Friday, June 22, 2007

3 Highly Effective Tactics to Abuse and Manipulate Those Around You

DISCLAIMER: repeated success not guaranteed. some individuals are more prone to submission by one tactic over another, or by a particular combination. to develop a pattern, approach carefully and with subtlty.

months ago i took it upon myself to survey a skilled group of adults and instruct the blogging world on the obscure art of fake sleeping. today i approach an equally weighty issue:

when you really want something - and good ole friendly persuasion just ain't cuttin' it - where do you turn?

it is my belief that every adult should be equipped with a few trusty tools of abuse and manipulation to be used carefully in the appropriate circumstances. fortunately, this is a far more researched and rehearsed subject than FS-ing so i didn't have to do much digging. for clear-cut, effective tools, i direct your attention to SNL's "The Herlihy Boy":

this is a great jumping-off point. the usual red flags (e.g. raised voice, brute force) are absent and yet the recipient feels like they have done something wrong. better yet, recipient feels as though they will do something wrong if they do not submit to assailant's requests. evoking pity and a sense that the recipient has been unduly harsh on the assailant are sure signs of a successful guilt trip. "gentle" is the key term in this tactic. overbearing guilt trips can provoke disastrous results or, in worst case scenarios, open rebellion. adam sandler's herlihy boy is a brilliant example of this technique.

akin to the guilt trip, shame showdown focuses on the element of embarrassment. perhaps you go public with your gentle guilt trip and, thus, manhandle your opponent into submission without lifting a finger. or maybe you imply that others share your sentiments. this is generally effective because most people will be too ashamed to check your sources. this is most commonly manifest in the political realm.

when all else fails, a good shout is sometimes necessary. research indicates that most adults cave after approximately 6.3 minutes of full-blown verbal assault ( - what? you don't think i do my research?!). even the most resilient adults seem to waver after 67 minutes of attack at a 50% effort level. the most important element of verbal assault is escape route. without a good getaway plan, you risk retributory physical violence and/or feelings of guilt due to manifestations of humanity (e.g. tears). for further instructions please observe chris farley in the 2nd half of any of his SNL sketches.

through the practiced techniques of gentle guilt trip, shame showdown, and verbal assault, i am confident you will find yourself with fewer friends, a skewed sense of humanity, and winning every argument in which you engage. bon voyage!

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