I Don't Like Rich People
Though I don’t think they should be hunted for sport.
Every so often I hear a song that immediately takes me back to another time and place. Some people get the same result from smells, but since I haven’t been able to breathe through my nose since the summer of 1990, I only have music.
I recently heard some crappy dance song from waaaaay back in the day. It transported me back to college. (I immediately craved pizza and felt like taking a nap in a TV lounge while skipping accounting class.)
I was at a commerce society social event one night. Despite my obvious super coolness, my buddy and I got there a bit early. There may have been twenty or so of us in the smallish house.
We were in the room with the bar when I saw a girl. She had reddish hair. Long. Plaid skirt.
I wasn’t much for the cold call approach back then.
Or, well, now.
But, I walked up and took a seat next to her. She had been turned the other way, chatting with friends. She turned to me and I said…
“Hi,” she replied.
“Is that all you have?” she asked cutely.
“I like your skirt.”
“Really? It’s a [some designer name maybe]”
“I have no friggin’ idea what that is,” I said.
She found that charming and turned her entire body around to chat with me.
And we chatted for like an hour.
In that time I found out that she was smart, even prettier close up, funny, athletic, charming as hell…
And somehow the last point ruined it for me.
I’m not entirely sure why.
We ended up going out to a bar (Liquor Dome, maybe?) as a group. And we danced and hung out some more. She dragged me around by the hand and introduced me to everyone she knew. But, something about her just seemed off-putting.
Her boyfriend showing up later in the evening didn’t help things. Though once I met him, I knew that I could steal her if I had wanted to.
College was a bit of a culture shock for me in general.
In my town there were people who had more money than others. But, the gap between upper and lower classes wasn’t nearly as wide. At home, “rich” meant that you had a slightly bigger house and a newer car.
One of my first days in college, I was chatting with a dude that lived next door. He mentioned that his mother “only” made about 150K a year as some kind of lawyer in Vancouver. And his dad made about a million and a half a year as “an importer/exporter.”
This guy figured that the average lower class Canadian family made about 100K a year.
I couldn’t decide if I wanted to punch him or pat him on the head.
I opted for the classic, “Are you out of your fucking mind?”
He turned out to be a pretty nice guy, but the money thing oozed from him a bit. It probably kept me from becoming close friends with him.
It’s definitely not an inferiority thing though.
I think it was just a lack of common experiences.
Rich friend: “I had to trade in my year old Beemer this past weekend for a newer model.”
Peter: “Dude, I had to go parking in a Ford Ranger. With a stick shift!”
The way I’m wired, it is unlikely that I’ll ever be rich. And, if I ever made a lot of cash, I’d probably just trade it for magic beans anyway.
I probably shouldn’t have slept through all of those accounting classes.