Things not to say


That Macklemore photo in #14 looks like it was drawn by Maurice Sendak.


Well thank goodness we have Buzzfeed to call us tools. It’s also very helpful when Boing Boing points us to the good stuff like this.


Sounds like more a list of the writer’s petty biases than a list of things not to say.


“I read this really interesting article at BuzzF” — DAMN!


"And the people are all phonies. No one reads. Everything has cilantro on it… "


I think I found my soulmate!

I’m pretty sure an article telling me I’m a tool ranks higher on the Douche-ometer than any other of these statements.

  1. I think R.E.M.s early stuff is better. Eat shit.
  2. I’ve worked on novels. It’s called making conversation.
  3. Milk chocolate is for pussies. End of story.
  4. Apparently you aren’t reading my tweets. Shame on you. It’s all gold.
  5. I skimmed this interesting article and I want you to skim it too so we can pull it up at the party and discuss it.
  6. You should. It’s good for you.
  7. Ok, I’ll give you this one. Soul Mates…they don’t exist.
  8. Dude have you listened to what passes for Radio these days? NPR FTW!
  9. E-books don’t feel the same, but you get used it them, and you can read them in the bathtub if you put them in a ziploc.
  10. Health is important. So is discipline. If I bail on the gym today, I won’t be able to get there until next week. Just wait an extra hour.
  11. I have to say that. I’m an Alcoholic. Who knows what’s going to happen tomorrow?
  12. Starbucks sucks. 'nuff said.
  13. Uhhh.

Apparently I’m 47% Tool. If that’s the case can I be a Water Jet Cutter?


Can I add one? “Do whatever works for your [obviously vastly inferior] family.”


20.  “I write for a website called Buzzfeed.


And make up lists as an anti-hipster hipster.


15, 16 and 17 make it sound like the guy is a party animal who requires constant human contact but refuses to experience his friends playing music, prepared to guilt trip them into accompanying him as he drinks himself into an early grave.

Maybe this article is a very craftily disguised cry for help?

Anyway, the whole ‘introducing a topic you want to talk about, without disguising it as having emerged from the conversation naturally’, is the major failing.

If you really don’t want to be accused of (or perceived as) being a dick for talking to people you know about things that interest you; get new friends.


It is a douchey article. That said, when I heard my 3 year old son say he ‘read a report that shows you how to pick a really good monster truck’ then I knew something was amiss.

But I like reading and talking about what I have read - not because I am a tool, but because that is how we get and share information.


Number 1 thing to do to make you sound like a tool? Calling other people tools because of what they said.


I think the thing is to not volunteer these sorts of things in conversation where it isn’t warranted.

Just don’t constantly derail the conversation and make it about you and your experiences. I mean that’s just normal conversation skills for non-douchebags.

The #3 “I don’t own a TV” crowd is particularly notorious for that, as well as the #6 “When I was in Europe…” crowd. Since the other things on the list are really not that bad, it’s true that they’re going to make you sound like an ass if you say them at inappropriate times.

I’m guilty of several things on this list (sometimes in slightly different forms), and I know for a fact that people sometimes find me to be insufferable for this and other reasons. So I don’t find the article to be completely off-base by any means :wink:

1 Like

You used “douchey” to describe an article that contains the phrase “I’m on the Master Cleanse right now”.


I find it annoying when a person specifically clicks on a link about a TV show and then offers, “I don’t own a TV”. But in the context of a very different conversation, in person, if you are rambling on about a program on TV, and that person responds the same way, it’s not really being a tool, it’s signaling that they can’t contribute to the discourse and aren’t interested. I think context is everything. I like dark chocolate better than other chocolates, but I’m not going to spew it out non sequitur, like Rainman saying, “I’m an excellent driver”. I might mention it if offered a choice of chocolate.


I only like Boing Boing’s early stuff


They forgot “I work in academia”… or the use of any academic terms in non-academic conversation… That pisses lots of people off I’ve found, but they just don’t realize that I don’t want to bring Foucault or Marx into this 2 way conversation, but given that I’ve read about 200 books that do nothing but namecheck them in the past few months… at some point, you can’t help it. It’s kind of sad really. We need help… Help me. I’m trapped under a major pile of academic works. But I’m useless in the real world… so there is that. :frowning:


So if you actually are going to the gym or actually do prefer dark chocolate you have to lie about it? “Ummm, I’m allergic to milk chocolate and I have a secret meeting at that time.”

I think some of the items in this list indicate issues with the article writer more than anything else, though if you said these out of context I can see them sounding snobby.