boundaries. It was really awesome to have the X Games at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, the little things we do irrigate our relationship and increase our intimacy - I can't say it enough. If we misconstrue contemporaneity - disregarding little things will be a tralatitious demeanour and it will deprive human the incomprehensible feeling of closeness.

Little things are not intended or shouldn't be intended to fob and conciliate a friend - damn it - but to change your relational relatedness.

-10-
There's a story that the architect of the Flatiron Building committed suicide when he realized, just before the ribbon-cutting ceremony, that he had neglected to put any men’s rooms in his prototypical skyscraper. It's definitely not true, but it teach us something unnoted and significant: we all bumble. Think about it, that guy was trusted; he was the best man for the job and a professional - ice it with his experience. But nevertheless, he muffed. You shouldn't biff yourself because of your friggin bungles, cumbrous fragments - they invigorate discipline. It's normal that when sometimes people bring up your past - you always look like death warmed over and after all the talking you look like you were dragged through a knothole - it's a horrible trudge. But you're forbidden to beat up on yourself. You don't have to raise the roof or go to a loony bin, you've let the chips fall where they may - to be veracious, screw-ups happen to everyone.

What's detrimental to friendship and crumbling our relationships quietly and tardily like the creeping rust that spreads insidious is actually living in our yesterday. What made the Israelites perambulate in the same desert for 40 years was not exactly their lack of faith, but it's because God still wanted to untangle the webs of their past so they can live the way He wanted them to live in the promise land. But they found it difficult to leave the past, embrace change and accept the new normally. That was their problem. Perhaps that's our problem too; we are bound to the past and twisted together in a tangled mass of what we should let go.

That's the reason why we can't love people or our friends the way they deserve to be loved. Love is the greatest gift you'll ever give - and love is like a force of gravity. If pride gives us wings to fly and hatred lifts us up, love keeps pulling us down to where we belong. What hurt us the most when it comes to love are predictions: you can ask yourself if anyone will love you, but don't predict who will love you, don't point your finger and foretell.

You're not a vaticinator for Christ's sake. At least we can see eye to eye on that one.

-11-
You should kneel on the floor, and if the hem of your skirt don't touch the linoleum - it tells something - you should change it. Don't prostrate and inconvenience oneself by heartily imploring because nothing will do - I'm afraid my sense of tact doesn't forbid veracity. Unlike what you're used to in the contemporary world, when it comes to relationships, you should be willing to sacrifice everything that will be detrimental to friendship - that genuinely include your putrid ego, pestiferous jactitation and swollen pride - because that's exactly what makes the hem of your skirt not touch the linoleum. You should put on a raddled dress that fits even if you languish sunday-go-to-meeting clothes - perhaps ones by my ducky, AJ Lee; a cut of shirt, baby blue short shorts, high black converse with folded parts on the end, or just anything that doesn't. I mean if you have your short dress on (which can also mean pride that makes you sparkle) in friendship, then you should be willing to put it off - this is weird.

Anyway, a skirt that touch the linoleum means wholeness and completeness in a relationship - and it mean you are focusing on soldering and nurturing your relationship with your friend, not glistening with pride, control and ego. When I am not writing (sometimes it’s gratifying, diverting and inspiring; your mind is sharp, imagination is high, and your words are unpredictably witty and satirical as well as eloquent, but sometimes it feels like climbing an unsurmountable mountain or facing treacherous waters, you find yourself caked with sweat, and your mind is like, not working; writing chapter one is like kettle of fish) or watching Modern Family or Two And A Half-Men, then I'm probably watching Your Style In His Hands which gave me an idea of Your Underwears In His Hands.

It's not a sin and it's not repellent, I just can't imagine myself stuck in wad shop with a garrulous wench brandishing a breechblock. I'm completely uncomfortable with that stuff, but fuhgeddaboudit! I can blithely purchase comfortable girl's vestures - joseph leggins, short shorts, Minnetonka 3 layer fringe boots, cut of shirts etc., with a meg clam grin. But this broadcast tardily helps me in a lot of different things - seriously - men do what they do out of love. But it doesn't mean everything will always be right and comfortable. We're human, why is it difficult for people to understand? What is important is to do what makes you happy, and it's good when people are themselves, and they do what they actually love or want to do. I think friends change, and people change, but what's important is to know that change is not a downfall and it's not the end, but the it's beginning; it is the beginning of becoming who you are, to spread out your wings and to see things from a different perspective.

Change makes you see how small and vulnerable you are, and it makes you agnize that all this time you've been wrong. It's really arrogant to be self-absorbed. I think change is the next level in your life and it happens to meliorate your relationship, and it obliterates some of things that held us hostage. I also think change is a mirror that makes us look at our old selves and weaknesses (weaknesses are simply those things we overlook in our lives) and I also think the human skin shedding - that means to forsake all the wrong and negative stuff - happens when we experience change.

The thing about change is that it crumbles our useless ramparts, blocks, and teach us to go with the flow. This is very important - go with the flow kiddo! I think change also teach us to accept people, embrace our weaknesses, and endure insecurity. Insecurity in a relationship is one of the most difficult hurdles to overcome. It's more of a psychological problem and not much involving the body as distinguished from the mind or spirit. Insecurity is attached to fear, which makes you vulnerable and experience anxiety, which are all the attributes of insecurity. We always think if we were half way interesting we'd be Brett Manning or Gwen Stefani, and we'd go on a date with America's sweetheart, Rachel McAdams.

We wouldn't be dysphoric nitwits and waste every minute of our lives watching programs that are only watched by people who don't know where the remote is. In friendship, sometimes let things work themselves out. Don't be easily shaken, but become trusting. I don’t want to write about trust because a lot of people have already done it. But serious, not everything in life needs you to work it out or solve it. Sometimes you have to sit back and wait. And it is the hardest thing you'll ever do in your life. You'll not always be in control and things will not always go your way. That's impossible. I think friendship grows with you - the more you grow, the more friendship grows, and the more you change, the more it change too. That's why I always tell people that they'll experience change of relational relatedness with age.

You don't relate with your friends the way you used to when you were both kids. Being honest brings out much more of you, and you should also allow your friends to be honest, to grow and become who they are. I think the main ground why girls ‘kill’ me is simply because they're honest - they always have mirthful expressions about men, and by God, it's who they are. Think about Hugh Jackman's six pack and muscles - Oprah Winfrey expressed that they look like a mountain, and she feels like she can climb them (only God knows why) I sometimes think girls should spare this kind of locutions when they're around novelists - their imagination is high. I mean, the third eye will not fail to show you a girl grinning and climbing a six pack. Whoof. I swear to God, it's too crazy.

On American Idols, Nicki Minaj once told a contestant that his voice sounds really good, and it feels like a waffle. At my house I once heard my sister talk about how she met a tiddler and how he was so cute - he almost looked like an apple, and she felt like she could just eat him. On Top Billing a girl presenter once held a men's hand, made fun about how it is so big and looked like a pizza. I used to prefer having Made-Eye Moody's magical eye, but not anymore. I now prefer having the ability to know what girls are thinking because they kill me. And the reason why, I think, is because those mirthful expressions girls make come out naturally, it's who they are, they never force it. Here's a lesson: we shouldn't force everything in life, and sometimes if it is too difficult, then you're using the wrong tool. Pow!

-12-
Relational conflicts can occur in every relationship, whether it’s with our spouse, family, colleagues and friends. But generally, conflicts are unplanned and unwanted, but they’re actually good for a relationship; it’s not about how we fight, but how we react. After all, a relationship that is unscathed and unchallenged is a notable exception, but can actually be rickety, undeveloped and unproductive. The greatest and most gratifying thing about relational conflicts is that they never flunk to teach us something unnoted, important and mysterious. There’s nothing wrong with theory, but pragmatical experiences are more efficacious. When you find yourself in a conflict with a friend, as you all know, you’re not ensorcelled and it’s not anomaly (some might say it’s an exemplary sign), but it’s a luggage crammed with personal and relational lessons that will make you a better person in the art of relationships. But think about this, there are some people that are seeking perfect relationships, but how are we supposed to have perfect relationships if we ourselves are not perfect? Perfection is simply out of this world.

It is alienism. But you know what I think? Striving for perfection is what makes us imperfect - precious Olivia Holt. We try too hard to attain the highest level of perfection which is impossible. God is not interested in a life that does it a cookie cutter, but He's interested in a life that is a total train rack because His power is made perfect in weakness. The reason why most of us struggle and strive to be perfect is because we haven’t accepted who we are yet, or we simply don’t know who we are (how can we accept ourselves if we don’t even know who we are?). It is one thing to know about yourself, but it’s another thing to know who you are.

Knowing yourself means understanding your strengths and weaknesses, your passions and fears. It means being aware of your eccentricities and idiosyncrasies, your likes and dislikes, your tolerances and limits and your insecurities. But knowing who you are simply means knowing your purpose on earth. Finding oneself has puzzled a lot of people for thousands of years. But does it mean we should give up in knowing who we are? An author writing in self-help, Stephen Richards, once said, “Whatever it takes to find the real you, don’t be daunted if the rest of the world looks on in shock” In some ways, it may seem contrary to common-sense or expectation to have to know who you are. Our experiences clearly helped to shape us into people we are today, but this does not mean that we necessarily know who we really are.

The journey to self-discovery whereby a person attempts to determine how they feel personally about spiritual issues or priorities, rather than following the opinions of family, friends, neighborhood or peer pressure can help you to know more about yourself, but it cannot help you to know who you are. Self-discovery is all about building self-esteem and mastering the seventh (inner) direction that happens little by little through the formation of the self —the container of our separate, unique identity that can adapt to changing situations by expressing and realizing authentic wishes. Psychologists can administer and interpret a number of tests and assessments that can help diagnose a condition or tell more about the way a person thinks, feels, and behaves.

These tests evaluate intellectual skills, cognitive strengths and weakness, vocational aptitude and preference and personality characteristics. And whatever the problem, psychologists will consider what scientific research says and will be likely to help. But when it comes to telling who you are, even the wisest psychologists will be just guessing. You are not who you think you are, and you are not what people say you are. That always sad and angry person who hates everyone and everything is not you - it was only pain expressing itself through you; you’re better than that. You just don’t know it yet because you’re still to discover who you are – the real you – not the “you” that is defined by failure or the past, but the real you that is far greater than what people say or think. Your career, success or failure doesn’t define who you are. Your past doesn’t define who you are, and where you are doesn’t define who you are.

You didn’t create yourself, so there’s no way you can tell who you are. If you really want to know who you are, it all starts with God. He’s the creator, and the only one who can tell who you are. He knows you more than you even know yourself. He even knows the number of your hair (Matthew 10:30), and in Jeremiah 1:5, He said, “Before I formed you in the belly I knew you”. God gave us a manual to know who we are and our purpose on earth: it is called the Bible. You know who you are by looking in the mirror of God’s word. You know who you are by looking at the one who created you, and you define yourself by what he has done for you on the cross. So many people pretend to be who they are not so they can edify themselves and please the people around them. We all struggle with the need to impress other people at some level.

And much of the pressure, fear and stress we experience in our lives is caused by our need to impress others. Relational conflicts are not supposed to devastate and separate us, but evoke more intimacy. The more conflicts we have, the closer we become, and the more conflicts we have, the more we learn about each other. Relational conflicts should be naturally unleashed. We learn more from war than peace, and relational conflicts give us the much needed experience to become better people in relationships. Being in a relationship is not vulnerability to being scathed, suppressed, changed, emptied and wretched. Of course people get hurt and miserable in a relationship, but the truth is: when it comes to getting miserable or happy in a relationship, ultimately friendship, it all depends on you.



There is no one or anything in the world that can make you happy if you don’t want to be happy. It’s your responsibility to be happy. And there is no one in the world that can make you sad if you don’t want to be sad. As an individual, you should create your own ambiance of felicity, bask it and invite your friends to come and share that happiness and delectation with you. This is very important because if you’re waiting for someone to make you happy, then you’re tardily perpetrating a piteous felo-de-se. Pow!

-13-
Friends were a game for that crazy spur-of-the moment road trip you will never forget, but they also showed up at your front door with ice cream and advice when you needed a shoulder to cry on; they're there to help you, carry a portion of your troubles, to share those subtle laughs with, and to help you work out life’s puzzles. Friendship is about feeling accepted for who you are, regardless of your faults or weak moments. Sometimes you knuckle down and hang on like grim death, but when you're at the brim, you throw a spanner in the works. It's difficult, and the idea of hanging tough wears you out. That's what it's like. We mostly disregard little things and sweat about nothing that ameliorates our relationships.

How dare you assume your smack and make dough hand over fist but only have frills? Don't be an idiot stick. Let's here some lingo: little things like eating and hanging increase our intimacy and make us to have that indescribable connection. It's mysterious - inexplicable, it flummoxes capacious minds. It's also recondite - like why gubbins use little things for bucolic cudgeling. Friends don't always want us to fix their problems and give them our two cent advice - they just want us to be there, and that makes a big difference. You shouldn't always be in your boilersuit brandishing a screwdriver - it's very important to stand aside sometimes and let things work themselves out. I think twaddling makes people squabble, don't mop and mow, it's not mickey mouse, you should stand aside.

And when your friends are dangling on a cascade and they have sore boils that they use a potsherd to scrape themselves, as a friend, sometimes you just have to be there, and simply belt up. That's all. I wish this was a bag of tricks, but it's not. Keep mum, bluejacket, and there by God, don't you feel better? I know it's one of the most difficult things to do, but don't be high and mighty - silence is a great physician. It knows how to mend a broken heart and give rest to a weary spirit and mind. There are a handful of people - I think - that crucify themselves in friendship. They're too hard on themselves. I need something yummy because this makes me hungry, I swear to God. I'm thin-skinned and punch-drunk with my bloomers - that's honesty. But let me jam the brakes: when we mistakenly hurt our friend, we should be careful not to get stuck in the mud. Or we shouldn't nail ourselves for Christ's sake, there are already potty fellows that take care of that.

In relationships, little things means much. I'm pretty sure you've heard it viva voce from that shock-headed slugabed with stubby fingers - brawn because of slinging heavy laundry bags and trucking piles of wet sheets - it's the little things that fortify our relationships to defy every weapon people use against us. There are really stubbled folks that languish to tumble your relationships, and courtesy will not always fend for you, it's shoot-'em-up with spurious rubbles of their past, boo-boos, and prevarication. But don't skedaddle, simply have a gimlet or planter's punch. I sometimes think that in the real world, little things are merely little things. It makes me queasy, a cockroach is a cockroach, and a collte is a collte, perhaps I didn't have anything to eat in a few days.

However, when you become appreciative, love-full enough, and your inner eyes open and you behold - in crystal clarity - the secret chamber of relational relatedness, you'll understand that little things means much and are exactly what keeps a unit bonded. I already told about listening in the first-half of this manuscript smoking a damn cigarette. But I fuckin know you're imploring. I’ve touched it already, but indirectly. It looks like I don't want to face it head-on. So not true.

-14-
Friends to spend time with are like fossils on the ground – you have to excavate to find them. They’re relics, rara avis’ that languish unfeigned friendship rather than irregular connections that make us feel terrible at times. Rara avis' are rare fossils indeed, singular and exceptional, and most importantly, sceptered to execute the enthralling and unusual deeds, even when trodden by spitting images that inhabit the wrethched and atrocious terra firma. Veracity recites that true friends haven’t vanished, and that each and every one of us has a tool box called personality – the complex of all the attributes – behavioral, temperational, emotional and mental – that characterize a unique individual.

But here’s something that is very important: Your tool box can either be crammed with utile and needful tools, or it can simply be crammed with inappropriate and useless tools. If you’re understanding, accepting, loving, appreciative, and able to see other people in a positive light, then those are your delicate tools. You have to use them to get as much of each fossil (friend) out of the ground intact as possible. But sometimes the fossil you uncover is small, scraped, melancholy or hard-pressed. It doesn’t really mean you should dispose it. Because the job doesn’t end when you find the fossil, it’s only the beginning. There is the exploration and adjustment part. When you have a friend to spend time with, it doesn’t really mean you’ve explored that person, it might depend on how long you’ve been together or how much you’ve rubbed elbows. That’s another thing. But what I mean is this: the right people to spend time with are indefinite but relatively small, so when you do find one, you’ll go through a process of mutual disclosure or difference exposure.

This is the exploring part. It’s when you learn who your friends are truly are, and hopefully, if you like them and feel they’re the right people to spend time with, then comes the adjustment part because it is impossible to share all your interests of need with your friend. At the adjustment part is when intersections are refashioned and few habits altered so you can exist and perform in harmonious or agreeable combination. But it’s a process, a disposition, an attitude and unwavering willingness to see the other person in a positive light. Things are easy when you have the right tools, except that people with the right tools are unsophisticated and gullible - self-absorbed and avaricious pricks.

But if you're thin-skinned, bumptious, vainglorious, sordid, swollen-headed and censorious - I put on the Invisibility Cloak and whisper in your ears: those are your tools too. But they're useless and prejudicious to friendship and you'll have to get rid of them before you can say Jack Robinson. They're actually dirty, malodorous and space-taking things that wad your toolbox - and you shouldn’t perambulate with it jammed with useless and old rusty tools. When it comes to excavating the fossil in your boilersuit, no matter how dolt and butterfingered you are, with the right tools - like a jackhammer - you'll liberate much fossil from hard ground. Let me show you:



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