12 votes

How You Know You're Not In the Top 1%

Being in the top 1%, people often ask me whether they're also one of the privileged and blessed. These 99%ers, they're simple folk, and do not know much. They like to imagine they're important and on their way up, though, and are always putting on airs. So I have compiled a helpful list to help them know their place, so they don't get confused or uppity.

You are not in the top 1% if...

You've ever received or given lottery tickets as a birthday present.

You have or have known anyone who has run out of gas and had to walk to the gas station with a gas can to get more.

...you had to borrow the gas can because you only had 5 dollars for gas.

You get excited about tap beer.

You would be a total bar hound or slut if Happy Hour was an all week thing.

You've been genuinely angry when the CoinStar machine was out of order.

You've purchased cigarettes with car change.

You've purchased anything with car change.

You have none of your good luck change left on your car floor.

You have drank Philadelphia brand whiskey, or any other liter of whiskey that cost less than $20. (You might also be an alcoholic).

You've purchased less than 15 dollars of gas recently, and do so regularly, often with odd sums like 8 dollars or 12 dollars.

You've disregarded the no shirt, no shoes sign at a convenience store.

...and not been confronted about it. (This goes beyond mere poverty; at this point you're a bum).

You've rode in the bed of a pickup truck with coolers and/or dogs.

You've filled up your water bottle w/ Brita filter water to go work out instead of just buying a bottle of water.

You've endeavored to save money by buying all 99 cent 50 ml samplers at the liquor store.

You've bought lots of stuff off the dollar menu instead of a meal to "fill up."

Your bed is just a mattress.

...worse, it is just a piece of foam.

You've ever accepted used shoes as a present.

You've ever worn socks with holes in them because "no one could see."


If any of these things have happened to you, you are most assuredly not one of us. You aren't one of the 1%, and probably never will be. Keep trying though, this is America. If you work hard and follow the rules soon you will be rich beyond your wildest dreams.

With contributions from metalhed1, jb.kibs, YG364, Sophron, 192., (formerly known as Twelfth Knight), John Jay, Katniss Everdeen, and Nincomputer.

Trending on the Web

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

You have not lived...

until you've rode in the bed of a pickup truck with dogs.

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself.
Friedrich Nietzsche

My servant just read your post to me. Good stuff.

You should buy a publishing house and get this list out to the masses.

Tweeting occasionally as himself @cudnoski on the twitter.

How I know I'm not in the 1%...

because I am busting my a$$ to get to be one.

I want to wear a jersey when I get on that team. Team 1%

Go Team 1% Go!!!

Ridden in a truck with dogs

Ridden in a truck with dogs and wear 'Sunday Socks'?
Guilty as charged.

Southern Agrarian

always love your comments

always love your comments ulfilas. what does ur name mean, is it latin?

(W)Ulfilas was a gothic

(W)Ulfilas was a gothic bishop who translated the gothic spoken language into words and letters using greek as a base. Basically, he wrote a language for some vandals in Eastern europe.

Southern Agrarian

You're not in the top 1% unless

you're an evil SOB bankster or in bed with one.

unless you have a ticket to the underground bunker in Denver.

How To Know You're Not In The Top 1%.

Did you make $344,000 or more last year?

No? Then you're not in the top 1%.

You are in the bottom 99% with the rest of us. Simple as that.

And I doubt that one single person of the 9 or so who contributed to this OP is anywhere NEAR the top 1%.

I have a one question test.

April 15 is "Tax Day." On that day, does the IRS TAKE money from you, or BRING money to you?

Love or fear? Choose again with every breath.

So you think that 1% pays taxes and the other 99% gets free

support from the government?

Thats crazy.

How did you score on "reading comprehension" tests?

No, the HYPERBOLE in that question indicates that I think 99% of us pay taxes and 1% gets the collected tax money, although those percentages are not accurate, merely useful for making a point. Of course, that point would be lost on barely literate folks.

Love or fear? Choose again with every breath.

Barely literate huh?

I happen to BE in the top 1% - not in income. But in IQ.

You only have to be in the top 2% to make it into Mensa. I'm a member.

You have to be in the top 1% to make it into Intertel. I am also a member.

In fact with an IQ of 165 on the CTMM (NOT an internet IQ test) I am in the top 0.7% (99.3 percentile). So I guess my comprehension is pretty good.

NEITHER of the conclusions you give for your post make any sense whatsoever.

Why Occupy Wall Street never caught on.

Because nobody wanted to admit, even to themselves, that they weren't in the top 1%.

Anybody remember the old line from the Prairie Home Companion?

"Where the women are strong, the men are good looking and the children are all above average."

Its comedy - but NOBODY ever wants to think that they are anything but superior.

Back when I was learning to do Social Research in college - I was taught that when you ask for information in a survey - you should always include a category under "Income" that nobody will likely use. For instance "Total Household Income - $0 - $10,000".

NOBODY with a real household has income between $0 and $10,000, but if you don't put that category in and instead start with say "$20,000 to $50,000" people will lie and bump themsleves up a category because nobody wants to think of themselves as the lowest. Your results will come back skewed that EVERYBODY makes more than $50,000 and your data will be garbage.

Likewise, when we heard of Occupy Wall Street - the tendency was to bump ourselves up and into the 1% and figure "Those people want to take something AWAY from me!" The organizers did their best to advertise "WE are the 99%" but most people weren't buying it. They really wanted to consider themselves in the 1% and therefore to side WITH the 1% and against those dirty people on the street.

But the fact is that the 1% make $344,000 per year and I doubt that ANY of us here do. Certainly none of us want to admit we don't.*

I had an argument in this very forum with some guy a couple weeks ago - who clearly considered himself to be one of the 1%. He bragged that he made $165,000 per year.

Thats fine. Maybe he did. But even DOUBLE that income wouldn't have put him in the top 1%

So stop thinking of the bottom 99% as skum. There is a 99% chance that YOU are ONE OF US.

Correction: Since there are at times 300 to 500 people active on this website, assuming that a fair distribution of income is represented by our number (and I have no information that suggests otherwise) - then there my be 3 to 5 people here who ARE in the top 1% out of 300 to 500. Thats according to what the definition of "1%" is. But it certainly is still not the majority.

So maybe change the title to

So maybe change the title to 'you might be a redneck in your 20's' lol

Dude... honestly, you can't

Dude... honestly, you can't 'takeget seriously' a blob of people who comprise 99% of the population. That is meaningless. Can you really believe that 99% of the population have enough in common to be 'takena seriously' as a group? You're saying people dont take almost everyone serious. What would it possibly mean to take them serious? Also i highly doubt that most people think they're one of the wealthiest Americans unless they are.

What OWS was claiming...

Was NOT that there was anything in common among the 99% EXCEPT that we don't enjoy elitists status that the OTHER 1% (a group small enough to have common distintions) has.

Since we don't fraternize with those people (the 1%) most of us are blissfully unaware of how they live their lives and the power that they wield. Thats the whole point.

Who cares what your "social standing" is?

The rampant jealousy and nonsensical class warfare from those spouting the "Occupy" drivel is an embarrassment and a disgusting attitude. Do people actually believe they deserve the wealth of others?

Its just a really poorly written rip-off of Jeff Foxworthy and

his "You Might Be a Redneck".

Recycled, unfunny and with the grammar of s second grader from an illiterate family.

Cyril's picture

Just my guess


It may not matter much, in some future, whether one is in the 1%, or the 2%, or the 3%, or ... etc.

What will likely matter more, though, is :

1. how much debt

2. how much of real, tangible assets (incl. livestock, land, precious metals, ...)

3. which skills

4. what sort of people network (remember we're social animals, even if self-reliant)

Take good care. :)

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.


"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

I guess I'm in the 1%. I have

I guess I'm in the 1%. I have tons of silver and virtually no debt.

i voted for gary johnson

we are the new 1%.

Did you make $344,000 last year? No?

Then you aren't in the top 1%.

Pardon me: More in keeping with the style of the OP:

Have you "makeded" $344,000 last year?

Yes but that doesn't mean I

Yes but that doesn't mean I won't be there someday. I have been taught to be very frugal and responsible since childhood, though I learned about the gold and silver investing on my own.

Sorry to say but you can be as frugal as you want - and it will

put you at $344,000 per year.

The 1% play the game with a different set of rules and THATS why people have been protesting.

No offense intended, and I sure you are very frugal and hope for

the best.

Its just that one reason nobody takes the 99% seriously is that many of us think we ARE in the top 1%.

Actually, if you made more than $32,000 - you ARE already in the top 1% worldwide.

But you would have to make $344,000 to be in the top 1% of the US.

Romney made more than that, so he was firmly entrenched in the top 1%. But even with a net worth of $250 million, he doesn't approach the Forbes 400 richest people in America who have an average net worth of $4.3 billion. The cut-off is a net worth of $1.1 billion.

What percentage are the

What percentage are the Rothchilds in? I want to be like them.

metalhed19's picture

Heh heh heh. How about

Heh heh heh. How about "You've wrapped Christmas presents in newspaper for wrapping"

*Wisconsin Constitution* Article I, Section 25 "The people have the right to keep and bear arms for security,defense,hunting,recreation or any other law-abiding purpose"

Linda Cross's picture

My son's birthday, and used the color comics page...

we were homeless shortly afterwards, but that was many years ago. That sort of thing puts fire under your but, and keeps you working hard to not go there again.

If you see something, say something, the government is listening.
Silence isn't golden, it's yellow.

I use the comics

to wrap all gifts. I usually cover the speech bubbles with my own words on one of the comics as a "card". :-)