Smile Politely

Allow Me to Introduce My World of Hate. Join Me, Won’t You?

Hello Gentle Reader. I am the Campus Wit.

I attend the University of Illinois and find absurdity around every corner. Being a wit, I feel it is my duty to satirize and bring to light many of the ridiculous and horrible facets of campus life. As I walk around campus, I actively hate every person I see. With every passing face, thoughts of derision and rancor enter into my mind. No one escapes my inner scorn. I’m not a racist. I’m an equal opportunity hater. I don’t care about your race, gender or creed.

I can find something to hate in everybody.

I’m actually pretty proud of my egalitarian hate. I think that it’s very progressive. If everybody could just hate all people equally, the world would be a better place. One of two things would happen: complete and utter destruction of the human race or total and lasting world peace. I’d prefer the former of course, but either option works. I’m thinking of starting a campaign for equal opportunity hating. We’ve been trying the whole “love everybody” thing for years now and look where it has gotten us. The world is a shit hole, and things are getting worse. Why not give hating a go? The new Golden rule should read, “Hate others as you would want to be hated.”

The great thing about my campaign is this: it is far easier to hate someone than love someone. To love someone you need to get to know them and understand who they are, whereas to hate someone all you need to do is look at them and observe what they are doing at that particular moment. I can hate someone for the way he walks or the style of headphones that he is wearing. Keep your eyes open for my campaign. Right now, I’m considering using the slogan, “Hate everybody. Our future depends on it.”

Well now, I may have gotten a little carried away there. That was quite the digression, but as the great wit Laurence Sterne once said in his incredibly tangential novel The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Esq., “Digressions, incontestably are the sunshine; they are the life, the soul of reading!- take them out of this book, for instance, – you might as well take the book along with them.” Sterne is a personal hero of mine, and I’ve picked up some of his digressive tendencies. Let me get back to myself, now.

As shown by my love of Laurence Sterne, the only people I have any real respect for are dead British and Irish men. Occasionally, I’ll find myself respecting a living British or Irish man, but these outbreaks are rare and short-lived. I model my life off of the lives of these great wits. I usually fail, however, to live up to any of the examples that they set. My life is characterized by debauchery, pessimism, misogyny, barbarism, anxiety, causticity, melancholy, and blasphemy. I am entirely contradictory. One day I will espouse a belief and then the next day I will ridicule that very belief.

It’s only my total and complete love of The Beach Boys that keeps me from nihilism.

Basically, I view the world as a horrible but wildly absurd place. As Ignatius J. Reilly once said, “I refuse to ‘look up.’ Optimism nauseates me. It is perverse. Since man’s fall, his proper position in the universe has been one of misery.”

I don’t see how anyone could see things differently, but when I look around campus, I see people smiling and radiating optimism. “How in the fuck are these people smiling and optimistic?” I wonder, but then I realize the answer: they’re fucking morons.

(I love the word fuck. It may be uncouth, but it is one of the few things in the world that gives me joy.)

I can’t understand how any rational person could view the world as anything but completely wretched, but then again I also can’t believe that people really think that cigarettes are actually bad for you.

Well, I’ve given you an idea of my personality. I’m gonna finish up with by telling you about the state of my affairs. I live in Urbana but delude myself into believing that I live in Ireland. I rarely leave my apartment because of a punishing fear that I might run into someone I know. I have no girlfriend because no woman would even consider spending more than eight minutes in my presence. My parents told all their friends that I died three years ago and refer to me as “our big mistake” to my siblings. I am constantly crippled by horrible depression, and my impressive collection of neuroses make Woody Allen look well-balanced.

So that’s me. The Campus Wit. Your Campus Wit. I hope to entertain you, Gentle Reader, with this column and also make you realize how horrible your life actually is. I will leave you now with one final thought from the good Dr. Sterne: “What is the life of man! Is it not to shift from side to side? From sorrow to sorrow? To button up one cause of vexation! And unbutton another!”

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