Friday, September 22, 2006

Smart Ass License

I have a confession. I like screwing with people. Call it a sick hobby or a misfire in the old synapses but it's something that I do. Now I will admit my humor is never intended to insult or impugn anyone, unless you count me in that equation. Most of my humor is self effacing. However it is always done in good fun. I will let you in on a little secret, it has helped me immensely in getting out of my introverted shell; I have discovered it to be cheap therapy. My smart ass license, as you might imagine, gets used quite often.

Now I am certain my wife and dad will not necessarily agree that this is the purest form of therapy as they are often pulled, unwillingly into my devious cravings to make people laugh and smile.

My wife for example almost refuses to take me to the grocery story any more. I have a tendency to joke about her using the "stolen checks" or using her "real license" when she is completing her transaction with the cashier. I consider it great fun and it often gets a rise and a guaranteed look out of who ever is serving us. Which is, in all likelihood, why I do it in the first place! To pull and impersonable cashier, waiter or whoever out of their mundane (and likely pissy mood) approach to serving us. It works like a charm every time!

Now my situation with my dad is entirely different. We fight, when we are together over the check. It has literally become an outright competition to see who pays. For an old guy, he is still pretty crafty and has one-upped me a number of times and to give him proper props, he gets his smart ass license renewed every time we are together!

Our normal ritual when the check arrives is to debate with the waitperson as to who he or she should give the check to. I launch into my various reasons as to why I should be given the check some of which include:

  • "Don't take his credit card, he' on a fixed budget! He and my mom won't be able to eat again for two weeks!"
  • Looking at my dad I will say...."Man, the credit card company reissued you a card after LAST TIME!"
  • "You might not want to take his card because he picks pockets at the senior center and I believe you could be implicated in some sort of crime if you use his card."
  • "He just got out of prison and I know for a fact that he made that card in the slammer."
  • "Look at him....could you really trust him? He looks shifty to me!"
  • "This is my father and I haven't seen him in 30 years since he left home with his secretary. As you can imagine I am still pissed and the least I could do is pay for his last meal on Earth!"
  • Looking at my dad, "Look man, I don't want to go jail again like last time. Please just let me pay."
  • "Sir, my dad get's credit cards in the mail all the time in some dead guy's name. He thinks it's okay to use them. I would just be real careful trying to process that thing!"
  • "Hey Dad, what's the name of the waitress that didn't listen to me and went ahead and processed your card? Is she still doing time?" Looking at the current waitress, "I have no idea why she went to jail and dad didn't!"

Now I know people will criticize me for picking on my lovely wife and my poor old dad. But before you fire off any hate comments or emails, there is a point!

I have a blast doing it!

Being a smart ass helps me think fast on my feet. It makes me be creative and often results in a smile or a laugh from all concerned. Well except for my wife who doesn't think much of my "form of humor" but we won't entirely count her. It's my BLOG after all!

Pulling out and using my smart ass license has had other benefits as well. For example, I was having dinner recently before I was to speak to a business group. The waitress seemed overly personable for some odd reason and I couldn't put my finger on why. Then she asked if I remembered her which unfortunately it did not. She told me that she remembered me from six months earlier when she worked at another restaurant and what crazy wild tales I told about my friend whom I wouldn't let pay. She said I really made her smile and she told people about me for months!

How cool is that? To be remembered because you changed someone’s day? Seems like a pretty good way to be remembered if you ask me. I got extra catfish in my dinner from the young lady as well so I will submit there are ancillary benefits too!

All I can say is I am giving you permission to pull out your smart ass license and give it a try. You will be remembered, you will likely get a rise out of whoever is around and I bet you will find you will enjoy it. Who doesn't want to smile after all?

Ripple On My Friends!!!

Steve Harper


ChiefExecOrganizer said...

Hey, Steve, I am coming to your next Ripple event-- I am a good friend of CJ's and she led me to your blog. I am really enjoying it! Can't wait to meet you! - Lorie Marrero

MagnumVox said...

Bro… I absolutely needed to read something like this today!!!
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
Humor is both an antidote, and an inoculation, for so much of what “ails” us in daily life. Thanks for sharing yours!

Oh… and my sympathizes to your wife and dad!! :o)