Welcome to the Massachusetts Progressive Asshole Licensure exam. We thank you for your interest in the PAL program. Please answer each item as honestly as possible, including specific examples wherever appropriate.
Behaving like an asshole will not increase your chance of passing, and in fact, such displays may disqualify you from becoming a PAL. This includes doodling genitalia on the test paper, having long conversations on speakerphone during the exam or demeaning your test proctor with names like “douche-nugget,” “wiener” or “Jimmy Fallon.” Good luck.
1. What is your earliest memory of being an asshole?
Pre-school. Brian Sanford asked for his blue crayon back, so I looked him in the eyes and snapped it in half. When Mrs. Davis came over to see why he was upset, I said Brian felt guilty for destroying his own stuff. He denied it, of course. I called him Lyin’ Brian in a sing-song voice, and the other kids joined in a chant that drove him from the room in tears.
The nickname stuck through High School, as far as I know. Lyin’ Brian Sanford. Hilarious.
2. Who was your asshole role model growing up?
My mother, no question. She is the perfect asshole. Not only is her name Karen, she has the majestic, rooster-spiked haircut you want any Karen to have. She has never patronized a place of business without speaking to at least one manager. Once she complained her way to the Executive VP of a taco chain and got everyone beneath him fired. She leaves a trail of tears in her wake, and she is my hero.
3. How often are you an asshole?
I would say whenever I’m conscious, but I can be fairly verbally abusive in my dreams. So best guess, anywhere from 17 to 24 hours a day.
4. What moment of assholery are you most proud of, and why?
So many to choose from. Just this morning I chucked a latte back into a Starbucks drive-through window. When they asked what was wrong with me I said I wasn’t the problem, and while they mopped the floor they should think about wiping the sides of their cups. That’s just one example off the top of my head. There are so many more.
If I fly, there is a 100% chance I will recline my seat all the way back. There is also a 100% chance I will push my knee into the seat in front of me so it can’t recline at all – especially if the person sitting there is old and likely to have back problems. When I’m at a theater, I wait until the movie starts before I open plastic wrappers. Then I dominate both armrests, chew popcorn with my mouth open and laugh caustically during heartfelt scenes.
My absolute proudest asshole moment? Paris, three years ago. I was passing the Eiffel Tower when some guy dropped to a knee and proposed to his girlfriend. Cliché as hell, I know. He thrusted his iPhone at me and asked if I would take a picture, I guess to commemorate his lack of imagination. I was holding a crepe at the time, so not really convenient for me. I counted to three and took it at one and a half. When they asked if it was good, I held up a finger and finished my crepe. Banana and chocolate, if you’re curious. Eventually I said no, it wasn’t good — the picture not the crepe — but it was the best two wildebeests like them could hope for. I stuffed his phone into the crepe wrapper and dropped it in the garbage as I walked away. Good times.
5. Are you willing to comply with Massachusetts state guidelines of acceptable asshole behavior?
6. According to Massachusetts state guidelines, under what conditions is it acceptable to be an asshole? Name at least 3.
Really? You couldn’t make this multiple choice? I already skimmed the boring-ass study guide on your website, so why subject me to more tedium? Fine. It’s “acceptable” to be an asshole 1) to retaliate against another asshole when they’re assholing in bad faith, 2) to get a crowd moving faster and 3) to force a business to give a group of people their money back. Happy?
7. What is the penalty for operating as an asshole outside of Massachusetts state guidelines?
This is so lame. If I’m caught being a “regressive asshole” or whatever, my license is suspended for two months. Three infractions and I lose it permanently, right? See, I read your dumb study guide. I’m warning you, government people, if you try to take my asshole license, for any reason, you will hear from me, my mother and my mother’s attorney. Don’t screw with me.
8. Why should you be granted a Progressive Asshole License?
If you don’t pass me, heads will roll.
9. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
You have completed the Massachusetts Progressive Asshole Licensure exam. Expect your results in 3-4 weeks. Please do not appear at this location, or the personal residence of anyone employed at this location, demanding your results early.
Thank you, prospective PAL, and have a pleasant day.