Archive for June, 2009

#21  - Mint Juleps

#21 - Mint Juleps

Kentucky Derby Mint Julep
Price: $1,000

All rich people love to drink. Give a rich person a stiff cocktail and a cigarette holder and they can stay out until dawn…of course they never do, it would be improper. Unlike the masses, rich people do not pick up a flat of Pabst Blue Ribbon or a bottle of Wild Turkey or loudly proclaim “it’s Miller time!” Instead, rich people tailor their drink of choice to the social gathering at hand. As an example, strawberries and champagne are lovely at Wimbledon, a Manhattan at The Campbell Apartment in New York will do, a Caesar (for our Canadian readers) or a Bloody Mary with brunch is quite civilized and perhaps the most famous, a Mint Julep at the Kentucky Derby is a must have.

Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, serves over 120,000 mint juleps each year. While this delightful cocktail of crushed ice, bourbon and fresh mint sweetened with syrup may fit the bill for the common man, the rich prefer a more prestigious concoction of this historic favorite. Each year the Kentucky Derby crafts 50 special edition mint juleps available to their wealthiest patrons for $1,000 per drink. Imagine…crushed ice from the Arctic Circle sweetened with hand-ground sugar from the island Republic of Mauritius, fresh Moroccan mint and Kentucky bourbon blended and served in an engraved gold-plated mug and sipped through a sterling silver straw. Custom storage box and an embroidered silk handkerchief, designed by the makers of jockey silks, make this a must-have for any patron of the sport of kings. Of course the proceeds go to charity but that’s hardly the point is it?

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La Prairie Skin Cream

#20 - La Prairie Skin Cream

Cellular Cream Platinum Rare
Price: US $1,000 per 1.7oz

Rich people love expensive skin cream. To be more accurate, rich people love to believe that they can appear forever young, glamorous and beautiful; all the reasons that their sugar daddy or sugar momma agreed to slip a Harry Winston ring on their gold digging finger in the first place. While not all eternal unions are based on such superficiality, the fact remains that stores like Neiman Markus can hardly keep their gleaming cabinets of youthful elixirs fully stocked.

How can this help you to ingratiate yourself with the wealthy? In a word, a thinly veiled compliment will do wonders for your social standing while exposing your connection with the finer things in life. Example…”My goodness you look exceptional, I play polo with a chap at La Prairie. I will have him call your Vertu, you must promise to act as their spokes model!” While this may seem grossly transparent, you are not clinging to yesteryear wishing you could turn back the sands of time a thousand dollars at a time.

If pressed, you must understand two things; Polo tournaments and skin cream. La Prairie is renowned for their luxurious skin treatment products. The crown jewel of their product line is ‘cellular cream platinum rare’ available in 1.7oz or 1oz sizes. In their own words this is “precious skin care for the privileged few”. Infused with platinum, valued at over $1,200 per oz, this precious metal bonds with the skin and synergizes with other ingredients to recharge your skin. Platinum protects the DNA and continuously replenishes moisture. A word to the wise…do not mention that in 2006, 130 tonnes of Platinum were used in automobile catalytic converters for emissions control…shhh it is for keeping the Earth beautiful too.

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Escort Services

#19 - Escort Services

Emperors Club VIP
Price: $31,000 per day

Rich people love escort services. I’m not suggesting that all rich people love escort services or even that the majority use them but at $31,000 per *ahem* day, escorts certainly are not targeting the middle class. Take former Governor of New York, Elliot Spitzer. He found himself in a ‘spot of bother’ after it emerged that his idea of polling the voters typically took place in The Mayflower Hotel of Washington, DC. Meanwhile, in Canada, Jim Whitehouse was dismissed after allegedly bringing a prostitute to his office. Being rich, he did not see the issue but his employer, one of Canada’s biggest banks, saw things another way. I bet nobody calls him Jimmy to his face although the frat boys buy Elliot drinks just to laugh whenever ‘Spitzer swallows’.

Call them what you may; escorts, call girls, prostitutes, hookers…the list goes on, as I am sure madam Heidi Fleiss recalls. The crux is that not every wealthy, morally corrupt, middle aged man wants to wear a golf shirt, blazer, designer jeans, Italian loafers without socks and drive around in his Ferrari until he meets a young woman willing to go to bed with him after a nice meal and a bottle of 1995 Chateaux Margaux. While it is reprehensible, some men have careers that they are willing to throw away and therefore pay for this type of company. It requires that they forego the role of the flirtatious, creepy old man and instead assume the role of creepy old man spending money on professional women who will dote on them until the clock runs out.

As nobody in the wealthy echelons believe that escort services are anything but whore mongering brothels, a key to fitting in at the tennis club is to learn a few key phrases; you likely already know and use them. First, use the delicate but not too subtle “tsk tsk” when news emerges that yet another wealthy imbecile has been exposed as a client. Next, you must show compassion by stating…”his poor wife…she’s so lovely”. Finally, diminish the source of his wealth by saying something like, “I understand the money comes from her family” or “did you know he made his fortune in sweatshops/importing tattoo needles/drowning puppies/etc?” If nothing comes to mind, simply nod your head and agree with whoever takes the lead in doling out moral superiority.

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#18 - Air Kiss

#18 - Air Kiss

Air Kisses

Rich people love to greet each other with air kisses. While regular people are satisfied with a firm handshake, a fist pump or a high five, these are beneath the upper class. To ensure that you comfortably fit with your new social group, follow a few guidelines and you will never find yourself the object of social scorn.

For those that did not grow up around young men kissing octogenarians, take note. The first time someone swoops in to greet you with an air kiss it may seem as though you are back in grade 2 when Cindy made her move by the bike racks. You may feel an overwhelming sense of panic and discomfort…fight through it. While your instincts tell you that an awkward social moment is brewing, a simple touch of the cheeks, pursing of the lips and it will all be over. That is, unless you manage to head butt your host and give her reason to visit Dr. Weinberg for more rhinoplasty.

Master the proper technique and you will never feel at odds. First, feign enthusiasm over seeing your acquaintance. Cup her hand with both of your hands say “My god, how long has it been?” Next, smile brightly and lean in as though you are about to kiss. Finally, tactfully dodge her lips, touch cheeks and make either a kissing sound with your lips or say “mwah”. Heed the volume of your kiss as your lips will be next to your host’s ear and you risk an enormous faux pas if you deafen your companion. Like shampooing, repeat as necessary. You will likely be expected to touch your right cheek and then left before carrying on about the fabulous weekend that you had in Paris, London, The Hamptons, Geneva, Zurich, Madrid or the Seychelles.

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We can’t all live in New York City but if you have been, you have visited Central Park. The whopping 843 acres is an amazing place to wander around, people watch, escape the hustle and bustle of 5th Ave or go jogging! The New York Times provides a really great interactive map of the park including clickable photos and audio guides to the running trails…I feel like I should pop into the Guggenheim! Visit Trails Less Traveled – Central Park Interactive Map at the NY Times!

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