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Thursday, September 3, 2009

How To Be Smart

Often in your day to day activities, another person's actions will give you pause and cause such thoughts as:

"How can someone be that dense?"
"How do idiots like that even feed themselves?"

or more bluntly: "What a fucking dumbass."

But while you are feeling superior to the aforementioned dumbass, there are others feeling smugly superior to you. Why? Because they are smarter than you.

How do we know? Because you are here. Readers of BDF can't possibly be that smart. But we love you all anyway. Like family. Like that family we dread seeing on holidays but once we are there we are nice, polite and witty to your face.

Anyway, you can stop people from feeling superior towards you by being smart. How do you get smart? You have to read a shitload of books. But that takes both time and money. And it's boring.

So your good friends here at BDF will teach you how to fake it.

Grow a beard

Dudes with beards just plain look smart. Sigmund Freud, Frederick Douglass, even Zeus. All had beards. All smart guys.

Or were they? Maybe you were lured in and fooled by the powers of the beard.

A photo from Jon Dyer's experiments with various beard types will illustrate:

Jon Dyer - bearded and intelligent

Now that is an intellectual!

See how intelligent Dyer looks? That guy could drop a metric fuckton of bullshit at your feet and you would probably believe him.

Warning: not a goatee. You run the risk of looking like a douchebag. Or Evil Spock.

Evil Spock


While we earlier said that reading was boring and time consuming (and we stand by that assessment) it wouldn't hurt to get one book on philosophy. Not some "...For Dummies" book, but an actual book by a philosopher. Don't go for the overplayed guys like Friedrich Nietzsche or René Descartes.

Try Hegel, Schopenhauer, or even Reynaud. Who are they? Who the fuck cares. It made us sound smart just then, didn't it?

You need someone who you don't really understand, but nobody else will either when you quote the guy. It will sound deep, and you won't get busted. Nobody will ask you to explain or it will signal to the group that they are stupid. Like all pack animals, stupid people avoid showing weakness to the herd.

An example: you are at a party and three people near you start discussing politics and current events.

Person 1 - "What do you think of the government's plan to turn the economy around? I don't think we will see results for at least two years, really."

Person 2 - "I don't think it will take that long. I hope not. We've all been waiting long enough for their promises to come to fruition."

You - "Schopenhauer once said 'A man's delight in looking forward to and hoping for some particular satisfaction is a part of the pleasure flowing out of it, enjoyed in advance. But this is afterward deducted, for the more we look forward to anything the less we enjoy it when it comes.' Food for thought."

Stunned silence from all around you. Now you can bast in the glow of their admiration.

What did it mean? We have no fucking clue. But it sure sounded smart. And that's what counts.


Put down that beer and pick up a martini. While we love a beer or fifteen as much as the next guy, beer doesn't carry the connotation of being the beverage of intellectuals. Which is a shame. As far as we are concerned, whoever created beer was one of the smartest guys to ever grace the planet.

Nobody looks at James Bond, Cary Grant, or Frank Sinatra and thinks "I'll bet that guy is a fucking idiot!". Hell no. Cocktails give the impression of a man possessing excellent taste and a rapier intellect.

For all you know, those three guys are fucking idiots (Hell, Bond sure does get captured a lot for being the greatest spy in England) but they don't appear to be idiots. And that's what counts.

As always, moderation is key.

One martini = intellectual with refined taste
Two martinis = intellectual with refined taste and a thirst
Three to five martinis = you proving that you aren't smart and probably attempting to dry hump some furniture before the night is through.

The Holmes Look

When all else fails, grab a deerstalker and smoke a pipe.

Sherlock Holmes is roundly considered the smartest detective in the world. Sure, some might point out that he is a fictional detective, but in a world were Santa Claus and Mickey Mouse receive fan mail, we think you are splitting hairs.

Smartest man ever

You can't be as smart as Sherlock Holmes, but you can look like Sherlock Holmes. For the most part.

Looking like Sherlock Holmes and acting like Sherlock Holmes are completely different. We're not talking about fucking cosplay here.

If you start dropping to the ground and examining the carpet with a magnifying glass or suddenly declaring "Elementary, my dear Watson" you will simply show the world that you are a true dumbass. Don't. Just don't.

Hopefully you can use some of this finely crafted information to make yourself appear more charming and intelligent. And remember, much akin to those guys who always sucked at sports but now they have gym memberships and wear football jerseys everywhere they go...image is everything.

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