I’ve been to cookie exchanges, which are these marvelous events where you bake like three dozen cookies and take them to a party, and then you come home with three dozen different kinds of cookies. It’s delicious. And I’ve been to clothing swaps, which are equally marvelous events where you take all the clothes you don’t wear any more and dump them in somebody’s living room, and everybody else does the same thing, and then you dig through everybody else’s stuff, and you get to go home with “new” stuff. Bam. Free shopping.
But ever since…well, probably ever, but definitely since my friends started getting married and I moved to New York, I feel like I’ve been a part of a jealousy exchange, which has not been a marvelous event so far. It’s where I’m jealous of my friends being married, and they’re jealous of me being single and free to roam the earth (alone, like the Hulk). Or they’re jealous that I pretty much never work more than 27 hours a week, and I’m jealous that they get paid regularly and have vision insurance. Or they’re jealous that I have this awesome Fossil bag, and then they’re jealous that my mom bought it for me. Or I’m jealous because they get more visits to their blogs than I do. It never ends.
But what if instead of exchanging jealousies with each other, we all exchanged jealousy in general for something else–like support? A lot of times, that’s what happens, don’t get me wrong. But I feel like we could be more proactive about it. Like if I’m jealous that you are married, I could get rid of that and instead help you plan a surprise party for your husband. Or if you’re jealous that I’m all single and carefree, you could start looking for a single, carefree guy who’d be perfect for me. If I’m jealous that you have a full-time job, I could instead help you do things you don’t have time to do because you’re at work. And if you’re jealous that I only work part-time, you could collect money to help me get new glasses when I need them.
It’s sort of a radical idea, I know, but what do you think? Am I totally a socialist? Do you want in?