I know it’s May when I start thinking about getting a career counselor and fantasizing about being reborn as a bohemian richboi.
Bohemian Richboi: Mid-twenties/early thirties, smart guy, lives in a lovely apartment but has never paid rent. Two Masters deep. Parents: biological Mom & Dad and also The State.
In Spanish: Hijo de papá.
I don’t really want to be a bohemian richboi, of course. I like paying my own bills. I get membership, at least, in one of the biggest but most exclusive clubs on earth: people who pay and have little left over. I am willing to admit that I might only say this because I am brainwashed to believe that there is something to be proud of about having less. It is also possible that I just like having something to tell myself when a BRB annoys me. The truth is that I too want to live in libraries and on bar-stools. I too want to believe that knowing the name Jacques Derrida makes me better than.
“Whatever, at least the money I use to buy beer and say stupid things is mine.”
A man I love often said “No sabe hacer la ‘o’ con un canuto.” We used this idiom for a lot of things. She may be a doctor of Philosophy, but she doesn’t know how to save a file. He may have written 400 pages on Economic Theory, but he doesn’t know how to ask the waiter for the check. She may be this country’s premier Agricultural Scientist, but ya boo has never touched a shovel.
“The conversations of straight white men…” a friend of mine says. He never completes the sentence. We have our own ways of making people small, less about who’s read what and who’s been where than it is about OK, who here has ever wanted or really thought about what that might mean?
I went to Warsaw two weeks ago. I stayed with a stranger who became a friend. On the midnight bus to Ostrobramska we laughed so hard that our ribs hurt and tears jumped from our eyes.
“What’s the best thing about being Polish?” I asked a factory worker on the Vistula River.
“I am proud of being Polish. We are poor but we have fought for our history” my new friend translated.
I may not be a BRG but I do have enough to dip into worlds that aren’t mine and drink wine there.
A thing called “wealth therapy” exists. It’s often geared towards those who have inherited their fortunes. Therapists teach trust fund babies how to overcome the guilt that being part of the 1% creates and how to accept their fortunes and reach their full potentials (note: the BRB and the trust fund baby are not the same but surely they have some things in common). I read an article about group therapy of this type at Central Park. The group must smell very good. Rich people always seem like they’ve just had a shower. There are tiny AC units under their armpits that puff out essential oils at all the right moments. I can’t be the only one who thinks so. One man in the article said that being rich felt like his “dirty little secret.” It is not possible for me to take this seriously.
“He was born, had everything he could ever wish for, and grew up to be successful” is not the sort of story that anyone I know is interested in, but I certainly don’t feel bad for the main character.
Where does rich guilt fall on the hierarchy of shame?
It was May. It ended quickly.
Luv and labor,