So, this morning I walked into my office building, and two nice ladies who work for the company that runs the place stood near the elevators, handing out candy from several large buckets. Loving all things Halloween I was utterly charmed, and I thanked them as I chose a small package of Whoppers. The elevator doors opened, and a coworker and I entered. As the doors began closing a woman took her sweet-ass time getting on the elevator, infuriatingly causing the doors to re-open.
After the doors closed, she turned to my coworker (who obviously doesn’t know her), and the following exchange took place:
Her (Looking at the candy bars in her hand.): Pssh! They’re handing out candy!?!
Him: (Friendly, but uninterested.) Heh, yeah.
Her: Really… Halloween used to be just for kids!
Her: (Derisively) Now adults need to get candy!
Her: (Dismissive sigh.) It’s the Baby Boomers, you know? They’re spoiled rotten.
Her: Well, at LEAST I got a couple of candy bars.
Ladies and gentlemen! For your edification and amusement… THE REASON THE TEA PARTY EXISTS! “I am entitled to perks and hand-outs, but no one else is. I deserve them, because I am good and virtuous; others do not, because they are lazy, indulged, and evil.”
First of all, and as I sneered to my coworker when Ms. Picky got off the elevator, “She doesn’t think Halloween should be celebrated by adults, and yet she’ll help herself to some free candy. Jesus, screw you lady!”
Secondly, as a social critic, I always try to keep two things in mind before I let fly about a perceived social transgression.
1. Is it worth getting upset about (i.e., is it causing harm, or am I simply attempting to elevate my status by being nasty)? This is why I don’t snipe about gluts of genre fiction, or music I may dislike, but which others seem to enjoy because, for instance, they are children or teenagers, or simply haven’t spent the years I have exploring music’s many nooks and crannies. I honestly do not give a crap if people listen to Taylor Swift. Tom Waits still exists.
2. At base, de gustibus non est disputandum. You may be smart. You may have exquisite taste. You may be right to criticize a piece of work that fails on its own merits. But, my friend, ultimately, you change nothing by being a jerk. Especially a hypocritical jerk. Do you want to educate people, or do you want to alienate them away from the things you love? Yes, yes, I know many folks get off on being jackasses, and believe that sharing a good thing somehow diminishes it. Such individuals are as useful to the artists and things they claim to support as a case of hemorrhoids.
Seriously, fuck that woman, and anyone else who thinks Halloween is only for kids.