A Pompous Ass with Gummybears

 

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How did I become a pompous ass? I am not into pomp and glitter; I am not a show-off; I was raised differently.

Money was tight when I was a child. We had everything we needed and made things work, but there wasn’t room for any luxury. I think we were poor, but I was never hungry, so I don’t really know.

Money was even tighter when I was a young adult -it was pretty much nonexisting. I was a poor student, and I married a man who didn’t have much more than I did. We made it work, like so many around us.

Then, almost overnight our studies were over, and we started our careers. I made good money right from the start, especially when I traveled. I even had an expense account -who would have thought that was possible. All of a sudden I could afford things; could spend money on items I didn’t need, and it felt good.

25 years ago, right before my birthday, I decided to throw a big party for people I worked with. I was working on the Eastcoast for a couple of weeks, far away from home and I couldn’t fly back before the job was finished. I missed my husband, missed my friends and didn’t want to sit alone in a hotel room on my birthday. Surely I could celebrate somehow?

I made a reservation for ten people at a Sheraton Hotel downtown. I had called around, and they offered a fabulous buffet for JUST $50 per person. 500 bucks without tip, that was a lot of money back then -still is.

“What the Heck,” I thought, “It’s my Birthday, and I will celebrate -even if I celebrate it with people I hardly know.” It was set in stone.

I felt so special that night when I entered the hotel. Everybody had shown up, all of them were dressed nicely for the special occasion. Of course, they were there, who would miss an invitation, when a pompous ass like me pays for everything.

They even brought me presents, things that I didn’t need. A silk scarf with a scary design, a book that I had read before, and wine I didn’t drink. We were coworkers for just a few weeks, they didn’t know me, and I didn’t know them.

Everybody was eating and laughing, they all had a good time -just inside of me it didn’t feel right. “Who were all these people and why was I there?”

I felt disconnected and alone inside. My smile and my laughter were just a facade, and I continued to play my part in the story that I had written.

Then another co-worker arrived, a lady that I liked a lot. She apologized for being late; her babysitter hadn’t shown up, and she had her boy with her. He was 10 or 11 years old, a cute kid, very well behaved. I didn’t mind.

The kid sat down beside me after a while, congratulated me and handed me a bag full of gummy bears. An assortment he had chosen, because he had heard that I always have gummy bears hidden in my desk.

He was right. I love gummy bears, and they are wherever I am. Swedish Fishes, gummy worms, sour bears, I love them all.

Of all the people there, he was the one who knew a little bit about me.

I always joke that it took 500 bucks and a bag of gummy bears for me to see who I am. I will always be the girl who was raised on a farm. I don’t need pomp and glitter around me, and I certainly don’t need to be a pompous arse.

What I need are gummy bears in every form known to man – and lots of them.

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Ostentatious

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13 thoughts on “A Pompous Ass with Gummybears

  1. I have always told my daughters that your twenties are the time to figure out who you are, what you want, what’s important to you. You can easily try new things then without really doing any lasting harm or damage to your psyche, career, relationships, etc.. This story is a great example of someone who learned that about yourself during those years. Thanks for unknowingly backing me up here.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree with Diana and I think you are being a little harsh on yourself. IT doesn’t sound like your motives were anything worse than wanting to be good to yourself on tour birthday when you were feeling a little sorry for yourself.
    You could, you did, no harm-no foul ☺

    However, I agree about the gummy bears! 💕💕

    Like

  3. love your humor….

    and the lessons we learn about our relationship with money and things – and the like….
    sounds like you are very grounded – (my kind of peeps)

    and is that your dog (sorry -s till new here)
    but he is awesome –

    Like

  4. AWWWWW! ❤ Well at least your defining moment didn't 'cost' you a great deal. Some folks never realize the pomposity of their arses; while others have affairs, buy $50,000+ automobiles, or several million dollar homes trying to find themselves. $500 and some bears is a steal girl! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t think throwing yourself a lavish birthday party was pompous, Bridget. You didn’t want to spend the day alone and were generous to your guests. But I agree with the message that the sweetest moments and gifts often aren’t the priciest or even bought in a store. A lovely story.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I tried to do something similar for my 40th birthday but the people I invited kept asking me to change the date — My birthday generally falls on Labor Day weekend. Ah well, at least my chance for introspection came at a cheaper price. >_<

    Liked by 1 person

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