Elegant Weapons For A More Civilized Age.

Greetings, and welcome to another installment of Asking The Wrong Guy!

I have a co-worker who [a] likes to hug everyone all the time (which makes this introvert cringe), and [b] wears an overpowering foul-smelling perfume.  Considering that she's a supervisor in my area, is there a gentle way to get her to stop?  I'm tired of not only the unwanted physical contact, but also smelling her terrible perfume on me for the rest of the day.


The desire to avoid unwanted hugging or other physical contact, especially when compounded with the stench of terrible perfume, is a completely understandable concern and one that I share also. My personal mantra in life always has been “Please, No Touching”, a dictum that the universe has handily chosen to help me enforce with little or no effort on my part. Thankfully, your problem has a simple solution, and for that solution, as for the answers to so many other problems in life, we turn to the realm of fetishism. Specifically, I recommend that you become a furry.

Furries, as I am sure my valued readers are already aware, are a proud subset of wholesome, productive, upstanding individuals who ask nothing more of life than to contribute to the good of society, help their fellow human beings, better the world in any way they can, and to seek their sick and twisted, depraved, ungodly thrills by dressing up in animal costumes in order to engage in sexual activities that make the rest of us normal, accepting, open-minded types shudder with revulsion and wish to cast the whole lot of them into a pit of everlasting, fur-consuming fire.

Showing up at work in a giant animal costume, I suggest a bunny or chipmunk, wearing a huge smile and covered in stains of unknown origin should be enough to dissuade even the most ardent, perfume-laden hugger. Even if it doesn’t, your getup should at least provide an adequate barrier between you and any unwanted contact from your supervisor. The only way this advice can go wrong is if your supervisor turns out to be a furry as well, in which case you may be opening a whole new unwanted kettle of fish.

Also, by the looks of a lot of those costumes, they appear to have a lot of room in them for snacks, so that might be an additional bonus, particularly if you work long hours.

I have recently taken up the noble sport of fencing, wherein two people try to stab each other.  However, I have started to find myself wanting to stab people while doing other activities, such as driving or washing dishes.  What can I do about it?


Anyone who reads Basic Instructions and follows the adventures of the Knifeketeer is aware of my fondness for stabbing. As Obi Wan Kenobi points out in Star Wars, sabers, swords, and other weapons of that ilk are elegant weapons for a more civilized age: specifically, an age when, rather than settling one’s disputes peacefully in a court of law, people flailed away at each other with long, sharp instruments of destruction and tried to lop each other’s heads off.

Why, who among us has not been washing dishes or driving on the freeway and thought, “boy, I could go for some good stabbing”? Well, a perusal of the major psychological publications indicates not many, as it turns out, but that is neither here nor there. My research indicates that many people have an interest in stabbing and simply never realize it until they find someone coming at them with a sword.

How to better work stabbing into your lifestyle? There are two solutions. The first involves getting a roommate that you may battle at will a la Cato and Inspector Clouseau in the Pink Panther. This approach has the advantage of providing an easily available, always ready fencing opponent. However, it also tends to result in a high turnover in roommates, as most people eventually grow weary of constantly being attacked out of nowhere and decide they need to get some sleep, so you’ll want to be sure to have them sign a long-term lease.

The second solution is simply always to carry an extra foil with you. That way, when the urge to stab strikes you, you can simply toss a foil at the nearest passerby, (or, as they are referred to in the legal community, victim), shout “en garde”, and have at it. Not only does this approach offer flexibility, i.e., no need to wait for Cato to heal sufficiently before resuming activities, it also provides an opportunity to meet new people, assuming they don’t flee, immediately seek the help of the authorities, or taser you and your silly foil into oblivion.

If you do employ the second strategy, be sure also to work on your crafting-a-knife-out-of-a-bar-of-soap skills, as, since we do not live in the civilized  far-off age pined for by Obi Wan Kenobi, you will not be able to solve any problems generated by engaging a stranger in fencing by lopping off the person’s head, but will almost certainly end up doing time.

Keep those questions coming in, folks! I can’t provide advice if you don’t display the lack of good judgment to come to me for help!

Also, if you have nothing better to do, be sure to check out basicinstructions.net, the funniest comic strip in any of the known universes!

Until next time, may the Great Cosmic Shoe crush us all.

As always, please direct all desperate cries for help to askingthewrongguy@gmail.com