How To Seem Successful When You're Not

 

Snake_in_basketWe've all been there: After a few months, sometimes years, apart, a group of friends meet at a bar to catch up. One guy finally got his Masters, another has been happily successful with his "biz" (that's what he's going to call it the entire night, by the way), and for the most part everyone has something going on. But you? Not a damn thing. It's not that you don't care about anything, it's just that twice-daily naps and binge watching television has more allure than spreadsheets and 9 a.m. conference calls. Or pants.

If you feel less accomplished than your friends, your best bet is a fictional story that makes you seem important.  And for those who are lacking in the cool facts department, here are a few things that can boost your cred with the buddies. Now, the key to most good lies is being believable yet vague enough to where no one can double check or challenge your new found hobbies.

Snake Mating Expert:

Yep, you have begun legally breeding snakes in your mom's basement for a few months now. Throw out how there was a ton of paperwork involved in getting permits to start a small-batch reptile farm within the city limits. Be sure to note how the experience has been a great vehicle for you to make the best of your time management skills, as well as how it will make you a better, more nurturing parent in the future.

Pro Tip: Use one of those staple removers to make tiny snake bite marks in your arms.

Sold Your Movie Rights:

Tell them you're not fully committed yet, but you've had talks with a mid-level production company about the rights for your life story. Use a confidentiality agreement with the project as a way to diffuse any direct questions your friends will lob at you because everyone will want to know what aspects of your life, and theirs for that matter, will be the focus of the film. Calmly tell them with a light smirk that it's for another side of your life, and if they're in it, it's because they were, and are, a huge part of your story. Ass kissing achieved, situation handled.

Pro Tip: Casually name drop informal versions of famous directors throughout the night. “Yeah, Stevie loved the way you were stood up at prom.”

You Ghost Wrote a Novel:

How can anyone really know that you didn't rewrite the first draft of Bill O’Reilly's "Killing Jesus." I mean who has the time to find out if you really did something that specific? By the way, this can be the toughest one to defend so you have two options: Learn a little bit about random chapters, or claim that your version ended up in pieces on the editing floor. "That's just the ghostwriting world," you say, with an air of confidence. "Sometimes they want you, sometimes they just want your words."

Pro Tip: Create a fake author account -- i.e. bill.o.o.o.oreilly@aol.com -- and send a couple of chains of correspondence claiming how superior your writing style is to the original author's.

You're Recovering From Very Specific Amnesia:

You can't remember a whole lot, but it was immediately after the last time you saw everyone. The roads were slippery, and your single-gear bike lost control on the ride home. Next thing you know, life has become a puzzle, and most days are a feeble attempt at reconstructing the life you once knew.  Tell people you're remembering more and more every day, and that you will cherish the hell out of everyone's help as you continue to get back to you being you.

Pro Tip: Tell them that it only affects points of your memory, and use that for emergency moments like when they need you to pay them back or to sidestep embarrassing questions about other lies you've constructed over the night: “Wait, my mom said I don't really tend to snakes in her basement?," you say panicked and frustrated. "What's real in this life?!"

With these simple fibs, you now have the confidence to express how your fake life is full of incomprehensible badassery. But if you really want to be the most successful guy at the next hangout, maybe you should put on some pants and actually do something with you life; messaging Bill O’Reilly is not recommended.

Andrew Plock is a blogging intern and a Level 2 student at Dallas Comedy House. When he’s not impersonating everything in earshot, he is sorta doing his best as the Managing Editor for THWRD Magazine in Dallas.