The Distilled Wisdom of Beavis and Butt-Head
Enlightenment from TVs most doubtful show!
Episodes from the WORK SUCKS collection, 1994.
When Beavis invites Butt-head Lets go inside, I got an idea, it is easy to miss the deeper import of the message. He is in fact suggesting a thorough meditation – looking inside, where thoughts prevail over the outside world and he can communicate his idea by the telepathic link that exists between these two doubtful spiritual masters. The apparent outrageous stupidity is simply hide for a thoroughness of wisdom that might otherwise be devastatingly unsettling to those around them. When Butt-head declares Hes going to eat a fried mouse! what is he doing but highlighting the limited range of permissible ways of doing things on the material plane. From his more detached perspective, the idea that a mouse is less permissible than, say, a chicken is a laughable example of the unenlightened humans inability to think outside the box. And hes coming back later – Butt-head recognizes the subconscious desire for his customer to further stretch his boundaries. Did you know when you eat rumproast youre eating a cows butt? – another example of how mental concepts can produce physiological responses. already powerful masters can sometimes stray from the present moment, forget who they are and wander off into fantasies. At the end of the episode, Butt-head lovingly calls his friend back to the present with Pay attention Beavis. This shows more compassion than the Zen method of hitting the student with a stick.
Beavis picks up a fried and melted telephone. He says Welcome to the world, may I help you. This is a clear example of the mans wisdom and compassion. Somehow he knew that the person at the other end was coming down from an intense LSD trip. He was offering help in re-orienting the person to his ecosystem.
A customer has become extremely upset with our idols. Butt-head says lets go break something. What impressive insight! He realizes that the impasse was caused by fixed viewpoints about how things should be, so he is suggesting that they break down some of those walls that limit peoples thinking and limit peoples imagination and creativity.
In a emotional demonstration of the futility of empty ritual that has no valid spiritual basis, Butt-head makes the tempting invitation: Pull my finger, dude. At first, Beavis says No way, then catches on to the game. He pulls the finger, and, with great significance says Nothing. At this point Butt-head reminds the viewers SBD – signs can Belie the Divine and they both laugh knowingly.
The Butt-head experience
Come here quick, bare ass on TV. Is Beavis talking about a naked donkey? No, he is referring to the uncommon honesty of the TV stop, which refuses to cover up the truth and, in colloquial parlance, shows the bear-ass reality of what goes on in the world. Butt-head concurs with the comment PBS is pretty cool.
How appropriate that our idols should be singing Da Da Da in a fantasy scenario. The reference is to Dada-ism, which is a rejection of all the fixed rules of logical structure, predefined ideas about beauty and already social organization. The audience is being challenged to look at the world in new and different ways.
At one point, Beavis inadvertently snaps his companion from a thorough meditation. Butt-head shows his annoyance for an moment with an affectionate you ass-wipe, but quickly regains his composure, pointing at that he was at the point of a major spiritual realization. He puts it in his modest and humorous way I was about to have a wet dream.
Ever experimenting on the edge with bold new spiritual tools, just as the Native Americans use peyote, Beavis has a psycho-active toad in his mouth. Butt-head asks if he is licking it right, but his friend has attained expert over his taste buds – It tastes like chicken. They go running after the transformative creature, chanting their new mantra – Here toady.
Be all that you can be
Always ready to satirize mankinds stranger activities, Butt-head is singing Youd better watch out, cause Im a war machine, then remembering the biblical imperative estimate not, he affirms War songs are cool. Just then the military recruiter comes out and offers them a purpose in life. Butt-head reassures him that he is on a sound life path and is no lost soul, saying This IS our purpose.
When the recruiter asks if he knows what a quota is, Butt-head gently guides him away from the unhealthy compulsion to recruit paid killers with a humorous quip you average like 25 cents? When the recruiter offers to stop them near Fort Dix, Butt-head makes a subtle reference to the insanity of war, saying Is that anywhere near Fort Nuts? The audience could easily have mistaken this for sexual innuendo, but it goes deeper. They both sign up with bogus names, mocking the intense seriousness of military statism.
The episode ends with a emotional characterize of their teleportation abilities. Tossing the live hand grenade between them until it explodes, you see them in the next episode, clearly having removed themselves from the dangerous location at the basic moment.
When a lecturer talks to Butt-head about manual labor, our hero seems hindered Theres a manual? All these years of figuring out what is true and suddenly someone tells him its all in a book! Of course this is a tongue-in-cheek question. He knows that the real source of knowledge and wisdom is within ones own heart. He remembers a past life where he reminded Kahlil Gibran: No man can teach you aught but that which lies in the dawning of your awareness.
Drifting somewhere in lofty etheric realms, where physical existence is insignificant trivia, Butt-head tries to put an 8-track tape in the VCR – It wont fit, Beavis. His friend, knowing that all things in creation have their rightful place reassures him it must fit somewhere, and knowing that crass language is needed to bring him back to crass physical reality says maybe your butt!
The owner of the house tries so hard to be spiritual and compassionate. But our friends know that for his growth he must be weaned away from his over dependence on technology – particularly out of use technology. So in their own poetic style they wash his 8-tracks in soapy water. I know a cool way to dry these muses Beavis as he finishes them off in the toaster.
Having completed their charitable act of tough love, they quickly complete an additional special job of cleaning the house. The disguise slips a little here as the idols forget to hide their extreme competence in cleaning. They raise the flagging self-esteem of the house owner by telling him how special he is.
The television scene opens to a closed door at the sperm bank. Behind the door, a man is seemingly creating some of their salable product. Here the disguise slips again, as the masters make a giant intellectual jump, extracting from their memories all the cultural information about sperm edges, and making the logical deduction that this could be a source of money. Beavis says We could do that!. Many highly evolved souls move in esoteric dimensions far beyond the details of survival in the physical world, so that money is the least of their concerns; nevertheless they need it to buy the necessities of life. And so we find our idols. Butt-head, arriving at the same point of reference as his friend says Were there dude.
To cover for the intellectual jump, the gurus give a convincing characterize of nervousness and inability to communicate their wishes on a subject that repressed humans find so sensitive. The understanding nurse make things easier for them because she knows what they came for. The boys cleverly avoid having to show their great intellectual capacities by knocking over and destroying all the bottles of collected sperm.
The lesson here is that spiritual and sexual energy are the same thing. Butt-head demonstrates this by delivering a large container filled with the product of his spiritual prowess. Beavis, modestly hiding his greater prowess, asks with feigned surprise I was supposed to use a container? We have entered a controversial area. Many people believe that sexual energy is sinful, and if uncontrolled will cause us to burn in hell. Spiritual energy however, i.e. prayer to the true god will guarantee our long-lasting place in heaven.
Once again, the disguise slips as Beavis is caught in a superb juggling act. In an oblique reference to the sound of one hand clapping, Butt-head jokes Maybe you should do that with two hands. Interrupted by an angry customer, he drops the glassware, not wanting his highly perfected dexterity to be noticed.
Many people are attached to money and give it serious importance in their lives; not so our idols. Leaving the sperm bank with money in their pockets, Butt-head, with mock drama and surprise, proclaims Maybe we could use it! A local store owner has been rather despondent with a downturn in sales, so, to raise his morale they buy a large stack of magazines. These, of course they will donate to underprivileged children at the nearby school.
Watching an educational television show, for a moment, Beavis thought he had found a gap in his amazing vocabulary. He asks What is ostespus? When his friend reminds him it is like a health food, it jogs his memory: Oh yeah, yeah.
Then the strength fails. At that moment Butt-head is polishing his far away-viewing skills and having a slight difficulty: The far aways broken. This may have something to do with his frustration at the absence of any worthwhile programming on television. The two of them use an old psychological device to travel anger: they start kicking the TV set until the tension is released.
Once, during preparation for a Vision Quest, Butt-head met some wise and bright but not formally educated shamanic masters. From this he learned a thorough fondness for the vernacular: I just like figured something out – Butt-head has remembered that his Yoga teacher friend has satellite access to some European underground TV stations: We gotta go watch TV somewhere else.
Out on the street, they see a looter running away with a television set. This is a particularly challenging situation for Butt-head who has discovered a penchant and a talent for finding the highest in people and getting them to re-estimate their destructive behavior patterns. He calls Hey, wait up dude, but it is too late, the poor fellow has been arrested.
Later, they see their old friend, the social-minded professor, who promised his do-gooder lodge that he would direct traffic in place of the traffic lights. There is nevertheless no electricity. He attempts to shirk his newly assumed responsibility and palm it off on our friends. Most of the towns drivers are taking advantage of the permanent absence of regulation and recklessly barreling by the intersection at maximum speeding up.
Its time for another lesson in tough love. In a emotional pretense of incompetence, our spiritual teachers allow the good citizens to fully experience the consequences of their behavior. It is sobering to see how strong, macho men become whimpering complainers in the presence of a little pain or a crumpled car.
Isnt there something were supposed to do tonight Butt-head prompts Beavis, hoping he will remember the Global meditation they had promised themselves to join, particularly since it coincides with Beltane. I think we are supposed to like leave the house he hints. Both know that the electrical wiring of the house disturbs the auric field, especially during meditation.
Beavis, with his dry sense of humor, feigns ignorance: Is there another monster truck show? Butt-head plays along: No, I would have remembered that.
A television commercial brings them back to the reality of the paycheck. They are reminded of the work commitment, but are excited that it is for the Late Shift! With no other people around, they can playfully create an alternate reality in the work place.
Check out these night crawlers I found in the parking lot exults Beavis. He has endowed a cup of worms with mythical character. Butt-head carries the mood with a histrionic proclamation: Bring forth the sacrificial worms. He challenges Beavis to transmute a worm into something edible and delicious: Ill give you a quarter if you eat one. The moderate amount underlines the minor importance that our masters assign to such feats.
The two celebrate closing time with the messiest possible mock food fight Burger catch, knowing that they can afterwards reverse the time vector and restore the place to pristine condition.
I wanted to extend this to a complete book, but could not get the copyright permissions.