Every now and again, I stumble across an article so terrible that I can’t help but shake my head and look out the window, subconsciously wondering if I’d be one of those unfortunate random people who accidently survive an eight-story fall. On those days, I like to order a couple cyanide pills with my coffee. The baristas laugh and I look to the street, wondering if a sympathetic bus driver might do me a quick favor.
Today is one of those days.
A friend from Oakland posted an article about how some girl had decide that she wasn’t going to pretend to be poor, no matter how much more acceptance she’d find in what must be her day-to-day interactions, and damn it, the article is hilarious in the most frustrating way.
Now, I can’t lie—she’s not the worst writer. In fact, she’s probably better than me. I could probably chalk that up to her expensive out-of-state education she so eloquently apologizes for, but that would be jumping the gun. It isn’t her writing that’s ridiculously offensive. It’s simply her main point in general and how she goes about making it.
To begin with, let’s skip the Mulberry bit and move right into the cashier’s glare. Somehow I don’t quite believe that the cashier is glaring at the author because of her extreme wealth as much as the cashier is pissed another person is in line. To loosely quote Randall from Clerks, “This job would be great if it weren’t for all the customers.” Beyond that, I wasn’t aware that Diet Coke was a clear-cut sign of class superiority, but I am glad that the author was willing to educate me on that one. From now on, every time I see someone refill a 64 oz. thermos with Diet Coke, I’ll know that I’m standing next to a deferential individual who should be treated as such. Of course, I won’t see that here in New York—we’re too class conscious. Moving right along…
So the cashier ignored the author huh? Who cares? She lives in the West Village. Has she ever walked around her neighborhood? Ignoring people is a way of life in New York. Deal with it. If I had a nickel for every time I’d been ignored, I’d be able to live in the West Village too. At least she walked out feeling like a turd, so that’s something.
From what I can gather, it was apparent that both the clerk and the customer in front of the author were being “that obvious.” If they’d known she had purchased her bag at 70% off, I’m sure they would have greeted her like an old friend. Instead they can, “fuck right off.” There’s nothing wrong with that. But if they can fuck right off, so can you, right? What’s the big deal?
“I am sorry that I was born into great financial circumstances and my father likes to provide for me.” We’re also very sorry for you. Feel better yet?
Next, she goes into a diatribe about how there’s a certain amount of tact you have to show around people who can’t buy expensive things. If there’s one thing that’s clear, this girl knows tact. Should we judge her for being able to showoff her wealth? Maybe not. Should she judge a cashier for not happily responding to her, “have a great day?” Maybe not. Instead she calls us “petty,” “bitter,” “unhappy,” and reflecting our own “misery” with our nasty glares. Nothing judgmental about that.
She then starts talking about how fortunate she was to be raised alongside billionaires before letting us know that her parents bought her clothes at Old Navy and food from McDonalds, which I assume is her way of trying to relate to the poor. I mean, she didn’t even know she was wealthy as a kid! But then she follows it up by saying she’s not, “one of those people who try to be poor to relate to people,” thereby rendering her statements about Old Navy pointless. She uses disgusting twice in the second to last paragraph, both times in reference to the behavior of those who vilify her financial status. I can’t argue against that. If there’s one thing poor people know how to do, it’s disgusting. Thanks for putting me in my place.
I’m not even going to touch the “damn fairy” line.
Finally, she reaches her conclusion: “What I’m saying is that it should not be made into a spectacle that there are differences in income.” Apparently she’s unaware just how different incomes are in this country. Is she aware that we currently have the largest income gap since the Great Depression in this country, and the trend is actually increasing the disparity? If we shouldn’t make a spectacle of it, what should we do? Smile and pretend that our lives aren’t quite as peachy-keen as hers?
Rachel Sacks, I don’t think you have anything to worry about. The thing is, pretending you were poor wouldn’t work anyway. You don’t know what it’s like, and how could you? You’re rich, game over. It’s like that song Common People from Pulp. “If you call your dad, he could stop it all.” Don’t act poor—I doubt you’re a good enough actress. But don’t give us shit for not giving a flying fuck about what you think, especially when you’re making a point of not giving a flying fuck about us. Good luck and God bless.