By continually pushing the message that we have the right to gratification now, consumerism at its most expansive encouraged a demand for fulfillment that could not so easily be contained by products. ~Ellen Willis
I think we have a problem? And I am including myself in this collective “we”. Just look at the lines to purchase the new iPad3 and the iPhone4S. And how about the number of old (and I use the word loosely) cell phones we have in our cupboards. My family of three have 10 very functional, but retired cell phones hanging about. To be honest, there is absolutely nothing wrong with the old cell phones, they still work, text, receive and send. But they are not the “new” thing.
So my question to all of us is: How much more NEW do we need?
My closets are stuffed with dress shirts, all perfectly functional. But I still wind up buying new shirts. My wife and daughter have dozens of shoes, but keep buying new ones. There is something definitely wrong with this picture as it doesn’t seem to be sustainable in the long run. We can’t go on consuming and discarding at a frantic pace. It won’t be long before the earth is buried under discarded stuff! Did you see the movie Wall-E? Pretty frightening view of earth.
And it is further fuelled by companies that continually bring out NEW stuff. For example, for 20+ years I ran in Asics running shoes. It took me a few times to find the right shoe make and style for my running style. The shoe model was great. It fit great and felt good. But the problem with marathon training is that you tend to wear out shoes about every three months. So, back to the store I would go to get another pair, only to find, you guessed, a NEW MODEL! It didn’t feel or fit the same, so I spent weeks trying to find another model that worked for me. In the end I wound up buying three pairs at once so that I could beat the New Model gambit. How crazy is that?
Ask yourself, How much more new do you really need? When I answer that honestly, it comes down to not very much NEW is required. But somehow in our society, vanity and bragging rights have replaced practicality. My mother used to say: All things in moderation. That’s definitely a value of the past!
I am going to become more conscious of being sucked in to the NEW obsessions and see how long I can happily function with my “old” stuff.
Tight Lines . . .