1. Get a job. And once you get a job, go to it. And so a little work while you are there. Seriously. I don't care what job you get. Hot dog vendor. Tollbooth operator. Architect. Just something. And make sure you go to your job. If you get a job then don't go, you will be fired, then you are just back to square one. This is not that hard of a concept people. Go to your job or go to hell. And once you have mastered going to work, make sure that you do something while you are there. Don't get all mad when they ask you to do something. That's the idea. You do things for them and they give you money. I know, it is a complicated system. And why would you want to trade your services when you can lie around your mom and dad's basement and have the state pay your way? Just remember this. Unemployment is for people who lost their job through no fault of their own, and it is to sustain them while they look for another one. Not to sustain you while you try to get to level 71 on World of Warcraft. Disability is for someone who can't work in any job because of a work related accident. Not someone who tweaked their back playing lawn darts. And social security is for old people who have paid in for 50-odd years. So the long and short of it is to go get a job, show up, and actually work. Don't complain about having to work for your money. That's called normal.
2. Get an apartment. Oh my, I know, it seems complicated. But don't get worried. Go look at the classifieds, maybe cruise around town, and find a For Rent sign. Then, sign the lease (remember, you have to do what it says), get a futon and a toaster oven, maybe a twin bed on the floor in the bedroom, and you are set to go. It's okay if you buy beer instead of furniture. It's okay if you have end tables made of used pizza boxes. It's okay if you wear socks, boxers, and your Boise North Junior High School gym shirt all the time while you are home. Just get a place to live that isn't your parents'. That's all you have to do. Now, if that job we talked about above doesn't pay you enough money to get your own place, you can always get a roommate. That's another person who will live with you and pay an equal part of your costs. Just make sure that they aren't either of your parents.
3.) Get a car. Or a motorcycle. This doesn't apply to you if you live in say New York City or Budapest or another city with fully developed public transportation. But if you don't live in a big city like that then you should spend some on the money from that job thing and get a car. It doesn't necessarily have to be a nice car, just some sort of car to get you, you know, to your job. And to the grocery store. And to the movies or wherever. There is bad news however. Getting the car is the easy part. You also have to make sure that you do the things that society says you must do to have a car. You will have to pay money every year to register it with the state. You will have to make sure you always have a driver's license. That allows you to actually drive your 1982 Chevrolet Camaro Berlinetta. And you have to make sure not to use your car to commit a crime. Don't drink alcohol while driving it. Don't run people over with it. Don't drive it at excessive speed everywhere you go. Just follow things like laws and common sense (trust me, if you don't want to be a lazy sack of shit you will have to learn what these are). Or, if those elude you, just sort of do what other people around you are doing. That will help you succeed. Just remember that you have to be responsible for your car. That means that it's your fault if you screw things up. So shape up.
Those are the basics to not being a lazy sack of shit. It's relatively simple. I know that is sounds scary right now. But make sure to follow these few pieces of advice and you won't be a lazy sack of shit anymore. You will be just lazy. Or you will be a douchebag. Or you will be a normal guy. Or hey, you might even become a success. But you won't be a lazy sack of shit anymore, and that's all that the world asks.
This post originally posted on April 4, 2008.