Re: education - jobs - $$$/with an anthro-theme eventually

Wade Tarzia (tarzia@UCONNVM.UCONN.EDU)
Fri, 11 Oct 1996 13:57:12 -0400

>...(BTW my colleagues from pre anthro days who
>earned similar incomes to mine way back then, now are almost totally in
>the six figure category).
>... The sad thing is that people who do make the
>big $ (small business owners, management consultants, lawyers, service
>providers, etc.), don't realize how little other sectors of the society

--- Actually, I like these story-telling rituals because I feel so much
more part of a group! Were I feeling more objective, I'd stop
participating and collect these texts as a form of academic-folklore-ritual
with a social function for just this purpose. However, I think I shall
participate in the in-group:

--- Doesn't that sound familiar. My brother-in-law who sells T-shirts with
dumb things printed on them (thus lives in a yuppie mansion) was astounded
at my low salary. If anything will persuade him to advise against sending
his kids to grad school when they're ready in 20 years, this will be it,
and I will be the blame! Yes, my friends (and they are still friends) are
now into the high-5-figures or low sixes. My best friend offers to send me
plane tickets to come out to visit him so we can cruise around in his Alpha
Romeo "like in the old days." Of course in the old days we cruised in
Oldsmobiles with 130,000 miles of rust on them! (I should add that my
other friend still looks and acts the same as he was in college, and keeps
the same company -- gods only know where all that money goes! Eating out,
I should think, as opposed to the Corn Flakes and hot dogs of the good old
days as room mates).

OK, I'm feeling more objective, now --

This *can* have an anthropological point to it, sort of. It seems easy for
us (them, really!) to adjust to increasing salaries while maintaining the
ideology of earlier poorer years. Part of this is American ideology. Part
of this MUST also be a brand of code-switching, or rather
ideology-switching? (although surely there must be a language-ritual
component to this as in linguistic code-switching) My friend and I can
meet do all the old things -- cruise, look for fossils, camp out on
mountain tops for star-gazing -- and then afterward he can go to his Alpha
Romeo club, or his company where he is a stockholder, and talk THAT talk,
and I can return and switch codes to academic-whining, though, of course,
remaining all the while secure in my greater ethical burden stemming from
"pure" investigation of the cosmos ;-) -- wade