People who know themselves and are secure with themselves let the Joneses keep up with them.
Hola. ¿Qué tal? I had a conversation the other day with my neighbour and this article is a close transcription of that conversation as I remember it. My neighbour is a local teacher at the college/university level. I asked her how her classes were going. She said: Don’t even ask!! These students I have are so stupid!! What is wrong with people today? (That sounds like me). She continued: People are getting dumber. (Absolutely. That should not be noticias/news to anyone who’s been paying attention). Some people have already dropped out of my class and I expect many to fail. They can’t do the most basic assignments I ask them to do. (She was very worked up about it.)
Then we changed the subject and she was telling me about las chicas that she’d been dating lately. Ugh. That’s a story! She’s been meeting some “unique” (that’s being polite) females. She said: All I’m able to meet are shallow and superficial people. They’re not interested in me as a person. They’ve been asking me what kind of car I drive, what kind of home I have, what kind of job I have, they’ve asked me about my clothes, my shoes, where I get my hair cut, where I go shopping and where I shop for food, etc. They’re so concerned about my wealth or lack thereof, they’re materialistic, status-symbol-oriented and they’re so self-centered and self-entitled with their “it’s all about me, me, me, give me attention” way of thinking that they possess. (Oh, not good.) I said: Well, it does sound like you’re dating the wrong people. She said that las chicas she’s been dating have been so corporate-oriented, like the New San Francisco. There’s nothing alternative about them. She said one of them said to her, “I like being seen at corporate chain stores and luxury stores.” She felt like asking: Why? She said she didn’t know how to respond to that other than she was thinking to herself: But who at those stores knows you that it would matter to them that you’re there? As she said (and as I’ve written in the past), corporations are ruining this planet in case one hasn’t noticed (or chooses to live in denial about that), so whenever possible I don’t support corporations or corporate/big box chain stores of any kind. Personally, I support worker-owned cooperatives whenever possible. For those who don’t know, with worker-owned cooperatives la plata/the money stays in the community and the workers in the store own their own store and there’s no “employer,” “boss” or CEO. One of the many problems with corporate chain/big box stores is that they put small, independent stores and businesses out of business.
I asked her: Well, what do las chicas talk about mostly when you’re together? She said to me while raising her noise in the air, “Well Dahling, they’re all about luxuriating and luxury this and luxury that. It has to be about luxury Dahling.” She ended her little skit with a loud laughter outburst. Her skit was funny the way she did it.
She said: They’re so damn shallow and superficial. I asked her if she was able to get to know the person inside at all? She said, “Hell no, they don’t even know who they are themselves so how can they tell me who they are?!” (Valid point.) “There’s nothing there with these people I’ve been meeting. They’re empty and cold inside. I was thinking to myself: You mean, “lobotomised?” That’s how I describe them. She said: They don’t know who they are. Some of them act like they have at least two personalities. They act one way on one date and another way on the next date as if they’re two different people inside the same person. (Loca./Crazy.) She said: At the rate these dates have going, I only take about two dates with any of them and that’s a struggle. And half the time we’re together on a date they’re playing with their phone and focused on that and not even paying attention to me. I went to dinner with one of them and she was on her phone the entire time. I sat there staring at the walls, my plate, the other people in the restaurant and ate quietly while she spent the time texting and scrolling (Related: ZDNET – Smartphones are transforming society into a sea of stupid). She didn’t eat any of her dinner. Then when we were ready to leave (or at least I was), I asked her if she was going to get her dinner “to go,” she said “no, just throw it away.” I said with frustration: You’re throwing perfectly good food away? I asked the server to make her’s “to-go” and she got offended at that and said she didn’t want another date with me. I said: Fine. It’s mutual. You’ve spent this date with your phone. Then on another date my neighbour said she got so frustrated with una chica that she asked: What are you doing on your phone? Lining up the next date before you’re done with ours? (Oh, that’s good!) I asked her: How did she respond to that? She said: She didn’t say anything. I don’t think she ever heard me. That rude-assed bitch was too busy on her phone.
My neighbour concluded: I think I’ll just accept being single because this dating work is like having a second job without pay. It’s just too much damn work. I don’t have the time or patience for it considering the people out there.
I said: Yes, it’s very tough. She said she thinks in major part it’s because of what San Francisco has become. And I agree with her. She blames this on the (what I call) the new Corporatist, Conservative, Lobotomised Techie San Francisco. She said in frustration: It’s so difficult to meet people who are not like that these days especially the way this city has changed. I didn’t even ask them about it, but some of these females made sure I knew what kind of car they drive. They made a point of me knowing that. I don’t care what they drive or if they drive. I don’t care that they drive some big, black, status-symbol SUV. I said: Oh those, the ones that look sort of like a hearse. She laughed and said: Yes, those. (Pause). Yeah, you’re right, they do sort of look like a hearse don’t they? LOL. I said: Yeah, all they’re missing is that little metal squiggly thing on the sides that you see on the hearse parked outside of funeral homes. We both laughed. She said: That’s appropriate then because the people I’ve been dating are basically dead zombies inside so they’re certainly driving the right vehicle. I said: Sí claro. Yes, the Land of Living Dead. Indeed. Chau.—el barrio rosa