Sunday, February 14, 2010

For the Po' Folks

"Now, for some of you it doesn't matter. You were born rich and you’re going to stay rich. But here's my advice to the rest of you: Take dead aim on the rich boys. Get them in the crosshairs and take them down. Just remember, they can buy anything, but they can't buy backbone. Don't let them forget it." -- Herman Blume from Rushmore.

I'm coming clean with a terrible habit I have of disliking and distrusting wealthy people. If you've never been the po' kid, I'm not sure you'd understand. Just as I probably don't understand how hard it would be to be the rich kid (poor little rich kids!).

In all honesty, where I grew up, most kids were the poor kids. We probably only had a handful of rich kids, and even they weren't really all that rich. Remember Napolean Dynamite and that "popular" girl's house? That's about as rich as they got in my town--maybe a touch richer.

Growing up in rural Idaho, we didn't have the disparity of classes as viewed in popular 80s brack-pack movies like Pretty in Pink, or the differences seen in an uber-wealthy private school setting like in Rushmore. But even still, in high school I found myself limiting some of my friendships because they would go out to fast food for lunch, and all I could afford was the 90 cent school lunch.

Nor was I able to afford to go snow skiing more than once or twice a year, and when I did go skiing, I brought my D.I.-discount boots and skis that didn't really fit me all that well. And I wasn't as poor as others, who I'm sure probably do view a bigger dividing class in south-central Idaho. And they never EVER got to go snow skiing, not even with used skis that cut off the circulation to the toes.

And while watching the Winter Olympics last night, Kulani summarized why it is I don't really care a whole bunch about the Winter Olympics.

"It's like watching all the rich kids compete."

He got an "amen" and a head nod from me with that comment.

When I'm watching the downhill skiiers, I think, "Dang! How much money did their parents spend to get them to this level?"

Still, I watch the Winter Olympics, but I don't have a love for them. These are people I just don't relate to. I'm glad for their accomplishments, really. Like I'm glad when I see someone winning an Oscar, or when someone tells me about a new boat they bought. It's nice for them.

And if they're happy, I'm happy.

Like Max Fischer said, I guess the secret is, you've gotta find something you love to do, and then do it for the rest of your life. For some, that's snow skiing. For others, it's a stable job that pays the mortgage and puts food on the table.


Kim said...

We had a VERY similar conversation last night. Ours was more like "Really? These people dedicate their lives to skating really fast or skiing down a hill. 4 years of hard training for ONE race between countries to determine who is the best by fractions of seconds or points?" I don't get it. I thought it was more of a guy thing, but it's totally a rich kid thing too!

Pat said...

More of a guy thing? I don't believe that. There are plenty of women who do the same thing. As a guy who watches no sports whatsoever, I think it's all pretty silly. There's way more to life; like bacon. Bacon I can get behind.

Christensen's Craziness said...

I know what you mean about being poor, although I did not know we were till I was 10 and Mom would not buy me the same unicorn-heart shirt that all the other girls had. But it gives you a better appreciation for things.

Jen said...

Well said and a perspective I, admittedly, had not thought of when watching the Olympics. But, you are right...I skied once in my life when I was 12 and it was in a pair of used skis and boots that probably weren't the right size, length, etc. Ski lessons/training as well as the purchase of regular ski passes absolutely would have been out of the question whereas the kid who just ski'd apparently grew up in Sundance and was Robert Redford's gardner. Now that's not a normal way to grow up!

Garn said...

so that is it? You thought I was rich? Really? Really? You do realize my parents quit dairy farming and became educators... Who is rich now? You know I love you Cindy

go mom go said...

It's not just the money they spent to get to the olympics. What about the time? The family time they must miss out on. The fun and inspirational stories you tell about growing up can't compare to the olympics. Apollo ain't got nuttin' on Cindy Fisher.