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Quotes: Conspicuous Consumption
"Salome was clad in the barbaric splendor of a woman of Shushan. Jewels glittered in the torchlight on her gilded sandals, on her gold breast-plates and the slender chains that held them in place. Gold anklets clashed as she moved, jeweled bracelets weighted her bare arms. Her tall coiffure was that of a Shemitish woman, and jade pendants hung from gold hoops in her ears, flashing and sparkling with each impatient movement of her haughty head. A gem-crusted girdle supported a silk shirt so transparent that it was in the nature of a cynical mockery of convention."

"For average working folks, America was becoming a puzzle. Who was buying all these two-hundred-dollar copper saucepans, anyway? And how was everyone paying for these BMWs? Were people shrewd or just stupefyingly irresponsible?"
Daniel Suarez, Daemon

"Weather the new Great Depression with a car from the last Great Depression. When this rolled off the production line in 1937, minorities and women knew their place. It was the world's fastest automobile. Now it's the world's most expensive second-hand automobile. One of only 10 ever made, the Z-Type is a car you can really enjoy sitting in, surrounded by army guards, too terrified to actually drive it anywhere."
—Legendarymotorsport.net description of the Z-Type coupť, Grand Theft Auto V

"Hey, buddy - ah, these pretzels suck - how's your day been, buddy? We havenít really talked much since I left you for dead! Hey, you think youíll freeze to death out there? Nah, probably not. The banditsíll get you first. My day? It's been pretty good. Just bought a pony made of diamonds, because Iím rich. So, you know. Thatís cool. 'Kay bye!"
Handsome Jack, Borderlands 2

ďAm I right in suggesting that ordinary life is a mean between these extremes, that the noble man devotes his material wealth to lofty ends, the advancement of science, or art, or some such true ideal; and that the base man does the opposite by concentrating all his abilities on the amassing of wealth? Exactly; that is the real distinction between the artist and the bourgeois, or, if you prefer it, between the gentleman and the cad."
Aleister Crowley, Moonchild

"In this book, dating from 1899, Veblen discovers and defines the leisure class, whose strange duty is to spend money significantly. So, they live in a neighborhood, because it is said that this neighborhood is the most expensive. Liebermann or Picasso fixed large sums [for their paintings], not because they were greedy, but to not disappoint the buyers whose purpose was to show that they could afford a cloth bearing their signature. According to Veblen, the golf boom is due to the fact that it requires a lot of ground.... If a manager does not have time for conspicuous waste, his wife or their children do so for him, so that periodic changes of fashion provide liveries.
Jorge Luis Borges prologue of Thorstein Veblen's Theory Of The Leisure Class (The reader can find more about this book at Conspicuous Consumption, Real Life).

"I love money. I love everything about it. I bought some pretty good stuff. Got me a $300 pair of socks. Got a fur sink. An electric dog polisher. A gasoline powered turtleneck sweater. And, of course, I bought some dumb stuff, too.Ē'
Steve Martin

"If they earned £10 million, they'd blow it all by buying Jura or a fleet of K Foundation airships or a Van Gogh to be ceremonially burned."
Sarah Champion on The KLF

ďIt's a funny thing about Americans, we love to bitch about paying too much for the things we really need and are really a bargain, like gas and postage stamps, but we willingly shell out outrageous amounts for unnecessary crap like gourmet coffee and soap to make your crotch smell good."
Bill Maher

"You've got to be shitting me. Artisanal Toast? 'Artisanal' goddamn TOAST is a trend now. There's officially no reason to try to save our species. Let's just send the Earth crashing into the sun and be done with it... Apparently, there are places in LA and New York which sell pieces of toasted fucking bread with ricotta and jam on them for upwards of $7. Like you do for toast."

"When Lorde release 'Royals' and blasted all those pop songs and rap songs about partying and stuff, she didn't do it because it was overdone, or because she doesn't like partying, or because she doesn't get hip hop and she's looking down on people who had to work for their success. No, she doesn't like these songs because they're goddamn boring! It's like watching a sports movie where, instead of being undergdogs, the heroes start out the no. 1 team and then they win every game and they become champions... Haven't parties gone out of style since the late-eighties? I don't get any of this."

"I scoured Amazon.com and collected 10 of the most luxuriously and insanely overpriced items from their sprawling, madman-populated database. Rich people, drop another panda heart into your helicopter's dog kennel and let's get ready to shop! Poor people, this seems like a good time to warn you that I'm in a helicopter, hunting you."

"As happens with all technology, HDTVs eventually became so affordable that any place with a waiting room bought them up for cheap and slapped them onto walls. Almost none of those waiting room HDTVs actually have an HD signal running through them. An HDTV without an HD signal is like a pair of glasses without lenses. Yeah, you can probably still see stuff, but who wants to see through a smear of peanut butter over their eyes when there are better options readily available? People would rather use HD screens as decorative accents. They're status symbols. They're the new version of an animal's stuffed head mounted on a wall... If you're going to torture me, do it with panache. Show that you care. Put some effort into making me hate your waiting room by not pissing away technology so you can give the illusion of success."

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