Everyone who’s hip likes Fight Club. Even if we didn’t quite understand the ending (why didn’t he die again… never mind). But over all the classic down-with-the-man quotes and scenes from the movie, one subtle line has stuck with me. I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone talk about it. Here’s the scene (it’s towards the beginning of the movie, so it’s pretty spoiler-free):

The exchange that interests me starts at around 0:54. “It’s very clever, How’s that working out for you?” Tyler says.

This 13 year old quote has made me wonder how much time and effort I spend trying to be clever. In some ways, I think cleverness has replaced “class” as the quintessential virtue for a post-modern Western cultured young adult. Think I’m wrong? How about everyone who has ever spent more than a minute carefully crafting in your head the perfectly worded Facebook status update or Tweet, please stand up. See? Continue reading


The Cost of Being Clever