Monday, January 27, 2014


Do you have friends who are wine snobs, beer snobs, or worst of all, “foodies?” You know their biases because they tell EVERYONE and ANYONE who will listen about why their merlot is far superior (and expensive) than all other merlots. And they judge you hardcore for not being cultured. And heaven forbid I don’t like anything braised (or even know what braising is) because when I once made the mistake of admitting the latter to aforementioned foodie, I was spoken down to like a child for the rest of the evening.

Needless to say, I am usually not a snob. I am far too poor to be a snob about much. I will consume whatever beer is put in front of me, whether it is an IPA winter ale from a homebrew dude in Ohio or a can of Miller Lite. Especially if it's free.

But even a poor, student-loan-drowning gal like myself has her preferences, and so I give you a list of five things that turn me into a full-on diva snob.

1.     Apples

I recognize that this makes me sound like a freak, but I only really like two kinds of apples: Honeycrisps and Pink Ladies. I will, of course, eat other kinds but I do not buy anything other than HCs and PLs (that’s right, I gave them cute nicknames). I like a crisp apple, dammit. They are more expensive but I would rather go appleless than eat a mealy Braeburn.

2.     Peanut Butter

My family has gone through some significant financial struggles, but I have a distinct childhood memory of when my peanut butter snobbery came to be. I was at the grocery store with my mom and she asked me to go grab a jar of peanut butter. I came back over to the cart with a generic brand creamy peanut butter and my coupon-clipping, rebating mom looked down at me with those condescending snob eyes, shook her head, and said, “Honey, we’re Skippy people. Put that back.” Ten year old Carlye took that comment to heart and up until this last year, I rarely consumed anything other than Skippy. Then I got into trying to incorporate more unprocessed foods into my diet and started buying the must-be-refrigerated Parker's Farm. Just peanuts and oil. I’m a snob through and through.

3.     Underwear

When it comes to clothing/style, I am all about cheap. My “nice” clothes come from Gap (that I bought at thethrift store) and I don’t invest in much when it comes to what I wear. Buying something NEW rather than NEW TO ME (aka thrifted) feels like a splurge. The only thing I refuse to skimp on is my under things. Without going into too much detail, know that I buy my underwear at Victoria’s Secret where they are 7 for $26 versus a pack o’ Hanes from Target where you can get 6 for $9. I have a lot of problems with Victoria's Secret as a company and the negative cultural stereotypes for women that they perpetuate, but I like to have nice undies. So sue me.

4.     The Kennedys

So I realize that I am obsessed with the Kennedys in a not-so-cute way. I mean, everybody knows that I love me some Kennedys and know a lot of trivia about them. But the obsession has also been scholarly and I have done a lot of analytical research and writing on Jackie in particular. Which predisposes me to be a little bit of a snob when it comes to “knowing” them. Like I’ll meet someone, the Kennedys will come up, and they will say, “Ohmygod I LOVE the Kennedys too!” And I just look at them with a condescending smile and think, “oh that’s cute.” It’s snobby but true. I refuse to accept that Joe Shmoe knows even close to as much as I do about the Kennedys. 

5.     Being from a big city

So I am from Minneapolis. Like in the actual city. Not a freaking suburb. My streets are numbered and nowhere within a five mile radius do we have streets such as “Hemlock Lane” or “Mulberry Street” or “Westchester Road.” I took the city bus to and from high school. I have never been prouder (or snobbier) of being from the city until I went to college. I am fairly desensitized to public urination, crazy people talking to themselves on the bus, and the occasional neighborhood drug bust or shoot out. Then I went away to my small, private, Lutheran college with respect and tolerance of life as a non-white in an institutionally racist society. I also had wonderful teachers, made great friends, and got an awesome education. This is how a lot of conversations went when I would first meet someone at my mostly-white, uber-Lutheran, private college:

Them: Where are you from?
Me: Minneapolis
Them: Oh, so did you go to Wayzata? (One of the richest suburbs)
Me: No. Minneapolis South.
Them: Oh, you bussed into the city for high school?
Me: No. I LIVE in the city. People actually live in the city, you know.
Them: (dumbstruck)
Me: (snobby look of derision)

OR my personal least favorite:

Them: Where are you from?
Me: Minneapolis.
Them: Me too!
Me: REALLY?!?! What high school did you go to?????
Them: Wayzata!!!!! How about you?
Me: Minneapolis South.
Them: There are high schools in actual Minneapolis?
Me: (snobby look of derision)

I have nothing against private schools, but I take a lot of pride in my city upbringing and so-called “toughness” that my fantastic “melting pot” high school experience gave me. Not to rip on the suburbs too much, because I have a lot of wonderful friends who grew up in the burbs, but it drives me up a wall when you say you are from Minneapolis but you are actually from a suburb. Saying you are from “the Twin Cities area” is a perfectly acceptable response. But unless your mailing address included the word Minneapolis, you are NOT from the city.

What are you a snob about??

(Also, I just figured out how to put GIFs in my posts. You're welcome, world.)