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Author Topic: Howdy, and some thoughts  (Read 5342 times)

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PriorRestraint

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Howdy, and some thoughts
« on: August 10, 2013, 01:02:07 PM »
Hey all, lurked for a while but decided that the Supreme Court has roundly rejected prior restraint, so here I am ready to add to this here rug, so to speak.

I'm early 30s, a shrink in NYC (clinical approach: just take it easy, man), and I'm married with a 2 yo with twins on the way (that's what I need my Johnson for, Donny).

So now we're a single income family in the most expensive area of the country and it has me thinking a lot about abiding and the dudely stance toward employment. I like to think I hit the balance pretty well between "fuck it" and responsible, and I'm fine stepping up and working my ass off when my family grows, and it doesn't hurt that I truly enjoy my job helping others find ways to abide, take it easy, and be ok with who they are.

But regarding the movie, much is made of the Dudes unemployment. I know that in an early draft he was an heir to the rubics cube fortune, and the Dudely Lama and I once had an exchange and agreed on Facebook that that would have significantly reduced our respect for his lifestyle of simplicity and non-attachment if he was just a trustifarian. But now that I think about it, why?

What kind of unemployment makes the Dude's admirable or noble? For instance, would it rub some the wrong way if he was faking disability and sponging off the government? Or what if he dealt Thai sticks and was just a burnout drug dealer? I think the Coens were brilliant in leaving that question open bc we can give whatever our most generous interpretation of his lifestyle we want to.

But we can't pretend that the dude was monastically meh about money. Most of his maneuverings in the plot are to secure more and more money from everyone involved, even worrying about his taxes, and being willing to mislead others to get more money.

I don't know if there's a specific question in here. More just a launch pad maybe for a convo about money, what is worth sacrificing to get it, and what kind of disbelief we need to suspend to take as plausible an unemployed man with a Venice bungalow, plenty of Js, and a full bar of expensive liquor.

Lots of thoughts in this duders head apparently. Looking forward to conversing...

Ps. I think I'd miss posted this on another thread. Sorry for stepping over the line

Havazhyol

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2013, 01:28:28 PM »
Welcome, bienvenue, psycho-dude! Nice to see you here. Have drink and make yourself at ease.
I'm the Dothradude, Dude.

PriorRestraint

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2013, 02:10:08 PM »
Thanks! I dig your style too, man

BrotherShamus

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2013, 02:18:55 PM »
Welcome PriorRestraint. I too have always appreciated that we don't know what the Dude does for money. I mostly contribute it to the fact the TBL's story and most characters were based off of The Big Sleep, an old Humphrey Bogart detective film. Not to say that the Dude does the sleuth thing a lot; TBL was obviously his first experience, but I think that giving him another job would not only ruin his self-image as a slacker, but also his detective role in the film.

As far as the money thing goes, I think its just one of those things we'll always have to deal with. The Dude obviously isn't worried about money but he obviously wants it. I think finding that balance is the best one can do.
"Be excellent to each other"             

PriorRestraint

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2013, 02:36:14 PM »
Right, I agree brother shamus. I suppose that just as I don't think it's necessary to wear a robe often and pretend to think White Russians are a great cocktail, you don't have to be un/underemployed to be dudely. It's more about taking responsibility lightly, abiding with the ups and downs, and not dragging the negative energy of financial stress into the tournament of enjoying ones friends and family, and being contented with a simple life.

LotsaBadKarma

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2013, 03:32:46 PM »

But we can't pretend that the dude was monastically meh about money. Most of his maneuverings in the plot are to secure more and more money from everyone involved, even worrying about his taxes, and being willing to mislead others to get more money.


I didn't get this impression, really. When the Dude and Walter were going to drop off the money to the kidnappers and Walter threw "the ringer" out of the car the Dude ended up being really stricken with the fear that "they're gonna kill the girl, man!". And as I recall he suffered angst at several points later because of that whole ringer episode.

I would say that when he saw someone who he might have considered nefarious at some point (Jackie Treehorn, Jeffery (The Big) Lebowski and, to a lesser extent Maude Lebowski) that his goal was to extract as much as he could. I think this changed with Maude but I still think that he continued to try to find ways to get over on those who he believed were in the habit of treating objects like women.

But, hey man, that's just like my opinion.

DigitalBuddha

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2013, 05:07:03 PM »
Thanks! I dig your style too, man

PriorRestraint dude, good to have you here, mang. Welcome to dude-topia and beach party, dude. We're all just lazy and laid back here, so grab a rug and a Caucasian and abide, dude!

PriorRestraint

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2013, 06:15:40 PM »
Thanks! I dig your style too, man

PriorRestraint dude, good to have you here, mang. Welcome to dude-topia and beach party, dude. We're all just lazy and laid back here, so grab a rug and a Caucasian and abide, dude!

Thanks DB! Appreciate the warm welcome

And you're right Lotsa, don't mean to imply he was greedy at the expense of others. That poor woman obviously trumped his financial gains, but I just wanted to point out that the dudes attitude toward money and gain wasn't anti or even neutral. He was very pleased to get more and was bummed to have lost a little money

Anyway, hope everyone has a laid back weekend

MindAbiding

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2013, 08:21:40 PM »
Hey Dude,

Interesting observations! My sense is the Dude is not indifferent toward money -- he's gotta feed the monkey, as do we all. But he keeps his desires simple, so he doesn't need that much, and he (like the rest of us, I'd imagine) would prefer to earn that money with minimal sacrifice of his free time. Time and opportunity are his greatest resources, allowing him room for baths, bowling, acid flashbacks, and the like. Actually, I find that inspiring.

I don't think Dudeism recommends unemployment; but I do think that if a Dude were employed in a decent job with a decent income, he'd think twice about trying to jump to the next great promotion or job just for the money and the prestige.

 
The clouds above us come together and disperse;
The breeze in the courtyard departs and returns.
Life is like that, so why not relax?
Who can keep us from celebrating?
 - Lu-Yu

Havazhyol

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #9 on: August 11, 2013, 05:52:15 AM »
I think that the Dude has it low on the money care. All the Dude wanted was his rug back
. Of course, he tries to have some from Threehorm, Lebowsky or Maud, due to this story, but I think he is more of an "benefit exchanging" dude.

You know? Like, in the beginning of the movie, Marty comes to tell him about his play and the rent. I think the Dude lower his rent by giving his notes and remarks.
He must have relations, like Smockey, who he apparently knows well, being pacifist and all.
About the Js, the dude must be raising his own... trees, somewhere.

And the cocktails are not that expenssive, if you make them with cheap ingredients.
I'm the Dothradude, Dude.

BrotherShamus

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #10 on: August 11, 2013, 12:15:41 PM »
Interesting point Hava. In discussions like this I like to think of the Dude as I would Lao Tsu. His state of being is sort of this ultimate, unreachable goal that we don't necessarily try to get to because its a state of perfection. instead we use it as something to compare ourselves to to see how we're doin.
"Be excellent to each other"             

PriorRestraint

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Re: Howdy, and some thoughts
« Reply #11 on: August 11, 2013, 03:01:07 PM »
Interesting point Hava. In discussions like this I like to think of the Dude as I would Lao Tsu. His state of being is sort of this ultimate, unreachable goal that we don't necessarily try to get to because its a state of perfection. instead we use it as something to compare ourselves to to see how we're doin.

Yeah I'd agree with this. He's a paragon, an ideal I suppose of a certain kind of lifestyle. Like what monks represent in a lot of cultures. Interesting the parallels there between the dude and a monk (which are pointed out in the Abide Guide).

The problem is that as an aspirational attitude it works fine to use him/them as ideals, but in terms of lifestyle, they're only so helpful because neither deals with family relationships or supporting themselves all that much, and those are two of the most, if not THE most, stress/strife inducing parts of normal human life.

 

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