Saturday, January 31, 2009

Chapter 3: Don't Be a Neidermeyer

You now know you're not alone, and you've learned to treasure your friends and loved ones. You're ready to begin the hard work of becoming the new you.

But where to start?

That's easy: Start by stating what you don't want to be, so your course ahead will be clear, like a highway under construction with Jersey barriers on either side of your lane. Sure, no one enjoys driving on such a road, but those barriers do make it very obvious what you shouldn't do. Now, you may not be sure exactly which boundaries to place on your own future, but fortunately our guiding film, Animal House, is ready to help: what you don't want to be is Doug Neidermeyer, one of the film's most awful characters.

Dean Wormer provides an early clue when he refers to Neidermeyer as "a sneaky little shit," but as the movie wears on we learn that being a Neidermeyer is both a bad choice and an ultimately expensive one.

Sure, Doug is rich, fit, an Omega, and probably scores more sex in a month then you do in a decade, but as Animal House teaches us, if you turn to the Neidermeyer way, you will pay.

Karma, in the form of Otter's golf ball, knocks Neidermeyer off his horse, which then drags him along the ground and leaves him with a neck injury. Later, that same horse, probably from the stress of carrying around Neidermeyer's evil ass, dies and, in an ultimate indignity, must be carved up with a chainsaw.

Neidermeyer himself comes to a tragic end, as the movie tells us: shot and killed by his own troops in Viet Nam.

You wouldn't want your horse (or cat or dog or froglet or whatever pet you have or might like to have) to die the way Neidermeyer's did, now would you? You don't want those you're leading to shoot you, do you?

Of course not.

So don't be a Neidermeyer.

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