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Auntie Maim

It seems like even the title of the article is negative toward women: it seems to imply, "ha ha, golddiggers, here's your comeuppance!" Ugh.


You know what I was immediately reminded of? How after 9/11, the Wall Street families "deserved" payouts because the husbands would have made millions over their careers, but didn't have freaking life insurance. I think you're right to question this as a generalized slam upon women instead of "Wall Street--Full Of People Seriously Messed In The Head."


How do you like this one? http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/30/fashion/30Monn.html?8dpc The poor author brings in an event planner to help him throw a party for 8 for $240. Seriously? I usually spend that much on a party for 40! And I serve some mighty fine food, thank you very much. Roasts, veggies, homemade ice cream and desserts. Oy.


I don't get the same outrage or schadenfreude from this article that I did from the one about the lady who bought Christmas presents by skipping the designer jeans. When you pare this story down, you're left with a family who had a goal to move into a nicer house. They sold their existing house at what they thought was the peak of the market and moved into an apartment to ride out the housing crisis and wait until they could realize their dream. That to me is a world of difference from people who said, "GIMME NOW! Balloon Mortgage!" Are they blind amputees living in a shelter? No. But conditions changed, and now they will not be able to realize the dream they did, IMO, move responsibly to achieve.

Also, sort of buried in the article is the fact that the day the markets really fell apart, this woman was a cancer patient having a mastectomy while six months pregnant! Of course you'd be worried about your husband losing his job and insurance! Hell, you'd be worried about ten thousand things, from whether the anesthesia was going to damage your unborn child to whether you were going to live to see the next day and what would happen to her toddler if you didn't. Mona Mond definitely gets my sympathy.

I agree that this story is contributing to the "Shopaholic Mopes About Trivia" meme, and it's damaging and sexist. While I enjoy seeing the entitled clueless get theirs -- the only time I watch Oprah is when she has on people with extreme lifestyle-accessory credit card debt -- I think this article irresponsibly broadens the target to include people who've spent more than they needed to at the Gap, but are otherwise reasonable people.


I agree with Kip. They're not shopoholics and neither of them were living hugely above their means. Both of these women were able to adjust on the turn of a dime, and I'd say the fact that one is an immigrant and the other is a mechanic's daughter has a lot to do with that. The wives who'll have the most difficult time adjusting are wives who spent their entire lives being spoiled rotten by Mommy & Daddy until they met Hubby with the Black Platinum Amex.

Oh, and spendthrifty harpies aren't a stereotype, they really are out there (I worked retail at the Short Hills Mall, so TRUST - I dealt with those beyotches all the time). But they would never allow a reporter to interview them for an article such as this. So the NYT and WaPo end up with women like these, who are just upper-class housewives who husbands lost their jobs, and treat them like high-maintenance trophy wives -- which they most certainly ain't.

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