This is the point where I consider someone a "success" in any given endeavour - when they reach the man-brain stage. Where they engage the prefrontal cortex and engage themselves in promoting a system that has worked for them - actively putting something new into the world for others to use.
You know, like I'm doing. I'm sorry, did I say that out loud? We're not supposed to do that in America - self-promote, blow our own horns, believe our own bullshit. Except that's kind of its own bullshit.
As you might have figured out, there's a point in your story where you actually do get skills or powers or abilities, and this is that point. You've reached the part where you blossom out of the animal brain and become, you know, a man.
In the biological sense, not the gender-specific one. Some of the manliest people I know are women. Not all of them were born women, but fuck it, that counts.
And what your skills and powers and abilities allow you to do is create a system which other people can follow, which will give them your skills and powers and abilities, so they can fight the kind of battles you fought - and win. Just like you did.
So we've covered the first four elements of NICER marketing: Nurturing dreams, Inhibiting fears, Confirming suspicions, and Excusing failures. That takes us up to the end of it, Rejecting enemies.
If you'll recall, Blair Warren said to throw rocks at enemies. What people really want is for you to join them in the assault - to attack those enemies and bring them down. But I've sat around thinking about this a lot, and there's an element of this which isn't considered.
If you only ever remember two of these rules... these are the ones.
Seriously, you can boil it down to this. If there were only two rules to being a badass, these would be the two rules. I mean, the rest are important in the grand scheme of things, but to put it in a nutshell? Once you get BAD, turning that into being a badass really boils down to these two things.
Once upon a time there was a Japanese-American businessman who wrote a book called Rich Dad, Poor Dad about how he was raised in Hawaii by two fathers: his own, who was poor, and his friend's - who was rich. And it was a good story, and many people read it, and his name became widely known: Robert Kiyosaki. He invented the Velcro wallet, of all things, and built a business empire.
Most recently, he was in the real estate business - not so much buying and selling real estate himself, but teaching others to buy and sell real estate. And not so long ago, he was sued for something or other, and one of his businesses declared bankruptcy. So people started saying he was himself bankrupt. And that's when the real bombshell dropped.
In the 1970s, there was still a lot of concern about the idea of evolution. I mean, weird, right? We had this big trial with Scopes and Darrow and all that in the 1920s. And yet, here we are today, and people are still debating the question of whether it should be taught in schools or not. And how it's "just a theory," kind of like, you know... the theory of magnetism.
One of the core disconnects between the religious mind (which believes what it cannot prove) and the scientific mind (which proves what it cannot believe) is that the idea of a "theory" is very different to each of them.
"The audience knows the truth: the world is simple. It's miserable, solid all the way through. But if you could fool them, even for a second, then you can make them wonder..." - Robert Angier (Hugh Jackman), The Prestige
Whenever someone comes up to me and points out "you tell lies for a living," I correct them that I am "in the business of bullshit." And when they demand to know the difference, or how I can possibly live with myself doing such a thing, I tell them to go watch The Prestige (starring Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, and Michael Caine)... twice. It's a movie about stage magic, and you have to see it twice: once before you know the secret, and once after.
And if they still don't understand, I can't explain it to them. Nobody can.
Remember yesterday when I said your broadcast doesn't have to be live?
Well, sooner or later, it does.
At some point, you are going to have to walk out on a stage or do some kind of once-only broadcast where if your audience doesn't actually alter their schedule to show up they just plain do not get to consume the content in it.
Do not attempt to change the channel, for we have occupied all frequencies. We will control the bass. We will control the treble. We can change the sound waves from piercing highs, to thundering lows. For the next few minutes your mind, body, and soul will be unavoidably infiltrated by the almighty supernatural powers... of the Tibetan jam.
This may come as a complete shock to you, but the blunt reality is that almost all of the bandwidth on the internet is taken up by entertainment. It's not people working. It's not people studying. It's not even people communicating. It's almost entirely people playing games and watching videos. The rest of it is mostly people reading bad fan fiction about their favourite characters in games and videos.
Well, okay, and books. But books don't really take up much bandwidth.
This frontal lobe of the brain is what I call the man brain. It's where we leave most of our animal evolution behind, and come into possession of all the things that make us, you know... human.
The part of you that might be complaining "what about women, this is a sexist term" is your monkey brain. A woman is a type of man, and it is entirely up to you whether you regard that as a diminutive (not really a man), an elevation (a special type of man), or neutral (a distinct variety of man). And whichever one you choose, it is this part of your brain which allows you to contemplate the possibility that you might be wrong.