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Old 05-26-2010, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,178 posts, read 67,320,481 times
Reputation: 15825

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Quote:
Originally Posted by ajzjmsmom View Post
There is no reason for you to feel like failure because you don't have anything in common with those your own age. Some people are just more mature than others, my 25 yr old daughter was always much more mature than her friends and many I time I heard her complain about their childishness. You have your principals and morals and don't bend or give in to others simply to "fit in." As you get older you will get to the point that pleasing others simply to fit in becomes very unimportant.

Unfortunately your description of NOVA is slowly but surely invading the rest of the country, my husband and I always discuss the degradation of society and how noone cares anymore. The scene you paint of neighbors caring about neighbors and friends taking a bullet for another is very slowly becoming an oddity. I know it is still like that in some areas but not many. Even our very small town that is advertised as being "the friendiest place on earth" doesn't have that neighbor helping neighbor thing going on.

I have to add while we were in NOVA we did find that the people in Stafford and Fredricksburg were more likely to hold a door for you, say hello and just in general be more friendly, which is probably the main reason we are so drawn to Stafford and are willing to sacrifice time for a more enjoyable existance. We all know the closer you are to the beltway the more expensive housing is and that alot of people there have to have a dual income. I am a stay at home mom and I have the utmost respect for a woman who works full time and then has a family to deal with when not at work. I would imagine women there are so busy dealing with day to day life they don't have time to worry about whether they come across as snobby or not. I would also think the majority of the people that we look at and say they are snobby would be surprised to know this.
Very true in that the title of this thread should perhaps be renamed "How high is the snob factor/keeping up with the Jones's on Earth?" I've noticed little by little, year by year, that society is becoming more materialistic, self-centered, cutthroat, domineering, etc. even in my own native area. It's still the type of area where when I accidentally got my car stuck in a ditch near my high school trying to on-street park along a narrow shoulder a half-dozen strangers stopped to help push me out. It's still the type of area where I thought nothing of trying to distract a man who was trying to beat his ex-girlfriend as he reached through the rear window of his car at her while others called 911. It's still the type of area where my co-workers at the grocery store I used to work at all formed a "circle of protection" around an elderly customer whose purse was snatched. It's still the type of an area where people hold doors. It's the type of area where I held a male friend and co-worker of mine close to me as he shook and cried after having been dumped by the girl he loved. However, I've noticed that gradually even in one of these last few "holdouts" of the goodness in society hope is dimming as well. On my most recent visit my "Good morning" greetings to passers-by were very rarely returned, and very few made eye contact with me. That wouldn't have been the case even just five to seven years ago. My own theory is that as my area evolves (or "devolves", perhaps) into an exurb of New York City, the insular and self-centered "big city" attitudes are following.

At the risk of veering even more off-topic I think we can shift this back to being on-course by discussing if the "I'm more important than everyone else" factor is more pronounced in NoVA than in other areas or if the entire world is succumbing to this. I can totally relate to what you said about Stafford and Fredericksburg. To me I feel the same way whenever I visit Winchester. I cry whenever I leave there. To the NoVA snobs people in Winchester are... because they don't vote liberally, watch NASCAR, don't drive hybrids, and don't live in tract homes, but to me those people have been nothing but accommodating and welcoming to me whenever I've visited, strolled around neighborhoods, and struck up random conversations with people. If I tried doing that in lah-dee-dah Reston most people would look at me and think "I don't know this person. Why is he trying to talk to me? Crazy!"

I'm sorry, but nobody is "too busy" to smile at someone who smiles at them as they walk by. Nobody is "too busy" to return a "good morning" greeting. Nobody is "too busy" to hold a door for someone. Nobody is "too busy" to give up their seat on Metro for a disabled person. Nobody is "too busy" to not block the box while driving. Nobody is "too busy" to use a turn signal (and those of us who blare our horns to "correct" that selfish behavior shouldn't be bastardized for it). Nobody is "too busy" to try to make this world a better place. I'm tired of people on this sub-forum using "too busy" as an excuse. People in NoVA are NO more "busy" than people whom I used to know in Scranton, some of whom worked even longer hours. People being too "self-important" is more like it.

I felt the sting of this firsthand when people learned of my suicide attempt and alienated me even further, which only drove me deeper into an abyss. The LAST thing someone who already wants to snuff his or her life out needs is for the ones whom they thought cared about them as much as they cared about those people to scatter like roaches thinking "not my problem", "too much drama", "I'm too busy", yada, yada, yada. That's exactly what happened to me, and to say I'm BITTER against a lot of society right now is a severe understatement. I've pro-actively reached out to people who have left depressing Facebook status updates or notes to let them know I'm here for them. Me? I've deleted my Facebook after learning people were LAUGHING at me when I was venting some of my depression. On at least two separate occasions since moving to NoVA I've "rallied the troops" to get all of my friends...errr...former friends...together to go out to eat and have fun to help others take their minds off of what ails them, knowing they could benefit from some positive social interaction. Me? When I asked why it had been seven weeks since I had been invited out anywhere I was told "everyone has been so busy we haven't had time together." The reality? I wasn't being invited because people thought I was too sick to bother with. I'm filled with such angst and hatred now towards the immaturity and glaring selfishness of many people in my age bracket in NoVA that words can't even describe it. I never did all of those nice things for an "atta boy", but I DID expect that if I were ever in as sorry of shape as I was (and arguably still am) that someone might want to reciprocate the gestures to try to get me to feel better. Nothing.

To see just how far in the toilet our society has become just watch "What Would You Do" on ABC at 9 PM on Fridays (after Wife Swap). It's a real eye-opener. Actors stage public scenes of distress, and hidden cameras show how many (if any) passers-by will actually intervene to try to help. Most just stare, shake their heads, and keep on going. The saddest thing? In Newark, NJ a shabby-dressed man pretended to be dead and laid on a public sidewalk. Hundreds of people walked past him, and not one person checked on him. Finally a REAL homeless woman wandered by, stopped to check on him, and begged passers-by who had cell phones to call 911. As if that wasn't bad enough, most just IGNORED her pleas for help. She stayed right by that man's side until help arrived, trying to comfort him, not knowing if he was dead or alive. What's even sadder? This "scenario" was based upon a REAL story that happened in Newark where cameras showed throngs of people stepping around and over a body. If the first person who came upon that person actually stopped to call 911 and see if they could help, then maybe that person would still be alive today? That person was loved by someone.

I'm sorry to ramble so much. I'm very shaken tonight.

Last edited by FindingZen; 05-26-2010 at 06:19 PM.. Reason: I know you were talking out of context but that term isn't appropriate
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC & New York
10,829 posts, read 26,407,110 times
Reputation: 6895
One thing that people should realize about the NOVA suburbs is that not everyone judges themselves by perceived societal benchmarks. People here are able to afford nicer things than other areas of the country because it's an area that has a high degree of education, and good salaries, across a large segment of the population. The areas are also removed from aging cities that had their share of problems, where manufacturing left ruins behind, such as was the case in Baltimore. NOVA emerged from an agrarian/equestrian past into what we have today.

RTC was a creation in response to the Dulles Corridor concept, where a former chair of supervisors in Fairfax vowed not to expand Route 28 -- to the point where she was shown the door, and the next chairman sensibly expanded the road, and added incentives to attract companies to the area. Tysons, in contrast, actually had anti-growth activists at that time, but as it's now becoming a true edge city, and has the future of rail transit, that's going by the wayside. Higher density will be tolerated in Tysons because of those factors in the coming years, especially since it's now become an anchor to offices in the Dulles Corridor, yet is still not too far removed from DC. For company headquarters, the location is ideal, since they do not have to be downtown, and can have ops centers in less expensive suburban office parks.

Because people are able to afford what they like, many tend to buy things that to some might seem excessive. I can vouch for the fact that many in medicine don't have flashy cars, at all, as I know that to be the case from my own family, and acquaintances. Hondas, Acuras, and Subarus, to name a few, will give years of good service, and will start in the middle of the night when alone in a dark hospital parking garage/lot, or when the owner has to get to the hospital. I think that it's a habit formed during their training when they have to be on call, and have to be able to count on transportation, such that something tempermental is not going to be acceptable. That's not to say that all are that way, but there are more circumspect vehicles in parking areas than excessively flashy sports cars/ultra-luxury sedans.

The other issue I see with the oft mentioned car class distinctions is also related to the relative affluence of the area, not to mention access to goods and services. People here own BMWs, Acuras, Mercedes, Lexus, Jaguars, Land Rovers, etc. because of the extensive dealer networks for such brands in the immediate metro area. There are many dealerships at which to buy/service brands that might not be as prevalent in areas where there is a sole concession for a given name for a 50 mile area.

And, just because someone has a nice car, wears nice clothes/accessories/shoes, or has the latest in tech goodies does not make them a shallow/materialistic person. I have a very dear friend from Long Island, who by the associations of her outward appearance, car, clothes, etc. would be dismissed as shallow and materialistic by the criteria outlined in this thread. Some people with whom she works have thought her to be a snob, or a show-off, but that's who she is -- she can afford what she buys and she likes to look good. It's her right to do so as an American, and what people who are quick to judge don't see the other side, since they are superficially judging her for being superficial. This is a woman who volunteered to help rebuild houses, once, and showed up carrying a trendy tote bag with her tools in it, perfectly accessorized, even to the point of wearing designer shoes. When the project manager told her she should wear other shoes, she laughed and said that she couldn't since she was from Long Island, and it was in her blood -- though she did cover them with shoe coveralls.

The saying that "Water seeks its own level," comes to mind when I read some of the descriptions presented herein, since for one to attract different people into their lives, they need to look to themselves. If one has the attitude that people are looking at them and judging them by superficial standards, then that's likely the person whom they will encounter. However, if one shifts focus to living their life the way they want to, and seeks out other like-minded people, who enjoy the same activities -- regardless of age -- then that's likely whom they will encounter, even if they need to travel. Societal expectations be darned to heck, since I have some friends who are old enough to be my parents, but who are fun to be around. Until a friend in that age bracket moved out west, I had a golf buddy where people thought that I was his son, something that we both found hysterical.

Speed of communication has replaced the art of communication, something that is magnified in a busy environment like NOVA. Add to that the higher than average geek quotient here, who may prefer to control interpersonal communications on their terms, and you have a reliance on technology to accomplish what was once done by phone or letter. I have had people shocked that I answered the phone, since they had anticipated voice mail, both professionally and personally. I, for one, do not like to sit and talk on the phone, since it generally precludes me from multi-tasking, which is something that I like to do, especially since I can relate to someone when I am visiting them, or out with them. I don't carry my phone to dinner or lunch, unless there's a potential where I am expecting an emergency call (and those are relatively rare). I leave it in the car, and wish that more people would follow suit, since there's rarely a reason to be disturbed by the intrusion of another's call, IMO, especially inside a restaurant.

So while the region is affluent, the apperance of a snob factor does not necessarily make it so, especially when the criteria used to categorize such behavior are inherently subjective, and framed by one's personal experiences. And, it's by no means, an exclusive condition to the region, especially since there are other areas that are truly materialistic, and/or have a high prevalence of the "mean mom" set, something rare among NOVA SAHMs, for the most part.
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All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players: they have their exits and their entrances; and one man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages.
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Old 05-26-2010, 10:08 PM
 
3,164 posts, read 6,129,009 times
Reputation: 1264
Great Post BMWguyDC!
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Old 05-27-2010, 06:18 AM
 
Location: somewhere
4,264 posts, read 8,153,163 times
Reputation: 3144
Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwguydc View Post
One thing that people should realize about the NOVA suburbs is that not everyone judges themselves by perceived societal benchmarks. People here are able to afford nicer things than other areas of the country because it's an area that has a high degree of education, and good salaries, across a large segment of the population. The areas are also removed from aging cities that had their share of problems, where manufacturing left ruins behind, such as was the case in Baltimore. NOVA emerged from an agrarian/equestrian past into what we have today.

RTC was a creation in response to the Dulles Corridor concept, where a former chair of supervisors in Fairfax vowed not to expand Route 28 -- to the point where she was shown the door, and the next chairman sensibly expanded the road, and added incentives to attract companies to the area. Tysons, in contrast, actually had anti-growth activists at that time, but as it's now becoming a true edge city, and has the future of rail transit, that's going by the wayside. Higher density will be tolerated in Tysons because of those factors in the coming years, especially since it's now become an anchor to offices in the Dulles Corridor, yet is still not too far removed from DC. For company headquarters, the location is ideal, since they do not have to be downtown, and can have ops centers in less expensive suburban office parks.

Because people are able to afford what they like, many tend to buy things that to some might seem excessive. I can vouch for the fact that many in medicine don't have flashy cars, at all, as I know that to be the case from my own family, and acquaintances. Hondas, Acuras, and Subarus, to name a few, will give years of good service, and will start in the middle of the night when alone in a dark hospital parking garage/lot, or when the owner has to get to the hospital. I think that it's a habit formed during their training when they have to be on call, and have to be able to count on transportation, such that something tempermental is not going to be acceptable. That's not to say that all are that way, but there are more circumspect vehicles in parking areas than excessively flashy sports cars/ultra-luxury sedans.

The other issue I see with the oft mentioned car class distinctions is also related to the relative affluence of the area, not to mention access to goods and services. People here own BMWs, Acuras, Mercedes, Lexus, Jaguars, Land Rovers, etc. because of the extensive dealer networks for such brands in the immediate metro area. There are many dealerships at which to buy/service brands that might not be as prevalent in areas where there is a sole concession for a given name for a 50 mile area.

And, just because someone has a nice car, wears nice clothes/accessories/shoes, or has the latest in tech goodies does not make them a shallow/materialistic person. I have a very dear friend from Long Island, who by the associations of her outward appearance, car, clothes, etc. would be dismissed as shallow and materialistic by the criteria outlined in this thread. Some people with whom she works have thought her to be a snob, or a show-off, but that's who she is -- she can afford what she buys and she likes to look good. It's her right to do so as an American, and what people who are quick to judge don't see the other side, since they are superficially judging her for being superficial. This is a woman who volunteered to help rebuild houses, once, and showed up carrying a trendy tote bag with her tools in it, perfectly accessorized, even to the point of wearing designer shoes. When the project manager told her she should wear other shoes, she laughed and said that she couldn't since she was from Long Island, and it was in her blood -- though she did cover them with shoe coveralls.

The saying that "Water seeks its own level," comes to mind when I read some of the descriptions presented herein, since for one to attract different people into their lives, they need to look to themselves. If one has the attitude that people are looking at them and judging them by superficial standards, then that's likely the person whom they will encounter. However, if one shifts focus to living their life the way they want to, and seeks out other like-minded people, who enjoy the same activities -- regardless of age -- then that's likely whom they will encounter, even if they need to travel. Societal expectations be darned to heck, since I have some friends who are old enough to be my parents, but who are fun to be around. Until a friend in that age bracket moved out west, I had a golf buddy where people thought that I was his son, something that we both found hysterical.

Speed of communication has replaced the art of communication, something that is magnified in a busy environment like NOVA. Add to that the higher than average geek quotient here, who may prefer to control interpersonal communications on their terms, and you have a reliance on technology to accomplish what was once done by phone or letter. I have had people shocked that I answered the phone, since they had anticipated voice mail, both professionally and personally. I, for one, do not like to sit and talk on the phone, since it generally precludes me from multi-tasking, which is something that I like to do, especially since I can relate to someone when I am visiting them, or out with them. I don't carry my phone to dinner or lunch, unless there's a potential where I am expecting an emergency call (and those are relatively rare). I leave it in the car, and wish that more people would follow suit, since there's rarely a reason to be disturbed by the intrusion of another's call, IMO, especially inside a restaurant.

So while the region is affluent, the apperance of a snob factor does not necessarily make it so, especially when the criteria used to categorize such behavior are inherently subjective, and framed by one's personal experiences. And, it's by no means, an exclusive condition to the region, especially since there are other areas that are truly materialistic, and/or have a high prevalence of the "mean mom" set, something rare among NOVA SAHMs, for the most part.

What a fantastic post, the world would be a much better place if we could all just be comfortable with what we have and not covet what others have, or judge them because they do have.
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Old 05-27-2010, 06:53 AM
 
2,688 posts, read 5,960,235 times
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BMWGuyDC, thank you for the best post I've ever seen on this board .
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
5,412 posts, read 3,471,661 times
Reputation: 916
Please, someone who drives a baby benz or a BMW 323, BMW 318 or a 1 series BMW desperately wants to be seen in a BMW or Mercedes.. Those cars are made for insecure people who want others to think they have status...
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Old 05-27-2010, 08:47 AM
 
7,968 posts, read 18,076,790 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by betamanlet View Post
Please, someone who drives a baby benz or a BMW 323, BMW 318 or a 1 series BMW desperately wants to be seen in a BMW or Mercedes.. Those cars are made for insecure people who want others to think they have status...
Granted I don't know much about makes and models but I do believe both Mercedes-Benz and BMW are known for their quality engineering along as much as their luxury amenities. It seems like I see those brands on the streets all day everyday around here so if I may have blinked occasionally back in Philly, I certainly don't now.

Then again, I do get curious when I see single occupancy Hummers and Range Rovers, but I don't begrudge those owners for their choice, gas guzzling notwithstanding. As it is, those Hummers are now officially collectors' items.
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Old 05-27-2010, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
5,412 posts, read 3,471,661 times
Reputation: 916
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tone509 View Post
Granted I don't know much about makes and models but I do believe both Mercedes-Benz and BMW are known for their quality engineering along as much as their luxury amenities. It seems like I see those brands on the streets all day everyday around here so if I may have blinked occasionally back in Philly, I certainly don't now.

Then again, I do get curious when I see single occupancy Hummers and Range Rovers, but I don't begrudge those owners for their choice, gas guzzling notwithstanding. As it is, those Hummers are now officially collectors' items.
Lots of people who drive lower end BMW or Mercedes lease them. They cannot afford to buy the car, but still want to be seen in it. How is that anything but insecurity?
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Old 05-27-2010, 09:23 AM
 
7,968 posts, read 18,076,790 times
Reputation: 2593
Quote:
Originally Posted by betamanlet View Post
Lots of people who drive lower end BMW or Mercedes lease them. They cannot afford to buy the car, but still want to be seen in it. How is that anything but insecurity?
I happen to work with a couple guys in their 20's who are car enthusiasts. While they don't have vehicles at that level (yet?), I believe they appreciate the inner workings as much as the style. I'd also guess that they see the cars as a "chick magnet". As for why ladies and those over 30 might lease Beamers and Benzes here....I have no idea.
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Old 05-27-2010, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
5,412 posts, read 3,471,661 times
Reputation: 916
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tone509 View Post
I happen to work with a couple guys in their 20's who are car enthusiasts. While they don't have vehicles at that level (yet?), I believe they appreciate the inner workings as much as the style. I'd also guess that they see the cars as a "chick magnet". As for why ladies and those over 30 might lease Beamers and Benzes here....I have no idea.
I know of a guy in LA who got a BMW because women are attracted to those cars. That probably even works, but I would never want a woman like that...

I live in a rental building, and there are several low end BMWs in the garage. one person has a lotus, but at least that person has it for performance. If you're going to ge ta performance car, you don't get a BMW 325... or a 125.. Those are inseceure people who want to be seen in a BMW.
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