breaking rules

I'm such a rule-breaker. I didn't notice it until coming to Germany, where every other rule seems like an illogical and unintuitive one that just calls out to be broken. Small rules, medium rules, big rules – I don't discriminate. I actually don't. Two of the biggest rules I've broken in 2011 were actually laws: I may or may not have photoshopped a certain bank statement in order to save a few bucks in admin fees by not having to go back to the office next year; and I may or may not have weaseled my way out of mandatory health insurance for the month of August (there are still 3 days to go – fingers crossed).

Past big rules include a new Canadian tax law that fined me a couple hundred bucks and then returned it after I wrote a sarcastic sob-story letter, and another Canadian (provincial) tax law that I didn't understand and so simply ignored. That second one will no doubt come back to bite me next year when they send another letter asking for the first amount of money plus a year's interest at premium, but perhaps I can just ignore that letter as well.

Lesser rules include the current conspiracy on how to get a deadline extension for my papers. My plan (tbc by uni admin that it'll work) is to hand in an 'blank' paper, as one does in exams, fail the course, and be given the chance to edit and resubmit it, much the same way as we get to re-sit exams two months later if we fail. That buys me an extra week, which is the world when you have two other papers due on the exact same date.

Even lesser rules are the petty ones like crossing (on foot!) at a red light, which Germans seem physically unable to do, much to my amusement :D

The novel discovery is not so much that I break rules but rather that I tend to break rules. I like to break rules. When confronted with a rule, as often as not I will try to scheme up a way to get around it. Perhaps not so much break it but find its loopholes and exploit them. Or perhaps even simply to find the loopholes without exploiting them. It's a game. I get off on the knowledge that I outsmarted 'authority' (read: bureaucracy). When I do exploit the loopholes, though, I obviously also gain in other ways – I never break a rule just for the sake of it. That would be antisocial behaviour :P


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