I’m not going to claim to be a woman of the people, or part of the working class. I did grow up among working class people, my grandfathers were carpenters, and I have an unaccountable enjoyment of working with my hands.
However, my working class neighbors considered me a little daft, running around with a book in my hands all the time. My mom’s brother who was a plumber cordially disliked me, and at least half of it was thinking I put on airs (I didn’t, but that’s how he perceived it.)
My father worked as a textile engineer, my brother is an engineer, our house was full of books, my best friend came from decayed nobility and her house too was full of books. My mom was as likely to listen to radio soap operas as to late-night programs on history and mythology.
We were odd, and this was just one of the ways we were odd.
Mom who came from lower class (the distinctions are very fine indeed down there) spent most of her life trying to ape people at least one class above, in dress, in speech, in cooking. When the facade broke you either got her most endearing moments or her most terrifying, the terrifying being when she was on a tear and spoke in a dialect I only half-understood, but what I understood was horrible.
I never felt I had anything to prove. Perhaps I had. In terms of the village, I was a half breed. But I was also grandma’s granddaughter and frankly, no one would tell grandma that.
I grew up blissfully unaware of the need to “project social superior.” Perhaps it’s just being odd. Just as I’ll make friends with people of any color, sexual orientation or self-identified gender or otherkin, I made friends with whomever I considered interesting and it was only after the third infestation of lice that mom managed to convince me there were some kids I SHOULD avoid for my own protection and so she didn’t have to shave my head.
When I left the village for middle and high school, I “ran with the strange.” Being an exchange student didn’t help me understand social class boundaries, and marrying an American and moving here did it even less. (I think my MIL tried to give me a hint, but she also tried to tell me she knew Latin women were submissive, so you can see how much attention I was paying.)
So I’ve never really cared about social signaling. Part of my issues living in a tightly knit suburb for a year, while we were fixing the other house for sale, is that I SWEAR women were evaluating my attire and conferring about it behind my back. They were middle-middle class and very conscious of it.
I’m still myself. I will walk out in whatever covers all the bits. If it covers all the bits, it’s appropriate attire. Sometimes I take pains, but only if it’s something important, like a Prometheus ceremony, or a date night or something. I mean I don’t wear clothes with holes or stains, but mostly I live in Jeans and sweatshirts, and only ever put on makeup if it’s an occasion.
Because I’m me the main standard of making friends with someone is “they’re interesting” so we have friends of every walk of life (most terminally geeky) and we frequent places the good people wouldn’t dream of setting foot on. When Colfax was still dangerous and the kids were very little, we used to go to Pete’s Kitchen when we could afford a night out in Denver. (It was perfectly safe, as they gave free dinners to policemen.) If it was a weekend, it might involve a stay in a very nice hotel (well, Dan got points from business travel) and visits to all the museums or some expensive historical lecture, and visits to Pete’s. Or we’d go to lakeside where if a bomb fell for non Spanish speakers, my family would be the only ones dead, and P.F. Chang’s (then at the top of our affordability and back then in a rather posh location, with a view of the city.)
My biggest issue during the three years I could afford (and needed) a cleaning lady was that either they were very bad or they became friends, and then they became very bad.
I kind of like not worrying about class or “what class this shows” or whatever. I’m a savage. I like what I like, and I’ll do what I like. No television comedian, no arbiter of fashion, no enraged SJW has ever had the slightest effect on my tastes, wishes and habits, save when they piss me off so much I do a gif post, mocking them.
The problem with the leftists we’re confronted with right now, is that they aren’t ideological leftists. They are fashionable leftists. They’re “display” leftists, wearing their politics as a badge so we know they’re upper class.
This is an inevitable result of our chattering classes and universities being invaded by the hard left in the long march through the institutions.
Most people don’t care about ideology, and most people will do anything not to think. That most people who frequent this madhouse do care about principles and like engaging in sport-thinking is a mark of how weird we are.
So if parroting the opinions of the “smart set” (and though the sense of smart has changed, in this case it means both, in popular image) makes them seem smart and upper class, like their college professors and all these celebrities, they’ll be “leftist.”
This attitude has displaced what people used to consider “the one right way to live.” In the nineteenth and even early twentieth century, people were pious, just like they’re leftist now. “This is the one way to be that signals we’re good people, and if you’re not of us you have no status, and you’re probably evil.” When you read Heinlein’s hostility to organized religion, it is that mindset he was pushing against. As his life spanned two centuries, he might never have fully realized it had changed or that attempts to dethrone religion from that “fashionable” position only wielded another religion, less rational and more militant.
Because this type of leftism is militant. You prove how great you are by “invading” other areas and preaching to them. You can’t leave people alone to enjoy anything without virtually signaling all over them.
This is what the push to bring political correctness to science fiction and games is all about. Missionaries, going among the heathens, trying to make us wear THEIR style pants, even though it’s 100 degrees out and our grass skirts are quite comfortable.
Since women are often the arbiters of social respectability (women care more about fitting in with the “smart set”) most of the people going into the lands of the benighted (often male areas) are women who come to preach their way and “change” geeks into something more acceptable. Since a few of us are geek women, we reject this nonsense most of all. We like our geek guys just as they are, stop trying to make them mind their manners and parrot your crazycakes leftism, which is more riddled with holes than Swiss Cheese.
I did a post about that dynamic for PJMedia some years ago called “Bad romance” (I couldn’t find it, even with a search) explaining that the leftists were bad girlfriends, trying to change the guy not because they wanted him, but so they could feel the virtue of changing him. And even though science fiction has always had women, it has had mostly non-virtue-signaling women (or at least fewer of them) so technically we were all the “Geeks” that the bad girlfriends were trying to change.
But the problem is that it’s everywhere. The federalist has a post about How Jon Stewart And ‘The Daily Show’ Elected Donald Trump.
What it talks about is precisely what we were talking about here, yesterday, in comments. Comedy is no longer funny, but a way to shout insults at those who don’t agree with you, and only one point of view is allowed. (And of course they can’t actually be funny or understand the other side, because if you show too much understanding, your side will suspect you of deviationism and punish you.)
And then this morning, younger son told me some news that made my jaw drop in their unself-conscious elitism. Denver becomes first US city to allow pot in bars, restaurants.
I’m going to be the first person to say that if restaurant owners want to allow pot on the premises, good for them. I’m also going to say I might not be able to go out to eat much at least in Denver, from here on. You see, I’m deathly allergic to pot. When we moved here, the previous owners indulged, and we had to have the house hypersanitized because my nose shuts completely and my entire upper respiratory becomes water logged. That’s fine. I’ve long ago realized the world doesn’t exist for the comfort and convenience of the Sarah.
What got me mad, really mad, was that this comes on the heels of forbidden smoking of tobacco in all those same places by city wide edict.
This made me — back then — a little sad. Yes, I have hyper-reactive airways, so tobacco-filled restaurants were a problem (not as much as pot) but they also had a certain atmosphere, and most of all, I opposed people telling the owners of restaurants that they couldn’t allow smoking in them, if they wished to.
Which brings us to why tobacco was ostensibly forbidden. It was forbidden because of “second hand effects” which are scientifically nebulous and hard to pin down, but if they exist at all are not the result of what weed is being burned and smoked, but the result of having small fires all over. Which is the same thing that happens, in fact, with pot.
In fact, these same restaurants will ban e-cigarrettes, which has no second hand effects. BUT they will allow pot smoking.
This is my middle finger.
In these liberal privilege circles, pot is a “given good.” It’s cool, because leftists smoked it in the sixties (and also because it makes the younger people incapable of realizing how they’ve been screwed over by those same leftists as they destroyed the economy.) And it’s so much cooler than tobacco or those lame e cigarettes, which are mostly for tobacco.
THESE ARE MY MIDDLE FINGERS.
I’m sick and tired of bad ideas and pseudo science being pushed on me to justify the fashionably left point of view and behavior. At least Christian missionaries were genuinely worried about people’s after life. These pseudo-atheist-leftists are mostly worried we’ll strike an incongruous note in their bistros.
And what they get for their condescension, their irrational pushing, is Donald Trump. Pray they don’t continue pushing, because they can get much, much worse. In fact, I’d say most people are on the edge of having a good ol’ “don’t care” snap moment.
You know that moment in A Canticle for Leibowitz when the crowd yells “Yeah, we’re simple, and we shall have a great simplification” and then starts killing all the “intellectuals” down to everyone who can read.
That is what I’m scared of because it will take also those of us who like books for the story sake and every who, at night, in the dark, can be confused for them.
Our only choice, our only hope, is to scream back at our sanctimonious, ignorant overlords “We won’t wear pants, even if you make us.” and to hoist aloft a matched set of middle fingers as often as possible, metaphorically speaking.
These people need their nose rubbed in the fact that their religion isn’t universal, and we don’t care if they call us names. We’ll take their names, own them, and spit them back at them.
We have to do this to save Western civilization. But knowing this lot, we’ll probably enjoy it too.
We’re worse than deplorable. You can’t make us over in your image.
And we’re all that stands between you and torches and pitchforks.