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The Mountain Goats Will Cure Your Bieber Fever:

Michael Buckley's Dear Buck:

In which John answers gives advice to real nerdfighters on the topic of dumb boyfriends who say they don't like smart girls, leaving home to go to college, boys who maybe like you, dating your friends, how to conduct yourself during a job interview, catching Justin Bieber fever, and how the Mountain Goats can cure you.


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A Bunny
( - -)
((') (')
Good morning, Hank. It's Monday.

So the brilliant Michael Buckley has started doing this advice show called "Dear Buck", link in the doobly-doo. And I have been inspired by him, to try to dispense some of my own advice. So I asked Nerdfighters on Twitter if they had any problems and it turns out that they do and I'm going to do advice today, and I'm also going to do advice on Friday. Umm...with the caveat that my advice may suck.

(From now on, SP=sock puppet/question asker)

SP: I'm scared to go to college so far away. How am I gonna deal with being lonely, and homesick?

John: I'll tell you how that generally gets dealt with by college freshman, it generally gets dealt with by binge drinking. Which, you'll be surprised to learn I don't recommend. There's this feeling on American college campuses that the best way to achieve intimacy is to get drunk with someone and throw up on them. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned, but it seems to me that throwing up on another human being is not an act of friendship. It's kind of an act of...yuck. The thing to remember about being a college freshman is that everyone is in the same boat you are. It's like alligators-- they're just as afraid of you as you are of them.

SP: I think I need to cut out a subplot of my story, but it means rewriting the first half of my novel. What should I do?

John: You should rewrite the first half of your novel--don't complain to me about rewriting! The first draft of this book (holds up Looking For Alaska) was like 62,000 words long and I ended up cutting 55,000 of them. You're not going to get any sympathy from me on that front, mister. All writing is rewriting.

SP: This guy who maybe likes me doesn't want our mutual friend (and my ex-boyfriend) to find out. What's up with that?

John: This guy maybe likes you? No, I don't like the cut of this guys jib, with this maybe liking you. If you're gonna be in a romantic relationship with someone, that person shouldn't maybe like you. The fact that this boy is unwilling to taunt your friend and ex-boyfriend with his affection for you is another problem entirely. In fact, I would argue it's potentially not a problem at all. Don't bother with someone who maybe likes you.

SP: How can I get more Nerdfighter friends IRL?

John: I'd recommend wearing your pizza shirt everywhere you go, until someone's like, "Ah! I recognize that guy!"

SP: I've got a job interview today, what can I do to stand out?

John: I would personally recommend the pizza suit, but you should bear in mind that I have never gotten a job as a result of an interview.

SP: My boyfriend says I'm too smart for him, but I really like him. Should I start acting stu-

John: *angry noises, giant squid of anger* There's only a few things in this world that turn me into a Giant Squid of Anger. And one of them begins, "My boyfriend thinks I'm too smart for him". I've said it before, and I'll say it again. The Venn Diagram of boys who don't like smart girls and boys you don't wanna date is a circle. *angry noises* I'm mad at you, boy who's dating girl who follows me on twitter.

SP: How do I get my best friend out of denial about liking me?

John: I think we need to consider the possibility that your best friend is not in denial--but instead just doesn't like you. Which is okay, there are going to be, in your life, some people who do not want to kiss you. And if you're not able to reconcile yourself to that fact, you're gonna have kind of a weird, miserable, life of narcissism.

SP: How do you cure the hiccups?

John: Patience, grasshopper. Patience. When it comes to hiccups, and also when it comes to everything else, I like to remind myself that every other time I thought something wasn't going to end, it ended.

SP: I can't get Justin Bieber songs out of my head. HELP!

John: Now, I'm not a physician, I'm just a guy who's wearing a cheap suit jacket, no pants, and my own face on a shirt. But when people come to me suffering from Bieber Fever, I always prescribe a heavy dose of the Mountain Goats. In fact, there should be a website called Wait, that website exists? God, I love the internet. Hank, Nerdfighters, please enjoy, there's a link in the doobly-doo.

I will be dispensing more advice on Friday, so if you have problems, leave them in the comments. Hank, I hope you had a great time at W00tstock, and I'll see you on Wednesday.