Glamorous

Reflections on Shuffle-Play

We sat at lunch, two friends who had not seen each other for a long time. Out of the blue she had sent an e-mail the week before: “Thinking of you today.” I responded with a short note, the kind of note that feels like way too little when you haven’t had a proper conversation for nearly a decade. As I closed the note, I wrote, “Do you ever come to Minnesota?” Within a few minutes, she wrote back and said that she was going to be in Minnesota the next week! She had forgotten I was living here now. I checked my schedule and devised a plan to meet up with her.

And that is how we came to be sitting at the Riverside Bar in Minneapolis on a November afternoon.

Part of the way through our lunch, she was telling me a story about a visit to New York she had recently had with her husband. He took her to the Cartier store to buy her a present for the tenth wedding anniversary. She showed me the watch and it was lovely. The way she phrased the story and talked about the gift, I knew it must have cost a substantial amount. Later that night, curious as to how much it was, I decided to look up how much a Cartier watch costs.

It quite literally took my breath away to think of having a watch that costs that much.

One of the many flaws in my character is that I get very judgmental very quickly when I find out people have spent what I perceive to be an excessive amount on anything non-essential. I immediately start picturing starving children in Africa and all the meals that money could have provided. It’s not fair that I do this and I don’t like that judgy-ness I feel, because I know that watch is important to her for many reasons and who am I to say what is and is not a valid thing to spend money on? Someone could look at my overstuffed bookshelves and say, “what a waste – look at all the money those books represent. She doesn’t need all those.” But to me, those books are important and meaningful. So, I seriously try hard to rein in judgmental feelings and realize that everyone has different ideas of what is important to spend money on. The cost of that watch couldn’t have fixed all the problems in the world, fed all the starving children – and it is a lovely thing that her husband wanted to buy her such a beautiful gift!

But it wasn’t just my own judgmental attitude that surprised me. What surprised me even more was that when I saw the price tag of a watch like that, I felt the sting of hot tears beginning at the corners of my eyes. I could never afford that watch, unless I didn’t want my family to eat or pay our bills for a couple months. In that split second, I felt shabby and ashamed. I was right back in junior high – alternating wearing my same two pair of jeans day after day and looking with jealousy at the pretty clothes the other girls had.

It wasn’t that I wanted that watch. I’m not easily swayed by fancy things – so why did I have that reaction to it?

It reminded me of when I lived in Texas and there was a parade of homes each year at Christmas-time. I went on the tour one year and vowed never to go again – because with each spectacular house I visited, my own house began to seem smaller and dingier. Before the tour I had been completely satisfied with my home, but afterward, for the rest of that day at least, all I could think about was what a bummer it was that other people had so much and I had so little.

It made me think about the tenth commandment. When we covet, we take our eyes off of all that God has given us and instead focus on what other people have. When we do that, it is so easy to start feeling jealous and put-out.

You see, on a normal day I feel like my world is full of abundance. I marvel at my warm house, our full refrigerator, that we have two cars that work great! I lack for absolutely nothing and I don’t ever want to forget that. So, it startled me that a watch (that I am happy my friend received) should ever bring up a negative feeling in me.

But any of us are capable of breaking any of the ten commandments at any time. While I know I might struggle with some of the other ones, I never think coveting is something I have to worry about, except rarely, every now and then the impulse sneaks up and bites me in the rear-end.

So what is an effective way to combat that coveting impulse?

I give thanks. I make long lists in my mind of all the beautiful things this life has given me, and then I remember there is nothing shabby about me or my days or the space I take up in this world.

A truly rich life….I’ll always say that most of the time it can’t be purchased for any price. And when I think of my friend’s smile as she showed me that watch, I suspect that her joy wasn’t in that piece of metal so much as all it represents: a gift from her beloved husband, love and time together, hard work, deep affection, and a significant wedding anniversary. Priceless.

 

Glamorous

By Fergie

If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home.
You say, “If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home.”

G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S.
G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S.

We flying the first class
Up in the sky.
Poppin’ champagne,
Livin’ the life
In the fast lane,
And I won’t change
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy

The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy
The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy

Wear them gold and diamonds rings
All them things don’t mean a thing
Chaperons and limousines
Shopping for expensive things

I be on the movie screens
Magazines and bougie scenes
I’m not clean, I’m not pristine
I’m no queen, I’m no machine

I still go to Taco Bell
Drive through, raw as hell
I don’t care, I’m still real
No matter how many records I sell

After the show or after the Grammies
I like to go cool out with the family
Sippin’, reminiscing on days
When I had a Mustang
And now I’m in…

We flying the first class
Up in the sky.
Poppin’ champagne,
Livin’ the life
In the fast lane.
And I won’t change
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy.

The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy
The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy

[Ludacris:]
I’m talking Champagne wishes, caviar dreams
You deserve nothing but all the finer things
Now this whole world has no clue what to do with us
I’ve got enough money in the bank for the two of us
Plus I gotta keep enough lettuce
To support your shoe fetish
Lifestyles so rich and famous
Robin Leach will get jealous
Half a million for the stones
Taking trips from here to Rome
So If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home

G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S
G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S

We flying the first class
Up in the sky.
Poppin’ champagne,
Livin’ the life
In the fast lane.
I won’t change
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy.

The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy.
The glamorous
The glamorous, glamorous (the glamorous life)
By the glamorous, oh, the flossy flossy.

I got problems up to here
I’ve got people in my ear
Telling me these crazy things
That I don’t want to know (fuck y’all)

I’ve got money in the bank
And I’d really like to thank
All the fans, I’d like to thank
Thank you really though

‘Cause I remember yesterday
When I dreamt about the days
When I’d rock on MTV,
That’d be really dope

Damn, It’s been a long road
And the industry is cold
I’m glad my daddy told me so,
He let his daughter know

(If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home)
My daddy told me so
(If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home)
He let his daughter know
(I said if you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home)
My daddy told me so
(If you ain’t go no money take your broke ass home)
He let his daughter know


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