We make no presumptions about why you’re seeking our help today: maybe you’re here because you accidentally followed Mike Pence on Twitter for a few minutes and you’re feeling unclean. Maybe your uncle Ralph shared a misspelled update on your Facebook wall last week warning about contamination at a fishing hole back home in Indiana and a couple of your friends liked it. Maybe you’re just feeling generally insecure about your life ever since you found out that the exposed brick in your new apartment wasn’t original to the building.
Whatever the circumstances, you’re here because you’re an urban professional below forty with an income north of six figures and a STOP KEYSTONE XL bumper sticker on your rarely-used road bike, you’re insecure about your social status, and you want to remind your family, friend, and coworkers of your place in the world. With that in mind, may we humbly suggest that you use social media to share a short, wryly funny humor piece from a respected national magazine riffing on the currently-trendy idea of tiny houses?
You see, by sharing an 800-word article that revolves entirely around the reader understanding both the concept of the tiny house and the term’s trendy buzz in Ivy League-educated coastal circles, you will be communicating a number of subtle things to your friends and family.
You will be reminding them that you care about the tiny-house movement, and that you’re familiar with the ethos behind it. (It’s an aesthetically and environmentally rooted reaction to the proliferation of McMansions. Don’t worry if you forgot; that’s beside the point.)
You will let them know that, beyond simply being familiar with the concept of a tiny house, you are likewise aware that the concept is currently enjoying a moment in the spotlight. This will communicate cultural literacy and a profound engagement with the world around you, or at least that you have an online-only subscription to Harper’s Bazaar.
If you’re lucky, some of your friends and coworkers will, upon seeing your post, assume that you have purchased a number of recently-published books on the matter of tiny houses. This will signal that you are educated and have ample leisure time to read books about architecture. Likely, in your friends’ minds, these books on tiny houses will sit tastefully on a modern Scandinavian coffee table, bathed in the soft glow of your newly-installed skylight, nestled between some back issues of the New York Times Magazine and perhaps serving as an ersatz coaster for a bottle of that high-pH water that your college-aged daughter is apparently drinking now.
This is all well and good, of course, but to truly demonstrate that you are a well-off urban professional who probably would’ve gone to the Women’s March if Carl hadn’t scheduled his goddamn presentation for lunchtime again, it is vitally important that the article you share about tiny houses be a humor piece. After all, sharing an article that simply observes and comments upon the concept of tiny houses is old hat by now. Affluent liberal urbanites have been sharing straight news articles about tiny houses for five or six years by this point. It’s one of their favorite things to do, its popularity even rivaling such perennial favorite affluent-urban-liberal pastimes as wearing sportcoats to Arcade Fire concerts and feeling guilty about owning Audis.
On the other hand, a humor piece on the subject — one that pokes light fun at the idea of living in a tiny house while respecting the ethics of the concept — would show your friends that you are far from stodgy; rather, you are with the times and possess a sense of humor about yourself. I am familiar enough with the concept of the tiny house and its place in our culture to joke about it, your post will tell your friends. Moreover, I am able to have a nice, jolly laugh even about the things I believe in. I probably wrote my honors thesis at Dartmouth about Infinite Jest and own a newly-renovated brownstone in Cobble Hill.
As you can clearly see, there are few better ways to remind your friends that you are, in fact, an apartment-dwelling liberal whose idea of “modest living” includes a month or two in Tuscany every year than to share a humor article about tiny houses with your friends on social media. If you find sharing this article helpful to your self-esteem and social standing among the other Montessori-school parents, you will be glad to know that there are a wealth of similar humor articles available online. These articles, which gently riff on subjects like man buns, charcoal lemonade, the frustrating aspects of owning a summer home, co-working spaces, and hygge, are, of course, written exclusively by, for, and about the kind of people who just blithely assume that everyone has a housekeeper.
Thank you for your time; we hope that this suggestion has been helpful. Good luck with your self-image-affirming Facebook activity, and we wish you the best in finding a couple of nice new L.L. Bean sweaters, the ones that go so well with your dress shirts, for the fall.