The Coyote Option

J.C. LaCroix Crass Humor, Goal Setting, Personal Productivity

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"Northern Coyote 7255", Jean-Guy Dallaire, Creative Commons License

“Northern Coyote 7255”, Jean-Guy Dallaire, Creative Commons License

Sometimes, you end up in a catch-22, where you seem to only have a limited set of choices, and all of them suck. And, you’ve looked for a way around whatever it is that sucks, but can’t find a solution. Considering your remaining options gives you a bad feeling in your gut and an even worse taste in your mouth, like you just gave Hugh Jackman a rim-job at gun-point. A lot of times, people get locked into “dichotomist” thinking — that’s a fancy way to say that, in your mind, you’ve turned your problem or situation into an “either-or”, where there are only two options. This is even worse. It is now like you’re licking on Hugh Jackman’s balls and are trying to pick the right nut or left nut — one being salty and the other being crusty. Not good. In either case, you’ve made a critical mistake, and I’m going to show you how to detect this error in perception, and get around it.

There’s an ancient native story that perfectly captures this point, and I’ve heard it a thousand ways, so I’m going to tell it with my own unique spin.

The Modernized Legend

A long, long time ago, in a galaxy somewhere near the ghetto, I think close to MLK boulevard in whatever city you live in (that’s ironic, isn’t it?), all the animals lived in the projects on government cheddar, in peace and harmony. Porcupine was the neighborhood ho, and fucked pretty much anybody for the asking. Wolf was the local vato. He had a knack for tuning up old cars, and he used that money to buy lots of little statues of the Virgin Mary. Bear kept to himself, and mainly spanked it to internet porn all day, but he was true to his word and would let you crash at his place if you brought some weed. Ashy Elk, well, he just didn’t do shit except sit around and watch Montel reruns all day. Nobody liked him much, and he got dissed on all the time. Then there was Frog and Toad. They were homies, and would go around doing crazy x-treme sports shit, laughing every time one or the other got hurt — they pretty much only got laid by Porcupine. Lastly, there was Coyote, neighborhood funny man. He would rummage around in the dumpsters, find old gems and pawn them for money to buy 40oz bottles of malt liquor, and if you were cool, he‘d share. All in all, life was good, everyone was in their niche, and nobody had major beef.

Then one day God, played in this story by Jessie Jackson, announces the Project Initiative for Grouping, also known as “P.I.G”. He strolls broadly into the projects and announces that there will now be a hierarchy to things. He puts a big stick in the middle of the playground, and from top to bottom, there is a list of names: Bear is at the top, Ashy Elk second, then Wolf, Porcupine, Frog, Toad, and then Coyote is at the bottom. Each hood rat now has to listen to and pretty much obey the hood rats above him, the idea being that those above will help the others find jobs and a normal place in society. Jessie Jackson then whips out his cock, jumps rope with it for three minutes, and vanishes never to be seen again. Only the stick remains.

Things proceed as normal for a while, but then Bear decides its time to hibernate. Since he won’t be going to any time soon, he decides its best to turn off the power before crashing out for the winter. Besides, he lives next to Ashy Elk, and with his damn TV going all the time, he finds it hard to sleep. This sets everything in motion. Ashy Elk now has no Montel, and is freaking out. Coyote opens his big mouth and remarks that now Ashy Elk should have enough time to rub some lotion on himself, and everybody laughs. Ashy Elk goes all gangster on Coyote, shoots him in the leg, and banishes him from the projects. With no power in the building, Wolf can’t fix up cars, so now he becomes a pimp and starts hooking out Porcupine. Of course, she’s pissed, but mainly because its hard to be a porcupine and wear fish-nets. Now Frog and Toad can’t get laid with thier broke asses, and Frog, in desperation, begins to mouth-rape Toad. Toad, to ease his pain and get through it, is now hooked on heroin. Looking for a fix one day, he goes to see Coyote, who is limping around outside the projects, picking up cans in an effort to get a down payment on an Immediate Care clinic visit for his gunshot wound.

Toad: “Hey, Coyote, you got some cheese man?”

Coyote: “Do I look like a millionaire to you hauling around cans? Why the hell do you want that shit anyway?”

Toad: “Frog can’t bump the ugly with porcupine no more, so….”

Coyote: “…{awkward pause}…why do you tolerate that?”

Toad: “What am I supposed to do? I can either put up with it and stay in the projects, or not deal with it but be on the outs like you — and no offense, but your situation is like hot wet ass…I mean, you could probably take Elk out like a little bitch, but not Bear…”

Coyote: “You know what, screw it. I can see the doc later, lets go see about this.”

So Toad and Coyote walk into the playground, and everyone seeing him gathers round. Wolf tells him he is stupid for coming back. Porcupine thinks its hot, and is about to give him some loving, but then Wolf smacks her and makes her cry.  Frog tells him he is double stupid, because now Elk is gonna kick his ass and let Frog krump his corn-hole. Coyote just smiles and laughs at them all, because his plan is to get his ass kicked.

Toad says nothing, because its been too long and he’s starting to withdrawl and get the shakes.

And that is exactly what happens. Elk comes down talking crazy shit, and pounds Coyote over and over again. Coyote screams and grunts, and from time to time sneaks a chuckle in. Bear wakes up with all the noise and tells Elk to cut that crap out so he can sleep. So Elk stops and tells Coyote if he ever comes back, he will sleep forever.

Coyote simply smiles and says, “I have to, the stick is law,” and then leaves.

Bear yells after him, “Yeah, it is, now fuck off so I can sleep!”

A few days pass and now everyone has bought in — after seeing what happened to Coyote, nobody is willing to question or rebel, and the new system has taken over.

This is just what Coyote is counting on.

Late one night he sneaks in. In the distance he can hear Frog grunting and Toad gurgling. He can hear Porcupine crying and Wolf polishing his statues, while Bear is snoring. Ashy Elk is upstairs in his apartment, cleaning his gun. Everyone has forgotten him. So, he walks over to the stick, flips it upside down, plants it in the ground, and leaves for a few days.

While he is gone, everyone wakes up and sees the stick has turned upside down. Porcupine has a vague vision where Jessie Jackson tells her the stick is “Autheticatized by the Innuendational“, and everyone flips their shit. Frog smashes some of Wolf’s statues, because Porcupine now says she is chaste and dedicated to the love of the Jacksinator. Wolf, enraged, grabs Ashy Elk’s gun and pistol whips him with it. Toad goes Pulp Fiction and makes Frog his gimp. Porcupine is not pleased with that, mainly out of jealousy, so she forces everyone to worship at the stick for most of the day. Finally, Bear wakes up, doesn’t see the stick has changed, and tells everyone to shut the hell up. Porcupine leads a charge against Bear, and Bear mauls everyone.

Now, the world has turned to crap and Coyote returns, like a boss.

He tells Bear to turn the power back on, and Bear refuses.

“But you have to,” Coyote says, “you said the stick was Law, and you’ve never lied. You‘re now on bottom, and I‘m on top”

Bear thinks for a second. Then, with a nod and a sigh, he turns the power back on. Coyote orders Elk to move to a room away from Bear. Then, he takes all the heroin from Frog, sells it, and fixes his leg. Wolf goes back to fixing cars. Porcupine gives Frog some loving because he jumped in front of her when Bear was about to rip her a new one. Ashy Elk starts watching Montel again. And when Toad is done with dextox, he and Frog bury the hatchet and start trying to figure out how to Ollie off the roof without dying. Coyote goes back to his dumpsters, and everything is right with the universe.


The moral of the story is, don’t be like Toad, be like Coyote.

Toad looked at the situation all wrong. He wanted to stay home (positive), but didn’t want to put up with the humiliation and rape (negative) . His only other choice, leaving, brought too much of a downside for him. So, he ended up putting up with something he did not like (negative), to enjoy what he wanted (positive).

What error did he make though? What made him different from Coyote? Both had the same problem, but Coyote did something different in his mind.

The error Toad made was the assumption of the hierarchy — he bought into the notion that the stick was fixed and couldn’t be changed. If he had simply opened up this assumption, his brain would have brought him, invariably, the same if not a similar solution. All situations you find yourself in where all of your options suck are the result of one assumption you have made, so deeply, that it has constrained all your choices.

That assumption, it’s the stick you have to flip. You have to find the Coyote Option.

It doesn’t have to be either-or, it could be you have three career options, and you’re stuck in misery because you don’t like any of them. Somewhere, you’ve made an assumption that is forcing only options you hate. All too often, no matter how many options, we screw ourselves by thinking like Toad. We force a constraint that doesn’t exist and thereby imprison our mind’s natural ability to find a solution.

Remember, Darkworkers, we are Divine and thus can create any reality we desire. If this is true, then we have created this problem for many reasons: To test ourselves, to make ourselves grow, to know ourselves deeper. You’ve heard the whole philosophical question — could God, in infinite power, create a rock he could not move? Well, the simple answer is no, thus you cannot create a problem you cannot solve. So, if you see no solution, the error is in your mind, not with the world. You are perfect, so your world is presenting you with exactly what you need at that point in time.

Here are some examples, and the stick-assumption usually comes in four types.

  1. Classic Either-Or Thinking — If you think you have to quit your job to start a business, you’re being like Toad. You have assumed you can only have one major source of income at a time, or that starting the business has to begin at a certain time investment. You can start the business small, one client at a time, even if you have to work at night, until you can quit your job.  The important point is, you have assumed that what you want comes with a downside. You are choosing between having what you want with the downside, or giving up what you want and avoiding the downside.
  2. False Resource Constraint: If you think you can either be a great husband, an outstanding employee, or devoted to your community, you’re being like Toad. You have assumed you only have so much time to give. The reality is, you can always learn how to get more out of your time, and how to leverage others to add to your efforts, thus creating more time. Solutions abound with some research and experimentation. Just because you don’t know how to get more out of your time, doesn’t mean there is not a way.
  3. Nonsense Expectation: If you think you have to stay in a job you hate because it pays more, as opposed to doing work you love but making crap money, you’re being like Toad. While this might seem like either-or thinking, it is not. The reason is because the third option is naturally seen, “well, I could do what I love and find a way to make the same money doing it”, but this option is rejected by the mind because the mind expects that no one will pay that much for the work. This expectation is false. Lets show this in an easy way — what if someone wanted to be a high-paid janitor, and thinks its impossible. Do you realize that White House janitors make 60,000 per year? What about becoming a consultant to janitorial firms, or creating training films for janitorial firms? Free the expectation and the solutions jump out of the woodwork.
  4. Bad Grouping: If you think you have to give up sex with other people to get the benefits of intimacy, reliability, and friendship that come with monogamous marriage, you‘re being like Toad. This seems like a false expectation, but it’s a bit deeper and more dastardly. In the false-expectation sense, you expect that no spouse would ever agree to polyamory, for example, even if you did some elaborate matrix-like psychological siege where your spouse ended up actually asking you to bring other people into the relationship. Your error here is that you’re assuming that a “standard spouse” is synonymous with monogamy. There are lots of polyamorous people who are dying to marry another polyamorous person. Go find them. But maybe you reject that solution because you just don’t want marriage to one person, it doesn’t vibe with you, you want continuous variety and have consigned yourself to shallow, meaningless fling-bouncing. Your error is that you have assumed the only way to get the monogamy-benefits is in one whole package, you’ve anchored everything together. Or, more importantly, you could do something even whackier. Make female friends for the friendship angle. Go to cuddle parties for intimacy. And, find fuck buddies or Porcupine-like prostitutes/whores. Now you have developed the same benefits of monogamy, with an infinite source of variety on all fronts. Release that anchor and divide the want into pieces and the solution falls from the sky.

But how, exactly, do you do go about systematically finding that Coyote option?

Its simple, but it takes some patience.

First, acknowledge the problem. Accept it. Give the suckiness one big hug.

Now, once you have accepted it, bring Faith. Create your mantra.

Tell yourself in whatever way works best for you that there is a solution to this problem. I often repeat to myself, “I can end this problem with my will, because I have created it with my wisdom”. Whatever it is, repeat it over and over until you start to feel an internal tension. That tension signals you that your creativity is online and ready for the following technique. The greater the tension that you generate, the more effective this will be.

Now, sit down and reflect on the situation, frame the problem in your mind.

There are three ways to best do this — either talk out loud, journal, or meditate, until you can state the following two sentences, clearly, succinctly, and efficiently. Don’t rush it, list all possible components that may arise.

  • First sentence:   I want (name the positives that you want)
  • Second sentence:  But I don’t want (name the negatives that you don’t want)

Repeat these sentences over and over like a new mantra, until that tension comes back up again. This is “anchoring the stick”.

Now, you have defined the box you‘ve put yourself in. Its time to break the box open the box, or “flip the stick“, and we do that by looking for the stick-assumptions. This is a separate self-talk, journal, or meditation, on this theme, and it continues until you can produce a third sentence.

  • Third sentence: But to want (positives), without (negatives), is impossible because (stick-assumptions).

List out all the reasons you think you cannot have what you want. For example, “I only have so much time”, or “Nobody will pay janitors that much”.

Go through your list, and look at each one. Now look at each assumption like it is a lie, a dirty bastard lie, on par with weapons-of-mass-destruction, and figure out which categories of assumption apply. Is it Either-Or, False Resource Constraint, Nonsense Expectation, or Bad Grouping?

For each stick-assumption, defeat it by identifying the category, and then finding situations where others have violated your assumption — you can almost always do this via a library or the internet. You may have to seek out groups of people who have the same problem, or who already have the solution (for example, a polyamorous forum or a business association), but if you brought enough “faith” to the table, this is not hard.

  • Either-Or: Look for situations where others have what you want, but have avoided the downside.
  • False Resource Constraint: Look for methods that others have used to create more of the limited resource in question.
  • Nonsense Expectation: Look for examples in which others have had an outcome different from what you expected.
  • Bad Grouping: This is a little different. If you suspect Bad Grouping, break your want down into pieces, and then look at ways in which others have achieved those pieces, and see if you can put them all together to get the same overall result you want.

Can you see how this process works? It is simply an algorithm that you run, and it is designed to seek and destroy your limiting assumptions. First, we define what you want, and what you don’t want. Then, we look at why having what you want, and avoiding what your don’t want seems impossible to you. We then examine those impossibilities and knock them down, one by one. We forget about the solution, and simply remove all obstacles. When the road is clear, the solution naturally emerges on its own. Don’t forget to give credit to yourself for this whole process — for in its application you are realizing your own inner power.

Its important to note that this process can happen in layers. You might want to be a performance artist who sells your own work, but still make CEO money, and you say “no one will pay that much for performance art”. But then you come across some performance artists who do. You then say to yourself, “Yes, but that won’t work in my case, people might pay to see his art but mine is different” and reject the solution. Stop. Pause. Repeat your mantra of faith, then do exactly the same process. Why is that impossible? Identify the assumption as to why your “difference” in art will lead to a different result. Question this assumption.

Over time, a solution must emerge. How do I know this?

The wisdom of Coyote is to apply Occam’s Razor to our own false assumptions. When all falsehood is removed, only the truth can remain. The truth is, you have infinite power and capacity to create anything you desire — you know this, or you wouldn’t experience tension when you began to systematically search for a solution. You would have experienced ambivalence, or more depression. That tension arises because the assumptions are living things within you, clinging for life.

Kill them, and you will truly live.

It is you or them. Do what has to be done.