Saturday, July 07, 2007

Something to read on the world's biggest wedding day ever

This is either the driest bit of satire ever written, or the best argument for the moon to break orbit and drop onto the United States immediately:

How to meet and marry a billionaire

Anyone who has read this blog more than zero times knows that I've never been among the wealthy and connected, nor does the prospect of being wealthy and connected appeal to me at all. From what I've read, seen and heard, being rich involves a lot of standing around in ritzy places dressed up in ridiculously overpriced suits with other people, drinking and eating trendy food no one can pronounce in some sort of ritual called "networking." As much as I love socializing with people, even rich and well-connected people, I also like being comfortable. And that just doesn't happen for me when I'm in a place where I'm afraid to touch a table because it may be made of Faberge eggs laid by Donald Trump's bald eagle.

Basically, I don't care for pretense. Conspicuous consumption doesn't impress me. If a decent person has really nice stuff, great. I like to think I do too. But stuff isn't going to influence my opinion of someone one way or the other. And it puzzles me that, in 2007, there are still enough educated Americans shamelessly shallow enough to constitute a target audience for these sorts of sentiments:

Marry money. Real money. As in not a mere millionaire (a dime a dozen these days) but an honest-to-goodness billionaire...

A seven-figure donation from your beloved to the school of your choice and your kids are in the door, even if they're no smarter than grapefruit.

Google is a gold digger's best friend.

Get an M.B.A. ASAP. To worm your way into a billionaire's business, and eventually his heart, you need the right career. An M.B.A. will give you the most flexibility. Since people think that it qualifies you to do just about anything, you can get hired just about anywhere.

Not all charities are created equal in the hearts and wallets of the superrich. To figure out which nonprofits are most likely to put you in touch with people of ultrahigh net worth, peruse the Chronicle of Philanthropy to see what causes top givers favor.

Ginie Sayles offers seminars around the country on marrying rich ($50 to $150 a person), as well as $500-an-hour private sessions. Using a 14-point system to help hoi polloi ramp up their classiness, she says, her clients have married several multimillionaires in her 20 years in business.

...available in her book Get Serious About Getting Married: 365 Proven Ways to Find Love in Less Than a Year...

Once you zero in on a prospect, you'll have to look as if you're interested in what he or she likes.

If you do make it to the altar, hire a smart lawyer to negotiate the best terms on your prenup. But no matter how difficult things get, hang in there. The longer you stay, the more the court will award you if the marriage fails. There's no reason, after all, that your divorce shouldn't be every bit as lucrative as your marriage.

What bothers me about this article isn't that it caters to the worst impulses of ruthless, attention-starved, super-capitalistic gold-diggers, but that it is so flagrant about it. And what's worse is that we all know actual people who are like this. And not as a joke, either.

Even without the money element, this is sad. "Look as if you're interested?" Why would anyone want to spend time with someone who bores them, even if billions of dollars are involved?

As a single guy, I get lonely sometimes. But that's preferable to being bored and phony.

My heartfelt pity goes out to anyone who reads this article and takes it seriously. At least when you're not high-society, you know who actually loves you.


Cajun Tiger said...

Must have been Anna Nicole Smith's personal dating counselor!

V'ron said...

I'll disagree. Anna Nicole and her sugar daddy knew exactly what both were in for.

This is more of the advice for people who see marraige and a power-couple merger. I work in an environment where I see lots of "power couples." Some are simply man and trophy wife, but this one really does sound like power-couple-itis. It's grosser than trophy-wife-ism, because there's this pretense involved. AT least with a trophy wife or trophy husband, you know its basically prostitution, and its kind of honest in a way.