It’s Un-American

Since I write mostly on financial advice, investment, tax, and insurance products, from time to time I like to just have a chance to rant.   Really, just to share some observations about life or what I see going on in America today.   As of late, I have noticed a handful of things that just seem to be missing the spot in the spirit of American tradition.

Recently, I went to a concert and saw Journey and Foreigner play which was really a treat with the exception of the new lead singer of Journey.  The music sounded just like the old Journey, but it wasn’t quite the same without Steve Perry.    The thing that really got me since I haven’t been to an outdoor concert in a while is when it came to the songs where typically people hold their lighters up in the air.  However, instead of lighters what I saw were a bunch of camera phones with a picture of flame waving back and forth amongst the crowd.   A concert without real lighters is simply un-American.   Technology can replace a lot of things, but a bunch of smart phones waving during the song Faithfully isn’t one of them.

Also, all of these new stadiums with private seating licenses and plush front row seats like you are in first class on an airplane.  Yeah, that’s un-American!    When you go to the baseball park, you are supposed to be jammed up against three other screaming fans with a hot dog in one hand and a beer with constant spillage in the other hand.    You are supposed to be able to look down on the ground and see the remnants of crushed peanut shells and flakes of popcorn as you do the seventh inning stretch.    Part of the fun of the game is the experience of the fans, the food, and the atmosphere.   Since when is filet mignon and some reserve cabernet wine part of a baseball game.  It’s just plain un-American!

My last one for this rant is the ‘new’ diners popping up acting like they are real American diners.  Look, I grew up in the heart of diner-land in New Jersey and I know what a real diner looks like.  It looks like some angry Greek people flopping a sticky ten page menu on the counter, and dishing you a giant heaping of plate of food no matter what dish you pick.   You can’t go to a diner (at least a real one) and finish the triple decker club sandwich.   You can’t finish the open face turkey breast plate with mashed potatoes.    And, you certainly can’t finish the eggs and corned beef hash plate even if you wanted to at dinner time.   Diners aren’t fancy places with plush seating and cloth napkins.    It’s just a place to hang out, have a choice of hundreds of items no matter what mood you are in, and have a meal that leaves you filled for the rest of the evening. Tomorrow you can decide if you really want the rest.

I hope we don’t forget the things that make us all feel like an American.   They used to say baseball, hot dogs, apple pie, and celebrating the good old 4th of July.    At this point, I’d settle for a diner that truly knew how to make a Rueben with fries.    By the way, don’t forget the Russian dressing on the side :)

Visit www.oXYGenFinancial.net to request a consultation with the leading personal financial advice experts for Generation X and Y in the country.

Written by:

Ted Jenkin, CFP®, AAMS®, AWMA®, CRPC®, CMFC®, CRPS®

Co-CEO and Founder oXYGen Financial, Inc

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About the author  ⁄ Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves


My friends and family all think I’m a workaholic, but I say I’m just a guy that loves to help people do better in life.

My mother is still the only one that calls me by my real name Theodore Michael, my wife calls me Teddy, but for the rest of you it is just plain old Ted.

Ever since I was a little kid, I always loved money and being an entrepreneur. In fact, I still have cassette tapes of me talking to my grandmother at the age of five and my mother tells me all the time how much I played with money as a kid...

Read More About Ted Here

Ted Jenkin is a frequent guest columnist for the Wall Street Journal and Headline News Weekend Express. He is the co-CEO of oXYGen Financial. You can follow him on LinkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/theceoadvisor or on Twitter @tedjenkin.

Securities offered through Kestra Investment Services, LLC (Kestra IS), member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Kestra Advisory Services, LLC (Kestra AS), an affiliate of Kestra IS. oXYGen Financial is not affiliated with Kestra IS or Kestra AS. Kestra IS and Kestra AS do not provide tax or legal advice.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect those held by Kestra Investment Services, LLC or Kestra Advisory Services, LLC. This is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific investment advice or recommendations for any individual. It is suggested that you consult your financial professional, attorney, or tax advisor regarding your individual situation. 

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One Comment

  • Avatar
    Ron Gastin
    October 28, 2011


    60 Minutes called and they want to know where you’re hiding Andy Rooney.

    Ron. ;o)

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