In a week I’m going to re-cap all the books I’ve read Jan-April because there have been some real winners. But last night I was laughing out loud so much reading Me v. Everybody: Absurd Contracts for an Absurd World that I couldn’t wait to blog it.
Calling this a “book” is a little bit of a stretch – it’s officially a paperback but each page is on thick paper that can be ripped out for everyday use as the need arises. There are numerous joke “contracts” to use on some of the most important parts of our lives – how to determine who controls the remote, when and how to keep the toilet seat down when it is used by both genders, how to screw over the guy sitting in front of you on a plane who decides it’s within his right to recline all the way back, and various other situations that can only be resolved through a thorough contract. It is all really funny and I reccomend it for anyone who likes to laugh (or as a gift to a lawyer-friend). Some excerpts from one of my favorite contracts:
Guidlines for Air Travel Beside Unknown Individual:
Hello. I understand that I have the “pleasure” of sitting beside you on this lovely flight. As you can tell from my strategic placement of this agreement upon your seat prior to your boarding, I have absolutely no desire to talk to you. I could certainly pretend to be engrossed in a novel as you attempt to cram your Honda-size backpack into the overhead compartment above us, endangering everyone within a twenty-foot radius. Or, in response to your pleasant inquires about whether I am headed home today, I could feign ignorance of the English language, shake my head, and cluck meaningless psuedo-Slavic syllables. But in the name of honesty and forthrightness, I have chosen to engage you directly and inform you that I do not wish to befriend you merely because some random accident of geopgraphy and ticketing has led us to be seated next to each other.
I am certain you are a remarkable person, with myriad delightful tales to tell and a thousand interesting life experiences from which I might learn Something Valuable. Also, I grieve for your Aunt Violet and that whole eye tag removal mess she went through last week in Minneapolis. But unfortunately, I am already overdrawn on my account at the bank of compassion and caring. My current relationship and the demands of my nuclear “family” have drained me of empathy or the ability to feign same.
I therefore think it best that we refrain from the chitchit that routinely results from long-distance travel, often leading to embarassing personal disclosures and revelations unlikely to be offered to anyone other than our therapists under any other set of circumstances.
Having paid [blank] for my ticket, I am enttiled to one armrest; one headrest; and one square foot of floor space at my feet. Should you dispute these claims I am willing to a) wrestle you in the curtained-off food service area at the back of the plane, b) submit to a process of binding arbitration at any time with the uniformed flight attendant of your choice. Should you be toting more than 200 pounds of carry-on luggage; nursing more than [blank] mewling infants’ or be in possession of colossal thights and/or oversize arm fat, I ask that you stow such exceess cargo in the overhead.
The light and air vent over your head shall belong exclusively to you, as mine to me. Put another way, I do not like it when you use my air nozzle to blow-dry your beard.
I could go on, but my hands are tired.