Dumps a cow hurts
5 things & comma; the only bad teens understand about poverty
Unless you have experienced it, you cannot understand poverty. Not really. Mentally you put yourself in the shoes you want, but it's nearly impossible to imagine what's beyond the surface point of "I have no money - I sure wish I don't." But the problems that poor people face are so much deeper. Especially If you are a teenager who is already trying to survive the five year onslaught of demon juice, that makes you question in your own existence in the first place. Just adding poverty to their already towering heaps of horseshit makes it so much worse.
I have an immense amount of sympathy and respect for the children because, for the most part, they are in a situation that they cannot control. They just have to clench their teeth and ride until they are old enough to take the reins themselves. In the meantime, they have learned a few things about poverty that the average American will never understand. For example...
# 5. That it probably can not help smelly kid in school
Notice that scene in Willy Wonka [or] in which Charlie finds some money on the street, and then spends it on candy because he's a little selfish pig? In an actual impoverished family there would be a lot less "shouldn't you find that ticket you're selling" and a whole lot more "bought you fuck." What?! We were out of the milk for a week! We have been wiping our asses on old newspapers and blood to keep up the business for sale! "We are made of sugar, butter and eggs and bread ..."
The remaining hour or so that the movie would only have that list, and nowhere in this aggravated rant would you hear the word "deodorant." Because if you are hurt for the essentials, deodorant is a luxury. So is curd soap. The average person doesn't put too much thought into what job does - you only buy because you know you need it. But when you're poor, the whole soap industry is a cruel, ridiculous joke. It is a type of soap for your body. Another one for your hair. A soap specially made for dishes. Another one for the laundry. In the eyes of a poor man you've got hand soap on the bathroom sink, you might as well be Bill Gates.
So many poor households, there are two types of soap: a bar that you can use for your ass and hair, and a thick butt container of the cheapest bowl of soap you can find for dishes and laundry. Because 40 ounces of cheap laundry dish soap costs about five times more than an equal amount of cheap soap. What you don't know until you've lived through ghetto laundry is that laundry detergents with some type of perfume are supposed to smell - or at least with chemicals, are specially designed to eliminate Step Funk. Dish soap is not. So with that, "clean clothes still smell funny".
There's also a pretty good chance that you won't own a washer and dryer. When I was a kid, A Gathering would be at the beginning of every month. An almost supernatural migration of the poor who had only cashed their welfare checks and now had between two weeks and a month's worth of laundry to make up in the laundromat. Laundromats are hygiene prostitution: expensive and scary sticky so you don't go very often. In many cases, you find yourself digging the least dirty outfit out of the shackles because it'll be a week before you can afford to go back and clean your clothes again.
So now you've done your laundry, but you've used all of your dish soap in the process. Your clothes still smell kind of weird, but it's better than what it was. Now your dishes are piling up because you won't have money to buy soap until you've paid again. The longer they sit, the worse they smell. You haven't changed the garbage in a couple of days because it's not full yet, and if you're poor, you learn to waste Nothing - not even a simple garbage bag. The shit box cat needs changed, but litter is up Very far at the bottom of the budget's list of priorities. There's a pretty good chance at least one member of your household smokes. And it doesn't take long for everyone to work their way around the house and in your favorite Nickelback shirt. The strange makes the shirt far more Nickelback than it was when you first bought it.
The worst part is: you know how when you stop on perfume or cologne, you smell it after about 30 minutes? The same thing happens with funky stink smells. You go to school, you smell nice, but your classmates start to think about crying from 50 feet away. Before you know it, you are mercilessly mocked and you have no idea why.
And the argument of "clean your house and take a shower" doesn't always solve the problem. All showers what you want - if you've got deodorant, you'll start to smell like sweat in a few hours. If you don't have chemicals to clean your home then you are just wiping things down with a wet rag that doesn't do shit for the stink. And don't even start with that "they're just too lazy to clean up" bullshit. I mentioned in this article that 91 percent of government benefits are for the disabled, the elderly, and households work walk. Of those who have the ability to clean, many of them work two part-time jobs a day while their children spend eight hours at school and another three hours on homework. Each piece is as exhausted as their income.
# 4. Their looks are based on your parents' artistic ability
Tees were the bane of my life when I was a kid. For a payment is out of the question, so you have to get it at home. Mom could never get my hair even on both sides, so I saw someone pinning a wig on my scalp. Dad would do it if he was deep, 30 beers, so I looked like Moe The Three Stoogeswould come out. If your parents suck at the cutting of their hair, then expose you to the shit for as long as possible. Fuck fashion, the is why many of the poor kids have long hair or buzz cuts. If you've ever seen a poor man come to school with a completely bald head, it means that either his mother fucked up the hairstyle so badly that it was less humiliating just to shave, or he got head lice and she didn't do that Shampoo could afford to kill so she set her head on fire.
And you can't just throw some mousse into a bad haircut and make it all lace up how you should go for that shaggy rock star look. Remember the deodorant what I do just talking about fucking? Hair care products are also further down the necessities list. They could also be sandwiched between "new Porsche" and "the awesome spinny blade thing of." Krull."
Your parents' artistic ability also determines how you look from your neck down. Dresses are poor so either you have to be good with wearing jeans that have been in style since your mother's hymen was intact, or you hope she knows how to spruce them up with dye or scissors or some kind of work of art, that makes you look like a grunge, alternative rebel.
Sometimes, as was the case when I was in high school, the world decides to pull his unlubed fist out of your asshole just long enough to give you a breather. My breather came in the form of heavy metal and eventually the grunge era, and it felt gorgeous. Holey, ripped-up jeans had come into vogue, and that meant that every single shitty pair of pants I obsessed with wasn't embarrassing to wear after all. The heavily colored ones were also great. In fact, the more tainted and evil they were, the better they looked ... and trust me, I was nuts-deep in evil-tainted pants. Good luck sleeping with that picture in your head tonight.
Again, my mother's artistic talent came into play, but this time it was a good thing. She knew how to get ripped jeans fight right so they don't look like I had just stabbed her a few times with a steak knife in a fit of anger ... which I actually did. She also knew that if you added just the right amount of bleach to the wash, it would make the jeans kind of stonewashed look difficult. Shut up, it was in style at the time.
Surprisingly, the artistic touch had a practical impact. When I got into high school I grew really tall really fast so most of my jeans were about three inches short. But I found that if you cut holes in them, the weight of the denim makes those ripping, making your legs artificially longer. So after being polished up with scissors and fits of insane giggles, all of my old little jeans were back on the market. And believe me, in the 1990s, ladies loved men in tiny ripped-up jeans.
Well, not when I wore them, but when the other guys did.
But as lucky as I was that the grunge era looked acceptable as a walking flea market, there were some pretty serious downsides. And that's because ...
# 3. Fads can destroy your ability to buy clothes.
Grunge has been a blessing and a curse. The upside was that we already owned most of the stuff that was more popular. We were always covered in flannel shirts because the dollar store sells them for a few dollars so we'd get tons of those for Christmas. Old shoes, combat boots, army jackets ... all that stuff came from Goodwill, Salvation Army, and flea markets. And if all else fails, you might as well put on dad's work clothes and fit them in.
But once this fad, holy shit kicked in, our shopping got fucked up practically overnight. The price of washcloths jumped a piece up to $ 40. Boots and thermal undershirts that cost as much as that high-priced preppy, sporty shit that the rich kids wore a few years earlier to combat. And it wasn't just a case of everything becoming more expensive. It was a little stranger at work.
We look at goodwill and portable toilet paper because we shopped had . When crappy clothes came into style, everyone else started shopping there because of them wanted . Since middle and upper class kids had the money to buy "new" clothes, they flooded the stores and bought all the good things. Which meant the shitty stuff back then? It's still hard to get it right in my head, even after all these years. The point is that they bought the clothes that were now in style.
Your family is now on the same clothing budget, which means you only go shopping once a year (when you get your tax return). So by the time you have a chance to buy new things, it's like going to a Thanksgiving dinner in January. All that's left is bones, mold, and the corpses of those who just don't have what it takes to hold it tight.
Now you have to find new places to shop, because even my parents, who couldn't give a damn about how we dressed, were like, "No, we didn't buy that. They couldn't even wear this shit with impunity. Your ironic Classmates burned out of sheer conviction and they would be justified. " Garage sales excluded, the next cheapest place to shop for clothes was Walmart. But even then, you would be able to buy a pair of jeans for every five you might have bought from Goodwill.
But wait, it gets worse. Because if you combine the three points I was just talking about it ...
# 2. It is almost impossible to make friends
Because of the crappy clothes and bad smells and the terrible hairstyle, you are ostracized at school. Not just from ordinary tyrants, either. I don't think I'm surprised anyone can be assholes by saying kids, but it gets so much worse when they want to look fun and nervous in front of their friends, and then go through with it.
You may not comprehend the idea that you are not making a choice to look and smell like that. They see you as a lazy, stinky asshole who never showers and doesn't give a shit like he looks. You can't explain to them that it's out of hand because (1) that would be degrading to fuck, and (2) they still don't understand it. You can't. You have never experienced this before. You will never understand what it is like to see three dollars as a saving grace. To have to replace "shampoo" with "chicken" on your priority list. So they make fun of you and that shit hurts you may not believe it. You go away, wanted to die.
But even if you're lucky enough to get hygiene products, you still have trouble making friends because you can't afford to go with them. I can't even begin to explain how embarrassing it is to turn down simple things like a trip to the bowling alley or a night at the cinema because the only path you could go is if one of your friends pays your shit. It gets so humiliating that eventually you, who are just starting to make excuses as to why you aren't leaving, and eventually you just jump off as an antisocial prick.
So one ends up curdling with other poor people because they understand what it is that poor people have to do with activities - cards, campfires, lies about cow butts. And don't get me wrong here; I'm not saying that impoverished friends are real friends. But they always came with a disadvantage, unfortunately common.
In my experience, many of the households were stressed to the point of tearing. So much so that it made it almost impossible to visit more than a few minutes at a time. Dad is coping with the stress of beating beer. At least two people in the house are constantly arguing. Since you are a guest, they feel like they have to feed you, but they don't have the resources, so stress and guilt piles up. It doesn't take long to feel like a burden even when all you did was stop in to say hello. Eventually, you find out that there is just less headache staying at home.
After a few years of that, you will finally come to the end of that terrible, shitty time. Graduation is just around the corner if you haven't already been eliminated. You are finally able to start your own "doing something that rich" career and fix this shit so your own kids never get away with it. And that's when you find out the worst of them all ...
#1. You are expected to continue leading the family tradition of the poor
One thing that has always driven me crazy is seeing that some rich daddy's boy inserted it into a high paying, high profile post. In the words of immortal Mike Patton, "it shouldn't bother me. No, it shouldn't. But it does." Funnily enough, the easiest place to see this in action is in professional wrestling. Here is Charlotte, daughter of Ric Flair, who holds the WWE Divas Championship title after just two months at the show:
And everyone knows The Rock was and is still an occasional WWE wrestler. But if you're not a wrestling fan, you may not know that he is actually a third generation performer. Both his father and grandfather were well-known wrestlers, and his grandmother was a sponsor. In fact, instead of putting it all away, here is a huge list of wrestlers who are related.
Well, I'm not saying they aren't talented and they don't deserve their spots - a lot of these people are insane good at what they do. What I'm saying is that people are often overlooked that they have something a lot of poor people don't have: someone to teach them a specialized, money-making skill and relatives or friends who know the right contacts to get their foot in the door .
When I was growing up, the people in my family who made the most money were in oil refineries or actual oil fields. They made big money, but they also worked 80 hours a week and were so tired when they got home it couldn't work. The other family members (those who had jobs) were all handicraft factory workers or cashiers in various shops and gas stations. The skills they had were very limited, and the contacts they had made were for jobs that barely paid enough to survive and often had no benefits at all. No sick days. No holidays. No insurance. "John, this is my manager, Chad. He's going to be interviewing for a position cleaning shit smeared off the bathroom walls. It's worth nine dollars a year."
My mother was on welfare for a large part of our lives, and when she finally started working it was paid under the table as a housekeeper. For those of you this makes it too young to understand what it means, she was paid in cash and not taxed on it. So even if they taught me their cleaning skills (which they did) I would still be in trouble because I thought it was perfectly normal to just report pocket cash and not income.
But the general thing that I, and a lot of people like me, learned from what our parents knew: You apply for the easiest to get, and just be happy that you even have a job, no matter what it is. It took 35 years to break that mindset, and when I finally escaped it, people were shocked. She patted me on the back and told me what a great job I did, how I hit the lottery or something.
Unfortunately "hitting the lottery" is the way it appears because breaking out of that eternal buttfucking is a real rarity. If you're poor, let me tell you something that the rest of the world doesn't. You can absolutely break out of this prison. It is not easy. In fact, it's the hardest I've ever done, but it's absolutely doable. Instead of starting to think all the time, exertion, exhaustion and happiness, it will take to make what happen, but small. Start by learning a new skill that few other people can do and figuring out how to make those skills work. Doing that isn't you ace-first drop in a bunch of money, but it's an excellent start to breaking that mentality of "I always pass people fries for a living." The longer you are in this mood, the harder it is to escape.
No, seriously, close the window and go do that. We'll be here when you come back.
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