YTAH's Weblog


Suicide? Don’t Make Me Laugh.

Posted in rants,satire,YTAH by YTAH on November 18, 2008
Tags: ,

Now I know what you’re thinking: “YTAH, you heartless fuck, what the hell is the matter with you? You’re not going to make fun of those unfortunate souls who are so despondent that they consider death only as a sweet, sweet release? Are you really that much of a cunt?” To which my answer is: yes, yes I am. And yes, that’s exactly what I’m about to do, because suicide is stupid, and stupid things make me laugh.

Sympathy for the devil’s advocate

Either way, you're still a cunt.
Either way, you’re probably a cunt.

For once I’m not trying to offend anyone, although I’m sure I will. Right now, many of you are probably going “Oh sweet Jesus” and rocking gently back and forth in front of your monitors, hugging your knees and praying that the bad man will stop writing such nasty, hurtful things. Even Pinvictor has expressed reservations about this particular column, and everyone in my social circle will probably shun me like a leper for broaching the subject – despite the fact that they’re (almost) as misanthropic as I am. Who knows, perhaps they have a point. Obviously I don’t think so, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing this. Or perhaps I would, just to offend you. Either way, I haven’t stopped writing, so there’s probably some point I want to make. But before you get your panties in a bunch, allow me to clarify. At least that way you can scratch me off your address list for the right reasons, and not because you couldn’t understand what the fuck I was on about.

Let’s start by clarifying what I’m not saying. God knows I don’t consider suicide a sin or a crime. And yes, suicide can sometimes be a completely understandable existential choice, if someone makes the decision while rational and sober. Besides, nobody over the age of 3 should need the threat of prison or hell to help them decide what’s wrong or right. Everyone has to take responsibility for their own shit, so you don’t get to blame it on anyone or anything else.

And I’m not talking about people who were abused as kids, or were genuinely bipolar, or were clinically depressed – at least, not if they’ve tried getting help for it. (By contrast, if they just went “Oooo I’m so depressed someone feel sorry for me” without ever getting professional counselling, my sympathy dissipates. I’m not as naïve as to suggest that everyone’s in complete control of their brain chemistry, but I’m cynical enough to know that most people who go on about how “depressed” they are wouldn’t recognize the clinical version if it disembowelled itself in front of them.)

I’m also excluding euthanasia because it’s a perfectly reasonable expression of your own free will. That’s also why I’m not discussing Hunter S. Thompson: if you’re suffering from a painful disease that’s going to kill you anyway, you may as well be the master of your own passing – and if it involves having your ashes shot out of a cannon, so much the better.

But if you kill yourself because doing too much coke and booze makes you depressed, or because you’re mad at your parents, or because you’re generally pathetic, don’t expect me to pity you.

What’s so funny about suicide?

Suicide is for wankers.
Suicide is for wankers.

For the record, I’m not the only one who thinks suicide is hilarious. Dorothy Parker wrote a very amusing poem about the different ways you can choose to end your life – and she should know, since she tried several of them herself before deciding that life as an alcoholic was better than no life at all. And Welsh rappers Goldie Lookin Chain wrote a song about how suicide sells albums. Indeed, talk of suicide is bound to conjure up a host of celebrities who ended their lives either by choice or “misadventure”: Kurt Cobain. Elliott Smith. Michael Hutchence.

Nevertheless, it’s not just celebrities who kill themselves, and I don’t want to glamorise suicide – quite the opposite. So let’s not pretend that dying makes you special. You don’t need to be a musician with too much money, or drink-and-drug-addled actor, or a character in an Ingmar Bergman movie to run into the Grim Reaper. Death is the great leveller, after all; he gets invited to all the best parties (and the worst ones, come to think of it; especially the worst ones). Nothing in life is certain except death and taxes, and nobody’s badgering the taxman for an earlier appointment. So why do people assume the Grim Reaper’s dying for a visit?

Naturally, there’s more than one way for a suicidal cat to skin itself, and most of them are stupid – but the reasons people kill themselves are usually even dumber. Killing yourself because you can’t support your family? Not helping. Suicidal because you lost custody of the kids? How is dying going to increase your visitation rights, Casper? Or perhaps you’re depressed ‘cos your mommy doesn’t love you and your daddy didn’t buy you that Wii you wanted. No shit, Sherlock, you’re a teenager – nobody likes kids your age, except paedophiles and other kids your age. And look, there’s that nice old man waving his Wii at you; I’m sure he’ll let you play with it if you ask him nicely.

I’ve never had respect for self-pity, and yet somehow I’m supposed to cut someone slack because they express their self-pity using razor blades or pills? Fuck off. I have particular contempt for people who try suicide as “a cry for help”, or threaten to kill themselves whenever someone won’t give them the last cookie. I’m not even going to talk about people who accidentally kill themselves while “just looking for attention”. Sorry, all you Nick Drake and Heath Ledger fans, but accidental suicide is just careless. But if self-pity suicide is stupid, and death by misadventure is sloppy, statement suicide is fucking retarded. The world is a nasty, brutish, unsympathetic place, and it will see your little protest and shit on it. Just ask that monk who single-handedly freed Tibet by setting himself on fire.

Not so enlightened.
Draw your own conclusions.

Frankly, I would much rather be thought an insensitive cunt than to be seen endorsing suicide as a form of protest or as any kind of solution to life’s problems. No matter why you think suicide is a good idea, there’s always another, better way.

The really hilarious part of suicide is how we’re not allowed to talk about it, except reverently – because hey, everyone knows how ignoring something, or turning it into a taboo, makes the bad thing go away. Wikipedia lists 14 kinds of suicide, including teen suicide, ritual suicide, or copycat suicide (which is what happens when suicidal pop stars have overzealous fans). You can even make a suicide pact or commit suicide over the Internet, which shows you how ridiculous it’s becoming. (If you need the Internet to make your existential decisions for you, you’re beyond help. If you’re one of these people, stop reading immediately, or skip to the last paragraph.) Maybe if more people regularly made an issue of how stupid it is, it wouldn’t have turned into such a growth industry.

A victimless crime, my ass

Let’s be clear about something: no-one who killed themselves has ever been “the victim of suicide”. Most people who opt for suicide are major league cunts who don’t deserve anyone’s sympathy. The first time somebody I know killed themselves, I was 11 or 12. I may have been a kid, but I was paying attention, so I had more than ample opportunity to see what suicide does to the people left behind. “What did we do? What should we have done? How could we have prevented this from happening?” I’ve known far too many people over the years who’ve lost relatives, friends, or partners through suicide, to retain any illusions about who the victims are. Let me disillusion you, emo-boy: it ain’t you.

All is alienation, dread, boredom, absurdity, and nothingness. Not just your life – everybody’s. Read Sartre, and you’ll understand what I’m talking about. Either life is completely meaningless, and you may as well end it; or life is intrinsically meaningless, and it’s up to you to make something of it. Of course, if you take the first option, you’re probably a cunt who can’t be helped. But let’s pretend for a second that you’re not. (Hah!) You still want to prove your nihilism by killing yourself? Fine – but don’t expect anyone to give a shit. Also, if you’re waiting for someone or something else to give your life meaning, you’re wasting your time. Take some responsibility for yourself, and then your achievements and your fuck-ups are all your own. I don’t know about you, but that seems better than eternal oblivion, or some stupid afterlife.

Choose life, asshole

Draw your own conclusions.

Draw your own conclusions.

I’m not sure how many people have noticed, but all of my posts so far have had a moral buried, dagger-like, in its pitch-black heart. But since I’m already pissing off most of my friends by even mentioning this subject, I thought I’d put this story’s moral right out in the open, up-front and personal-like: Kids, don’t kill yourselves. Not if I know you and you value my friendship. Because if you kill yourselves I won’t compose loving odes in your memory; I won’t send flowers; I won’t offer my condolences. Instead I’ll be at home, writing about what a cunt you were, and listing every one of your most embarrassing faults so that I can publish them online and make everyone else realize what a cunt you were, too.

In fact, if you do plan to kill yourself, you should probably mention me in the note you leave for your parents/family/partner, asking them not to invite me to the funeral. Because if I do get invited, I’ll spend the entire ceremony making jokes about you, until they throw me out or accept what an incredible asshole you were. In fact, the first thing I’ll do is to walk up to whoever was closest to you, and tell them: “Oh well, turns out they didn’t like you that much after all, eh.” And if that pisses you off – well, don’t say I didn’t warn you. But then, concern for others probably isn’t your strong suit. If you killed yourself despite those people, you obviously didn’t give a shit about them, and I’d be doing them a massive favour by bringing this to their attention.

Now, usually I would end this post by saying, “Go ahead, do us all a favour,” but that isn’t really the point. As much as I’m convinced that the world would probably be better for your not being in it, your friends, partners, or family inexplicably want you to stick around, and I’m more concerned about them than I’ll ever be about you, you selfish prick. Instead, I’m going to refer you to people who’re paid to help you. (I’m not, so don’t even try it.) You want my sympathy? Get some goddamn help. But let’s not pretend there’s nothing you can do.

*****

You can phone LifeLine (toll-free) at 0861-322-322, or visit their website. Alternatively, you can visit the South African Depression & Anxiety Group website or phone them (toll-free, again), on 0800-567-567.

[Originally published on Africans.co.za on November 18, 2008.]

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3 Responses to 'Suicide? Don’t Make Me Laugh.'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Suicide? Don’t Make Me Laugh.'.

  1. Vaktap said,

    Choose life. Lol!

  2. natasja said,

    we do not communicate and that is first off all a dumb ass thing to do if you have a problem and you can not open your mouth and tell people about your problem how the fuck can we help???and to sulk about it and feel sorry for yourself is V.A.K.T.U.P excuse the pun…

  3. Dimitri said,

    I think your view of suicide is pretty naive. Admittedly, your cocky comments about are mildly amusing, but you really don’t seem to understand what could be going through the mind of somebody who decides to end his / her life.


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