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In which Hank loses the game A LOT!!!


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A Bunny
( - -)
((') (')
Good morning John.

I hope you don't mind if me and Nerdfighteria get together and give you a little bit of an intervention. We are here for you in your time of need, but, if you want to continue having a loving and respectful and kind relationship with all of us, you're going to need to cut back on the soccer. If a person needs to create a second Twitter account so that they can tweet more about the World Cup, that person is probably spending a little too much time thinking about soccer.

I mean, it's great, sure. I don't want to argue about whether or not soccer is a really good game, but, no matter how good a game it is, John, it's a game. It might be a great game, but it is just a game.

And god, dah! I just lost The Game. Not the soccer game, though, in my career as a nine-year-old goalie, I did lose my fair share of those.

I just lost the, uh, The Game. You know, The Game. The Game.

And, of course, now I have bad news for you and everyone who's watching this. You guys just, uh, lost The Game, too. So, for the people who are confused and somehow do not know that they are currently playing The Game, let me explain the rules.

There is a game; it is called The Game. You are always playing it, and there is no way to win. But, if you think about The Game, then you lose The Game.

At first I thought The Game was really dumb. Saying you just lost The Game is a self-fulfilling statement. If you read the statement, then you have lost, which is kind of interesting.

I mean, that's kind of an interesting idea, that there could be a statement that fulfills itself. But mostly it's not interesting. Mostly it's just annoying.

But over the years of begrudgingly playing and losing and thus thinking about The Game, I've come to realize that The Game is actually more than a way for twelve-year-old boys to exercise some tiny and meaningless amount of power over other people. The really fascinating thing about The Game is that the only way to win is to not know you're playing. And thus I must apologize to all the people who I just introduced the concept of The Game to.

But that idea, that you are always winning until you know you're playing, is actually a fascinating bit of distilled wisdom about the folly of humanity. Whereas the internet troll may say, "The Game, you lost it!" the truth of that statement is that all desire and, in some ways, all knowledge leads to loss. It's strange that one of the principle tenets of Buddhism is hiding inside of an internet meme, but there you have it.

It's true of every game and of everything. If you play, you lose. The only way not to lose is to not know the game exists.

And the game is everywhere. I see it everywhere now. Take an example of academic researchers.

These are people who do a great deal of good for the world, and they're very smart people. And their gain, the thing they're motivated by, is being published in academic journals that you have never heard of and being recognized by scientists that no one has ever heard of. They fight their entire professional lives for that recognition, and then, when they achieve it, they only want more.

It doesn't matter what game you're living for. If you're living for it, you'll never win. The game can be anything.

It can be the desire for fame or money or romantic conquests, and the game can even be the desire for good things, like ending poverty or having a really happy, healthy family. Recognizing this about the game, that we're all playing it and we're all losing it, has made me realize that what's really important is that we're playing the right game, because you can't win. Every marriage that doesn't end in divorce ends in death.

There's no way not to lose fights. That doesn't mean that there aren't fights worth fighting, but it does mean that thinking that you'll only be happy when you win is the surest way of never being happy. You just lost The Game, and you're going to spend the rest of your life losing the game.

The only real way to win is to not care if you lose. And that is what I got from spending way too much time losing The Game. John, I will see you on Monday. [text scrolling over screen:] I feel compelled to remind you that the somewhat more obscure second rule of the game is that, upon losing the game, you must announce that you lost it.

So have fun with that!