Wednesday, February 23, 2005

There are distinct differences between a Boy Scout and a Bad Boy

- The Boy Scout helps the elderly lady across the street safely.
- The Bad Boy helps the elderly lady in a wheelchair by pushing her down a hill.

- The Boy Scout helps direct the police officer to where the criminal ran.
- The Bad Boy points the officer in the opposite direction and giggles afterward.

- The Boy Scout politely asks for a glass of fruit punch at the school party.
- The Bad Boy empties a pint of his favorite rum or vodka into the punch bowl and has a toast with his friends.

- While passing the police man in the family vehicle, the Boy Scout gives a friendly wave to Officer Friendly.
- The Bad Boy gives an unfriendly hand gesture to Officer Friendly.

- The Boy Scout turns in his homework assignments on time.
- The Bad Boy copies the homework assignment from the Boy Scout.
- In return, the Boy Scout gets to keep his life.

- The Boy Scout runs in to the burning school and saves his fellow students. He is then honored for his courageous efforts in the local newspapers.
- The Bad Boy high-fives his fellow greasers in celebration while their school is burning. He then takes it upon himself to declare to his classmates that school has been dismissed for the rest of the day. The students all cheer and then leave.

- The Boy Scout sacrifices his coat so that a pretty classmate can walk over the puddle without getting wet.
- As the pretty classmate walks close to the puddle, the Bad Boy zooms over the puddle with his bike, soaking the girl.

- The Boy Scout must demonstrate to his Scout Master the proper "Boy Scout handshake."
- The Bad Boy's gang handshake is in the form of a punch into the shoulder blade.

- The Boy Scout uses his spare time for worthy charity causes.
- The Bad Boy considers "charity" to be giving his pals a free smoke.

- The Boy Scout continually does good, and yet the girls turn him down.
- The Bad Boy can make it all the way to third base just by being, well, bad.


Lo said...

These are all highly amusing concepts, but lack the punch of conciseness.

"Brevity is the soul of wit," observed the Bard. Being over-written is one of the biggest causes of death for true humor.

Excessively verbose humour only appears breathless and desperate. As Strunk and White advise: be a harsh miser with your words. Begrudge each and every word, and make the most of them. This applies not just to humor but to serious writing as well.

No one likes to slog through excessive prose, no matter how compelling the subject matter or creative the writer.

It helps to *look at* your writings; if they simply appear too voluminous, learn to expertly trim away words, condense phrases and ideas, and -- perhaps most importantly -- trim away extraneous detail.

Writing is, like any creative art form, the process of selecting detail in order to induce a certain impression on the audience. No creative person can include every idea in his works, so learn not to be greedy; only the bare minimum of words to get the point across should be used.

As I said, you've got great ideas; you really are a creative person. But even Shakespeare went through an intermediate phase in which he had to *learn* how to be concise and impactful.

Dry Guy said...

[The Bad Boy boo's the Boy Scout for being too "extraneous in detail."]

Lo said...


"Guards! Sieze this impudent 'Lo' character!"