Sunday, December 23, 2012

Less Gifts and More Christmas

This time of year I find the mind numbing barrage from stuff peddlers rushing to fill my every need overwhelming. Needs both real and imagined, I'm even asked to reach out and consider, and speculate, on the needs and desires that others might have. Peoples lives are crammed with material goods, our drawers and closets are chucked full of the trendy apparel of last season, exercise equipment, knick- knacks, and electronic equipment, until they threaten to explode unless they move to a larger house or rent a storage unit.  Neurotic people with over active pack-rat syndrome literally destroy their quality of life with clutter and junk that sits in one place for years while they can’t find a chair to sit in or a clean table top on which to eat. 
Ads like - "get it all" or "have it all" with Dell, live on the cutting edge, buy all of these high powered models and "put your life in the zone." This new fangled electronic gizmo does it all and more, look at the art work, let it wash over you, surround you, and cover you up.  Check out that car, is it not perfect?  Wouldn’t driving it make life a zen like experience - got to have it, no payment for 90 days.

We get caught up in the game of finding the perfect patio furniture and after we buy it we use it twice. It then sits on our deck only to fade in the sun over the next three years.  Never before has man had so much, but its far from enough.  Things will be “swell and down right peachy” only after you fill it with the right kind of stuff. Then your life will be nearly perfect in every way till . . . . .  No, the new model’s here, and its better, sleeker and cheaper, Nooooooooo!

Great are the efforts we make to fill our needs with material objects in an effort to achieve happiness. We rush around with our video and digital cameras in a desire to preserve those precious moments.  We capture so many images that we forget to download, view and print them.  We now have the ability to collect and store vast quantities of information and data, much of which is never processed or utilized.  Poor quality or obsolete data entered into our system downgrades the output, "garbage in - garbage out."  
What is real?  The Sunday paper weighs ten pounds, the ads, the ads, the ads.  What store is that?  Never heard of it?  They are all the same, junk, junk, junk, buy me some happiness!! It is only natural to be drawn to nice things but new is merely a point in time, and not a reflection on quality or utility value. We have so much junk we can’t find the item we need or want, so we are forced to buy a replacement until we find where it was placed.  You know it’s true  – yes, you are guilty, so are we all.

We have even been convinced that we should not leave our house or office without a bottle of water, if it were not for bottled water, we would all be dead.  Bottled water was a two hundred billion dollar industry last year.  Oh, how our needs have grown.  Well, all I really need is a lamp, an ashtray and well maybe a yogurt maker.  That’ all I need!  Using a line by the song writer-singer Jimmy Buffet, I want to go where the women and water are free.

PART OF THIS POST WAS LIFTED FROM MY BOOK "ADVANCING TIME". If you glance over at the archives over the months you will see other post concerning social commentary, sustainability,  or the environment.

1 comment:

  1. Very well written. I agree that many items we get on the holidays are junk that are used a few times and tossed away or broken because they are made in China. Then you have the relative that wants something that costs hundreds of dollars. When they get the gift there is little appreciation or gratitude for how long it took to get that specific camera or the new Xboxone. Lets get back to family and remember to put the Christ in Christmas.