Monday, November 12, 2007

What I Really Want

I have another commercial I hate. This one is a Best Buy commercial. It's Christmas and a woman (blonde, perky, round cheeks and snub nose -- what movie was she in? I remember her!) is fondling a big Best Buy gift. The man says "You can open it after we come back from Grandma's". So they drive to Grandma's house. She's standing out front, smiling, waving, this sweet looking woman. They yell "Merry Christmas, Grandma!" Then the woman says -- with a most evil look -- "I Think We're Done Here." They drive off.

Greed. It's all about the greed. Best Buy sells such wonderful stuff that it's worth more than the love of family, kindness, spending time with others, or even commitment and promises.

Lately, I've been getting a lot of messages about consumerism -- that is, the CREATION of need in order to supply a market. The idea is that someone makes a product and then spends money convincing people they need this product (as opposed to the old fashioned idea of finding a need and making a product to fill it.) Radio news series, magazine articles, a lecture on tape I listened to in the car...just bits and pieces filtering to me from different sources, but all with the same message. So now I'm looking at my own consumer habits. Oh, I have am a good American Consumer. I find peace in the retail outlet, and somewhere in my brain is a voice that says if I only find the right box, bag, can, carton, CD, DVD, dress, shirt -- whatever -- I will find happiness, fulfillment, contentment, love, success, and the perfect jeans to make me look skinny.

Only that hasn't happened yet, and I don't believe it will.

Sam Keene calls it a myth, the Myth of Consumerism. He asks "What do you really want? What do you REALLY want?" So, as Christmas approaches, I'm thinking carefully about what it is I want and what I don't want.

I'm certain that nothing I want can be found at Best Buy. That's for sure.

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