Fall 2009

Volume 4, Issue 2



What People Earn

(Cover story from Parade, 3/13/05)

Although among these 137 inch-
square faces, places, ages, occupations,
incomes, it’s weirdly gratifying
to read Sponge Bob, “ageless,”
raked in $1.2 billion—Kudos,
SB—Katie Clark, 21, a North
Vegas danceuse (body not shown) couldn’t
crack thirty thou. Call that
earning? Annualized, how much
are you worth? Idaho archaeologist
Steve Armstrong, 40, says
53 grand; Christopher Ivy, age 51, highway
maintenance of Belleville, IL 29, whereas
Teresa Dougherty, a bravely-smiling New
Jersey school-bus driver, tallies 26. One
of my favorites, the spunky LA
actress Renee Zellweger, only racks up
21, just kidding, million.

How about that, tow-boat captain

Tom Miller, 40, Ponce de Leon, Fla, sitting
on a squalid 85, or you, Fresno Mike
McKneely, 30, deputy DA, 51 large—Where’s
the justice?—after stuffing scads of scumbags
into cells? Alfred Cocina busts his ass
running an Hawaiian coffee company to realize
50. Al can’t hardly afford pineapple pupus
at the Wiki Wok. And Yevgenia C, layaway
clerk up by Fairbanks, AK, good for a cool
17.5, should try loving the real estate racket.
Clue her in, M. B. Gourlay, Wilmington, Delaware,
mortgage financier, who pulled 280,000
little green ones out of her hat, while Gualberto
Medina, Jersey broker, trundled home
a jolly 6000 Benjamins.

Feeling prime NG, Pittsburgh secretary,

about your 23? Or you, Tracy
Gregory, environmental tech, gleaning
a measly 28, did you squeeze yourself
dry as Sponge Bob? Sweat blood
like Angeleno Lindsay Lohan, 18,
over her ten mil? No way. Not unless
you’ve stared yourself in the eye and commanded
you measure up, rock, kick butt,
cut mustard, put your shoulder to the wheel,
suck in your gut and salute for 65, such as
Zach R, 36, US Army Specialist First Class,
who all must trust remains alive,
a success in itself.


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© 2009 Americana: The Institute for the Study of American Popular Culture