In which I overthink my consumer decisions...
I’m sipping a coffee drink from Starbucks right now. It is umm, umm delicious. Although I’m enjoying my tasty beverage, with all its caramel-y goodness, I am still a little conflicted about my purchase.
Assume arguendo the following described you during college: you were an economics major, but never believed in the invisible hand; you proudly participated in Take Back the Night rallies while shouting “we’re women, we’re pissed, we’re not going shopping;” you bought your groceries at the local farmers’ market; and maybe you had one or two anti-Starbucks stickers on your fridge along with your other anti-Republican and anti-capitalist propaganda.
With those initial starting conditions, imagine the following took place in the many* years since then: you worked at a management-side labor law firm for a spell; you got married; you bought a condo in the suburbs; you own two cars and two golden retrievers; your last major purchase was from Pottery Barn; and maybe you own one or two items with monograms on them.
Do you know who you are now?
Yeah, me neither.
Every time I take part in an activity that is so stereotypically yuppie, like going to Starbucks or getting a pedicure from the lovely Vietnamese woman at the shopping center, I feel unsettled. I want to stay true to that activist spirit of my youth, but I have my feet firmly planted in our consumerist adult culture. Does everyone of a certain age and educational/economic privilege face this dilemma?
I want to tell the mass marketers, the catalog makers and the TV advertisers to leave me alone. I already own property and contribute to the GDP. Isn’t that enough for you? Why do you all have to be up in my face with your flat-screen TVs and your micro-suede couches? LEAD ME NOT INTO TEMPTATION FUCKERS!
I’m weak and defeated, yet highly caffeinated.
*Not too many!