In other words… Do The Jones’ seem to represent everything we admire and respect in individuals and families? A completely selfless approach to life and the needs of others?
Are The Jones’ the people who seem to have the possessions and lifestyles we admire and would enjoy having ourselves? Do they “hang with” people whose names would be “fun to drop?” Do they always seem to own the latest and greatest of whatever is viewed as “must have?”
In other words… How did the Jones' suddenly get so much money, and why are they always acting so uppity about it? Or, put a different way… For some well-deserved reason, The Jones’ seem to have earned quite a bit of money, and why do we always feel so downity about it?
Funny thing, money.
It does seem to motivate people in different ways.
For example, you might ask someone, “How ya’ doing?” And they respond:
“Fantastic. Our youngest just graduated from college, the car repairs were a lot less than I thought, and if we drive to Orlando with the grandkids we can stay two extra days for the money we save on airfare. Plus, I figured it would be a few years before we could add the screened porch to the back of the house, but now, without having to pay all the tuition money, maybe it can happen this summer. Wouldn’t that be something? Plus, my wife and I would love a little vacation for the just the two of us. Maybe a cruise. I’ve heard they’re terrific.”
So when asked, “Do we know anyone named Jones?” these people respond, “No, I’m sorry. I’m not familiar with anyone by that name.”
Then again, you might ask someone, “How ya’ doing?” And they respond:
“Not bad. I mean, I’m a touch underwater on both mortgages, and haven’t been able to drive the Beemer with gas prices so high. The kids school called whining about some ‘mix-up’ with my credit card, and the BMW dealer wants to know when I’m going to ‘drop-off’ the car. I’ve told them ten times, ‘Not ‘til gas prices come down.’ Man, you talk about pushy. I tell you what, I’m very disappointed in their Customer Service. If they don’t get their act together pretty soon, I’ll be giving all my business to Mercedes.”
So when asked, “Do you know the Jones’?” these people respond, “Yeah, what about ‘em? Greedy bastards live just down the street. That’s their house right there. The one with the pillars and the real shitty tan color.”
Oh, yes. I see it. The one with the greener grass.
Keeping up with the Jones’s.
And yet, think about it? Have you ever been inside the Jones’ home? No? Well, then, for all you know they have second hand furniture, or perhaps no furniture at all. Maybe they’re starving themselves to appear more successful than they assume they are not.
And are The Jones’ universal? Do other countries nurture these same perceptions?
Are there Joneski’s, jonesov’s, jonesberg’s, jonesetti’s, Van Jones’, Von Jones’, Joneson’s, McJones’, O’Jones’, Joneschmidt”s, DeJones’, Jonesmubar’s, Jonesriquez’s, Joneschin’s, Joneshari’s or Jonesomoto’s? Seems likely, somehow.
Can someone please explain why the Smith’s aren’t being questioned in all this? Plenty of them doing quite nicely, thank you.
And sometimes, money issues don’t come from just the money we have. There’s also the money we might have.
Are you aware families often engage in serious disagreements over possibly winning the lottery?
“Hi, sweetheart.” She sings out. “How was your day?”
“Terrific, honey.” He answers back. “And yours?”
“Really good. I ran a bunch of errands, went grocery shopping and bought you a package of those cookies you love so much. Oh, and I bought a couple lottery tickets.”
“Wow, baby. Thanks for the cookies. And lottery tickets, too. How much is the prize up to?”
“$60 million.” she exclaims. “Can you imagine if we won that? We would pay off all our bills and never have to worry about money ever again.”
“No kidding. Wouldn’t that be something? $60 million.”
“Plus,” she reasons, “with all that money, we could pay off my sister’s house and help her out.”
“Your sister?” he asks.
“Well, yeah. She’s been struggling for a long time. You know that.”
“I know she has. For the simple reason she’s too damn lazy to go get a job. Screw her. She can go win her own lottery.”
“Oh, I see. Nothing for my sister. But I’ll bet you’ve set aside plenty of money for that overbearing, know-it-all, pain-in-the-ass mother of yours.”
“What??! Why, you little bitch. My mother has done a lot more for us than your sister ever has!”
“Oh, really?” she counters. “Like what exactly? Sell us that ‘turd on wheels’ that broke down two days later, and you didn’t have the balls to confront her about it?”
“Hey, you know what?” he demands, “I’ll just take my half of the prize and spend it any way I want?”
“Your half!? Oh, I’m sorry. I guess I didn’t see the lottery ticket you bought. Oh, and those cookies I bought you? If you want to eat them, you’ll have to shove ‘em up your ass, cuz’ that’s where your head is!!”
“Wow. I guess it’s true what they say. ‘Money really does change people.’”
“ME!?” she shouts, “I haven’t changed one little bit. But, I’ll be brutally honest. Ever since I bought those lottery tickets, I don’t even know who you are anymore.”
How about that?