Buckle up kids!
It’s time for the further adventures of, “Back in my day.”!
This time, Gentle Reader, I’m sharing with you a short list of recently introduced ludicrous rituals that spring from unearned, over the top wealth, and the resulting near-French Revolution level of conspicuous consumption.
Nouveau riche, parvenu, arriviste, they all mean the same thing; people who have recently come by indecent amounts of money and want the whole world to know how very wealthy, classy, and flat-out better they are than everyone else.
It’s not new. The Biltmore Estate, and much of Providence Rhode Island was built during the Gilded Age (1870s-1900) as a big fat, middle finger to old, historic families by newly monied titans of industry and robber barons.
Nowadays many of the new breed are social media and reality television stars. And like every permutation of financial upstarts, subtlety and discretion are considered dirty words—what’s the use of being rich if you don’t show off?
The complete lack of humility, and any sense of shame, does though, seem to be a new concept that is directly related to the interwebs.
Image is everything, and if it isn’t gorgeous, or impressive, or shiny enough, then they manipulate and stage their live’s until it is. One’s social media presence must announce to every eye that views it that this person is richer, chic-er and more loved than you can ever hope to be. So, a whole slew of holidays and celebrations tangentially connected to life events have been contrived to prove it.
Promposals. This is asking someone to the high school prom. But this isn’t the time-honored meet-up at the locker of your intended date and bashfully, adorably asking them out.
No, this must be a production worthy of Busby Berkeley, complete with setting, props and co-stars which is of course filmed and then shared online so others may feel dumb, dull, and underserving of love in any form.
Weddings have become six-figure extravaganzas that are complete failures if they don’t make every other couple swoon with envy. It’s tough to pick one item from such a self-involved cornucopia but among body shaming bridesmaids, mandatory, color-based dress codes for guests, and the obscenity that is the unfrosted wedding cake is one particularly pretentious trend; the choreographed dance.
It’s not enough to eat bad chicken dinners, wear uncomfortable clothes and purchase a gift that costs more than your first car, no, you and seven other sad sacks have to rehearse for weeks in order to get up in front of two hundred people and gyrate awkwardly for ten minutes to “Shake It Off”. Or worse yet, watch your boss do it. Try looking him in the eye on Monday morning after that nightmare.
Sorry, Brunhilda. I gave up enough for your big day. There’s no way I’m shaking my arthritic, uncoordinated, money-maker for you as well.
Fact: everybody that ever had a baby feels like they are giving birth to the most important, special child to ever walk the earth. But that’s ok, because every baby should be born into a family that feels that way.
But, here’s the thing; the world isn’t holding their breath to find out if it’s a boy or girl. And a gender reveal party with (sometimes literal) explosive announcements of the news is something only the parents really give a rodent’s hind parts about.
A push present is a gift the father of the newborn gives to the mother.
You know what Joseph gave Mary? He let her sit on the donkey on the way home, instead of walking next to it.
Thanks for your time.
Contact debbie at firstname.lastname@example.org.