Living in the suburbs and what I’d call a fairly affluent area (compared to where I grew up, I guess) there exists certain burgeoning trends that have exploded onto our well-manicured lawns and, well, make me want to blow my fucking brains out. It’s high time someone addressed these trends and suggested places you could, possibly, shove them.
Among some of the most annoying, grating and totally fucking maddening suburban trends are:
1. Cutting the cord.
The newest, most popular thing is to disconnect your cable or satellite service and choose options that are way more fucking complicated, require additional, expensive devices and make no goddamned sense at all. You can use Roku through the Sling, the Firestick around the Hulu or Netflix under the Vue. Oh yeah, then there’s AppleTV. Didn’t make sense? Yeah, no shit. Because it doesn’t. You have to purchase equipment and then pay subscription fees to use any of it. I can barely remember my fucking Facebook password and I’m going to have to use four different subscription services on several different pieces of equipment? And I bet that’ll come with about three different remotes. I’d love to tell you we aren’t television watchers but it would be a pretty damn big lie. The television stays on all of the time. When I felt like my satellite bill was getting too high, I did the only respectable thing I knew to do – I called them and told them I wanted to cancel. Within about five minutes, they offered me one year of the same programming for half the cost. And no need for any of the chaos of various pieces of equipment and a barrage of services that, when added up, probably cost as much as the big, bad cable wolf.
2. Asking for Recommendations.
First of all, if you’re not a member of your neighborhood’s Facebook group, join this shit immediately. It draws in every social maladroit within a two mile radius. I usually only participate in the conversation because there’s been a lull in my day and I need some excitement that only poking the bear can bring. Through these neighborhood groups, people are constantly asking for recommendations for things – an exterminator, a dry cleaner, … a fucking gynecologist. First of all, the people giving the recommendations are just as moronic half of the time. They recommend someone that they’ve only heard of or someone that left a flyer on their doorstep; not someone they’ve actually done business with. Second, have you been introduced to Google or Yelp? It’s fucking genius! Then you won’t have to constantly hop online and look for guidance like a lost puppy or ask questions like “Does anyone have the phone number to the CVS on Main Street?” Third, some stranger named Susan tells you that she had an enjoyable pap smear and you’re just getting in line? Where’s the credibility requirement? How do you know they’re not just an asshole with low standards? This practice is totally lost on me.
3. Community Festivals.
As if hopping on Facebook and asking for a recommendation for a doctor to see about your vagina feeling like it’s been dragged over gravel wasn’t enough, every neighborhood is holding festivals these days. My own neighborhood has barbecues, movie nights, egg hunts, and more. Do you know how many events I’ve shown up to? In the words of Erika Jayne: “NONE, NOT ONE. ZERO, ZERO, ZERO. DONE.” Maybe I’m just a curmudgeon but none of this sounds fun to me. It sounds like a crowded, hot, grassy knoll (Isn’t that how JFK died?) filled with other people’s ratty fucking kids running wild. It sounds like lousy parking but no big deal because these suburban folks love to bike or jog several miles like it’s nothing. To top it off, there’s always people that hop online post-event to complain about something that happened or passive-aggressively chide some minority group of no-gooders. PASS.
4. There’s a Party for Everything.
Chances are, at least three different people on your street have invited you to a party for something they’re selling – boutique clothing, cleaning supplies, or sex toys; it’s all the same. You receive an innocuous Facebook invite about their “party,” and how eager they are to “introduce” you to something. Open mouth, insert bottle of Drano. Look, I don’t need a “party,” or your crackers, cheese and wine to know I don’t need that shit. The online parties are worse. They play into every female stereotype that exists, instructing women to “get in their pj’s, grab a glass of wine and get ready to PAR-TAY!” Look, I’d much rather watch last night’s Real Time and ignore my family like I do every Friday night. I certainly don’t want to stare at my laptop and watch videos on why your company is so fucking great or participate in strange online Q & A sessions where we earn prizes for answering simple questions just before you tell me why I need to give you $199 if I care at all about my family, the environment, and Baby Jesus, for all that is good and holy. No.
This is a huge pet peeve of mine. You don’t make dates for your kids. That’s just fucking odd. Kids go outside and play. If they like each other, they play together. If they think each other are losers, they’ll avoid the other; it’s really pretty simple. Yet there are people who actually arrange “dates” (ugh – can we collectively come up with a better term for setting up two children?) for their kids to play together. And do you want to know the worst part about this whole thing? You’re expected to go to. So then it’s just four people hanging out awkwardly in a room. Look, I haven’t dated since the early 2000s and I make a terrible first impression. I have bitch face, I curse, and my house looks like it was decorated by four college bachelor roommates. I am not prepared to “date” another mom and I certainly don’t want to force my kid to hang with a dud. I’m pretty sure this counts as some form of suburban child trafficking. (Jesus, Child Trafficking Advocates, please don’t email me. It’s just a joke.)
6. Personalized Shirts.
Grown fucking women will walk around with a shirt adorned with glitter or rhinestones or some other obnoxious accessory proudly exclaiming that they are Johnny’s Baseball Mom or Tristan’s Swim Mom. In addition to that heinous self-identifier, they always have some catchy little phrase like “Home is where the field is” or “I’m a Towel Washin’, Goggle Findin’, Snack Packin’, Always Cheerin’ Swim Mom.” We get it, you’re a parent and you love your kid but these shirts are even worse than stick figures on the back of your car. What are you trying to prove? Can’t you just wear a black t-shirt and cheer just the same? Does it make a difference if the teenager at Chick-fil-A knows you’re a “Always Cheerin’” Swim Mom? And can we let some of the “bling” go because it’s not 1999? I can’t take it. PLEASE. SEND. HELP.
Look guys, I know it’s hard to resist these things. After all, we live in suburbia. We’ve been chloroformed into thinking this is our culture but it’s not. You, too, can resist. Like Nancy Regan said – “Just say no.”