Today, Darwin and I have had a very yuppie kind of day. We spent a while sitting in our expensive glider chair, listening to classical music, reading The Economist out loud, drinking an eggnog latte. In Ravenswood Manor, around the corner from the Governor. With our Honda Accord sitting out back in our spiffy off-street parking. If anyone described someone’s life like that, I would decide immediately I did not like that person. How could I have anything in common with them? Oh wait, that person is me. It’s kind of amazing that it is me, in my “Punkin Chunkin” t-shirt (if you do not know about Punkin Chunkin, click here or here immediately and find out more!), with giant plastic peace sign earrings in my jewelry box (and feeling strange just owning a jewelry box), and a love of Miracle Whip. It reminds me of a Bloom County cartoon, where a guy is sitting at a bar telling Steve Dallas about how he self-published a book called “The American Rich: Forgotten Financial Fascists,” made a mint, and saved “$91,000 last year with Reagan’s tax cut.” In the last pane, he ends with a crazed expression, shaking Steve and yelling “What’s a liberal to do?!” What, indeed. Count my blessings. Give back what I can. Be nice to people, no matter who they are. Raise a child to do the same, and more (no pressure, Darwin).
The fact that I still find things to complain about will always be there. The counter space in our kitchen is too small, the glider chair has a small “bump” in the rock if you go too far back, the organic lettuce I bought goes bad more quickly than the other kinds. Apparently Barack Obama had the same problem when he tried to identify with Iowans by saying “Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately and seen what they charge for arugula?” It’s like that Joe Walsh song “Life’s Been Good to Me,” where he says “I can’t complain, but sometimes I still do.” Maybe it’s human nature, or maybe it’s just the nature of those who have always had it pretty easy. But I hope that realizing that I have it pretty good will ensure I don’t get all entitled, and will hopefully assuage some of my liberal guilt.
And, hopefully sitting reading The Economist together and listening to Mahler will offset all the braincells I invariably kill in Darwin’s little head by watching Regis and Kelly some mornings, and singing “When It’s Time to Change” by the Bradys almost every time I change his diaper.