Friday Night Out

I read this article where a working class academic took umbrage with his middle class academic colleagues when they described those who supported gun control as rednecks whose idea of a big pacificoceanFriday night out was going to Wal-Mart.  How could such people who would never think to stereotype a woman or a minority person or a gay person stereotype so completely members of the working class?

Hell, I say if the shoe fits wear it.  My idea of big outing, in light of my working class background, is going to Costco.  My idea of a really big outing is taking a truck load of crap to the dump.  The dump is usually pretty exciting and you get to throw all that shit out on the ground, and the whole place has a powerful odor and lots of birds, plus big tractors and shit like that.  I always found trips to the dump fulfilling.  What the hell is wrong with going to Wal-Mart or Costco or the dump?  If I really felt middle class people had better things to do on Friday nights I might be envious. 

My parents never went on outings.  I have absolutely no recollection of their ever having gone out for example to a movie.  They had two big outings:  Church on Sunday, and Friday evening a trip to the grocery store.  Because they went out to get groceries on Friday evening, the old man frequently bought a roasted chicken at the local market, so there wouldn’t be much to clean up after before they headed out to the grocery store, and when they got back we had to run out to the car immediately and bring the shit in because be damned if the old man was going to carry one of those bags in not when he had us slaves to do it for him.

We did have the obligatory family outing every summer when I was in elementary and maybe junior high to the beach.  Since we were an hour or so drive to the Pacific Ocean I guess we had to take advantage of its presence.  These were dreadful affairs rife with potentials for disaster.  First, since these trips involved roasting weenies, we had to find the ice chest, the charcoal, the charcoal lighter fluid, and the hibachi like thing the old man used to roast the weenies.  By the time we had rounded up the shit necessary to make the trip, I was usually a nervous wreck.

That was followed by the drive.  Before they put in the freeway, there were actually stop lights, and it seemed every time we made the fucking beach trip half the city had also decided to go there.  This made for much swearing and cursing and pleading on the part of the old lady for the old man to drive more carefully.  Then the ultimate horror was locating a parking place near where my mother liked to go on the beach, a place without much sand but with tide pools for educational purposes.  The looking for a parking place could go on for some time attended throughout by cursing and whimpering.  Then there was lighting the fucking coal in the fucking hibachi…

So we usually ended up drinking some lukewarm soft drink and eating weenies in buns with sand in them.  Fuck but I would much rather have gone to Wal-Mart.

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