What’s More American Than…

by Lorna's Voice
Get ready. I'm in a mood, People.

Get ready. I’m in a mood, People.

I’m giving you fair warning. This post is a smidge snarky.

Maybe it’s because I was stung by a bee or a wasp or an unmanned drone last Sunday. Yup.

In an uncharacteristic moment of outdoorsyness, I decided to whack the dickens out of trim an annoying shrub.

Why was it annoying? It was getting too lush and beautiful. I’m the anti-gardener and I can’t have nice looking shrubbery. That thing was totally ruining my reputation. Plus it was choking out some ornamental grass I planted (and by “I,” I mean “Phillip”). We all know grass is more important than Bushes. Oh, did I use a capital “B” on Bush? Total typo.

Anyway, the predator poison injector with wings got me in the upper right inside thigh, which immediately swelled to the size of an impressive goiter. Plus it itched. Since Sunday, the swelling has gone down, but the redness and itching has traveled to my knee and surrounding areas. Let’s just say shorts and short skirts are not in my future. Neither is sleeping through the night.

Obviously that's not me. I rarely go outside to garden without a bra. This is just to show you how I reacted to the sting.

Obviously that’s not me. I rarely go outside to garden without a bra. Plus I think this is a guy and I’m not. And the sting is on my upper thigh. This is just to show you how I reacted to the sting.

So, if this post sounds a bit off the wall edgy, the person writing it is dizzy, sleep-deprived, itchy, has a deformed and discolored upper right leg, and is generally mad at nature. Forgive me. I’ll get over it. I’m Buddhist. I’m working on it.

Okay, back to the point of this post.

Last weekend, (before the Attack of the Killer Bee) Philip and I were walking to our local grocery story, located in a strip mall. As with all strip malls, it has a huge parking area.

I don’t know if this phenomenon occurs around you, but it’s common in my neck of the suburbs: people with motor homes use the nether regions of large parking lots (like Walmart/Sams lots) to park and set up “shop” for their camping experience.

I don’t mean they just pull in for the night and vamoose at day break. They roll out their awnings and set up their circle of chairs. They CAMP in the parking lot. On the pavement. Is this what camping is really all about to some people? What happened to trees and water and roasting marshmallows on an open fire rather than over a propane tank?

Yeah. That's the way I like my marshmallows: with that hint of methylethyl-bad-stuff to add the right amount of flavor.

Yeah. That’s the way I like my marshmallows: with that hint of methylethyl-bad-stuff to add the right amount of flavor.

Philip and I saw campers in the parking lot we were crossing. Nothing unusual there.

The unusual thing was how they were situated. We saw a grouping of about 4 small, modest rigs. A bunch of people were circled in their camping chairs laughing and talking. Coolers in the middle had beer cans on top of them. These people were having a pavement party.

Way off on the other side of the parking lot was a lone and very high-end RV. This motor coach cost big bucks. Two people, ostensibly Husband and Wife, were seated outside on cushy high-end folding chairs. No cooler. A little table with a tablecloth. They were drinking wine. No laughter. Very refined.

When do we have to be ready to shoot that Cialis commercial?

When do we have to be ready to shoot that Cialis commercial?

Then it struck both Philip and me: this is a demonstration of the American social class system. The 1% (well, in this case 20%, because there were 5 campers in all) were isolated, in fancy and expensive accommodations, and obviously not interested in being anywhere near those “other people.”  The majority were grouped together in adequate accommodations and making the best of their situation. They couldn’t afford wine, so beer would do.

Of course, I’m making all kinds of assumptions here. But, hey, this is my post. I’m cranky and I’m allowed. Just look at this picture and tell me if this doesn’t smack of some elitism going on…even if they are all camping in a freaking parking lot!

At least they are close to a nice hedge and some pine trees. Off to their right is a Dunkin' Donuts and a Burger King. But no KFC. I guess that's what camping is all about--roughing it.

At least they are close to a nice hedge and some pine trees. Off to their right is a Dunkin’ Donuts and a Burger King. But no KFC. I guess that’s what camping is all about–roughing it.



15 Comments to “What’s More American Than…”

  1. Ouch! That shrub’s security guard really enjoys his work. And with wopses, one hasn’t even got the satisfaction of knowing that they left their life with their sting.
    *shock* These strip mall places: does one go there nekkid?
    Never heard of parking being used by the camping set. Maybe they study human nature rather than the green type?
    Snobs will be snobs whatever undertaking they may undertake.
    This was a fun post – even though you had to suffer to produce it.

    • Glad you liked it! I am almost fully recovered–just a faint red patch and residual itching near my knee (where the poison traveled–gravity, you know). Crazy with the camping thing, eh? I was hoping it was a universal phenomenon. I really hate to think that it is unique and creepy to my area… 😉

      • It is a far cry from what we used to do in our little campervan in the Good Old Days – simply find a nice scenic spot at the roadside in the middle of nowhere, and spend the night. We occasionally woke up to find we were surrounded by gawking sightseers – but they were things like a herd of wildebeest or zebras. Or we might find tracks of a leopard who hadn’t been able to lay paws on a can-opener.

  2. Wow, definitely didn’t think of social classes amongst the camping crowd, but you made some good and shock! Serious points! I heard the “snarky” and some bite and wit, but you were making a statement here. Interesting post and I really liked it!

  3. Oh man, I don’t blame you for being angry at nature. I’m a little bug-phobic myself, so there would have been running and screaming involved if it were me. Then body armor and a wasp hunting trip would have followed that would end in a flaming, exploding nest (I would probably snipe it from my roof with a flaming, explosive tipped arrow because I hate wasps THAT much). My neighbors would probably be extremely concerned, but hey – there would be no more wasps. 🙂 Lol, I wish I could say I was mostly joking, but I’m not – I’m currently at war with a spider infestation… and the neighbors ARE concerned. I’ve been running around the backyard with a can of bug killer, threatening things the neighbors can’t see from their windows. I’m sure I look like a crazy… but soon there will be no more spiders. *mwa-ha-ha-ha* I hope your leg gets better soon!

    • Good luck with the spider infestation. My leg is finally better. The poison traveled all the way down to my knee. I couldn’t believe the swelling and itching from one little sting. 😉

      No more gardening for me!

  4. So sorry to hear about your owie!
    My sister-in-law and her husband often spend the night in a paved parking lot when they haul their rig down south for the winter. Most of the time they have no choice because the local campgrounds are closed for the season!

    • I can understand that, but we have tons of campgrounds around here–all open at this time of year. I just don’t get it. well, yes I do. But not for the people with the $100,000+ rigs–they can afford a camp site!

  5. You could have quite easily titled this ‘What’s more British than…’ because I see this regularly,, and as far as bumble bee stings, well “they ain’t fussy neither” teehee! nice read and dare I say observation…. Lorna…

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