Tuesday, July 26, 2005


When you're watching the car in front of you swerve all over the place and you can see the driver fishing around for something in the car

People who use "who's" when they mean "whose"

People our age who try to rationalize stealing music. They will use the most convoluted, nonsensical excuses to reconcile what they're doing. "Well, if the record companies released BETTER music, and we didn't have to buy an entire CD, maybe we wouldn't have to STEAL music!!" or "The record companies are so out of touch. If only they had a place where you could buy reasonably priced music, I definitely would."

Ok, let me make a quick comment on this. When you do customer research, some percentage of your prospects will say "Yeah, I'd buy (your product) at that price, but I'd buy more if you priced it lower." Don't listen to this. Customers have no idea what they're talking about when they engage in theoretical pricing/purchase exercises. As an example, when I Was launching BitterShirts, I did fairly extensive customer research on about 20 shirts, having a representative cross-section rank about 20 designs from "I hate it" to "I'd definitely buy it." When I eventually chose shirts and launched http://www.BitterShirts.com, over 70% of those who said they would "definitely buy it" didn't. So PLEASE, IF YOU EVERY SAY "I'd buy it if it were cheaper" THE TRUTH IS YOU PROBABLY HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT--yet you will steadfastly insist that you do. Go away.

Why is it that people above you always lie about what you're about to encounter? Think about people in high school or college, who had taken some class a year before you. You ask them, "Is it hard?" And they will inevitably give you some completely polarized response: "Oh my god, it's the hardest class you'll ever take" (implication: I am really really smart because I got through it). Alternatively, they might say "Oh christ, that is the easiest class I've ever taken" (implication: if you don't get an A+ you are a moron). At Stanford, there's this class affectionately called Rocks for Jocks--it's some geology course that a bunch of athletes take. But it's not that easy!! Neither is Econ1 or CS106a. Yet people will always insist that they are.

With that said, the easiest class in the world is EDGE. Sorry for the inside comment but if you went to Stanford, you know what's up.


People who only have hot girls on their Facebook friends. Hmm...yes, you are completely transparent

People who have poor hit ratios and continue to talk. These are the people who try to be funny by making like 1839581325 "jokes" per day and, of course, just by probability, maybe 1 or 2 hit and are actually funny. So then they consider themselves very funny!!! Ooh I am so funny!!! I made 3 funny jokes today!!! (Ignore the context, that they made 829359298354 non-funny jokes.) I had a group of friends and we genuinely hated this, so we created the Minus 3 strategy to combat this. Here's how it worked: If you said a joke that was just PATENTLY UNFUNNY--meaning everyone around you would look at you and just say "Why did you say that?"--someone could assign you Minus 1. If you got up to Minus 3, you weren't allowed to talk for the rest of the day. Yes, it's rough, but we succeeded in shutting the morons up for the rest of the year. Tough love, people!!!


Anonymous JPT said...

1. People who cannot admit they made a mistake.
Example 1: I heard a story on This American Life about two teenage girls who ran away from home, became heroin addicts and nearly died. One girl still insists this was a major step forward in her life, a learning experience, etc. If anyone is thinking to date or marry this girl, please get a vasectomy immediately!

Example 2: My friend hated her job, but couldn't get another one. So she just quit her job during a terrible downturn in the economy. She went completely broke, declared bankruptcy, lost her great apartment and ended up on another coast, living with roommates on temporary subleases [and she's about 40]. After all that, she's still mad at another friend for warning her not to walk away from her job. HELLO, YOU FUCKED UP! ADMIT IT!

Here, I'll show you how! (1) When I graduated high school I didn't want to choose a college right away, so I lived with my parents and worked. IT WAS A TERRIBLE IDEA. I worked horrible jobs, saved no money, and my parents nearly drove me into an institution with their fighting. (2) A few years later I married a beautiful girl from the south who talked like Scarlet O'Hara. BIG MISTAKE - she and her family were totally psycho and I lived inside a William Faulkner novel for nine mind-shredding years.

This is how you do it, see? You make a decision, it turns your life to shit, and instead of being proud of it, instead of explaining it away, you ADMIT YOU'RE NOT PERFECT! LEARN SOMETHING!

2. People who pierce and tattoo every inch of their body — including the face — then complain that nobody wants to date them or hire them or even look them in the eye. Hey, nobody cares about the deep thoughts of a self-made Frankenstein monster! Look around you. Simply put, there are two kinds of people: masters and slaves. Some of us can't help being born into the slave class. Others volunteer for it. If you tattoo your face and then spend your life pulling espresso at Starbucks, tough shit! Don't come crying to me! Wearing a suit compromises your individuality? Fine! Enjoy commuting on your skateboard!

3. People and their goddamn dogs - use your imagination here, it's a book in itself.

10:47 AM  
Anonymous Will said...

People who don't care to or aren't capable of differentiating between "stealing" and "infringing copyrights." Sorry if things like "legal definitions" and "reality" make it more difficult to loop copying some IP into the same category as depriving someone of property. ANGER!

11:34 AM  
Blogger Gabe Rosen said...

Man, ditto on the tattoos and piercings. My brother took me to an overpriced veggie-loving sandwich shop and the help there were so grotesquely pierced it nearly took away my appetite. These people were not only ensuring that they did not endear themselves to me in their current capacity, but guaranteeing they wouldn't get a better job. You ever go to a nice restaurant where the staff gets big tips? They tend to look pretty presentable. I pointed this out to my brother, who shrugged as though I were overreacting, and pointed out that many successful rock musicians are covered in piercings and tattoos. How very compelling.

Hey, kids, look at me. I don't have any tats or piercings, I keep my hair cut regularly, AND I'M A BIGGER REBEL THAN ANY OF YOU 19 YEAR OLD FUCKS WHO LOOK LIKE MARILYN MANSON. Not only that, but merely by looking like a respectable human being, I have a chance to ruin productivity and morale in much bigger venues than a coffee shop.

I hate when people think a great oldie is a new song by some Johnny-come-lately artist. I actually met someone who thought the Beatles' "Across the Universe" was a Fiona Apple original! And as for the guy who thinks "Blowin' In The Wind" was by Tracy Chapman, I've still got enough spring in my backhand to bitch slap you toward the light.

People who don't return phone calls. Ever.

People who think cats are cleaner than dogs. On the surface, this may be true. But how many cat owners' houses reek unbearably, as opposed to dog owners'? I mean, when your pet's sanitation plan revolves around going indoors, you know something is wrong. Also, I know I'm about to start a big war here, but cats are the sorriest, least companionable pets ever. On the other hand, my friend Pete's Australian shepherd recently went to a bar with us and had his own beer in his portable dog bowl. Beat that, cat fanciers.

When you finally get some good exercise after a long layoff and immediately hurt yourself. As I type this, my leg is being iced and elevated and I'm having legendary chips and salsa brought to me on a tray while watching Seinfeld reruns. Come to think of it, this isn't that bad.

People who are really cheap around you, but will spend big to impress newer acquaintances.

7:13 PM  
Blogger HKagan said...

social commentary is annoying and stupid for pointing out the obvious. for example, i am tired and walked out of the elevator on the 3rd floor while i work on the 4th floor. i got back in the elevator and a lady said " i hate when that happens". i said "oh i enjoy it". no seriously i love when that happens, why did you say that to me. YES I AM being very critical and stupid about something. Its just a thought about how people say things I already know, just to comment.

9:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When. People. Write. Like. This.

2:15 PM  
Blogger Gabe Rosen said...

I just wanted to add that JPT has introduced a really great perspective to this site. Disaffected twenty-somethings are all well and good, but "living inside a William Faulkner novel for nine mind-shredding years" ? Fabulous stuff. I'm sorry you had to go through it, JPT, but the rest of us are richer for your wisdom. I think I echo the sentiments of many when I say I hope you're a frequent T.I.H. commentator from now on.

11:47 PM  
Anonymous Dan H. said...

Coincidentally, we at Cornell also have a geology course that's referred to as "Rocks for Jocks" with a similar reputation. I haven't taken it personally, but I can comment on a different so-called "easy" course we have called "Introduction to Wines." A lot of people sign up thinking it's a joke and just an excuse to drink wine. While it's true that you get to drink wine in class, the tests are fairly difficult, requiring knowledge of smells, tastes, regions, label terms, and the winemaking process. Needless to say, a lot of people fail out since the entire grade is based on the written tests.

10:08 AM  
Blogger travis said...

1) There's a Rocks For Jocks at every college. I got a C. (The interesting part being that I consider myself at least mildly intelligent, even though I had to use dictionary.com to find out whether "intelligent" had two Ls.)

2) When my sister and her husband were contemplating getting their dog a shock collar (don't even get me started), I suggested that they buy two, so I could put the other one on my brother-in-law, and zap him every time he made a stupid joke. Following this comment, I figured that after he heard me say "Zap." and point an imaginary remote at him about 829359298354 times, he'd start to get the hint. The result: he still tells 829359298354 bad jokes per day, but follows 829359298352 of them by saying "Oh. ZAP! Heh, sorry."
Unfortunately, I'm not allowed to stab him in the face.

10:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whats wrong with that deodorant? I dont know about "ARCTIC FORCE!!" but the original old spice stuff is pretty good...

2:45 PM  
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Anonymous Anonymous said...

that joke thing is the best idea ive ever heard of... thankx

7:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good God, you can buy Old Spice deodorant now? Ramit, I don't care what you say about people constantly bemoaning the "way things are going," trust me: things are clearly getting worse!

7:30 PM  

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