Listen– I like camping as much as the next person. I drink soy lattes, I’ve gone through a few non-meat-eating phases, and I own several pairs of skinny jeans. I listen to Hercules and Love Affair, bring my own bags to the grocery store and turn the lights off when I leave a room. I’m not without my “hip” traits, and I’ll admit it, many of these habits (except for the soy lattes, which I only drink because they’re delicious) have been influenced by the major counter-culture trends of the past few years.
But some people, let’s call them “Life Snobs,” just take themselves way, way too seriously. These people generally congregate in urban, West Coast areas like San Fran, Portland, Denver and Seattle, and they will go out of their way to make it clear to you that their life is better than yours.
Have you ever had a West Coaster try to convince you to move out there? I bet you have. The pitch is always the same:
“Dude, you really don’t strike me as an East Coast person– everyone’s so uptight out there. You should consider moving out to (insert West Coast city). People really take advantage of the daytime here. The weather is better, the people are cooler, and there is just generally less judgment all around. Last weekend I did a decathlon, hauled 23 turkeys to the local soup kitchen, whipped up a tofu casserole for my partner using the basil leaves that I plucked from the spice garden on my windowsill and camped under the stars. Did I mention that the sun now shines out of my ass? It does– it shines right out of my ass. You can have all that and more if you will just shove all of your things in to a Northface backpack– one backpack, that’s all you’ll need!– and relocate.”
Then I say something like,”But what about my job, my house, my friends and my boyfriend?”
And they respond with something like, “These things are all transient. What’s really important is that we get more sunny days here in a month than you get in a year. The weather breeds happiness– you can’t not be happy here.”
But… I’m… kind of happy here… Does that matter?
No, it doesn’t matter to a Life Snob. Unless you shop solely at consignment shops, grow your own produce, work at a non-profit, occasionally moonlight as a yoga instructor and spend your weekends hiking and camping, then you’re really missing out on the beauty of life, the oneness of humanity.
Do you own a TV? You’re out of the cool club.
Have you ever strapped a kayak to the top of your Subaru? No? Out of the cool club.
Don’t get me wrong– I think all these things are great. Green living, hiking, exercise, healthiness, charity, all wonderful things. But you have to have a sense of humor about yourself. You have to accept people who live differently than you do and have different values and priorities, or you’re just as elitist and intolerant as the people you criticize.
There is nothing more annoying and hypocritical than an elitist, evangelical hippie. You want to have a bring-your-own-toilet-paper wedding on the top of a mountain? Fine, but don’t expect everyone to think it’s as cool as you do, because in fact, it’s kind of obnoxious. That’s right– I said it. A mountain wedding can be beautiful, but when you throw a party for friends and family, you at least provide them with toilet paper. Period. If you want to be cool and alternative every other day of the year, that’s your prerogative.
My point is, live how you want to live, but for the LOVE, please stop looking down your nose at people who live otherwise. No one is jealous of you and your top-of-the-line kayak. What, you’re going spelunking in No-Cal this weekend? Awesome, I’m going to sit down at the local diner with a newspaper and have a cheeseburger. Lookin forward to your Facebook pics, tho!