If it's one thing that this seemingly world-wide financial meltdown is teaching us, it's something that I've already been aspiring to most of my life: a more simple and more enjoyable life.
"The things you own end up owning you."
It may be a random quote from a random movie - which would be David Fincher's Fight Club - but it's a very true thought to keep in mind. Although I have never been one to surround myself with the "finer" things in life: fancy clothes, fancy cars, fancy dinners, etc, I have recognized that I still have things around me that I simply don't need. I have been gradually unburdening myself of these things that take up unnecessary space in both my home and in the back of my mind. Until you try this for yourself, you won't understand how much more refreshed and free I've been feeling with each item I've learned to let go of. And I've been thinking for a long time now that the rest of the world, and most particularly my American neighbors, should give it a try and learn to free themselves from the plastic and gold prisons they so often create for themselves.
Now the economy is tanking world-wide. Now people can't seem to afford the oversized houses they bought, or the gas-guzzling vehicles, or the over-convenient electronics, etc etc. The media is sharing stories about "ordinary" folks who are deciding to simplify their lives by cutting back on all the excess, seemingly trying to portray them as groundbreakers; economic role-models who are sacrificing so much. It's all bullshit. None of us should have been buying into all this consumer excess in the first place. For a country full of self-proclaimed Christians, we don't seem to mind being greedy, status-symbol one-up-er compulsives. I thought I had always heard that things don't make you who you are; that money can't buy happiness...
Maybe I'm the only one who heard wrong.
Then again, maybe I'm the only one who's been paying closer attention.