Road To Portland: Part 5: Ayn Rand’s Disciple Takes A Punch

“Billy Loser” wasn’t Billy’s name but he temporarily matched the nickname. He was a pizza delivery boy and Uber driver. He’d recently dropped out of college, his Subaru needed new brake pads, his girlfriend had dumped him, and he hadn’t gotten laid in five months. This was merely a temporary setback but at the moment he was, he had to admit, a loser. Thus, provisionally and temporarily, he didn’t resent the nickname. What did sheeple at the pizza shop know anyway?

He had a great future in store! He was a capitalist, libertarian, go getting, man of freedom. He was also completely moved out of his parent’s house, which put him head and shoulders above his age cohort. Plus, he owned his Subaru lock, stock, and rusting tailpipe. Owned it!

The car was his prized possession. To him it represented safety (bug out!), home (hunker down), and an economic engine (Uber driver & delivery boy). He had a “What would Ayn Rand do?” bumper sticker, a Glock in the glove box, and a net worth of $287.34.

In times of darkness, like when he levered his tall frame into the Subaru to sleep, he consoled himself that a net worth greater than $0 put him far above average in America. Compared to his student loan bound brethren he was probably fifty grand ahead. They were the losers.

Everyone thought he was a loon. The worst of them was trust funder shithead extraordinaire Robert Maglowski. An elitist chowderhead, he had no student loans, planned to stay in college forever, and had a new Audi. He delivered pizzas one or two evenings a month and dutifully reported to his gullible parents he was “gaining blue collar experience”. This induced a fat monthly check from his shithead parents who thought their shithead son was learning shithead life skills from dalliances amid the unwashed. Robert, who got an Audi for his birthday, lorded over Billy’s humble Subaru which had been purchased with Billy’s blood, sweat, and tears. Billy often thought of putting sugar in Robert’s gas tank.

But he didn’t. Billy was going to earn his own way and jealousy over Robert’s Audi was just one of life’s tests. Billy had a life plan mapped out in his head. Someday he’d own land; no mortgage of course. He’d build a cabin and raise some rabbits. He’d be free forever, owe nobody anything, and find another girlfriend.

About the girlfriend; he’d known she’d dump him soon after his “bad day”. But there were good times too. When he was in college she overlooked his rants about freedom and self-worth. She seemed impressed with it in fact. At least enough that, five months ago, he’d scored. That had been a “good day”; possibly a “awesome day”. He’d finished all his finals, verified that he’d maintained a 4.0 GPA, and got laid all on the same Friday. Then she’d jetted off to Jackson Hole to spend winter break skiing with her relatives. Meanwhile he’d camped out in his Subaru trying to rack up a grubstake while the dorms were closed. (What a word! If gold prospectors a century ago could have a grubstake so could he.)

Life doesn’t always work out. His “bad day” came shortly after school reconvened. Over the break, Billy earned $1,400 but got in a mild fender bender that burned the return on two-week’s hard work to a mere $376.

The registrar got word Billy had grossed “too much” (ignoring the usurious repair bill!) and swung into action. First, they cut his hours at his third job; a “workstudy” position at a nonprofit where he taught fractions to football players. Then they cut his financial aid package by 36% and offered to give him a student loan of equal size to make up the difference. In the end, earning $1,400 had cost Billy a $1,026 fender repair, jeopardized $900 in potential earnings as a tutor, and was threatening to balloon into $7,271 in student loans. Socialist assholes!

Never fully comfortable in the Orwellian conformity of college, the registrar’s “balanced approach” to the problem of “excess earnings” was Billy’s tipping point. He threatened to burn down the registrar’s office and was ordered to attend voluntary (yet inexplicably mandatory) “life skills” classes. These voluntary/mandatory classes were taught by a rumpled walking trainwreck everyone on campus referred to as Captain Burnout. The sessions were well known as the best place to score dope and/or an STD.

That same afternoon Billy told one his football player “clients” to “get bent” when the Neanderthal objected to Billy’s new reduced schedule. This escalated into a free for all at the tutoring office which “cleared the bench” on both sides.

Three pasty math majors (including Billy) and a willowy sixteen-year-old prodigy Engineering student they affectionately nicknamed Doogie Howser found themselves squared off against three functionally retarded but hulking football players and Janice. Janice was a transvestite who looked smashing in stiletto heels and a thigh length sheath. He/she/it was failing math while writing poetry for the English department. She seemed eager to bash heads; perhaps the quadratic equation will do that to you?

At first it looked good. Billy and the other nerds successfully held off the football players (and nobly kept Doogie alive!). Unfortunately, it soon surfaced that Janice, who had kicked off her heels and was grinning like a maniac, had even more under the “hood” than the obvious “more” transvestites are usually packing. First, she was pumped full of steroids (and an illicit supplier for half the football team). Being amped up enough to make a stallion blush, she was also prone to what, if it were dialed far lower on the mayhem scale, would be called “aggression”. Second, she knew aggression like a concert musician knows their instrument. Janice periodically took out her chemically enhanced frustrations as an MMA fighter.

Before calmer heads (i.e. the nerds who were not Billy) could defuse the situation, Janice decided a room full of math books was as good a venue as an octagon. She flattened everything in the room; including but not limited to football players, a potted plant, math nerds, and furniture. Two of the players went down immediately. They would miss the next game. Next came the plant. It was crushed so completely other plants would have nightmares about it. Then she focused on Doogie.

Doogie held weak hands in front of his fragile face. It looked like a small town that had never seen a perfect SAT (much less one from a 14 year old) would send their child genius prodigy to the university only to have him come back less than two years later with a head so battered he could never do more than work in government. This would confirm his town’s assumptions about universities and cities in general.

Billy, who was in the 98th percentile of IQ scores, and therefore just bright enough to understand Doogie when the kid talked slowly, interceded. He got between them, shoved Doogie out the door, and for his heroism, got clocked with a roundhouse that would stop a train. It was the bravest thing he’d ever done.

Billy’s ensuing headache lasted for days. During that time, he quit college in a desperate (and successful) gambit to get off the rolls before the next semester’s tuition could be billed. He also stopped payment on his dorm fees and liquidated his meal plan into a huge stock of candy bars which he was slowly selling (at an outrageous markup of course) to his drunker Uber clients.

Two weeks later Billy got a $76 bill for the “life skills” session he’d never attended. This was the beginning of Billy’s life of crime. Bricks would fly through the “life skills” window at unpredictable intervals whenever Billy had time to kill and a buzz on.

Somewhere during that whirlwind, his girlfriend dumped him and he gained the nickname “loser”. Billy was down but not out. He remained optimistic an opportunity would present itself. When it did he would carpe the diem out of it.


As always, thanks for reading. Free to signal your support (or take the opportunity to tell me I suck) by hitting the tip jar.

About AdaptiveCurmudgeon

Adaptive Curmudgeon is handsome, brave, and wise.
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3 Responses to Road To Portland: Part 5: Ayn Rand’s Disciple Takes A Punch

  1. Writing your life story huh? Story is great. will tip next week.

    • AdaptiveCurmudgeon says:

      Getting your ass handed to you by an MMA fighter? Who hasn’t done that? Could be anybody. However, I will neither confirm nor deny that I ever owned a Subaru.

      Thanks in advance for the tip!

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