Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What would you do for $3,000?

On Mondays and Wednesdays I have 75 minutes to kill between Modern American History and Journalistic Inquiry, so the time is usually spent grabbing an omelette and printing out reading material in the Weinstein computer lab.  

Today, I had over 100 pages of French fairytales to print out, so I knew I'd be at the machine for quite a while.  Well, of course just as I swipe my card and am charged $3.50, the copier jams.  And so, I had a rather awkward conversation as I waited for the mutilated paper to be removed. I just couldn't resist sharing it with y'all....

When I walked in the printing center, the girl at the front desk was filling out a questionnaire.  It looked pretty officially (not like one of those stupid quizzes that will tell you the name of your 5th child or anything), and with RA interviews wrapping up this week, I just assumed it had something to do with that.  Then, all of a sudden, one of her friends walks in and asks her what she's doing. 

"Oh nothing much," she replies, "just filling out a form so I can be an egg donor.  I really want that new Coach bag, and it pays $3,000. Why not?"  

Her friend and I just kind of stands there, speechless.  Did we just hear her correctly? Is this NYU sophomore really going to sell her eggs to a complete stranger for a designer handbag?

As I stand there trying to pick my jaw up off the ground, she turns to me and asks what I think about it.  

"Um, yeah, I don't know," I mutter.   

The copier still isn't fixed; I promise I'm not just evesdropping for no reason.  So, I listen to this girl call up her mom and ask her all these ridiculously personal questions about her family's medical history. 

"Oh crap; dad only has his associated degree. If they don't pick me because of his stupid educational mistake, I'm gonna be so pissed!" 

"Ok, so Grandma died of a stroke. Maybe we'll fudge it a little, and I'll just put down that she died of old age." 

All of a sudden, after I'm completely invested in this girl's life, the computer-tech guy fixes the copier, and 100 pages of The Great Cat Massacre sputter out.  I'm forced to leave the printing lab and ponder.  By no means am I condoning this girl's decision here, but if she was at least going to use the money to, oh I don't know, maybe pay back her student loans I could possibly see some justification. But come on, for a bag? 

So, this whole conversation really got me thinking; is this really what the world has come to?  

1) Has our commodity fetishism taken hold of our lives so deeply that we're willing to put ourselves in danger and possibly risk our ability to have children in the future just so we can have the latest it item?

 2) Do we really need designer babies; what ever happened to the good old days when a baby would be born and then (and only then) would a parent even know if it was a boy or girl? Now, we have to genetically design our kids to be a super geniuses with  blue eyes, standing at 6'5". 

I brought this whole incident up to a few of my friends in class.  And,  I was informed that on the second page of each addition of the Washington Square News (NYU's local), is an add for sperm donations as well.  Sure, they'll pay you $1,200, but would you really want a little you running around without your knowledge?  

I guess everyone just thinks we're desperate college kids who'll do anything for a little cash. 

No comments:

Post a Comment