With the rise in social media, it's so easy to put whatever it is that you want out there. There are many positives to this, such as spreading the word on great charities, re-posting helpful marriage advice articles and of course, the meme's.
It's great for sharing our day to day life, documenting the first lawn mow of the year or the amazing meal we just made from Pinterest. It's a good tool to keep grandparents up on the doings on their grandchildren and also to tag your husband in whenever you come across a DIY project that needs to happen, like STAT. It's fun to share photos of friends that we haven't seen in forever and to document exciting events like concerts and weddings. Social media, in and of itself, isn't a bad thing. It's when people use it for inadequate purposes that gives it that negative aura.
Take for instance, bragging. Also known as: showing off, boasting, gloating, crowing, showboating.
Also known as: no one cares.
Yeah, I see your new Mercedes on Facebook. I'll raise you one paid off ten-year-old SUV that still looks pretty good, if I do say so myself. What's that? You bought the whole line of Armani over the weekend? That's nice, I hope it all stays in style. Just the other day, I got a new purse also...the cutest canvas style tote that holds all my stuff and is totally my vibe. Forty eight bucks. I got it at a store that also sells couches, which may seem weird to you, but I kinda like that off-shoot stuff. Not everyone has it, you know?
And yes, I did see your pricey designer shoes. How could I possibly miss them!? Sillygoose, you only posted a photo of yourself wearing them — sole side out! — 39 and a half times. And tagged the designer on every social media platform. And mentioned them in your theatrical detailed caption. We get it. You have feet that need to be covered. We now also get that you are a gasbag braggart.
Profound bragging is just so obscene and gross to me. Especially when there are so many people in need, so many people in the world who don't even know what they will do for their next meal. So much struggle and pain and poverty that some people (definitely not you!) have to endure and deal with every day. And yet, there you go boasting about how much money your hideous designer chandelier cost. I can't tell you the animosity I feel when I scroll through my social media feed and see a post about St. Jude's hospital, and the very next one is from some chick showing me her new Tiffany's jewelry purchase. Bragging isn't cool. It's narrow-minded and unoriginal. And it's just in such poor taste.
It's funny. Those who have worked from the bottom up are usually never flamboyant with their wealth. Some of the richest people I know wouldn't dream of instagramming their car emblem. Some of the even richer people I know are so low-key about it, you'd never guess they were loaded. What's more, they are some of the most fun, interesting and real people I know.
I'm not saying people shouldn't enjoy their wealth, not at all. That is part of The American Dream — making a good living, working hard, enjoying nice things. And shoot, I wouldn't turn down a hundie if offered to me. We all love to be able to take a nice vacation every once in a while, and splurging isn't a sin. I love a quality pair of leather boots just like the next person, but I spend the money on them because of the comfort and sustainability, not so I can showboat and toot my horn. (And can someone please tell me why Uggs are so looked down upon? I constantly get made fun of for my Ugg love — mainly from my nonjudgmental family — but I am Uggs-and-Bikinis all the way, ride or die.)
It's fine to own luxury handbags, and it's fine to be photographed with your expensive purse if you happen to be carrying it the second someone asks to snap a pic. But if you're showing me the coffee you just ordered, there's really no need to "discreetly" place that overpriced LV conspicuously in the same frame. Why not just show me your coffee? Which, if we're being honest, what you are really going for here is pretending to show me your coffee and maybe the manicure you got today but bam! diamond ring, front and center.
Motives. Everyone sees right through 'em.
Boasting about your weekly maid that comes and cleans your house is just so, so very uninteresting. Literally. It's about as interesting to me as all the in-utero fruit-sized babies that grace my Facebook feed. Show me how you work your ass off, volunteer at your child's school, make a house a home and know how to mow a lawn. Now I'm impressed.
It's exhausting playing the game of keep up and show and tell. I was at a dinner once where someone mentioned a vacation they had just gotten back from. Someone else at the table piped in with a lavish vacation that they had just taken last month. And I kid you not, then someone entirely else told us of how he is going on a vacation for three weeks "just because he can." It went back and forth and forth and back with these three people and then a few more joined in and everyone was trying to state their case that their vacation spot was the most extravagant and otherworldly and the one-upping that was going on just about did me in for humanity.
One-upping. Also known as: no one cares.
I mentioned that my family likes to go camping during the summer and you should have seen the looks of pity thrown my way. (I would like to also mention that I don't attend those kind of dinners anymore. I prefer to eat my food sans the salty taste of over-inflated pride, thank you.)
It's like the time Rob and I went to Vegas one year and stayed in one of the nicest hotels on the strip (see here). It was a blast, we felt like high fliers and we had the time of our lives. Things change however, and the next time we were able to make it to Vegas, we ended up staying in probably one of the cheapest most beat down hotels on the strip (see here). It was still a blast, we still felt like high fliers and we still had the time of our lives. Because it didn't matter to us where we stayed, how much our room was, or how many stars our hotel was rated. We had a real good time with real good people and the same real hot sun shined upon us all.
Keeping up with the Joneses? Ppsssshh. More like schlepping it with the Smiths. It's so much more fun, believe you me.
Look. Having nice things obviously doesn't make someone a bad person. But if those things define you, then I'd say you've got a problem. If you feel the need to show off and grandstand with all your stuffs...well then, you have fun with that.
I'll just be over here in my camping chair. With true friends, a warm bonfire and worn-out Uggs.
You know, in the real lap of luxury. *wink