Sunday, December 19, 2010

Writing from the Front Lines of Xmas

> rant get

Let me just preface this with a disclaimer: I am part of the problem, not part of the solution. I have multiple China patterns, enough scarves to strangle all the elves at the North Pole (I'm not getting rid of any of them) and I'm a gadget-junkie. I consume too much and give back too little. I'm from one of the most affluent places in the world but I'm broke and I owe the government money. Seriously -- there are people a LOT worse off than me living just a few miles down the road.

So what the hell is wrong with our society? Why do we need to sell 30 different styles of what is basically a long-sleeved T-shirt in 20 different colors, and why do we lose all sense of propriety when the decanter of infinite options runs dry?

I haven't worked a retail position over a major holiday since I was in high school, and -- to be fair -- I think I slept through most of those shifts. As a post-grad living in a major recession, I was thrilled to get a full-time job and start paying off student loans. But people are on the brink of absurdity, and as a person who finds a perverse thrill in the ridiculous I think I'm qualified to say that this is very quickly passing the point of amusement for all parties involved.

For anyone who has ever called the 20-something crowd the "Entitlement Generation," I encourage you to try telling a 50 year-old housewife from Alabama that the top she wanted is not available in Azalea Pink and that she will have to settle for Carnation Pink instead. I double-dog dare you. If I told a 25 year old that they couldn't have a top in Azalea Pink, do you know what they would say? "That sucks." Succinct, to-the-point and largely on-topic. Even most octogenarians would brush it off, mumble about cats/grandchildren/medicare/Florida and move on. But that 40-60 crowd?

What the hell happened to you as children?

> end rant