today i was thinking about the short-lived thrill i feel whenever i acquire something new that i’m really pumped on. like, for example, the laptop i’m writing this on.
before i got this laptop, i used a 14-yr old hand me down from jenn that was criminally slow, frequently froze, and couldn’t play most of the video formats used by facebook, instagram, and twitter. i looked and finally found a good used computer for cheap, got it home, excitedly checked my email and the latest MMA and UFC news…
…and then there wasn’t much else to do on the computer so i went and washed the dishes, or something equally unworthy of note.
each time i sat down at the new laptop over the next week or so, i had the passing thought, “this is great. this works so much better than the last one,” and it was a bit of a rush. but pretty soon this thing just became the norm. now i don’t think about it. it’s no longer the exciting new laptop, it’s just my boring old laptop now.
for many years, i’ve been aware of this kind of transient thrill brought on by acquiring new things. it’s helped me to be a cheap prick, even when i was young, because i knew not to let the enchantment and sexy look of a new thing woo me. i was aware that i would only end up poorer and bored not long after getting the new thing home so it’s never been a big problem for me.
but judging by how i see a lot of other people live, i don’t think most people are aware of it, and they frequently fall victim to it. every time i go to a big box store like canadian tire or home depot, i see gross fat people walking out with brand new BBQ’s. the way people buy BBQ’s, you’d think they’re a ‘use once and throw away’ item. people seem to love upgrading their fucking BBQ’s every year. it’s insane.
of course, that’s just one silly little example that i tend to notice. it’s like that with everything. trucks, phones, computers, clothes, whatever. you name it, most of north america wants the latest version of it NOW, and i think there’s a strong link between that and the transient thrill of consumption i just described. i think the average human cow’s life is so fucking vapid that they never feel as good as when they buy something new, so they get addicted to buying crap they don’t need and the intrinsic excitement that goes with it because, despite its fleeting nature, it’s an easy and dependable high. and hey, so what if that joy is fleeting? there’s always a new iphone or F150 coming out the next week, so there’s always some new fix to look forward to.
it’s no surprise so much of north america lives in crippling debt. we’re so fucking bored and lazy that buying more junk is the best way we can think of to make life feel worth living again.