Saturday, November 29, 2008

Not Buying It

I thought I'd stumbled upon a satirical piece from The Onion when I saw the headline, "Wal-Mart Employee Trampled to Death". Sadly, it isn't a joke. A 34-year old man died when 2,000 "Black Friday" shoppers/idiots surged into a Long Island, NY Wal-Mart. Later the Black Friday toll moved to three dead as two men had gunned each other down in a California Toys-R-Us store. An added bit of madness in the LA Times report about the aftermath at the Toys-R-Us: "Many shoppers Saturday were slightly skittish." Is there nothing that will keep the North American shopper from their appointed rounds?

Judith Levine took herself out of the shopping madness when she tried to not shop for a year, as reported in her book, Not Buying It: My Year Without Shopping (2006). Given that one needs to shop to eat in North America, Levine and her husband had to define what was a need and what was a want. The year begins with enthusiasm but by fall she's weary. She makes use of the local public library (of course!, joins a local Simplicity group and participates in Buy Nothing Day (shouldn't be too difficult if you are already not buying anything!). An interesting look at consumerism and how what we buy can define who we are if we aren't careful.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home