Chuck Bass' Lesson In Hypocrisy: The Rich Kids Of Instagram

13/10/2017 14:17 BST | Updated 13/10/2017 14:18 BST

How watching Gossip Girl made me realize I need to stop complaining about the Rich Kids of Instagram

We are a world obsessed with money. A world fascinated by long digits, green paper and status. We think that money has the capacity to make our lives better and are constantly fed to believe that money means something it doesn't. As a result, money's implications have a far broader implication than just a medium of exchange. Viewing money as an abstraction, it now implies somewhat an intellectual and social value too.

My parents, clichéd as it is, have always told me that money doesn't equal happiness. I'm pretty sure when they are regurgitating this over-used expression at me day in and day out, they forget about their financial freedom and the fact that unlike the average person, they are not slave to their job. Regardless, I have always gone along with it for the most part because I do truly believe that there are other standards of value in life.

However, lying in my bed, watching my twelfth episode of 90210, in a fortnight I began to question my own authenticity when it comes to how I think about money. When I was injured during my Freshman year, I became enamored by Gossip Girl. Throughout my teenage years, I went through phases of infatuation with America's Next Top Model, The OC and even Sex in the City; a show that glamourizes the lives of thirty something year olds.

These shows are unrealistic portrayals of life and I am fully aware of the liberties taken. Every good show has death, divorce and an arrest but these shows gave me something more. I wanted to be a part of the elite group of Upper East Siders, I wanted full access to Blair Wardof's incredible array of headbands and I wanted to take impromptu flights with Chuck Bass to god- knows where. Samantha from Sex in the City wore Louboutins to her job in PR and Carrie, despite her writing job, made me forget that she had deadlines. She could even afford a studio in New York! Miranda's life was by far the most mundane, which is why no one, myself included, wanted to be a Miranda.

This Obsession with glamourand decadence extends further than just Gossip Girl.

I am also a devoted follower of the Rich Kids of Instagram; a page with 415,000 fans, all dedicated to keeping up with the lives of ridiculous children cradling champagne bottles and lying in opulent gold bathtubs. Most people, myself included, claim to be disgusted by this narcissistic exhibitionism. We all become sociologists that read into their rich lives as a cultural sadness. We like to look down on these people, we like to separate ourselves from them and we all argue that if we had that sort of wealth, we certainly wouldn't post about it.

We all argue that if we had that sort of wealth, we certainly wouldn't post about it.

But here is what we all seem to forget. Despite our complaints that their sense of entitlement is completely over the top or that their wealth is underserved, we haven't stopped following them. In some twisted way, we are as obsessed with their money as they are.

we are as obsessed with their money as they are.

we are as obsessed with their money as they are.


Because although we don't want to admit it, these postings are emblematic of the entire medium that we all use. Even more, emblematic of the people we aspire to be.

Materialism is a trait that defines both rich and poor. It isn't about holding wealth but a system that is "pre-occupied with the possessions and social image they project". We are all materialistic , whether we like it or not. To some extent, we have no control in this. We are constantly fed advertisements encouraging us to act as consumers rather than citizens and a level of obsession is sadly needed because money supports and sustains us.

However, although we may not be able to flaunt our private jets on a social media, most of certainly post a picture from our holidays now and again. I like nice clothes, I like parties and I am the first to admit to a bit of showing-off on Instagram. I don't have a master-bedroom sized walk in wardrobe like Serena Van Der Woodson but I wouldn't say no to one. I don't use Voss Water to flush my toilets like one of the Rich Kids of Instagram yet I can't deny my intrigue. Plus, the glass water bottles are just so aesthetic.

There are different levels of wealth and there are different levels of materialism. I just didn't think it would take Chuck Bass to remind me.