Clerks offers audience members a whole lot more than cheap laughs and raunchy jokes.
1. Don’t date someone because they’re convenient.
“You date Veronica because she’s convenient and low maintenance,” Randal explains to Dante, the lead character in the film. He tells him this because Dante is still in love with his ex-girlfriend, who has a history of cheating on him. Veronica, his current girl- friend takes care of him; she brings him lunch, she relocates schools to be closer to him, and pushes him to go back to school. Bottom line: date someone because you genuinely want to be with them.
2. If you are unhappy with your life, do something to change it or quit complaining.
Life is too short. If you are not happy with your current situation, then you need to do something about it. When Dante complains about his job, Randal simply tells him to stop complaining and quit. There are other jobs out there that will pay higher than his current position.
3. You’re not as good at your job as you think; you are wholly replaceable.
Some people think nobody in the world could possibly do their job as good them. Think again. There is someone out there right now that could do your current position better than you.
4. Get out of your comfort zone.
Sometimes when people get too comfortable, they become fearful of taking risks, or trying something new. In Dante’s case, he didn’t want to quit his lame job. Even though he did not enjoy going to work, he knew how to manage everything, it was what he was used to. Becoming complacent means you’re probably more willing to settle.
5. You are not better than anyone.
“He has no delusions about what he does. Us? We like to make ourselves seem so much better than the people that come in here.” Both Dante and Randal spent a significant amount of time poking fun at customers. They made fun of women that try to find the perfect gallon of milk that they believe will not expire, and Randal’s obscene language offends a male customer, but in reality, they are not superior. Do not think you are above anyone; you are not.
6. You’re responsible for your mistakes.
It seems to be human instinct to point the finger in someone else’s direction when we mess up, but the truth is you are responsible for own bad decisions. “You wanna blame somebody, blame yourself,” Randal says as Dante attempts to blame him for ruining his relationship.