It’s a simple fact really – Macs are outnumbered nine to one.  We will inevitably be forced to interact with those distant, and somewhat retarded cousins of Apple at some point.  We can’t hide from them. They control the libraries, the computer labs, the offices, the confines of hell, the workplace.

What am I talking about?  Windows of course.  But my thoughts might actually surprise you. I’ve been working on a Vista box all week at a design firm, and it’s really not all that bad.  I actually think it’s a huge step up from Windows XP, but that’s not the point of this article.

What I want to talk about is surviving in a windows environment, and more specifically, surviving in an environment with some pretty “passionate” Windows users.  Once word got out that I preferred Apple computers to PCs, the friendly bantering began.  So here’s a guide to kick start a holy war for you… Sun-tzu style.

1.) “First on the battlefield / Waits for the enemy / Fresh”  You have to be ready, and you certainly have to acknowledge that a battle is coming.  If you’ve prepared yourself, you can control the confines of the battle. Whatever you do… DO NOT… admit that you “HATE” windows. No good will come of it.  It’s better to use words like, “prefer” and “enjoy.”  No one can argue those types of answers, and they’ll probably leave you alone after that… and that’s when you strike.

2.) “The Skillful Warrior attacks/ So that the enemy Cannot defend; / He defends / So that the enemy / Cannot attack.”  There’s at least one closet Mac fan in the room, they just don’t realize it yet.  This is what we’d call a “prospective cult of mac member.”  They’re usually the first one to ask “real” questions. They ask about dual booting, running office, and other important questions. Stick to talking points, and don’t get baited into a flame war…  It’s for the best, trust me!  “The skillful warrior/ Stirs / And is not stirred / He lures his enemy/ Into coming / Or obstructs him / From coming./”

3.)”Be sure of victory/ By attacking / The undefended.” Plan an attack where they can’t mount a defence. For me, it was the crapper.  There was a big magazine rack, so I decided to bring in some Macworlds and place them on the rack, at the very front.  Everyone wants something to thumb through, and at least three people would have the luxury of grabbing the first magazine on the rack.  Now, that’s what I call attacking the “undefended.”

4.)The “undefended” will probably be rather “annoyed” that they were attacked during their most personal moment, but they might also be pretty ashamed to admit that they thumbed through the magazine.  If it’s the latter, you’ve won.  If it’s the previous, you’d better be ready to defend your honour, because they’re about to attack you.  Hopefully it’s more intellectual than physical, but you’d best be prepared to defend yourself in either circumstance.  To be safe, I recommend sitting in such a way that you can see anyone coming at you with a used toilet plunger.