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Old 04-09-2010, 12:04 PM
 
13,194 posts, read 28,295,536 times
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There have been many heated debates on here about the materialistic pressures of the Park Cities vs other affluent suburbs in the area and I have seen many relocatees pick Southlake/ Frisco/ Plano over the Park Cities because of their worries about fitting in / keeping up. I have always argued that materialism is far more rampant in other areas, but now I have a relevant concrete example to share (vs my HPHS experiences in the 1990's):

1. I was out walking last night and at the park at the corner of Beverly & Lakeside in HP (across from the Dallas Country Club and Ed Cox's $30M estate) were a group of high school boys hanging out. All their cars were parked along Lakeside and they were pretty much what I remember: 2 1980's Diesel Mercedes, a 1990s 3-series, a beat-up pick up truck, an old blue van, an early 1990's Honda. Only 2 cars were "new" - a shiny new Yukon and a 2000's pickup truck. The rest were almost as old or older than the teens who were driving them. These were all football players (judging by the stickers on their cars). Hardly the picture people try to paint on here of "everyone" getting a brand new luxury car and jetting off to Aspen on the weekends.

2. Just found out my coworker who lives in Frisco is getting his 15-year-old son a brand new Hummer for his upcoming 16th bday because "all his friends" drive one.

Just sayin'.
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:13 PM
 
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I must say I had a lot of reservations about the Park Cities (when we moved here recently) but the people I've met in UP specifically are all very friendly, down-to-earth folks. There are definitely a lot of strong feelings about the area on this board, but like anything else I guess you have to spend some time there for a true perspective on what it's like. I'm still not sold on it, but I think there are more regular folks there than people think. Some of them are working hard to convince our family to move there.

I'm not sure why I only meet people from UP and never HP though...
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Old 04-09-2010, 02:38 PM
hsw
 
2,144 posts, read 7,162,376 times
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In any major city in US, the wealthiest parts tend to have relatively modest cars...often a 2-3yo Mercedes S550 even for the dad, let alone the kids who drive more beat-up Hondas/Toyotas

Suspect the cars are even more modest in garages of the most costly mansions of Strait or Park Ln vs HP's median house

Most rich folks aren't very interested in cars; they usu drive something respectable but nothing extravagant unless they are car nuts

Makes sense as nearly everyone in their world (colleagues, clients, employees, etc) knows they can afford any house or car or jewelry or clothing, so no need to advertise it to general public

And even in many lucrative industries like energy or finance, flaunting wealth at office often creates problems/jealousies as employees may feel underpaid; customers may feel overcharged, etc etc
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:01 PM
 
13,194 posts, read 28,295,536 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSPMom View Post

I'm not sure why I only meet people from UP and never HP though...
Two big factors:
1. UP's population is 3x bigger than HP's.
2. If you have kids, most families live in UP. Less expensive homes are more affordable to younger buyers and younger buyers have kids at home. HP is much more of an "empty nester" crowd.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:08 PM
 
9,418 posts, read 13,496,448 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleCreek80 View Post
There have been many heated debates on here about the materialistic pressures of the Park Cities vs other affluent suburbs in the area and I have seen many relocatees pick Southlake/ Frisco/ Plano over the Park Cities because of their worries about fitting in / keeping up. I have always argued that materialism is far more rampant in other areas, but now I have a relevant concrete example to share (vs my HPHS experiences in the 1990's):

1. I was out walking last night and at the park at the corner of Beverly & Lakeside in HP (across from the Dallas Country Club and Ed Cox's $30M estate) were a group of high school boys hanging out. All their cars were parked along Lakeside and they were pretty much what I remember: 2 1980's Diesel Mercedes, a 1990s 3-series, a beat-up pick up truck, an old blue van, an early 1990's Honda. Only 2 cars were "new" - a shiny new Yukon and a 2000's pickup truck. The rest were almost as old or older than the teens who were driving them. These were all football players (judging by the stickers on their cars). Hardly the picture people try to paint on here of "everyone" getting a brand new luxury car and jetting off to Aspen on the weekends.

2. Just found out my coworker who lives in Frisco is getting his 15-year-old son a brand new Hummer for his upcoming 16th bday because "all his friends" drive one.

Just sayin'.
I can never wrap my brain around this kind of thinking. I don't care if you're a zillionaire. Why? Why would you buy a 16 year old a brand new, expensive car? Talk about raising a generation of kids who will have no grasp of the value of things. I actually find it very tasteless.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:13 PM
 
16,087 posts, read 41,159,147 times
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We (Woodrow) have played suburban schools who actually felt sorry for us (because we are a DISD school) and tried to donate money - they had no idea that sitting on our side are people who live in huge no-mortgage mansions on Swiss, Lakewood/Tokalon etc, White Rock Lake (and they would never know how many multi millionaires live in modest homes).. we find it hilarious. We even got it from a small town we played in the playoffs recently.

True/Independent Wealth vs. Nouveau Riche/Employment Dependent

Last edited by Lakewooder; 04-09-2010 at 04:59 PM..
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Old 04-09-2010, 05:10 PM
 
126 posts, read 443,456 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurtleCreek80 View Post
Two big factors:
1. UP's population is 3x bigger than HP's.
2. If you have kids, most families live in UP. Less expensive homes are more affordable to younger buyers and younger buyers have kids at home. HP is much more of an "empty nester" crowd.
Makes sense. It does seem like all the families live in UP. We were at a birthday party there recently and the neighborhood was beautiful and filled with children. It's just hard to wrap my head around buying a UP "starter" home for $750K! But my husband loves the area and thinks we should consider it since he feels we won't find much ethnic diversity in any of the upper middle class neighborhoods inside 635 anyway. I'm still concerned with the lack of socioeconomic diversity though.
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Old 04-11-2010, 10:16 AM
 
6,819 posts, read 14,032,189 times
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Most folks who actually have wealth see little reason to flaunt it (HP/UP). Folks who are trying to get it, recently got it or want you to think they have it flaunt it (Frisco). This does not apply to everyone but pretty close on average. People with wealth are pretty competitive regardless were they live. It's part of the reason they have wealth.
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Old 04-11-2010, 02:52 PM
 
74 posts, read 202,044 times
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I agree that there does seem to be more showiness with new money vs. old money. It sounds like Highland Park is somewhat similar to the suburb I grew up in outside of Philadelphia and the flashiest car on our school parking lot in all of my years there was an old corvette (which was pretty cool). The kids that did have cars when they were 16 were mainly driving the hand me downs, nothing flashy, and were really just grateful to be driving. I just can't imagine giving a 16 year old a brand new hummer for their 16th birthday - so many lessons are just being thrown away. I feel like I am 80 years old when I look at the generation of today. When I was a girl . . .

I just finished a book "The Middle Place" written by a former classmate and she does such a great job capturing this very thing in an excerpt called the "Guess Jeans Fight of 1984". She gets into this crazy fight with her mom over having to have the latest designer jeans. If you have time, you can view the excerpt at http://www.kellycorrigan.com/themiddleplace/jeans.php ~ it is quite entertaining. It probably means more to me because I was having the same fight concurrently with my mom. Kelly is well representative of my home town - kind of cool when you see a person that seems to capture or embody a locale in regards to values, their accent, the way they dress, think, etc. Of course, people are individuals but sometimes just listening to someone can make you feel like you are in the place they are from.

In my high school, Guess jeans were THE thing to wear and we all tried to get out moms to buy into the fact that we needed them, had to have them but I remember my mom would only pay half and then make me use my babysitting money (which was fair) to pay the other half. My mom was so appalled by the price and she would never have just given in. I laughed so hard when I read this excerpt in Kelly's book because we were all trying to work our parents for the same things which is so normal for a teen. I am so grateful my values came from a place like this and that I sincerely value money and realize it does not make a person ~ it is simply a tool which lends freedom. But man, people can get messed up with it all, huh?

Kind of a side note and off topic a bit. I appreciate all of Lakewood's posts and Turtlecreek's posts in that they capture their growing up experience in a local pocket of the DFW area. I don't know the Dallas area well but I agree that it is not all about the money ~ it is more about the values surrounding the money that makes all the difference in the world.
Can anybody recommend a local author that captures a pocket of DFW through their writing? For instance, someone you would say "Oh that person is so representative of Plano, Allen, Highland Park", etc. For example, Kelly Corrigan's book is not a book about her hometown per se (it is a memoir about battling breast cancer) but by reading it, it does provide a window into the world that shaped her thoughts and values and the reader comes away feeling like they can connect to her and the locale that shaped her (hope that makes sense). It is such a great read on so many levels - this thread on "materialism" just came to my mind and I thought I would share.
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:20 PM
 
9,418 posts, read 13,496,448 times
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Read The Middle Place several months ago and loved it! We had a similar fight when I was in high school, don't remember what brand (Guess wasn't out yet) but my mother sided with me over the stupid jeans, dad thought spending money on something like that for a young girl was tacky. Mom and I won but now I realize my dad was right! I become more like him every day. LOL. Back then it was jeans, now it's cars? I just can't get over that. A new car never would have entered my mind and I drove one of those hand me downs.
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