Friday, December 25, 2020

May This Year Bring Less Gifts and Far More Christmas

Even The Grinch Knows This
May this year bring to all more Christmas and less of the junk we have all come to know as gift giving. This time of year I find the mind-numbing barrage from stuff that peddlers are rushing to fill any need I can imagine overwhelming. These needs appear to be both real and imagined, I'm even asked to reach out and consider, and speculate, on the needs and desires that others might have. Over the years our lives have become so crammed with material goods, our drawers and closets are now chucked full of the trendy apparel of last season, exercise equipment, knick-knacks, and electronic equipment. For some people, the place where they live is about to explode unless they move to a larger house or rent a storage unit. 

Many garages across America are so full of this stuff cars can no-longer be parked inside. Neurotic people with overactive pack-rat syndrome literally destroy their quality of life with clutter and junk. This stuff will often sit in one place for years while they can’t find a chair to sit in or a clean tabletop on which to eat. Ads like - "get it all" or "have it all," live on the cutting edge, buy all of these high-powered models, and "put your life in the zone." fill our lives. This new-fangled electronic gizmo does it all and more, look at the artwork, 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.

This has resulted in consumers getting caught up in the game of finding the perfect patio furniture and buying it to 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 it's far from enough. The idea things will be “swell" and life downright peachy only after you fill it with the right kind of stuff is a slippery slope. The fact is for some people they will never be able to get enough. The one thing we can count on is that tomorrow the new models arrive, better and sleeker with even more options!

Great are the efforts we make to fill our needs with material objects in an effort to achieve happiness. We rush around creating video and digital images 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 to one of, "garbage in - garbage out."    

It seems the ads filling our Sunday paper and mailboxes 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.

The fact there is a lot more to life than stuffing your face with to much food and running around trying to find things to buy. This is made clear by the picture appearing to the right. Life is about more than buying and spending. So many people are not as fortunate as we that have been born in America and we should count our blessings and good fortune. When all is said and done it is more likely the most precious moments in our lives will center around people rather than things. We should never forget that trying to do the right thing for our fellow man is an important part of being alive.

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 three 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 songwriter-singer Jimmy Buffet, I want to go where the women and water are free. All this means that for many of us it is time to take a deep breath and forget about material things. This might make a lot more room for us to remember what is really important, people and family.

Merry Christmas to All!!

 Republishing of this article is welcomed with reference to Bruce Wilds/AdvancingTime Blog


  1. The main problem is that "consumerism" makes the world go round i.e. creates jobs. If people don't buy, jobs are lost and businesses eventually go out of business.

    This is also a sign of a decaying society/civilization. The Gov't over the past many decades has done a damn good job of removing God from peoples lives. So instead of people believing in a higher power have replaced it with materialism.

    Just compare photos of the 1950's vs photos of today. In the 50's photos you typically saw a well dressed couple with at least 1 child and slim. Today you see just the opposite with sloppily dressed fat dregs that loiter your typical Walmart.

    That's just an indication of a society in decline. It will only get worse.

  2. There is much admirable in the United States Constitution and in other countries' rules, but much you write about in this article could be greatly ameliorated by adopting a 'Bill of Wrongs'.
    Frederik Pohl's "the Bill of Wrongs" in his fictional piece "The Waging of the Peace" :
    1. The First Wrong that we must abolish is the forced sale of goods. In future no one shall sell goods. Vendors may only permit their customers to buy.
    2. The Second Wrong that we must abolish is advertising. All billboards are to be ripped down at once. Magazines and newspapers will confine their paid notices to one-quarter inch per page, and these may not have illustrations.
    3. The Third Wrong that we must abolish is the commercial. Anyone that tries to use God's free air for pushing commodities offered for sale is an enemy of all people , and has to be exiled to Antarctica, at least.

    This could be 'amended' and introduced into legislation in every country to counter some of the ills that the capitalist system has bestowed.