I enjoy an intellectual debate. I like hearing new ideas and getting different perspectives on the world.
But some people have a skill. They can take this to a new level. They crush spirits and eat souls along the way, barging through a decent conversation until everyone walks away feeling like they’ve had a punch to the gut.
If you want to learn the ways of these masters – these superior beings who are always right and can never lose an argument – see below for the key tricks you will need to learn. It may take your years to master but to be a true intellectual who has reached a transcendent state of being you must be willing to sacrifice your time and the desire to have people respect you.
Just kidding. Here’s how to make everyone think you’re an arse:
1. Talk over me when I am trying to make a point
Wait. Hold on a second, I’m not finished speaking. I was in the middle of my argument and you’ve started shouting over the top of me.
Oh wait. I forgot. My point of view is not valid enough to be listened to or even allowed to continue when you have something to say (or even if you don’t). After all, what’s the point of trying to challenge my thinking through words and persuasive facts when you could just be so loud that no one can hear it so it can’t count.
2. Telling me that what I say is “ridiculous” or not to be “stupid”
I’m not calling you stupid. I’m not saying your argument is ridiculous. I’m expressing thoughts and facts to argue against what you presented as your understanding of whatever we’re talking about. I’m not belittling or patronising you by making you seem stupid because of what you say.
If you can’t argue against what I say and have to tear me down to get the upper hand, that’s bullying.
3. Telling me that it doesn’t matter what I say; you aren’t going to change your opinion
What is the point of even talking about it then? I’ve spent an hour pointing out flaws in your logic, counter arguing and presenting you with my side of the argument and that doesn’t matter?
If you can’t (read: won’t) take on board what you hear from people, actually think about it and God forbid allow it to alter your decision, you’re stuck! You’ll never learn anything more, you’ll grow as a person and you’ll stay exactly the same as you are now.
If I knew you were too pig-headed to take in what I was saying and all we were going to do was pontificate about our point of view, I could have sent you it in an email.
STOP WASTING MY TIME.