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Filed Under on March 29th, 2011

Family Maxims #25

By Seth Kabala

We shall master the art of respectfully ignoring the “Polly”(s) in our lives.

This family maxim comes straight from the pages of John Grisham’s fiction. Grisham is a father, so his love of family comes across on the page as sternly as the pressure of my hand on my son’s shoulder when he was about to comment on the caved-in front teeth of someone he saw: it’s there for a reason and immediately clear as to the intention, though the result often (let’s say 1/10th of 1% of the time) is often not what the parent wanted.

We need to keep this resolve present in our lives without the aid of an outside force, which is necessary to fend off the aforementioned Polly’s, who may take on any form imaginable: annoying secretary/co-worker, naked internet chick, naked internet dude, whatever.

A “Polly” isn’t the same as a “Hanger-on,” who is someone that wishes to ride bare-assed on your coat-tails, expecting you to realize they’re there, dress and feed them, and generally cut down the Amazon bush path for them, their own machete taking on the form of a butter knife, or so their lazy ass would have you believe.

A Polly is somebody that wastes your time for no reason other than that they enjoy and occasionally receive orgasmic pleasure from hearing the sound of their own voice. They are on both ends of the speaker from Private Parts, if you will.

They don’t want you to do anything for them. They don’t care if you ignore them. They just produce a gross of au naturel frosting by having an audience.

Drawing from Grisham’s novel “The Street Lawyer,” I, or rather he, breaths life into the Polly of this post:

“Polly appeared instantly, as she so often did; no knock, not a sound, just a sudden ghostlike presence in the room,” Grisham wrote.

Giving kudos to one of my favorite authors, Grisham’s Polly doesn’t fit the role I’m describing, other than appearing like a genie from a bottle that’s been mistaken for an attempt to attack the to-do list. I used her here because she fits the requirements for the opening salvo in the battle against the evil Pollys (this sounds like a King novel that was never written).

I know you’re generally a nice person like me, and you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings (sarcasm, check), but if you say nothing to these people, they’ll be like a tire that needs air every few weeks: always requiring more and more attention, until they eventually cause a catastrophe.

In this instance, it’s ok to be an asshole. All the Polly’s out there certainly don’t mind stinking it up.

Now open your yap and eat some damn beans.

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Seth Kabala

About: Seth Kabala
Seth is an entrepreneur, writer, and musician. He lives with his wife and three children in Portland, OR.

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