“How to” lists are extremely popular in all forms of modern day media, from internet humor columns like this one to the blogosphere to popular home and gardening websites. Resident Columnist-in-Chief Nathan DeGraaf has made no secret of his fondness for “how to” lists when he is otherwise not creatively inclined. Recently I searched for a list of, well, “how to” lists, and I was surprised by the results.

It seems to me that there's a “how to” list for just about everything imaginable. But what about a “how to” list for life? Sure, some yokel can break down how to use “mind-control” in ten easy steps for you, but what about making it through middle school? I couldn't find anything. Luckily for you, the Ass is here with the “how to” list of “how to” lists. I present, for your humble enjoyment, the “How to Get Through Life” list (for guys [mostly]).

To be a teenager is to be a fucking idiot. Just try not to fuck up to the point that you die.

Stage 1: Sperm<

Swim like hell.

Stage 2: Pregnancy<

Eat like a sonofabitch. Kick like hell and start tugging on shit like gangbusters if you come within five square miles of an abortion clinic.

Stage 3: Childbirth<

Get out alive. Keep your eyes and nose closed so you don't remember what your mother's vagina looks or smells like.

Stage 4: Infant<

Look cute. Eat. Shit. Repeat.

Stage 5: Toddler<

Things have been pretty chill up ‘til now. Outside of the sprint towards your mother's ovaries, you've mostly been maxing and relaxing, having your every need attended to hand and foot. Unfortunately, people now expect you to start doing shit. The first thing you need to learn is to behave. This can most easily be achieved by doing whatever your mother or father tells you to do, which on a side note, tends to totally suck.

On top of that, the ‘rents are going to count on you to at some point learn to use the toilet. Daunting I know, but for the better in the long run for all of us, trust me. Also, we're getting to the point where you have to learn to walk. It kinda sucks because once you start, you'll be expected to use this newfound skill basically all of the time, for the rest of your life. But it's not all beer and Skittles, kiddo. Revel in your lack of responsibility by watching copious amounts of cartoons and learning to masturbate.

Stage 6: Childhood<

Learn to draw a turkey using the outline of your hand.

Stage 7: Adolescence <

Unless you're the girl who got her boobs early or your parents are really fucking rich and you have every video game on earth, this is no doubt going to be a pretty tough time for you. Simply put, it's an awkward stage in life, what with puberty setting in and all that. One of the things you have to keep in mind during this period is that it sucks for everyone. I don't know if that really helps you, but it sure makes me feel better!

On top of this, the one-time homogenous structure of your social circle will begin to cleave off. Allegiances will be made, trysts formed, and cliques initiated. Choose your alliances carefully. You should also try and carve out a niche for yourself–jock, skater, burnout. It doesn't even really matter what you choose because in a couple of years you'll regret it anyway. On top of this I would suggest using what little newfound freedom you have to accrue some porn to fuel your masturbation habit.

Stage 8: Teenager<

Don't die.

The best way for me to sum up being a teenager is to that you're going to think you know everything, but in reality you are a fucking idiot and you know nothing. What's funny is that everyone from parents to guidance counselors to D.A.R.E officers are going to attempt to relate this to you in a much subtler fashion over and over and over again.

You can trust me when I tell you it will fall on deaf ears, because like I said earlier, to be a teenager is to be a fucking idiot. So with that in mind, your one and only goal during this time should be to not fuck up to the point that you die or seriously debilitate yourself. Cheers!

Stage 9: College<

It brings a tear to my eye to think about a young Marine heading off to college for the first time so many, many years ago. That or I just coughed exceptionally hard off my last bong hit. Thinking back to that young, robust, virile man-child headed into his freshman year of college, a couple of things come to mind that I would pass along to him.

1. Fuck as much as possible. Once you get out of college, casual sex is going to be harder to get your hands on than scandium alloy. Even if you're not in the mood, don't like the girl, or are too drunk to make rational decisions, this is THE TIME to get this sort of thing out of your system, so please, for gawd's sake, have at it.

Eventually, many years from now hopefully, you're going to find a girl you love and maybe, just maybe if you're religious or a complete fucking idiot (same thing) you will want to settle down and be with her and her alone for the rest of your life (read: insane). The last thing you want is to be stuck with one woman forEVER without having sewn your wild oats.

2. Drink as much as possible. Here's a sad fact they don't tell you about during freshman orientation: eventually you're not going to want to drink yourself retarded anymore. Ridiculous I know! But it's true. Eventually you're going to be old, and when that happens, the thought of drinking ‘til you pass out, and more importantly not waking up the next day, just aren't going to be worth it anymore. So with that in mind, ravage your fucking liver while it still has some vitality left.

Stage 10: Adulthood<

Holy. Fucking. Shit. The party is over. You thought things were rough when I told you that you had to learn to poop? This is where the going really gets tough. In essence what you have to figure out at this point is just YOUR WHOLE FUCKING LIFE. You see, they lied when they told you that you had important decisions to make about your future when you were in high school. Then they lied to you again about it when you got to college. None of that shit matters now for the most part.

What the fuck do you want to be when you grow up? That question in itself used to contain such boundless opportunity that it was an adventure just thinking about the possibilities. The problem is, there are only a few answers you can actually give to this question, and they all suck.

On top of that, let me add that you'll now be responsible for yourself. This means two things: pay your bills and don't get arrested. If you can mange those two items, you're pretty much straight until you hit middle age.