Stop Buying Crap

5

February 11, 2013 by Kriscinda Lee Everitt

I thought today would end up being a skimpy post, but maybe it won’t be. See, I’m about 62,000 into writing what really is turning out to be my first novel. I’m probably about 3,000-4,000 words from being finished, which I can probably get done in the next couple of days. Heck, maybe even just today. That’s a big deal. That’s a get-some-wine-or-maybe-even-go-out-to-dinner kind of celebratory achievement. Well, for me it is. So, I really just wanted to concentrate on that today.

I'm willing to be that handmade lasts longer for no other reason that the person who takes the time to make the product actually gives a shit about it, and therefore makes a superior product.

I’m willing to bet that handmade lasts longer for no other reason that the person who takes the time to make the product actually gives a shit about it, and therefore makes a superior product.

But as I was having my breakfast and then my coffee, I was reading some blogs, and I read the post of my most recent favorite blog, The Arts and Crafts Bungalow. There, she talks about the burgeoning new Arts & Crafts Movement, which is also the Homesteading Movement, and the Local Food Movement, and the I’m-Tired-Of-Spending-My-Hard-Earned-Cash-On-Cheap-Garbage Movement. It’s all the same, if you think about it. Basically, it’s one massive umbrella movement against the corporate-backed, money-grubbing, let-them-eat-cake sort of consumerist society that we’ve all unknowingly created for ourselves (or allowed to be created for us).

A little elbow grease and you can have yourself some really good food.

A little elbow grease and you can have yourself some really good food.

You know, it’s one thing when the trend from healthy, whole food turned to shitty, pre-package crap, or the trend of sturdily-made furniture being replaced with Ikea…it’s one thing when these trends happened over a period of time, almost like a backwards evolutionary change (backwards only in concept, because if we could truly go backwards with these trends, we’d be doing ourselves a favor), but just because it happened—we let it happen, our parents let it happen, their parents let it happen—doesn’t mean we can’t, or shouldn’t demand, that it unhappen.

Handmade/homemade also means that it's not anything a thousand other people are furnishing their homes and gardens with---it's unique and it's as simple or as fancy as you want it to be. How is that not attractive?

Handmade/homemade also means that it’s not anything a thousand other people are furnishing their homes and gardens with—it’s unique and it’s as simple or as fancy as you want it to be. How is that not attractive?

I left a lengthy, rambling comment to the above mentioned blog post, which was basically this: The vast majority of people seem to be happy to buy crap. And it doesn’t actually make sense. Why would you buy a bunch of poorly-made items for the same amount of money you could have spent on one or two well-made items? Why would you buy a ton of crap food that is killing you when you could buy fewer healthy food items (yes, that would mean you eat less, which, chances are, isn’t a bad thing)? I qualified my comment by stating that I am not talking about those communities that don’t have access to these things: they should have access to them and it should be affordable, and that they don’t is the topic of a whole other angry, bitter rant.

I'd rather shop this way...

I’d rather shop this way…

I’m talking about people who have access and the resources to have these things, but they deliberately chose the shoddily-made items just so they can have more of them, or they willingly buy the food that is designed to force them to eat more than they should and literally takes years off their lives. I hear the “arguments” again and again–“It’s too expensive. Why would I buy one of those when I can have ten of these?” Oh, I dunno, because one of these will last longer than the forty of those you need to buy because they keep breaking, and breaking, and…oh! That actually costs you more, doesn’t it? Yes. Yes it does.

...or this way...

…or this way…

Cheap, shitty food? Oh yes, why buy fewer healthy foods for too much darn money when you can buy bags and boxes full of crap? It’s cheaper, right? Tell your health insurance that. Tell that to the collection agency that’s after you for that diabetes maintenance doctor’s visit you had six months ago. Oh, and while you’re telling them that, have another bag of potato grease oil chips.

It makes no sense. It’s illogical. And it all seems to come down to a very distorted sense of value and money. It costs the same to eat well and be healthy. It costs the same to have a product that works, or that lasts generations, as opposed to six months-to-a-year. It costs you more to replace these items repeatedly. It costs you more to be treated for your diet-related illnesses. Stop saying that this way of life costs too much! It doesn’t.

...than this way. =P

…than this way. =P

It does, though, require a certain amount of discipline, because, let’s face it, changing these learned behaviors—these deeply entrenched behaviors—is very much like breaking an addiction. We have been led to believe that a healthy, sustainable way of living is somehow socially inferior to just (lazily) playing along with all the companies who make billions from our crappy lives. Doesn’t that piss you off? It pisses me off. And that’s why we’re doing what we’re doing—making big changes in our lives, but most importantly, making big changes in the way we think about our lives. Sometimes in order to break an addiction, one only needs to start with a thought. Think about the facts and not just what you want to hear because what you want to hear is easier. The changing might be hard, but it’ll probably be the most valuable thing you can ever do for yourself and your loved ones.

And no for something completely appropriate and inappropriate at the same time: From southern California, Amityville Whore with “Wake Up or Die.”

And if you won't take advice from me, take it from this guy from Amityville Whore. (The best part about this pic? The flip flops.) Oh, also, we're not talking about the same thing, which is unfortunate. But the sentiment is the same!

And if you won’t take advice from me, take it from this guy from Amityville Whore. (The best part about this pic? The flip flops.) Oh, also, we’re not talking about the same thing, which is unfortunate. But the sentiment is the same!

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5 thoughts on “Stop Buying Crap

  1. Awww….nice to be one of your most recent favorite blogs :) Thanks for stopping by and commenting–I just posted a reply.

    • Kriscinda says:

      No problem! I expect we might not have a lot in common as for our tastes in music (though maybe, I listen to a decent variety!), but we do have *something* in common, and that’s enough. =)

  2. iheartsatan says:

    Amityville Whore did a nice job of recycling that casio. ;)

  3. […] mentioned in a post earlier this week that I’d come across this blog: The Arts and Crafts Bungalow. If you dig on […]

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