How do trendy social climbers do a one-up on bumper stickers? Why would they want to?
Seriously now: Studies somewhere show a correlation between the number of bumper stickers someone's plastered all over their car and the likelihood of the car's owner erupting into some crazy road rage act—fully-justified, of course. Is there any other kind?
But in this day of $300,000 starter homes and On-Star; mortgages, SUV payments, satellite radio and Blackberries established BFS (Before Fiscal Sense), keeping up with the Jones' has taken a new twist.
Flat Stanley's keen eye observes that it's not enough anymore to be jonesin' for your neighbor's address or wife (or husband or boyfriend or girlfriend or children or—) or lawn care service or even their SUV. Now, even the bumper stickers are trashy-chic. Is this the true indication of the current economic climate, when the trappings of the would-be nuveaux riche are reduced to bumper sticker fashion?
So maybe you're wondering, what the hell is Flat Stanley talking about? Maybe it's an East Coast thing, but around here, the sheep are separated from the goats not only by the number of inches between the ground and the drivers' seat, but also by the shape and location of the bumper sticker.
Regular middle class people have rectangular bumper stickers stuck to conventional locations. This car climbed Mt. Washington – right rear. Ok, poor example. That's definitely less than middle class. How about Question Authority. Nah. Too counter-culture, although edging toward junior-year respectability. I love my cat. FS is kidding. Not even eccentric rich people sport that one. A-ha. My kid is an honor student at F.U. Elementary School. Soccer parents. So not cool.
OXB Black lettering centered on a white oval with a black ring. Getting c-l-o-s-e-r-r-r. USA Black lettering centered on a white oval with a black ring. CBF Black lettering centered on a white oval with a black ring. All fine indications that the vehicle owner is an aspiring social climber, but the true test lies in the real estate.
Location, location, location. The truly classy don't permit their ovals to accentuate random bits of chrome or color-matched bumper. Realizing the value of understatement, rejecting the values implied in disorder, and embracing the implications of upscale, those aspiring to the status of Have Arrived indicate their ambition by arranging their collection of ovals in rows or colums on the back window of their SUV.
FS has told the reader how trendy social climbers notify fellow travelers of their social aspirations. As to the why? When all ya got is the delusion of substance, the illusion of subtance is all yuh need.