Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The "Right" to Snootiness


I got a phone call today from a very rich lady.

I sent out a few emails last night to those who were looking for an English tutor. So, this lady called me to have me tutor her 8-year old daughter. She already had an English tutor who helped her with reading and writing so she just wanted me to have conversation with her. Then, she told me she lived in Chungdam-dong which is where all the rich people in Korea live. She asked me where I lived and I told her I lived in Yeonhui-dong, which was kind of far. She then told me that tutors who live far away don't continue with their tutoring for very long. I asked her how long it takes to get there and she didn't answer. That's when I realized she hung up on me. It totally took me off-guard so I thought maybe we got disconnected so I called her back. She didn't pick up so I knew she hung up. I was flabbergasted that she didn't even have the courtesy to say I wasn't what she was looking for and hang up in mutual consent. Then, I thought about what made her think that her behavior was justifiable. Because she was rich? Probably.

People have different ways of measuring their superiority depending on what they are good at or what they have. Like tall people think they are better than short people, smart people think they are better than dumb people, hot-looking people think they are better than ugly-looking people, and rich people think they are better than poor people. I believe many people think they are superior from others in at least one way--even if they are poor, ugly and stupid. They could get on a high horse and criticize people for screwing up the world or preach about morality on the pedestal of self-righteousness. (If nothing else, they could be the king of righteousness.)

I think our need to feel superior comes from a hole inside us that wants to suck in all that seems to validate, love and makes us feel special whether that is money, looks, smarts, talent or power. And I think the less we feel whole on our own, the more we seek to fill that void with a sense of superiority. (Or fill it through other means like drugs, alcohol, food, sex, and violence.)

It's really fascinating how people think and function.

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