Friday, June 06, 2003

The Myth of Upkeep

For some reason, in this country, there's a prevailing notion that people who are rich, intelligent, beautiful, or exceedingly fit were born that way and shall remain that way indefinitely with little to no intervention.

It's pretty ridiculous, really. I couldn't even begin to count the number of stupid comments I've overheard or received that center around this notion. It kind of reminds me of that old shampoo commercial where the guy tells his friend to use Selsun Blue or Denorex or whatever dandruff shampoo it is; and his friend says "But you don't have dandruff!"; and he replies with an annoying "BINGO!" (usually accompanied by a mock pistol-shoot or other asinine gesture...). Yeah, duh, you fool--I don't have dandruff because I have the presence of mind to suds up my eczema-ridden baklava-flaky excuse for a scalp with freaking Selsun Blue every day. You might want to consider doing the same if getting laid is of any consequence to you whatsoever.

I digress.

Let me offer some other examples of this strange phenomenon. People say them to me often, simply because I am so very rich, intelligent, and beautiful. Or maybe just because they're all morons. Could go either way.

"But your hair is such a beautiful color! Why do you want to have it colored?" (Because the "beautiful color" comes out of a bottle, silly!)

"You don't have any wrinkles, yet! Why do you want to buy anti-wrinkle cream?" (See the word "anti-" preceeding the word "wrinkle"? Take a short course in Latin roots. Maybe then you'll understand the word "anti-" when used to describe a preventative measure.)

"Your eyebrows are just so lovely. Why would you want to pluck them?" (The "loveliness" comes from the careful removal of unsightly extra hairs. If you'd prefer I look like Brooke Sheilds circa 1986, that could be arranged...)

"You already have so much education! Why would you want more?" (You're right. Let me go sit in a dark room and experience sensory deprivation for an extended period of time. That's the best follow-up to getting any sort of formal education!)

"But you've got plenty of money. Why do you need to clip coupons/shop sales/buy a used car?" (Money grows on trees, you know.)

This one is perhaps the scariest, although sadly, it hasn't been uttered at me in some time. I just overhear it and sigh audibly: "But you're so thin! Why do you need to eat salad/go running/lift weights/count calories?" (As if achieving "thinness" automatically qualifies one for a lifetime of Big Macs in unlimited quantities and a couch cushion permanently imprinted with one's butt...)

People just don't seem to understand or recognize the cause-and-effect relationship. It's as though they just see something they covet, and automatically assume that they just were unfortunate enough to have called in sick on the day it was issued. Upkeep, people, upkeep! Sure, some people were lucky enough to have been naturally blessed with an attribute others desire. But that doesn't mean that they spend their entire lives sitting back and reaping the reward that X has afforded them. They keep the attribute because they're savvy enough to do so.

Gaw! Stop whimpering about what you've been deprived of and start making some progress towards it!

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