Sometimes I am asked, "What is it like being The Dead Guy?" Well, I will tell you, since I am probably the person most qualified to answer this question.

Early on in A Dead Guy Walks into a Bar, I talk about feeling like I am on a perpetual acid trip or in some alternate reality. This is because I remember my life before my suicide in 1994. I also remember it was completely different. Nothing seemed to have changed in the world around me, but everyone was acting differently. There is an ongoing "joke" throughout the book where prior to 1994, I had a hell of a lot of trouble attracting the interest of women... and well, throughout the story I have all these women pursuing me. At that time in my life, I thought it was hysterical. One of the reasons why I chose suicide was because "women don't like me," although I didn't put it quite that way in my suicide letter. 

So, to be me, you have to honestly question, every minute of every day, whether or not this is reality. And this is the result of having the world react and relate to me in a very different way pre-1994 and post-1994. Genuinely feels like two different realities. I attribute this to my change in attitude, confidence, and how I projected myself. I've been told by other "dead people" that this is because we have no fear of death. Instead, we generally evaluate situations on the potential for hit point damage and how many experience points we can gain. We take on absurdly challenging situations for the fuck of it (and to earn experience points).

Are you experienced? Have you ever been experienced?

Something like that. We look for ways to develop deeper empathy and the ability to understand an always growing number of people. In my trilogy, I jump into many situations that would have scared the shit out of me prior to 1994. And it is a rush. And it makes me laugh a good laugh. In A Dead Guy Walks into a Bar, I jump into the situation with the Grand Duchess of Stoli just for the fuck of it. "I know this is a trap, and I'm going to get out of it." I know this woman is crazy. I know she is a narcissist of the highest order. I do it anyway... because I find the whole thing hilarious. Plus, I get a good amount of experience points for getting out of her trap.

So, this is what you have to be able to do. It has nothing to do with courage. Getting into shit that I know is probably going to fuck me up is how I get my jollies.

You need some kind of kryptonite. My weaknesses are a woman with a great pair of legs and peanut butter. The only thing that really scares me is peanut butter. I've lived with people. I forbid peanut butter in the home. Horrifying.

Another thing you have to be able to do in order to be me is to have a way to chill. I'm fucking intense. I often have no idea how intense I am being. My life has been intense. I have to turn the headphones up to eleven to hear anything. I'm rocking out non-stop... unless I chill. So, you've got to have a way to chill. I have many ways. It takes time to find them. Otherwise, being me is recipe for constant anxiety. Until I got Lupus, my life was half-adrenaline rush and half total chill. I took a job in what was basically a psychiatric facility for high aggressive and violent patients because I was, "Shit, I have to take on this challenge. This place is off the hook. Throw me in there!"

So, you have to generally do that. Sometimes I avoid it. I slow down time and measure the risks. You have to be able to slow down time. Otherwise, you will have trouble being The Dead Guy, because everything will move too fast and you won't be able to calculate the odds of each choice before you make them. Those odds can change based on experiences had. You might already have the ability to reject gorgeous (insert gender of your choice - this is optional) who really want to sex you up big time. If you have this skill, then you can calculate the odds the next time a choice cut of (insert gender of your choice) comes knocking and you're feeling a bit weak in the knees.

From time to time, you must remember to be an asshole. To be The Dead Guy means that you spend a good deal of time finding people who you can help find a better path in life, one that leads to light rather than darkness. You're essentially a preacher of no faith, who embraces all interpretations of light and darkness. You know that these forces battle within you all the time. Life is about that battle within. Your better angels against your bitter demons. The choices you make determine the winner of all the matches that will be fought in your lifetime. Tell the people, "You make the choices that determine the winner of the battle between good and evil within yourself," and preach it without anyone knowing you're preaching, (insert your choice of identifying pronoun).

You also have to shave your legs and let people check them out. This is how you make up for objectifying women due to your obsession with their legs. Now, this is very specific to The Dead Guy himself. You might need to do a similar thing depending on which of many gender and sexuality based factors in a person has led you to objectifying them. Unless this is something you have come to terms within and are actively doing penance for in some way, then you can't know what it is like to be The Dead Guy.

And you must have completed a journey to be The Dead Guy at this point in the current timeline. It must have provided illumination, destruction, joy, pain, laughter, tears, boners, impotency, good meals, awful food, so on and so forth. Your life has to be like a seesaw in order to know what it is like being The Dead Guy.

There are other things as well, but I think that gives you a good starting point in case you want to cosplay at a party one day. I hear they have those kinds of parties now. I'm old now and have taken a lot of battle damage of the years. 

Basically, you have to play life like it is a game. It isn't about winners and losers. It is about how everyone does. You know the meaning of life. Not only that, you understand it, and you practice it. At this point in my life, I do it as a way of life. It took me a long time, and many experience points, for this to happen. Without the experiences, you don't learn how to truly do it. Live by the sword, die by the sword (the sword is figurative, a metaphor for that which can kill).

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