Deep down, we all wish we could get away with half the shenanigans Ferris Bueller did. It’s so much more than about shirking responsibility. The Buellerian philosophy, at its heart, is about approaching any given situation and refusing to bend to the demands being handed to you. And there’s surprisingly more applications for adult life than you think, post-high school mischief. Here are a few lessons to be learned from the charismatic slacker.
Don’t work for the conditions, make them work for you.
Now make no mistake. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t play by the rules. But a creative bending of one or two regulations never hurt anyone. Tailor the situation to your strengths and weaknesses, your needs and goals. This lends itself to the whole, “Work smart, not hard” mantra. So you got a computer instead of a car. Use the computer to fudge with the admin records. Get the day off. Gee up old mate Cameron, and figure out how you’ll get your car later. We’re all placed on a (mostly) similar playing field. Whether you choose to start a game of soccer or field hockey is completely up to you.
Aspire beyond your means.
The death of ambition and potential starts with being safe. Why drive a car that belongs to you, when you could drive a borrowed, fully restored 1960 Ferrari 250 GT California? And sure, maybe there might be dire consequences to answer for if anything goes wrong. But what’s to say you would have had the same outing in the big city while the rest of the chumps are back in class studying European socialism? If you’re going to dream, dream big.
Ride it out with confidence, the rest will fall into place.
There comes a time when planning and constant questioning of all the possibilities will only stop the momentum from building, and slowly kill you in a tomb of self-doubt. There comes a time where you need to proverbially (or literally) walk with your head held high and a puffed out chest. There may even come a time where you need to put on a fake voice, fake a family death, throw on a trench-coat, sunnies, and a trill-billy, to pretend to be your girlfriend’s dad, and get her out of some day-to-day obligations. And later on, you might even have to finesse your way onto a parade float to bang out a Beatles track, just to inspire your timider best friend. You never know. Ultra-specific, perhaps, though the logic stands.
Have fun with it, how many days are you going to live like this?
The chances of singular opportunities presenting themselves again for your convenience are slim at best. So take advantage of them to the fullest. It’s like Warren Buffet says, when it rains, put out buckets. Not thimbles! After all, we’re only alive and kicking for a cosmic blink of the eye.