By Andrew Arthur Williams -- A glimpse into the dazzling world of the super rich, from an insider's point of view!
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
What Do Rich People Talk About?
I love this question. And they do talk about the damnedest things. Here's a few juicy items I've overheard at cocktail parties:
- How much longer they have to live, according to their actuaries!
- Who's the best lawyer in town to break a prenuptial agreement?
- "Is your runway long enough for a weekend visit?"
- "Is that from Cartier's? Or did you find it in a taxi?"
In general, however, conversations among the rich (whether at intimate cocktail parties or huge events) are seemingly limited to trivial topics: the weather, wines, cigars, the best caterer in town, hors d'oeuvre recipes - and non-stop, profuse compliments upon their evening's attire, hair styles and the selected jewelry for the evening.
One of the funniest conversations I ever heard was when the Missus, during a late-afternoon cocktail party, escorted our local Grand Dame out onto the terrace. (It was autumn, and fall colors were at their peak - reds, pinks, purple, yellow and gold - absolutely beautiful.)
Said the slightly inebriated Grand Dame, "Your grounds are lovely, my dear. Who does your trees?"
Now, you will rarely hear rich people talk about their money, or their success. In fact, using a cocktail party or event to network (such as handing out a business card) is frowned upon, if not altogether forbidden.
And you will never, ever hear the rich talk about their illnesses or medical problems! As every human being has their own ailments, not only is this the most boring conversation known to mankind - but among the rich, any mention of ill health can collapse fortunes, frighten investors and possibly bring about social ostracism.
Having said that, they have no problem at all talking about their nips and tucks: "Who did it? Where? How long was your recovery?"
And one final thought: you rarely hear politics discussed, unless it is absolutely certain that everyone in the room is of like mind. Political debate is simply not an option at social functions.
Hope this shed some light, and as always, thanks for reading.
Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom)
The Rich ARE a different breed, aren't they?ReplyDelete
I found this a fascinating peep hole into what 'small talk' goes on in upper circles.
I do rather wish that some friends of mine would take heed and stop discussing every single medical ailment in minute detail over dinner!!
Witty and wonderful as always, Andrew.
the goddess known as Jacqui
Goddess Jacqui, my dear.Delete
Always great to hear from you!
I'm in total agreement! When someone starts ticking off all their aliments, I absolutely go into a trance!
And how insanely rude to discuss such things at dinner! (It's a wonder that starvation and malnutrition hasn't taken you away from us!)
I laughed at the prenup breaking lawyer. It rather reminded me of the oh-so-brilliant move by a certain Hollywood type recently who quietly arranged and consulted with all the most notable divorce attorneys (under the pretense of choosing her attorney) and this prevented her future ex-husband from hiring a single one of them.ReplyDelete
Honestly, Memphis Girl, I always thought prenups were a done deal. But apparently not!Delete
I love the story of the "Hollywood Type" pre-empting her husband from retaining the best lawyers in town. Ha! How imaginative!
It's awesome what lengths the rich will go to legally negate the traditional concept and vows of marriage! Ha!
Thanks for adding to this topic.
This was sucj a Fun read Andrew !!!! Thanks for the laugh ! kekReplyDelete
I was laughing when I wrote it, KEK! Ha!Delete
So I'm glad you got a laugh, too!
Good to know about staying quiet about illness for stockholders. Never thought about that. Very interesting!ReplyDelete
Thanks for this comment, Debbie.ReplyDelete
As voters, we always demand to know the health records of politicians who want to run our lives.
Maybe we should ask the same from investment counselors who want to control our money. Ha!
I just saw this post now, and I must say this is absolutely fascinating!ReplyDelete
So how do the rich expand their businesses when they are forbidden to talk business when together? For normal folks, the best networking happens at martini o' clock! Ha!
Hi Anonymous, and thanks for the question. If the subject of business does come up when rich people are together, they generally and quickly set up an appointment for further discussion, so as not to distract from polite conversation or the frivolity of the evening. As for the cocktail-hour networking you mentioned, so prevalent nowadays, it certainly has its place and value for those still on the way up. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. AndrewDelete