16 May 2005

Worst Case Scenario

Lessons in Survival

Saturday evening I had the chance to play "The Worst Case Scenario" survival game, which I'd seen in shops before but never really was into it enough to purchase it. It was actually fun, and consisted of obvious, helpful, not so obvious, and just plain confusing tips. The best part was sitting around and actually trying to figure out what the best option might be. Some of them were actually helpful. For example...

What's the best way to avoid a shark attack?
A) Swim only when the water is calm.
B) Avoid wearing shiny or reflective objects such as jewelry.
C) Swim only in large groups of people.

We pretty much decided B was the best option, maybe because the jewelry attracts fish, and those attract sharks. C is also perfectly acceptable if at least one swimmer in the group is slower than yourself. Other questions were less logical..

Question: How do you survive a volcano?
A) Stay in your home, moving to the highest point.
B) Get in your car and drive away from the area as quickly as possible.
C) Climb a tree.

While the obvious instinct is to get the hell out of there, for some reason the game tells you to go hide in your attic. None of us could figure that one out. Finally, some were just... wierd.

Question: What is the best way to keep yourself hydrated with undrinkable water?
A) Urinate in the water and leave it out in the sun. Let the waste settle and drink the clear part.
B) Soak yourself in the water.
C) Use the water to give yourself an enema. At least your intestine will be hydrated.

I'll give you a clue.. A and B are wrong. See? Wierd. If for nothing else, the fact that they expect you to be lost in the wilderness with an enema bag -- what kind of camping trip was that??

In honor of the game, I decided to contribute my own how to...

How To Survive Your Daily Commute.

1) Eat a good breakfast, it's necessary to fuel you throughout the day, and it helps put you in the proper mindset for your drive. The definition of 'good' extends to eggs, toast, whole grain cereal, three-day-old chinese food, and the blowpop you found under your dresser the other week.

2) Make sure you leave in plenty of time. This is all relative to your driving style. If you drive like your grandmother, or my friend Steve, you should be starting your commute at about the time you get home the previous evening. If you drive like the Duke boys, hit that snooze one more time.

3) Plan your route. Listen to the traffic reports -- or better yet, ignore them, and increase your sense of adventure. Or, watch the news and find that most major routes toward your destination are blocked by accidents, construction, and the asses that have to slow down and watch accidents and construction.

4) Listen to the radio. It gives you a beat to match when you start banging your head against the steering wheel.

5) Use your turn signal responsibly. To most people who commute (at least in my area), flashing yellow lights are a clear universal sign to speed up and cut off/run off the road/sideswipe/etc. the person trying to get over. Under no circumstances should you use this signal. Somewhat acceptable is what's known as the 'DC turn signal', which involves rapidly turning your head to look over your shoulder in the direction in which you want to move.

6) Use your horn sparingly. Honk at the assholes that don't use their turn signals.

7) Have an effective stress relief method. This can include stressballs, a song, counting to ten, or gin.

8) Respect the speed limit. This inevitably varies anywhere between five and eighty-five miles per hour, a figure completely independent of the actual set speed of the roadway. Count on people braking to a stop anytime a police officer comes into distance, even if they've already pulled someone over.

9) Avoid distractions while driving. Cell phones are the big ones. There's no potential legislation against eating, drinking, applying makeup, or preparing fugu while driving are perfectly ok.

10) Arrive home safely. Your work day is done -- relax, eat dinner, finish off the gin, and go to sleep. Repeat in ten hours.

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