I was driving to work the other day not feeling that great about myself. I needed to work out the serious funk I was in before my radio program started at 6 AM, but how? I needed a self-help book, and fast! Then I had an ephinany: I would write that self-help book myself. After all, who better to write a self-help book than a person in dire need of self-help?

I was sitting at a red light, pounding the steering wheel, telling myself that I really didn’t suck as much as I thought I did. After a few minutes of just sitting there, watching the light turn green about 10 times, I felt better. My shoulders began to straighten up. My chest puffed out and before the next red light, I realized I was actually smiling! I finally came to the conclusion that I wasn’t the miserable failure I thought I was. My friend, Jim is! Jim’s always smiling and bragging about how his life is going. He beams with pride when he tells you he’s in finance. And, if by ‘finance’ he means selling Covid masks at the train station, yeah, I guess he’s the man.

e says I kept on repeating over and over, at the top of my lungs, “I’m not as bad as dumb old Jim! I’m not as bad as dumb old Jim!” And it worked. By the time I got to the radio station I was fully cognizant of the fact that I was making a complete ass of myself in traffic and could have easily been arrested for disturbing the peace. But I also felt great. Why? Because I was better than dumb old Jim, that’s why? And if I was better than Jim, who knows, maybe I was even better than someone else and from there, hopefully the list would grow like weeds on my freshly planted Pacasandra.

Maybe you have a Jim in your life as well. And, truth be told, you hate him. For example, if you were being honest with yourself, you know without a doubt that you’d derive a great deal of pleasure if he ever tried to photocopy his pockmarked butt in the office and the glass on the copier broke! That would be the highlight of your week and it’s perfectly alright to admit that., Why? Because Jim is an idiot.

Have you truthfully never felt that your life isn’t progressing as you thought it might? Is it taking a little longer to reach your goals? Do you feel that everybody else you talk to is doing better than you? Everybody else seems happier than you? Gosh, from the way some people make it sound, their sheets don’t even wrinkle when they sleep on them. They never drop any toast crumbs on the floor and they can get out of the house every morning in fifteen minutes, completely bathed and sparkling from head to toe. I’m here to tell you that THEY’RE MISERABLE. There, now don’t you feel better?

Yes indeed, I’m writing that book! C’mon, anybody can write a book about how to feel good when they’re already feeling good. What’s the challenge in that? The world needs to hear from someone whose emotional swings are as vast as theirs. 

Here’s a little-known fact about the ‘happy’ people who author books about how to improve yourself. Oh sure, they’re nattily attired and beam confidence on their book jacket covers but the reality is, they’re the ones you’ll find closing piano bars in Manhattan at 4 AM with a stirring rendition of Red River Valley using a swizzle stick as a microphone as the waitresses push them out the door!

So, until my book entitled, Bob’s Self-Help Guide to Self-Help, comes out, keep this important fact in mind: The people who seem the happiest are always the ones who can’t wait to get home, lock the door and play hide and seek with their cat. I’m talking to you…Jim!


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