My Nuts Make Me Better Than You

Last week, we were in the unfortunate position of being in a Target, which I try to avoid, as they discontinued playing music and always only have one checker, despite there being 1200 patrons in the store and 15 lanes. In a stroke of luck, we found some Planters cashews on sale, and curiously, the wholes were the same price as the halves and pieces. Now, listen, I’m not royalty. I don’t toss my bills into the air all devil may care. I’ve spent my life eating halves and pieces like the lower to middle income person I am.


But here was an opportunity–finally–for me to feel superior to everyone, to put a nut in my mouth the way that God intended, whole, not broken, like most of this country. And in a time of unrest and people unemployed and so bored that they look for every opportunity to be offended where no offense was intended, I decided YES this is my moment. My moment to step up that ladder one caste level and taste what I’ve been missing.

To be clear, this was not a short fat can, like short fat poor people. This was a long and lean tin like greyhounds and Windsors and ladies who lunch, despite eating disorders. This was a can of abundance and hope and opportunity. This can was my people, where I truly belonged. No longer was I tossed out “pieces” like a commoner, a prole, a dog begging his master for scraps. Nay! This was the entire brown crescent! Not crushed by the foot of the man, here to oppress me. But untainted, unbroken, uncompromised. And while the image says “lightly salted,” ye who know me know I am nothing if not salty.

I poured out a handful of the beautiful cashews. Now I am important! This is my mink coat! This is my rapper grill, demanding that others affirm my value! Look at me, I have gold chains! My messy past is erased, and now I matter! But guess what? They taste the same. They simply require more labor from you, as they need to be chewed more. And what is the lower class but not the laboring class? Chew, prole, chew. Fatten up, for there is much labor to be done! So many dichotomies. And it occurred to me that I didn’t need whole nuts to feed my self-esteem. The fact was I was eating cashews, and that still made me better than any peon eating peanuts, no? And “peon” literally means Spanish-American day laborer. So there you go. Can we choose to be offended by that? Now, I’ll go one you one better!

Uh-oh! Don’t say that one out loud.

The Price Of A Tall Starbucks Iced Coffee

Only at Starbucks does “tall” actually mean “small” these days. But that’s beside the point. What we have here is a local money trader on the Brazil side of the Venezuela-Brazil border (Brazil has borders with TEN countries). He’s counting out five million Venezuelan bolivares, which is the equivalent of just under $2.50–or enough to grab this mostly -ice overpriced drink at Starbucks.

Nat Geo 11/18

Can you imagine handing over that stack of cash just for a drink that’s not even refillable? Good Lord. Crafty artists have decided to use the currency as a medium, making dogs out of the money and selling them on etsy for $65.


Well, They Were Right About Black Tuesday

Only two weeks after the stock market plummet of Black Tuesday (not to be confused with the upcoming Black Friday), Current Events newspaper was already trying to determine how history would look back upon the crash of the stock market and beginning of what would later be termed The Great Depression.

My Granddad Bill kept this paper from when he was nine years old. Here is the cover of the weekly that was used by students across America.

While the optimism was admirable, they seemed to believe the worst of the effects would be limited to 1929, rather than a depression that would carry them all the way into the second World War. But such is the hindsight allowed in only a handful of days. The Roaring Twenties would roar no more.


Central Park “Hooverville”

Illustrated History of US-Central Park, NY
Illustrated History of US-Central Park, NY

“During the Great Depression, which began in 1929 and lasted approximately a decade, shantytowns appeared across the U.S. as unemployed people were evicted from their homes. As the Depression worsened in the 1930s, causing severe hardships for millions of Americans, many looked to the federal government for assistance. When the government failed to provide relief, President Herbert Hoover was blamed for the intolerable economic and social conditions, and the shantytowns that cropped up across the nation, primarily on the outskirts of major cities, became known as Hoovervilles.”–