Ask Andrew W.K.: As an Atheist, How Do I Handle Religious People?

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[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Hi Andrew,

I'm hoping you can help me. I'm a passionate atheist and one of my best friends is too. I've known him since we were six years old and I love him like a brother. Just last week, he got married. He hired a non-denominational minister to conduct his ceremony. Everything was going fine until the minister said, "We are gathered here today, in the presence of God, to unite these two people in matrimony." I tensed up as soon as I heard the word "god" and basically spent the rest of the ceremony fuming over the fact that this minister snuck the god thing into my friend's special day. The whole thing was tarnished. I never really mentioned how upset I was to my friend or anyone else, but I can't stop thinking about it and feeling like I should've spoken up. I really hate religion and that religious people always need to force their dogma into everyone's lives. Just because they think everything's being controlled by some bearded sky-daddy doesn't mean they need to insert their faith into otherwise beautiful parts of my life. I'm the kind of person who stands up for atheism. I've made a commitment to fight against religion whenever I can. I'm most upset that my friend allowed this minister to say the word "god" during such an important moment in his life and then didn't say anything back or even seem to care. My question is: Should I mention this to my friend, or do I just let it go?

Kind regards,
Anonymous Atheist


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Ask Andrew W.K.: Is It Bad to Be a Loner?

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Photo by Drew Crozier
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

I've always been a quiet and reserved person, but I've been feeling pressure to be more talkative and social. Do you ever feel pressure to be a certain way? I see people who are so easygoing with social interaction, but I really enjoy spending time alone. Do I need more friends to be good at partying? How do I become the life of the party?

Thanks very much,
In A Shell

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Please Eat Shit and Die!


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Ask Andrew W.K.: Please Eat Shit and Die!

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Photo by Christopher McLallen
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

Would you please do us all a favor and eat shit and die?

Thanks,
I Hate You

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: My Boyfriend Listens to Evil Music

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Ask Andrew W.K.: The Science of Halloween

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Photo by Douglas Anson
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Hi, Andrew!

Believe it or not, I really don't like Halloween. Out of all my friends and family, I'm the only one who dreads this time of year and doesn't get excited about dressing up or going out and doing "spooky" stuff. I've always been this way. I just don't believe in this sort of stuff -- like ghosts, goblins, haunted houses, and all that supernatural nonsense. I believe in rational thought and science, and to be honest, it creeps me out to see so many millions of people allow themselves to get into such an obviously shallow frame of mind every year during this "holiday." How can I participate in Halloween without bringing everyone else down, while at the same time not compromising my belief that all this is moronic?

Halloween Hater

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Pizza Is Healthy

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Ask Andrew W.K.: Am I Getting Too Old to Party?

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Photo by Andrew Strasser
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

It's my birthday and I feel depressed. I never used to be one of those people that hated telling people their age, but for the first time in my life, I feel like I'm getting old. How do I keep the party going even though I'm old?

Yours truly,
Aging Rager


See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Should I Worry About Ebola?


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Ask Andrew W.K.: Should I Worry About Ebola?

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Photo by Drew Crozier
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]


Dear Andrew,

I'm shitting my pants about this Ebola virus. Just hearing the word "Ebola" makes me literally sick to my stomach. I'm sick of hearing about this disease and I'm sick of feeling terrified about it. Every morning I wake up for work, I scramble to watch the news and read the latest horror stories, and then I spend the rest of the day irritable and panicked about this growing epidemic. And it seems like every day a new fear of mine has come true: more people getting sick, no one doing anything real to stop it, and more and more people chiming in about what should be done, without any real organization or plan of action. But what can be done? I feel like we're all going to die! How do I stop freaking out about this?

Scared Sick

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Pizza Is Healthy


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Ask Andrew W.K.: Pizza Is Healthy

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Photo: Frank White
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

I love pizza. And I eat lots of it. Now, for the first time in my life, I'm worried that my love of pizza is bad for me. I read some pretty shocking health food articles that focused on eating only natural food, and some of my friends have started giving me a hard time, basically saying that pizza isn't "real food." They say it's poisonous junk that is slowly killing me. They say I should live a more healthy and natural life. That my way of eating isn't part of an "authentic" lifestyle. I'm not severely overweight, and I'm a pretty active and happy person, but now whenever I eat pizza I feel kind of depressed. I know you love pizza as much as I do. How do I keep my love affair with pizza going but also live a good and natural life?

Thanks for your help,
Pondering A Pizza-Less Life

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Tackling Procrastination


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Ask Andrew W.K.: Tackling Procrastination

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[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Hi Andrew,

I'm a terrible procrastinator. It started back in high school, when I literally put off everything I had to do. Sometimes I would get very inspired and motivated, and other times I just felt so lazy I couldn't do anything. By college, it had got so bad that I basically had a panic attack when I avoided writing two big papers until the night before they were due and literally went through hell and back to finish them in time. The problem is, I'm good at procrastinating. I got good grades on those papers, and haven't really ever missed a deadline. It's just the putting stuff off and the pressure piling up that's really wearing me down. I think all the stress has taken years off my life. I'm seeing it get worse lately and I just need to figure out how to get that spark that kicks me into gear. For some reason, I just keep sitting around and doing other stuff instead of what I'm supposed to do. Look what I'm doing right now...I'm writing to you instead of actually just doing my work. Please help me!

Uninspired Procrastinator

See also: Ask Andrew W.K.: Should I Feel Guilty for Being White?

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Ask Andrew W.K.: Should I Feel Guilty for Being White?

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Photo by Andrew Strasser
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

I saw an essay you shared called "White People Problems" that was a pretty angry response to one of your advice columns. I think it's cool that you consider views from people who disagree with you, but from what I can tell, the person who wrote the "White People Problems" essay was basically saying that by being a white person, you're automatically luckier than other people -- that you're "privileged," and that you don't really understand how hard life is. Well, I'm white, and guess what? I don't feel privileged at all. Like many people, I was raised by a single mother after my father (a drug addict) bolted. I currently work three part-time jobs, none of which pays much more than minimum wage. I started working as soon as I was legally able and never had a real opportunity to go to college. And yet I keep hearing how privileged I am to be white. So I ask you, should I feel...

Guilty For Being White?

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Ask Andrew W.K.: My Friend Is Joining the Military and I'm Furious

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Photo by Anthony Dubois
[Editor's note: Every Wednesday, New York City's own Andrew W.K. takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution, a purpose, or -- no surprise here -- a party. Need his help? Just ask: AskAWK@villagevoice.com]

Dear Andrew,

One of my closest and oldest friends just told me last night that he wants to join the Army. I was completely shocked. He had never seemed interested in this before and never really mentioned it, and now he's decided to not go to college but sign up with the military instead.

At first I just didn't say anything, but then I got really pissed off and told him not to do it. I believe in peace and am just so upset at the idea of someone I've known and loved for so long participating in this kind of violence. I basically told him that if he goes through with this, I won't be able to be his friend anymore. I can't stand by in good conscience and let my friend go kill people or get killed, can I?

Pissed Off Pacifist

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