It makes everyday life more interesting. Because once you start thinking about the things around you, you find yourself asking “what the hell?” a whole lot more often, and that’s ultimately pretty amusing.

An example: I was just eating chips out of a bag and fresh hot salsa. On the back of this Tostitos bag is written:

EVERY 3 MINUTES a woman in the U.S. is diagnosed with breast cancer.

In 2010, Frito-Lay will donate $1 MILLION to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, to fund education materials for early detection and prevention.


LEARN how to administer a breast self exam by visiting

SPREAD the word about the benefits of early detection to your friends and loved ones.

ENJOY a sensible, satisfying snack!

Now you may be wondering whether my sense of humor is black enough or insensitive enough to be amused by breast cancer. Not at all: my grandmother had a rough time with breast cancer (she ultimately survived the cancer). If you click on the link above, you’ll find yourself at the website listed on the back of the bag, because it’s worth getting the word out on something this important.

Is a million bucks of charity from a multinational corporation like Frito-Lay a paltry sum? Yes, but I’m not going to take issue with that, either. I’m going to guess that they lay out a lot more than that in charitable donations each year.

By this point I’m sure you’ve guessed that step three is the part that made me think, “What the hell?” In how many different ways can something be a non sequitur? First of all, snacking has nothing to do with breast cancer. Second, I bet there’s no woman alive who, even after reading the back of this bag, runs through those three steps: breast self-exam, getting the education out there, Frito-Lay snack.

And why does it have to be a “sensible” AND “satisfying” snack? C’mon, Frito-Lay: faced with our own mortality, can’t we head out and knock back a few beers over some buffalo wings? Because, like my grandmother, God rest her soul, even if you survive the cancer you’re going to find life terminal. In the face of those odds, I think the average woman needs to live a little. Maybe she needs some ice cream, if beer and wings ain’t her thing, you know? Whatever. And contrary to popular belief, she who dies skinniest does not win.

So why you gotta bring us DOWN, Frito-Lay? Oh, right, because you’re The Man, and The Man is always about keeping us down, one sensible, satisfying snack at a time.

And this is what it’s like to be a person who has spent most of his adult life studying literature. Doesn’t it sound fun?