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Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Status Strollers

I must admit to living in a neighborhood where conspicuous consumption is the name of the game. In my community, homes are being built that are true monuments to excess. And it doesn't stop there. These homes are being used as receptacles for yet more consumer items. From the luxury SUVs parked in front, to the custom kitchens inside, to the multilevel hardwood swingsets installed out back, the Five Towns is definitely not what I would call a model community for restraint when it comes to spending. So I guess I should have seen the advent of the "Status Stroller" as inevitable.

Evidently, the new must-have accessory in the Five Towns for hip mommies in the know is the $1,000 stroller (with accessories). It started small. Six months ago, I only saw a few of these dotted about the shul stroller parking lot. But now, these strollers (called bugaboos, in case you might not be up on the lingo) seem to be proliferating...well, like bugs. You know what they say about roaches, "if you see one, there are 100 more where that one came from"? Well, that seems to be the case with these bugaboos. They are crawling out of the woodwork. Unlike roaches, though, they don't only come in brown. I have seen them in every color imaginable, in denim, even in ultrasuede! They have managed to creep their way into almost every conversation. Overheard in the coffee shop yesterday: "I'm so depressed. I jumped on the aubergine, when really, I should have waited until the 2006 colors came out." Yeah. Whatever. Really depressing. Want to know what I find depressing, girls? That this is what passes for conversation these days.

Now excuse me, I need to take my baby out for a walk in my jalopy of a stroller. And it doesn't depress me a bit. As a matter of fact, I couldn't feel luckier - not even if I were to get a gray bugaboo cameleon with orange and red fleece fabric, complete with diaper bag, bag clips and footmuff (did I leave anything out?).

32 Comments:

Blogger Unknown said...

I remember this kind of thing when Evan was born. I think Pregos or something like that was "da bomb" of the baby stroller. I remember critically evaluating everything in my own personal, pitiful price range to get the "right" wheels and the "right colors...until I won my stroller from Burlington and got a tan outside with navy inside. It was nice. Until it broke and then I used a semi-cheap unbrella...and Evan loved it even more. Gone were the days of the stroller weighing more than the baby!!!! Who knew?

1:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

classic five towns. i thought so, but now I KNOW you daven in the red shul.

1:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But pay yeshiva tuitions? Oh no we can't afford them!

1:31 PM  
Blogger AMSHINOVER said...

some times we forget you are also a mum

1:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, Mr. Anonymous! What is with all the hostility to the Five Towns in general and the Red Shul in particular? Is your insecurity showing a bit?

1:54 PM  
Blogger and so it shall be... said...

Aha! You wrote a post about expensive baby carriages. PROOF that you DEFINITELY daven at the Red Shul!!

3:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

???

3:49 PM  
Blogger Ezzie said...

:::Reminder to escape the NY region before kids get too old:::

4:31 PM  
Blogger and so it shall be... said...

Anonymous said...
classic five towns. i thought so, but now I KNOW you daven in the red shul.

Still Wonderin' said...
Aha! You wrote a post about expensive baby carriages. PROOF that you DEFINITELY daven at the Red Shul!!

Baffled said...
???

Still wonderin' said...
Exactly!

5:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry, I don't get it.

Couldn't you say "classic _____," and fill in just about any neighborhood?

5:58 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

baffled:
Of course. That's why conjecture based on this post is just absurd, as Still Wonderin' pointed out.

7:36 PM  
Blogger orthomom said...

z:
Tell me about it. My baby's fave is also the cheapo umbrella from Target. Go figure.

anonymice:
Whatever. Not sure if you're the same person, but you might as well be, from the tone of your comments. Pick a fake name, guys.

Mirty:
I know. I find it funny too, especially since I haven't shelled $1000 out for a stroller either.

ezzie:
Not everyone out here is like that. There are many like me. Don't get scared off.

7:41 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der ┼íteg) said...

It doesn't matter whether your stroller cost $1 or $1000, but to be cool it has to have HYOOGE OFF-ROAD TREAD TIRE WHEELS!!!!!

(ahem)

8:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

another fine example of how people are being taxed out of their homes. (insert sarcasm) public schools are crumbling? tough. I need the money for my bugaboo. (awaiting indignant outrage)

9:21 PM  
Blogger and so it shall be... said...

(awaiting indignant outrage)

Given the choice, most people would prefer wasting their own money on a Bugaboo than on superfluous school employees and outright fraud...but you knew that.

9:56 PM  
Blogger nikki said...

oh please. you guys are sooooo has been. here on the other side of the world we've moved beyond the bugaboo, way too pedestrian to be sure, to the quinny zap or buzz. and to up the exclusivity factor, i don't think they're even available in US retail outlets... europe here we come! don't call us poor israelis! {sigh}
anybody read a good book lately?

1:21 AM  
Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Orthomom: Are the $1000 stroller parents the same one who want alternative yeshiva/public school lower tuition plans?

3:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"wasting their own money on a Bugaboo than on superfluous school employees and outright fraud...but you knew that"

you're right. what was I thinking? teachers, secretaries, custodians, etc. are certainly superfluous. also, since the district hasn't spent money wisely and other districts have had full blown scandals, all districts must be fraudulant. While two and three years ago, I understood voter outrage. However, at this point, it boils down to economic self-interest. (which can be re-interpreted as selfishness)

also, I simply found it amusing that I would read quotes in the Herald about people being taxed out of the community, when everyone can see the McMansions popping up everywhere, and now, apparently, the occasional bugaboo.

8:24 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ezzie:

Five Towns =/= all of NY Area.
There's also:
West Hempstead
Flatbush
Borough Park
Jamaica Estates
Kew Garden Hills
Teaneck
East Brunswick
Upper West Side
Lower East Side
Upper East Side
Riverdale
Monsey
Willowbrook
Washington Heights
etc. etc.

8:44 AM  
Blogger orthomom said...

Just so you know, anon, I saw your comments coming from a mile away, as soon as I put up this post. Do you just hang around, waiting for posts to spring up that you can use to trash the Orthodox segment of the community? Grow up, and get a sense of humor. People buying $1,000 strollers doesn't absolve the district of their responsibilty to manage our money in a responsible fashion. We can spend our hard-earned money any way we want. The district, on the other hand, cannot.

8:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saving $1000 on one bugaboo stroller is still not going to make a dent in tuition. While I hate (make that HATE) conspicuous consumption and can't even imagine spending $1000 on a stroller (I imagine $1000 is what we have spent on baby equipment, clothing, and toys), it is incorrect to suggest that an entire community goes out and spends their money like this, only to be left with nothing for tuition.

What those making the snide remarks fail to miss is that there are plenty of people in every community, who are suffering, not because of their consumption--some of these six figure earning families are struggling to pay their utilities and they don't show-off with material goods--but because tuition is just too high.

8:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Woo hoo! You go, OM!

8:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ouch. FYI, I'm not a lurker. I check your site a few times a week because I find it interesting. I should also add that I think you are an excellent writer. I agree with you that my initial reply has very little to do with your bugaboo piece. It is also true that snide comments don't help community relations. Therefore, I'll make the following promise. All future posts by me will be relevant and free from snide sarcasm. I prefer actual dialogue, anyway. With that said, we'll "speak" again in May (where, I'm sure, you'll be posting about BOE elections and the budget vote), if not sooner.

11:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone wanted to buy a bugaboo for a lakewood grandkid and was told, "Wait, next year you'll need to buy a double stroller, so don't buy an expensive single." I thought that was wise advice. :)

1:31 PM  
Blogger Stacey said...

wow. and i thought the $200 and $300 strollers were expensive! we are looking into getting one and i never imagined frum people would be into spending this kind of money on a stroller. it sickens me. i love living in israel!

9:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my neighborhood in Yerushalayim nobody goes with anything but a bugaboo - so its everywhere.

11:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like vancity - monster strollers everywhere. I'm still waiting to see one with spinners or chrome accents.

9:17 PM  
Anonymous Eric said...

Someone wanted to buy a bugaboo for a lakewood grandkid and was told, "Wait, next year you'll need to buy a double stroller, so don't buy an expensive single." I thought that was wise advice

1:20 AM  
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