Monday, February 16, 2015

First-world problems

After meticulously planning a two-week vacation, my checked luggage was lost when I landed at my destination. I had to wait around my friend’s apartment looking out the window for a good day and a half, stewing in the same clothes I had started my journey in, nine time zones away. 

Poor me.

Then I looked at the bright side.

  1. I was in Paris.
  2. I was staying for free in an apartment that was two blocks from the Eiffel Tower and was outfitted with gorgeous French doors that opened onto a balcony that I wouldn’t have been at all surprised to find out that Audrey Hepburn had graced. Outside this charming apartment, the Eiffel Tower looked like it had been painted against a background of blue October skies (see photo). Quel domage.
I may have been washing my panties out in the sink but I was in Paris. In other words, un problem du premier monde.

First-world problems are everywhere, if you know where to look and when to listen.

“Should we go to the beach today or just hit the resort pool instead? You know I hate getting sandy.”

“I’m in a pickle. My Swiss au pair isn’t arriving until a week after the kids finish preschool.”

“I can’t decide between buying a new four-story townhome with a rooftop deck or staying in my 1912 Craftsman.”

“One of my resolutions is to purge my stuff this year and simplify and streamline. I just have way too many clothes, shoes, books, CDs, computer equipment, train memorabilia, Precious Moments figurines…”

I sympathize, I really do. Problems are problems, even if you’re not starving or in danger of eviction or battling the measles. But a first-world problem that actually needs to be addressed is our collective lack of perspective and self-awareness. I’m sorry you weren’t able to snag those heirloom tomato seeds and it sucks that your metabolism has plateaued to the point that you can’t lose those last five pounds. But every time you get stressed or P.O.’d, take a breath and think of a third-world problem.

Nothing like Ebola or lack of clean drinking water to make the long line at Chipotle suddenly bearable.

What's your favorite first-world problem?

1 comment:

BillyK said...

The supermarket is out of Antarctic crab claws. I'll have to make my Thai fish cakes with prawns instead. Bugger!