It seems that the freedom of the rich to marry one another as well as the fate that most poor people are doomed to. I wonder if there isn't a way that we can better integrate our classes.

I often wonder why I have not met more independantly wealthy men in my age group. I am aware that I am in the poor bracket for 20 somethings and that this bracket comprises most of the age group, but I know they're out there.

The reason I think people of varying classes do not hook up more often is because they are simply not around one another socially. They won't hang out at the same hot spots, eat the same food, or listen to the same music, or at least that's what they think. Each class is probably guilty of the theory that their preferences are unique unto themselves, that they can't possibly be accessed by people outside their own comfort zone. This is to assume that people, as a whole, feel as much imprisoned by the socioeconomic ladder as I do.

Warning: This entire node is written with this assumption in mind, whether it's wise or not.

Even though we tend to stick to our own, it is not always because they are the company we want to keep, but more the company that is the least troublesome, requires the least work. Sometimes it's fear.

Couple fear with feelings of inadequacy, and you may get what I consider to be a pro-poor class stigma, the theory that because you are poor but do not have to be, you have put yourself in the company of real people, not the (insert negative image of wealthy class member here) that you would have to put up with if you were anywhere else. That you are the genuine article, the starving artist, the true poet's poet.

The one suggestion I have on how to possibly reduce this problems calls for the reinstatement of lunch counters, those 50's style cafeterias that allowed people from all walks of life to slurp down a milkshake or chow down on a Salisbury Steak. Of course, the social strata in the US then may have been considerably closer and more intimate than the gaping chasm it is now.

For someone like me who prides herself on being able to hop from one social dictum to another, the re-introduction of lunch counters may be the grassroots kind of attempt we need to ensure better blended marriages.