Wednesday, January 11, 2012
"The Rich Get Richer, The Poor Get - Children."
Appeared in a novel first published in 1925, that is as candid today as it was truthful before.
Poor boy meets rich girl. Poor boy and rich girl fall in love. Poor boy, a soldier, leaves to call of duty. Abandoned, rich girl marries a rich man.
Five years later, poor boy returns filthy rich - no, he did not win the biggest lottery of all time; picture how, and you may be right - and pursues rich girl who is now married, by throwing big parties only the New Year's Eve parties in Time Square can compete.
Finally they meet again. A tragedy here. Another tragedy there. The novel ends with three gruesome deaths: a vehicular accident that rips the victim's body apart, a murder, and a suicide.
The Great Gastby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
The Jazz Age, coined by Fitzgerald in the novel, is an era of lawlessness, wantonness, materialism, and excesses. A new dawn of sexual freedom, and greed.
In that age, only the rich get richer. In that age, if you're poor and you want to get rich, you don't go to school and be a topnotch or drop-out of it and invent something. You lick ass to kick ass. In that age, the poor and humble and meek only get babies, not rubies. In that age, one is a fool to love. For love has no chance in a caked soil simmering summer.
Ironically, the worst of the wealthy are those who were the dirt poor once, the downtrodden, the last in the line of the underdogs. Today, these are those who buy bags the tag price of each could build a house for a family of five. And you pity them for abandoning the past completely with all the gala of pretense. Those rich get richer and become the poorest all at once.
The Jazz Age resurrects stronger, and uncontested.
(Book cover from Amazon.com)
Posted by Yaw Lee