My mother, convinced that guests will not enjoy dancing at my vintage-style wedding unless we include “popular” music, proceeded last night to play me a selection of tunes I am fairly certain were written with the purpose of inducing sweaty sexual harassment. Apparently, this is 65-year-old ladies’ jam.
Adventure the First: Here’s Lookin’ at You, Kid
This dude makes me want to have a dinner party, because the idea of serving guests an entrée that stares them down is highly amusing to me.
Adventure the Second: My Two Cents, Literally
Dear Whole Foods:
Two cents off does not a last chance clearance price make. I would humbly suggest that everyone who enters your store donate the two cents saved on that LAST CHANCE! clearance sale to hire a math tutor for whoever does your pricing.
Adventure the Third: Coconuts for You
If you’ve ever seen this Coco Libre sparkling organic coconut water from concentrate and thought, “wow, that sounds disgusting,” you would be correct. Not possessing your power of clairvoyance, I can tell you that this particular product tastes as though a lemon had sex with a coconut, then they stuck the used condom in a can and poured some fizzy water over it.
You – 1
Me – 0
Whole Foods – negative 2, because that two cents off thing is really inexcusable
Loser: The red snapper, because at least the rest of us are alive and not about to served up at someone’s dinner party.
I received a wrong number text today and had a series of reactions. In order:
1) This person should not be using drugs (because I’m judgey like that).
2) Wow, not making sure the number is correct was a dumb move.
3) Hey, I know what “molly” is! I’m like, 90 percent sure I know. I’m hip (do kids still say “hip?”). I understand how kids talk!
It seemed pretty certain that reactions one and three would not be appreciated, so a gentler version of reaction 2 seemed an appropriate response.
I do not understand how kids talk.
There’s a lot of focus on privilege these days, and too often, it’s focused on other people’s privilege. There’s an expression: Check your privilege. It means (I think): “Consider how good you’ve got it.”
At least, that’s what it means in the best of intention. Most of the time it sounds like “Shut up, you’ve had your turn, take a seat.” Frankly, it is among my least favorite expressions. I find it rude and counterproductive.
And not because I disagree that there are plenty of people, myself included, who need to be more aware of advantages they haven’t earned, but because in an instance where a phrase like “check your privilege” is being used, “privilege” is being thrown like a weapon. I don’t find that useful.
And what really gets my goat, burns my biscuits, twists my knickers, takes the jam out of my doughnut, is how often I see the “privilege” grenade being thrown by people who are very privileged.
A few years back, I found myself embroiled in an abortion debate with a group of college friends. A theme of the argument was that the men in the room needed to recognize their privilege and hold their tongues. Understandable, yes, that the women should want the floor on that particular matter. But as the discussion moved to tangential subjects, I couldn’t help but point out the obvious:
We were all, men and women alike, very privileged. We had the standard ones that are always cited: White, cisgender, heterosexual. But we were also all American citizens, able-bodied, college educated (some of us with advanced degrees), employed, mentally capable, etc. etc. people in our early 30’s.
As I see it, many of us have our privilege and we have our disadvantages. I am very privileged in many ways, and less so in others. There are ways in which some people might perceive me as lacking privilege, whereas I can see certain advantages. And it’s good to recognize our own privilege, to recognize when we can use it to serve others, rather than ourselves. And yes, absolutely, many of us need to improve our sense of perspective.
But what is not good is when we start being the privilege police, often based on surface information only. What’s not good is telling someone “what you think is wrong, and you think what you think because of what you are,” rather than asking “why do you think what you do?” or “look at how we’re different”rather than “where can we find commonality?” That abortion debate I mentioned? We all agreed on 95 percent of the points. It was the five percent that escalated things into an ugly argument.
That happens. It happens a lot. And it seems to happen often when we focus our energy on what someone else’s privilege is, and on how that person is misusing or abusing said privilege. It happens when we use someone else’s privilege as a weapon against them, and when we presume the root of someone’s perspective, and say things like “check your privilege,” while overlooking our own, and shut down the opportunity for open discussion.
As this very insightful young lady says, worry about yourself.
This notice was forwarded to me:
U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is continuing its efforts to take back unused, unwanted and expired prescription medications. The DEA invites the public to bring their potentially dangerous, unwanted medicines to one of over 5,000 collection sites around the country that are manned by more than 3,800 of DEA’s tribal and local law enforcement partners this Saturday, April 30th, from 10 am-2 pm local time. This service is free of charge, with no questions asked.
The public can find a nearby collection site by visiting www.dea.gov, clicking on the “Got Drugs?” icon, and entering their zip code into the search window, or they can call 800-882-9539. Only pills and other solids, like patches, will be accepted—the public should not bring liquids, needles or other sharps to take back sites.
How I wanted to reply:
I sell all my leftover prescription drugs to law students or give them friends with teenagers/who don’t have insurance. It’s a good way to make a little extra cash without the tedium of uploading photos of old clothes on to eBay*.
How I actually replied:
Because some people just don’t appreciate sarcasm. More’s the pity for them.
*CMA: Obviously, I don’t actually do that. It would be A) Illegal, B) Stupid and C) Doubly Stupid (in title case) to blog about it. But that needs to be stated for absolute clarification because see comment about people who don’t appreciate sarcasm. I might be a snarky bitch, but I’m an intelligent and law-abiding** snarky bitch.
**I always wear my seatbelt. Even in cabs.
I recently heard about a young man who died falling off a roof at a St. Patrick’s Day party. A college classmate of mine died trying to jump between roofs.
And I couldn’t help but think “what a dumb, pointless way to die.”
I hope I can become the kind of person who doesn’t think things like that. It doesn’t seem terribly magnanimous, or generous in spirit.
Also, I hope I don’t die in really dumb, pointless way.
(What? Personal growth doesn’t happen all at once).