29 Dec, 2006
Time to get my piggy back
ETA: thank you Andrea … for submitting my site as a December Just Post.
I’m not big on resolutions. First, I hardly keep them. I tell myself that I’m going to exercise, eat right, yadda yadda but I inevitably give up …(although I REALLY do plan to get up off my @ss and do something about that someday. Soon. Really.)
But this time it’s different. I’m promising myself, and you, that I’m not going to buy anything. That’s my goal. I’m not going to shop until February 1, 2007. See the counter on in the righthand sidebar? That’s how long I haven’t spent any money since I started down this particular road.
I love Christmas. Hate Boxing Day … or, as it’s now become known, Boxing Week. YES, it’s great for people who receive money for Christmas and relish standing in line for discontinued electronics. YES, I realize that some people use this opportunity to actually buy Christmas gifts for the following year. YES, I realize there might be people who don’t own a computer or a camera and wait ALL YEAR for this day to arrive because they need one and have to save a few dollars. But overall I see it as a gross spendathon for useless junk that is destined to end up in a landfill sooner than later.
This has always bothered me, but it really hit me while I was doing a small grocery shop at Loblaws on the 26th. Christmas decorations and the perfume/cosmetic gift sets were 40% off. People were filling their carts with huge overpackaged boxes of Shania perfume/bath oil/soap/shower buff sets. It depressed the crap out of me. Who would give something like that as a gift? Who’s receiving it, and more importantly, do they need it? Will they want it?
Every time you spend money you’re casting a vote for the kind of world you want to live in. There is so much that is wrong with perfumed bath sets that measure 2′ x 4′ and are wrapped in a greater amount of cardboard and plastic than the mass of the product within it.
We are all binging on stuff, and this is a problem. There are environmental consequences to overconsumption, and with six billion people on the planet, the onus if on the most affluent “the upper 20% that consumes 80% of the world’s resources“ to begin setting the example. (That last bit is taken from adbusters.org)
I’m not sure what to call this goal of mine: non-spending, anti-consumption, imposing limits?
I’m not buying anything but food and basic necessities for my family. I consider groceries, personal hygiene items and clothes/shoes for the girls to be basic necessities. I will not be buying overpackaged bath sets.
This is the way I plan to do this:
* avoid the malls
* leave my plastic at home
I still have one to finish up my part of the Winter Gift Extravaganza (I promised awhile back so those purchases will not count) but otherwise, we don’t need anything, so why buy anything?
So there it is. My anti-spree. I am going to do my best to avoid shopping until at least February 1, 2007.
I would love it if anyone out there wanted to join me. We could make it a sort of a contest. Who can go the longest? Should we have a prize? Perhaps I could mail some homemade treats to the person who goes the longest without spending. I’ll see who’s interested and maybe we can come up with something.
Yay! We have participants! Those who rose to the challenge officially include:
Feel free to use the image at the top of this post. I would love it if you could spread the word in your own blogs.
I plan on coming back here and posting my progress in the comments. I would love it if you did too!