Seven signs you’re an Amsterdam yuppie
The Shallow Man recently read an opinion piece in the Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool called de yup neemt Amsterdam over which claims that the city is being taken over by yuppies. Before we go any further let’s define what is meant by yuppie. I’m going to refer to Wikipedia, which like a person that uses tinder too often, usually can’t be trusted, but I agree with their definition below.
Yuppism… is not definable entirely by income or class. Rather, it is a late-20th century cultural phenomenon of self-absorbed young professionals, earning good pay, enjoying the cultural attractions of sophisticated urban life and thought, and generally out of touch with, indeed antithetical to, most of the challenges and concerns of a far less well-off.
Amsterdam is crawling with yuppies, the sad thing is that many of you are not even aware that you belong to this group. So at great risk to my three piece suit wearing self, I’ll provide seven signs that you are indeed an Amsterdam yuppie. The things I do for my readers!
1. You work for a Bank that is now partially owned by the taxpayer
You’re an employee of a bank that had to be bailed out by the Dutch government due to its gross incompetence. The entire economy has suffered for years as a result but you’re doing fine. While Henk and Ingrid normal public now have to provide your employers with a kidney, a pint of blood, and the rights to the earnings of any future children in order to get a mortgage, you are living pretty in Amsterdam East, South and West in a property that cost many times your annual income. This is due to the generous mortgage discounts given to employees of the Banks. That’s fine, yet you still have the temerity to sit on terraces of cafes and whine about the fact that your annual bonus is less than the year before. Do you hear that dripping sound? That’s my heart bleeding for you.
2. You drive a 4×4
You happen to live in a city that’s flatter than Miley Cyrus’s chest, yet you drive a bloody huge deer crushing 4×4! Having such a thing in Amsterdam is essential to pick up your children from daycare. It’s especially handy when you leave it parked blocking the road with the hazard lights on while you discuss house prices with other parents.
3. You’re a mummy with a Bakfiets
Nothing beats that feeling of supreme smugness that you get when out transporting your spawn in a bakfiets. You are environmentally friendly, hogging the bike lane like two customers at FEBO trying to push their way forward to get their hands on the same greasy croquette. Grown men burst into tears of terror when they see you attempting to turn a tight corner. Old ladies spring out of the way in panic, and you just smile, in the passive aggressive way of one who thinks, “hey, I’m not showing off, even though this is a custom made expensive bakfiets, I’m just doing my bit for the environment”.
4. You belong to a mamas group
After you’ve caused a fatality or two while taking your offspring to anywhere they don’t have to spend time with you, the next part of your hectic schedule for the day is to meet up with a bunch of fellow mamas for coffee. After a number of empowering discussions about how busy the life of a modern mama is, what with all the multitasking, balancing having your kids looked after by strangers all day, supervising the work of cleaners, a nanny, and fitting in time for the affair you’re having with the bootcamp instructor, this barely leaves any time for you to have some space for yourself. You’re only one step away from a burnout.
5. You or your partner participate in one of the following
Floris and Marylene go every week in summer and you’ve met lots of people there that are just like you. Gezellig!
You don’t even like hockey. Whacking a ball around with sticks, woo bloody hoo, but the networking opportunities are endless. So many nette mensen from fine Amsterdam and Het Gooi families.
6. You and your partner are heavily in debt
You live in a beautiful apartment in a fine neighborhood, but barely have enough cash left to pay for hair gel and ugg boots. You’ve stopped taking expensive holidays apart from going camping in France with your own food packed in the trunk of the car. What matters is that as in the name of an old British sitcom, that you continue keeping up appearances.
7. You live in the Jordaan
So you and your partner (with a little help from mama and papa) have bought your dream home in the Jordaan. Wonderful. No sooner do you move in, you start complaining about all the tourists in the neighborhood. Well spotted Sherlock, didn’t you notice this when house hunting in the neighborhood? Now you’re part of a local property owners group who will try and close down all bars whose patrons make any noise after 8pm in the evening. You’re constantly complaining to the gemeente about refuse collection, “oh the pretty canal streets are covered in rubbish, I’m too fine to witness this” and bore everyone you know to the point of wanting to strangle you with their bare hands about how the Jordaan is not what it used to be. I agree with you, it was once a working class neighborhood, now it’s full of whining upper middle class folks like you with double barrelled names.
If any of the behaviors described above, sound familiar to you, then congratulations, you belong to the fastest growing demographic in Amsterdam, the yuppies. Obviously it takes one to know one 😉
No mamas on bakfiets were hurt during the writing of this post.
Till next time, hou je bek!
may I ask a question, what exactly do you mean by the Jordaan
The Jordaan is a neighborhood in Amsterdam.