Hate it here

You just finished reading your emails and all you know is some poor customer service rep at Denver Health is going to get an earful on their first day back from the holidays. Your fourth surprise medical bill this year will bring your total to $600 for three well visits. You thought well visits were covered but, they explained, you scheduled one too soon since the last visit oh and there was some extra blood work. Well, you don’t know who makes these rules, but they are clearly deranged.

But it’s not really about the medical bills. It’s the whole thing of it. No matter how you look at the numbers you will never be able to buy the house you live in. You could never raise kids on your salary. You couldn’t buy a new car if yours got trashed. There’s no backup plan there’s no extra. And it’s not about the job–you’ve gotten a 40% pay raise since you started. You get good health care (but also shitty health care because health care is inherently shitty now because it has become a behemoth of an industry that does nothing but gobble up money and make people wait on the phone for hours to figure out why) from a business so small it is not even legally required to provide health care to its employees. Your boss comes to work all the same days as you do and does the same work that you do. You can ask for more money–it’s a noble and necessary ask–but also besides the point. That’s not where the money is.

You feel like you shouldn’t complain, because you’ve benefited so much from capitalism. But no, you will complain: this is so clearly messed up. You believe that people should be able to steward the land they live on, the spaces they live in. They should be able to have kids if they feel called to. They should be able to be well, without going bankrupt. But what the world seems to say is no, some people don’t deserve those things. And that’s so fucked.

Look, you’ll get over it. You’ll calm down. You’ll try not to curse when you’re on the phone with the customer service rep. You’ll stop eating out so much and buy the sale bread at the grocery store. Maybe you’ll get a new job or move to a new city where things are cheaper. Maybe you’ll win the lottery or the government will send you checks suddenly and randomly that are worth more than you ever made at work. Maybe you will sell that novel you wrote. Maybe you will benefit from your white privilege (yeah you totally will). Maybe you happen to know a lot of lawyers. Maybe one day, you’ll have so much money. But fuck, couldn’t we do better than that?

What I really hope really, is that one day we’ll live in a world where you won’t feel like you need so much money to have the things that are already yours.

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