At a recent meditation retreat in Woodstock, our teacher, Lama Kathy, play-act illustrated grasping.
She pretended to be a person who has paid for a candy from a vending machine, and failed to get one. She got down and pretended to reach way up into the machine. She spoke of how stupid people look, when they do that. And then she said: “That’s us.”
And it is in that spirit that I present this awesome link to you, to tweets from “Every Gentrifier,” sending up how stupid we look when we take the form of people grasping. In this case, of course, gentrifiers, who move into a poor neighborhood, and slowly wait for the poor people to move out, and for prices to rise up. They are funny quotes with dead on observation meeting playful exaggeration.
“My daughter Quinoa is allergic to quinoa.”
“I’m a hyper-local small perimeter vegetarian. I only eat native plant food grown on my fire escape.”
“I couldn’t get pregnant with twins so I have a surrogate carrying a second baby for me. We’re due the same week!”
“Can you believe that Starbucks refused to make my cappuccino with my own foamed breast milk?”
“My twins Ockeghem and Requiem are star players in the local peewee lacrosse league.”
“I’m wearing a t-shirt for this charity—even though I’ve never donated to it—because I support people supporting the charity.”
And maybe clicking on it and scrolling down will bring you temporary relief from the job, family drama or tedium. Maybe it will remind you that we are completely impermanent in our enjoyment of this gift, life, and our common tendency to grasp after more better different can really throw us off our gratitude. Maybe you’ll see yourself reflected in these sarcastic tweets, and loving yourself, forgive, roll your eyes and be less pretentious for it.
Or maybe none of that will happen, but you’ll get a grin from your tireless team at elephant, and be glad you clicked.
And meanwhile, keep pondering the imponderables. Like “Does Whole Foods carry gluten free gluten?”
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Ed: Kate Bartolotta