My blog contains a large number of posts. A few are included in various other publications, or as attached stories and chronicles in my emails; many more are found on loose leaves, while some are written carelessly in margins and blank spaces of my notebooks. Of the last sort most are nonsense, now often unintelligible even when legible, or half-remembered fragments. Enjoy responsibly.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Nothing is more Nouveau Riche then a BMW

First of all, a few disclaimers: I understand that we live in a time of plenty in this country. I understand that those generations that came before you worked hard so that you could have the “best” things in life. And yes, I understand that you now want the “best” things in life. Now that that has been said, let’s move on.

Secondly, for those of you that don’t know, Nouveau Riche is a French term, usually derogatory, to describe persons who acquire wealth within their generation, and spend it conspicuously. The implication is that, being of lower- or middle-class origin, these individuals lack the taste to properly use wealth. Frankly, I could care less about your pedigree and overall elegance as long as you can carry yourself in a respectful manner – which very few of our recent generation seem to be able to do.

The warning:

Stop it, just stop it. You aren’t fooling anyone. You are not part of the mega-rich and you are not “old money”. Old money won’t speak to you; old money doesn’t like you. To them, you are nothing more then a snotnosed little brat with a maxed out credit card and no class. The only time Prada, BMW, Gucci, Rolex… will bring you respect is when you are dealing with another Nouveau Riche child. And yes, I’m talking to you.

But I digress to explain.

Old money has been here for a long time and is very comfortable in its daily rituals. It doesn’t feel the need to flash “bling”. It knows that it has money and doesn’t aim to buy the “best” of everything. Instead, it buys what it likes and doesn’t think another thing of it. It’s only the Nouveau Riche who would ever seek out that which someone else has deemed the “best” as the actual “best” and flaunt in lieu of class. What you buy, wear, travel in and display does not make you cool or add in any meaningful way to your level of standing in society. So when you try to act rich your lack of urbanity shines through and you appear, to everyone who is not your lesser, as someone who has a little bit of money and spends it on shiny things to amuse their little mind.

And now I’ll regress.

My parents did a wonderful job of instilling a sense of self-pride and refinement in me at a very young age. I value respect, civility and real substance over impressing you. I do not feel the need to buy things to increase my standing or pretend that I was not born into a different class then I was. And for that I thank them and hope that your own children see through your parade of distractions to the substance and class that still lurk down deep in your soul.

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