I think it was Mark Twain who said “Children and fools always speak the truth.” I will go ahead and add teens to this equation. I always find that spending time with my 17-year-old niece is an invaluable experience that allows me to see life through a simplistic prism and reaffirms the notion once so effectively conveyed via Mean Girls: real life mirrors high school. This time around, the kid hit a nail on the head while volunteering a description of a guy her friend was dating: “He’s just one of those Basic Douchebags – he is used to always getting his way and f*cking girls over, so once he finds somebody who can play his game, he’s like “she gets me” and decides he’s finally found his equal and he’s in love.”
She didn’t have to elaborate any further – let’s just say that she had me at Basic Douchebag, a breed of male that transcends all age groups and social circles. And, while my niece might be smart enough to keep her distance, I foolishly flocked to them like a fly to horse sh*t throughout my early twenties, always yielding the same disastrous results. Since I was never slick enough to “turn” the BD, it would usually start with me being smitten and enamored, a feeling that would quickly metamorphose into a giant ball of disappointment once he lost all interest. Eventually, I developed a defense reflex against Basic Douchebags and began teetering more towards the Freaks and Weirdos end of the Dbag spectrum, and yet the memories of the Basic Douchebag stayed with me forever. So what, exactly, qualifies one for this eminent title?
To start, the Basic Douchebag usually has a deeply-rooted sense of confidence that comes from being moderately attractive from a young age, allowing him to avoid any sort of fat-kid or nerd complexes that eventually build excellent human beings. He peaks in high school, securing his positioning as the “popular guy” and breaking many a BFFL friendship while sailing though on a straight-C average. The poor one then usually weans off via Darwinism and transitions into his predestined path of lowlife and loser (my own BD from high school is now a fat divorced single dad!) The rich one, however, has a much longer douche-span. He usually go off to a good college, where he plays college sports and stands on his head, shoving funnels of beer up his throat and trying to tap every jegging-clad ass to walk down the hallway. At some point, he meets that one girl who can play his game, but freaks out at the prospect of a challenge and quickly reverts back to his emotional slacker self. He graduate and utilizes his “network” to secure a well-paid job in a finance-like sector, after which he f*cks around some more, wasting his bonus on bottles at Tao and summer trips to Ibiza. Towards his thirties, he gets tired of partying and finds himself a wife who is hot, skinny and smart enough to bring around in public, yet not smart enough to realize the tragedy of settling for a moron. They move to a Yuppie neighborhood, have a few kids, vacation in Europe (FYI he thinks ‘Europe’ is one singular place, kind of like ‘Africa’), and live happily for the next twenty years, with him cheating on her in the comfort of business trip hotel rooms and her looking the other way. Around fifty, he has a mid-life crisis, upgrades his car and possibly his wife, and lives happily ever after in the comfort of Palm Springs, occasionally attempting to tap one of his daughter’s friends, who look at him with the pity that he deserves.
The Basic Douchebag, in one sentence, is good on paper but bad for the soul, a freeway to a lifetime of spiritual mediocrity. He never touches anyone in any real way and is completely satisfied with this. (I have been reading a little too much Coehlo and it shows.) Personally, the idea of the BD depresses me so much, that I cannot help but yearn to continue plucking out the crazies, if only to comply to the wise words of Apple and Steve Jobs: “Here’s to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes!.. While some see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
Because another thing about Basic Douchebags is this: he never changes the world, mainly because he doesn’t give a flying f*ck about it.
P.S. Pardon the fact that this post was pretty much written by a sailor with all this cussing, I’m feeling rather aggressive upon my return to France!