In the spirit of the pop-up quizzes that Facebook puts out on a regular basis, the Backstabbers Guild Of Australia is set to introduce a series of fun games that everyone can participate in. Are you ready? Got your thinking cap on?*
- What is your favourite food?
- What is your favourite colour?
- What is the log-in code to your bank account?
- How much money do you have?
- What is your security password ?
- When do you go on holiday?
- Where is the spare key for your house?
There. That wasn’t hard was it? And did you have fun?
We’ll be in touch…
* On yer arse…
I just realised that the title of this essay may be misleading. It is not meant to be a guide for popular journalism or entry into Federal Parliament. It is dedicated to a more private level of vile behaviour.
The novice who wishes to take up untruth as a hobby or part-time job needs to make it clear in their own mind whether they expect to obtain money, advantage, or other valuable consideration from the act – or whether they just wish the thrill of the thing. Either approach is quite valid, but newcomers make things much more difficult if they try to mix the motives too early in their career. Advice: pick one and stick to it.
First off – the pure lie – told with innocent grace and kindly intent. ” Do these pants make my bum look big ? ” is often a good place to start. Even if they make the wearer look like a Pickfords van backing out of an alleyway, always say ” No “. After all, the wearer is responsible for the bum; the viewers responsible for the derisive laughter. You are just a middleman and need not concern yourself with the consequences. Think of yourself as fashion version of Werner von Braun – you just shoot them up and need not concern yourself where they come down…
If this seems to be dangerous -after all the pants wearer may well turn on you – consider putting on an Akubra hat and a pair of moleskins and lounging around a venue popular with Asian tourists. If you are sufficiently wrinkled and tanned, tourists will take you for a local and ask for directions to the botanical gardens or their consulate. You have a wonderful opportunity to direct them to the worst parts of town in the safe knowledge that they will be far away when they discover they have been had.
Do not hesitate to lie to children and the elderly in the mistaken belief that they are frail or innocent. We have seen what both groups get up to when no-one is looking, and you need have no qualms. It will be difficult enough work as the young believe nothing and the elderly hear nothing. A lie shouted is never as satisfying as a whispered one.
Do not lie to policemen, doctors, or judges as they all three hold more punishments in store than you really want to investigate. You may lie to lawyers, real estate agents, and used car salesmen all you like. They will be doing the same to you and the exchange can be refreshing and artistic. You may both burst out laughing at times.
Next Essay – Lying For Money.
Wa are often besieged by people who would have us be kind to everyone. They smile and simper and pretend that saintly behaviour will be rewarded with universal happiness.
Saints have never been happy and their acolytes were no better off. Martyrdom was the best that any of them could hope for and in a lot of cases they had to work pretty hard to achieve it. Missionaries and prophets and reformers generally had to spend a lot of time making nuisances of themselves before they could compel the authorities to burn or expel them. They were unpleasant people who decided to spread it about.
How much better, instead of spreading kindness, to lash about with mindless acts. Folly and questionable behaviour spread thinly. The theatre of random occurrence. Do things then run away.
To this end I have gone to Bunnings and purchased three cans of clear acrylic spray in a matte finish and a large screwdriver. I’m going to the place out in the industrial area where they stack the wrecked cars.
The screwdriver is so I can scratch the paint and the cans are so that I can paint stealth graffiti. I’ll show ’em…
People have told me that there is no need to feed road rage – it has its own sources of nourishment. I am astounded by this – when I take my Toyota Crown 2000 along the Old Coast Road at Easter time towing the Blockmore caravan at 35 Km per hour I never see any rage. I’ve taken off the towing mirrors and I never look back.
Recently a person who was a great deal more Asian than I am was behind my little green Suzuki in a grey Subaru – a big one. I suspect I was not going fast enough to satisfy him – though it would have satisfied a magistrate, as it was the legal limit. In the brief glances I took into the rear-view mirror I could see lights flashing and violent gesticulations on his part. This may have been a folk dance, but if it was, the folk were unhappy.
I made sure I kept strictly to the road speed limits and drove safely – using my turn indicators at the proper distance as required in the Act. My stern companion may not have read the Act, nor approved of it, as he kept repeating his light show. Perhaps there are different rules in the Dutch East Indies or French Indo-China regarding road use, and he has not had time to learn ours. In any case, when he peeled off to do important things elsewhere and I continued on to do trivial things in my part of the world, I reflected upon the lessons:
- Road rage sits beneath the surface of many psyches wearing many suits of clothing. You cannot assign it to any one group.
- It manifests itself when the practitioner is under stress – they are late – they have had a bad day at work – they are under financial pressure. Stress = rage potential.
- The trigger for the rage can be anything that frustrates them. If you drive at the legal speed in a lane within which they wish to break the law, you are target for that rage. They want to gamble with the laws and the Multinova fines. If you prevent this, you are culpable.
- The road-rager is better than you. Richer, stronger, handsomer, more powerful, etc. Some of this is in their mind and some of it may, indeed, be true – but if you do not allow them to show it, they are ANGRY. Arrogance only works if it is shared.
- You cannot satisfy the road-rager. Not by any means, whether that be defiance, or ignorance, or grovelling apology. The road rage is not directed at you – it is an inward attack that continues until the person has exhausted their fear and sorrow. You cannot make it better.
- You can, however, make it worse. If your behaviour has provoked the rage, the best and most sensible thing to do is to intensify it until the emotion rises to the point of psychotic and murderous mania. Until it is fury beyond boundary and stress beyond bearing. Get the road-rager to this stage, judge it accurately, and then slowly motor away. If you can pull into the forecourt of a hospital or police station – both well-provided with security cameras -and quickly go inside, you may be rewarded by the sight of the culprit exploding in the arms of authority. Be kind. Tell them to hold their temper…
Of course it goes without saying that you should make careful note of the licence plates of any offenders – these can be reported to the police or to people who will extract a suitable revenge for a small payment.
We seem to have a form of thief who preys upon people attending funerals. At least, that was the impression a sign at a suburban crematorium and funeral centre gave – it had dramatic warnings about leaving valuables in the car. Presumably the vehicles are targeted by criminals who figure that the owners will be essentially locked into a ceremony for an hour and unable to respond – even to mobile phone car alarms.
Let’s leave aside the emotional attack involved in this or the emotional response of the mourners. Let’s consider how it might be remedied:
- Do exactly what the sign says and strip your car bare of all valuables when you leave it. Presumably that includes turning down the rear seats to show the thieves that there are no goodies secreted in the boot. The possibility of vandalism can then be reduced by leaving the doors and windows open to prevent frustration on the part of the crims. Or would it…?
- Provide a lock-up car park.
- Provide a security patrol that is out in the car park when the services are going on and has the training and permission to whack the offenders into next Wednesday with a stout iron-bound oak stave.
- Dogs. Hungry dogs.
- Television surveillance and monitoring all the time the service is going on.
I should opt for the No.3 solution, and add the costs of it onto the service fees for the funereal centre. These could be passed into the clients via the funeral directors.
Or dedicate a police undercover team to the cemeteries for a month with subsequent trial and jailing of the offenders. The word would go round.
Or just arrange a good haunting.
Which to choose when you want to fleece the rubes – it can be a vital business decision.
The simple pea and shell game ( variation for industrial towns – pea and thimble ) is fast, cheap, and always effective for an operator who can palm effectively. It is the sort of thing that can be easily mounted on a bar table and doesn’t need a portable stand. The betting can be as simple as needed for the intelligence of the crowd, and like many bilks, it is perfectly suited to a con and shill team as well as a single operator.
It does fall down a little in states where they regularly carry sidearms. A pistol can make operation awkward – the wise worker carefully gauges the time to pocket the shells and fade – five minutes more has been a fatal temptation for many a Texas grifter.
The Three Card Monte table seems more suited to the city alley than to the county fair. Urban rubes always fancy they know cards better than their country cousins – and perhaps the taint of sin doesn’t enter into it as much for the towns. You need a folding table that will come up to waist height for a good monte and wise operators know that occasionally you’ll have to abandon a setup – so don’t buy an expensive table.
On the other hand, buy the best cards you can find and monitor them for wear. Replace them at regular intervals or when any form of scuffing starts to show. There is nothing worse than a palm shift being stopped by a card that sticks – people have been detected and knifed because of it. Moral: buy good cards.
Of course neither of these two cons should ever be attempted by someone who is not perfect in the art. There is nothing at all, save a jail term or a slug, to be gained by trying to train on the job. If you wish to enter the pea or monte industry, set aside enough time and money to train yourself properly and practise in every spare moment. After all Heifetz or Paderewski did not play scales to their audiences on the stage of Carnegie Hall.
I am going to try a new one on the South Asian phone scammers.
When the next one rings up – and there will be a next one, no fear – I am going to offer to send them money. I shall be polite and sincere.
It should lead to them ringing off instantly…as it is far from what they have been told to expect from their victims. If they are intrigued and ask how much or how I will send it to them, I shall offer them $ 1000 – and ask to which postal address it should be sent. This, again, should lead to them ringing off in confusion.
But there may be a newbie in the stream room and they might give me their address.
Oh Boy, could I have fun with that…