most of the "things" that we buy with our hard-earned money, are absolutely not necessary. we buy them just to buy them. we consume beyond our needs. why is that?
when i returned to the US, i unpacked all the stuff i had in storage, that i hadnt used or even thought about in an entire year. these were the items i felt worthy to save for the year i was gone... things that i thought i would really need when i got back.
and then i found the mold. nearly everything that i saved was covered in a fine blue-green powdery mold that grew in my absence (i now recognize the benefit of climate-controlled storage facilities)! after a couple weeks of fighting back against the mold, i gave up and just started throwing things away.
i worked very hard to clean and save childhood mementos, photo albums, and all the journals i started keeping in 3rd grade. certain things i'm having to replace, like camping equipment and some clothes, but i have ultimately felt liberated by getting rid of so much stuff!
part of the problem is the endless advertising to which we are subjected. a person living in a modern city sees 5,000 ad messages a DAY! absolute sensory overload as our eyes meet potential products to buy instead of earth's natural beauty.
thats why i'm very excited to learn about the anti-advertising agency! this agency and Packard Jennings took a poll of residents around the oakland area to find out "what advertising tactics they found most bothersome in their neighborhoods." in response, they created clever anti-advertising artwork for bus stop benches! brilliant!!
fine print: i say all this as my blog flashes google ads along the side. i recognize this hypocrisy, and i'm thinking about it....