Nov 26 2012
Within an hour of being home for Thanksgiving break, my loving and cheery mother poses the question to my sisters and I, “What do you want for Christmas this year?!” Nothing. “Nothing, nothing, nothing,” I say. I’ve constantly heard about how the American Studies food seminar will persuade you into becoming a vegetarian, and I am beginning to believe that this class is equally as moving. I am disgusted by my consumer habits, to say the least. I sorted through my closet over break, and I was shocked and dismayed at how many garments I found that had only been worn once, (twice, tops). This was just the beginning of all the questions I would begin to ask myself: Why do I need a car? Is it necessary to have a laptop when we have a library full of computers? How do I grow my own food? Would I ever be able to limit myself to living off of 100 items? All leading to the grand finale of — “WHY DO I BUY SO MUCH USELESS CRAP!?” Schor’s Plenitude is simply the icing on the cake of inspiration. As I was thinking about her economic scheme of working and buying less, I considered how extremely idealistic and unrealistic it all seemed. But why? Because we are lazy. We have become a civilization of people who thrive off of convenience and instant gratification, and we don’t know how to make it stop. An hour after I responded to my mother with, “nothing,” I found myself participating in a Black Friday sale at South Moon Under. Why am I so quick to forget the things that convict me so heavily? I hate to say it, but maybe America, as a whole, is being dragged in a whirlpool of consumerism; we can see the way out, but we’re swept in it too greatly to change. It would take too much effort. This can’t be the end of the story, though.