Dante's Inferno, a masterpiece of Italian literature, was written in exile with limited access to research materials, 650 years before the Internet. Here's how Dante would have organized Hell if he could have seen the modern era.
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By Nat Towsen
The 9 New Levels of Hell
Dante Alighieri's Inferno, a masterpiece of Italian literature, was written in exile with limited access to research materials, 650 years before the Internet. Here's how Dante would have organized Hell if he could have seen the modern era.
Level 1: People who look at their phones while walking down the street
We've all done this before. But do it too often and risk landing in Limbo. This level of Hell is not all that bad. It's roughly as annoying as walking down a sidewalk full of people staring at their phones. But forever.
Level 2: People who say "I'm just sayin'"
No one is ever just saying anything. What you mean is that you have an opinion that you can't back up, so you want to say it without anyone responding.
You're "just sayin' that black neighborhoods usually have more crime"? It's a good thing you're just saying it, because if you thought about it even a little bit, you might realize that you're trying to make other people think racist thoughts on your behalf. Don't make us fill in the blanks in your racist jigsaw puzzle, or you'll be just sayin' "I wish I'd learned how arguments work" for eternity.
Level 3: People who use the word "hipster" as an insult
Whether you go with the "handlebar mustache and paperboy cap" stereotype, the "neon clothing and hi-tops" stereotype, or even the "plastic-framed glasses and strong opinions on cinema" stereotype, the hipster joke is the new Polack joke. Try harder or end up in this lesser, but still hellish level of Hell.
Level 4: Internet commenters
No good has ever come of what you do. One might argue that your current existence already plays out across a terrible, real-world hellscape, so perhaps this terrible afterlife won't be anything you're not already used to.
Level 5: People who cough without covering their mouths
You are animals. Animals go to hell. It's in the bible.
Avoid this level of hell by coughing into your elbow.
Level 6: Anyone who has pitched an ad campaign in which a referee or coach interrupts a non-sports scenario
You lived the easiest life a person can live. You will pay for it in the afterlife.
Level 7: People who quote internet memes in conversation
Internet memes are already an extremely low form of humor: they take someone else's joke and re-arrange it, using something pre-approved as funny to create a mildly amusing permutation. Then other people share these barely-funny images, as if recognizing this "humor" will somehow reflect positively on their own sense of humor.
Don't bring that cowardice into the real world.
People who make life harder for homesexuals, ethnic minorities, transgendered people, vegetarians, vegans, intellectuals, German-style board game players, and/or furries
It's not about you. It doesn't affect you. If someone else's way of life is so scary to you that you need to try to limit their rights, you're probably mad about something else. I'm not saying it's your lack of sexual potency, I'm just saying it's probably your lack of sexual potency. I'm sorry to hear you're jealous of all that hot, gay, vegan sex action, but that doesn't mean you need to hold a poorly-phrased protest banner outside of a health food store.
You can't stop the progress of equal rights. We'll have a furry president by 2032.
People who get on the train or elevator before letting people off
This is not only a practical issue, it is a philosophical distinction. If we all try to take for ourselves first, we end up slowing everyone down. People who would diminish the progress of the world to attempt to get ever-so-slightly ahead of the herd deserve the worst punishment.
That punishment: You all get to ride an elevator together forever. It's too crowded to sit, the air conditioning is broken, and the speakers play an infinite muzak loop of the opening strings from "Bittersweet Symphony". Occasionally, the doors open, but more people shove their way on, preventing you from leaving. A bittersweet symphony, this life, indeed.