I have to ask… could there possibly be another species that’s so narcissistic as the Homo sapiens? Sure, the peacock flaunts his feathers to attract the opposite sex but in the sense of self absorption, people are constantly trying to outshine each other. Some go to the extreme when it comes to enhancing their looks (plastic fantastic, anyone?), but being a vain one myself, I am not one to preach. One prefers longer lashes using Latisse, another a double D cup size after a quick visit to their fave plastic surgeon and yet another wants a face to resemble their cat — after a visit to a crazy plastic surgeon. Yes. This is the reality of the world we live in. But hey – the levels of which we want to represent ourselves are blurry and should be left in the category of personal freedom and freedom of expression. What has gotten my attention, however, is the obsession over things, — we want to show off rather than show our personalities. Madonna didn’t know half of it when she sang Material Girl. These days we tend to change appliances faster than socks. Ipads, iPhones, x-box… if you can finally afford something, the next thing you know it has been outdated by a newer version. Hauling your luggage? It needs to have the infamous LV-logo. Walking around town? Better make sure those soles are red, you wouldn’t wanna be caught dead wearing anything but Louboutins, now would you? Drinking red wine? Please don’t spill on my designer couch.
In America it’s considered rude to ask someone about their paycheck, in Norway it’s a part of the introductory ritual. “Oh hi my name is A B C, I come from X Y Z and I make 1 2 3 an hour. How much do you make?” That’s one of the things I miss about the States. Less emphasis on prestige, more on personality, but yes, it varies. I loved going into people’s homes that reflected their personalities rather than their taste in expensive things, and we’re talking journalists, lawyers, musicians here if titles are important to you — to me, they’re not. Sure, I love fashion and trends. But I enjoy them as sociocultural phenomena rather than lists of items I need to possess. I have worked hard to get where I am today, but I have never owned an iPhone or an iPad or an iPod or an X-box. I guess I just don’t consider those necessary, but I don’t ignore the fact that some do. That doesn’t make them bad people, that’s not my point. What I am trying to say here is that I find the emphasis on things is just a burden that’s too heavy to bear sometimes.
Shouldn’t what you DO count more than what you OWN?