Guidance Grab Bag

A few words of wisdom for those in need of a wake-up call.

Here is some advice--free, on-target and completely unsolicited.

· For Eminem, the incredibly talented wordsmith but fatally flawed human being who verbally fantasizes about raping his mother and worries that all the money he's making is going to change him: Get a clue. The self-proclaimed Slim Shady was recently in the news for refusing to grant permission to Weird Al Yankovic to make a parody of "Lose Yourself," the big song from Eminem's 8 Mile soundtrack. (Yankovic can do it anyway, since parody is protected by law.)

Here's the deal, Em: Take some of those millions you've made and buy yourself a sense of humor. Bitch.

· For the Muslim woman who doesn't want to expose her face for her driver's license picture in Florida: Read the Quran. I haven't read all of it, but I'm sure there's a passage in there somewhere equivalent to the Bible's "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's ..."

The ability to drive on the roads is not a right; it's a privilege. And if the requirements to earn that privilege conflict with your religion, you have to make a choice. That's how Utah earned its statehood. If you don't want to do what everybody else does for a license, stay at home and curse the American devils.

· For LeBron James, the 18-year-old who will be the No. 1 draft pick in the upcoming NBA draft: Get a new posse and possibly an alternate mom. The ones you have ain't gettin' it done. Oh sure, you just signed a $90 million contract with Nike (which is probably worth about one-tenth of that) and you'll probably make a decent amount of money from the Cleveland Cavaliers (although the NBA came to its senses a few years ago and did away with those scandalous huge-money contracts for rookies). But you actually have to earn the big money by playing at a certain level of excellence for several years. You might be able to; some people say you're a can't-miss prospect. But the playgrounds and bars of America are littered with guys about whom it was said they couldn't miss.

The warning signs were everywhere. You turned 18 and your mother bought you a $55,000 Hummer! And then she feigned shock when people questioned where she got the money and why she couldn't buy her kid a Honda Civic like every other parent in America! Then, you got caught accepting hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise for making public appearances at a sporting goods store, and your idiot mom said something about how you were being manipulated and that you really do know right from wrong.

I coach high school kids, and by the time I get them (usually around the age of 14), they all know the difference between right and wrong. Some of them still do wrong things, but they do so knowing in advance that it's wrong and still do it anyway.

I never root for athletes to fail, because it's just wrong. But if you succeed, it'll send a horrible message to the kids of America. And if you fail, the people you have around you will all just shrug and say, "At least he got paid."

· For Democrats seeking to see to it that the G.W. Bush Reign of Terror lasts only four years: Quit focusing on the wrong stuff, like aircraft-carrier landings.

Point out the inequities built into the ludicrous tax-cut plan. Ask whatever happened to the Republicans' commitment to a balanced budget, the absolute cornerstone of the so-called "Contract With America" in 1994. Remind the average sheep-like, Fox-watching American that Saddam Hussein and his scummy sons are probably still alive, that we're rapidly approaching a point where more Americans will have died in Iraq during the peace than did during the war, and that ZERO weapons of mass destruction have been found. (The other night, David Letterman had a Top 10 list of Bush's reasons why no such weapons have been found. The list included, "Did I say they had weapons of mass destruction? I meant they have goats," and, "We've only searched 99 percent of the country so far.")

Bush is tossing out the beach-ball-sized blunders that Demos should be knocking out of the park. This $350 billion tax cut for his rich homies is supposedly supposed to create a million new jobs? That's $350,000 per job, enough for 10 or 12 new jobs. Where does the rest of the money go? Oh, I know, into stock dividends that won't be taxed.

Under Reagan, Bush and Bush, it has not been a matter of the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It's actually much worse than that. It's the rich get fabulously richer and the middle-class continues to shrink and fall behind.

So, Democrats, quit focusing on nonsense like legalized drugs and go after Bush. He's ripe for the picking.

· For operators of the National Spelling Bee: Quit giving these kids words that no human being has ever uttered aloud. We all watch these words come on the screen, and even the most educated of us utter, "What the hell?!"

Give these kids easier words, but make them spell them while dodging batted baseballs or walking over hot coals or (for the boys) while staring at a life-sized poster of Elizabeth Hurley in a bikini--bigger challenge, better ratings, real words.

· For Israel's Ariel Sharon, who took time out from the Middle East peace process to meet with Whitney Houston and her thug-life husband, Bobby Brown: Dude, read the newspaper someday. What could possibly be served by meeting with these two drugged-out used-to-bes? Each is just waiting for the other to die so they can smoke their ex's ashes.

It would be better to meet with Sonny and Cher. Even in his current state, Sonny is more lucid than Bobby Brown.

Besides, the only reason they're there is that somebody said the Middle East is in a bad mess--and they heard the Middle East has "some baaad meth."