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Dangerous consumerism

Obligatory knitting content: Progress continues on Mom’s Angora.

Planning on getting a lot done on it today just because it’s an overcast cloudy day (after days of bright blue skies and actually going into the water at the beach yesterday) and going to Catalina Coffee Company and drinking hot coffee and nibbling on muffins and knitting.

And we’re not going anywhere NEAR a mall, Best Buy store, or anything like that. Dave was telling me that he heard a news story about people getting into fights waiting in line to get into stores and throwing merchandise around etc while in the store. Absolutely nuts. And really, on a deeper level, despicable and sad and just wrong.

I subscribe to Janet Luhr’s simplicity newsletter and one of her essays points out that, as of 1987, there were more malls than high schools in the USA. That our kids are being taught to be consumers, not scientists or teachers or whatever profession you’d care to insert. And with parents battling over discounted electronic items who do kids have as role models???

I’ll admit I have my toys — my SCUBA gear, my road bike, even my iPod mini. And our (ONLY) tv is a big screen, rear projection tv, and because of the size of our house (small, 900 square feet) I occasionally think a wall-mounted tv would be nice. We have countless books, Dave has his heavy metal cd collection, and, of course, I have my yarn and knitting books and needles and the Zelda knitting bag I love.

But I do try, with everything I buy, to make sure it’s something I really want or need (trying to wait on big purchases to really determine this) and that it’s something that is really nice, that will last and age well (i.e. our antique iron daybed), that will add something to our house and life. That, above all, we will USE. And if it is replacing something, that thing replaced gets donated to the Goodwill, not hung onto ‘just in case’. Often I don’t make the purchase, after the waiting period.

Periodically, too, I go through our things to find things we don’t use, that we should donate, give away to friends, or even sell on eBay.

So fighting — fisticuffs!– over a place in line or a laptop computer just seems downright stupid.

Of course, if it were over a bag of qiviut, maybe.

2 comments… add one
  • Dani November 25, 2005, 4:34 pm

    I totally agree! This day is one I ALWAYS choose to stay in and away from people. I had to run to the supermarket and specifically drove out of the way to go to one that wasn’t in a shopping center with any “mega store”

    *sigh* what happened to the spirit of the season?

  • me myself and i November 26, 2005, 8:49 am

    I agree as well. I only shopped once on black friday…never again. Online shopping for me all the way. Not to mention the fact I am hating the mega commercialism this year….Xmas stuff before Halloween??? Gimme a break!

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