Questioning Some American Ideas

I always find myself questioning the life of a typical American after I have spent time around people who don’t embrace my values. People who don’t understand why I want to have less possessions, why I want to work less and have a fuller life. Why I put more emphasis on experiences and memories than money and possessions. Why I care more about fostering my spirit and developing my soul than what car I drive or whose designer name is written on my jeans.

There are a few things I like to do when I want to clear my head after hanging out with people who talk about a lot materialistic possessions, jobs, money and clothing. I do a lot of deep thinking. I also embrace my inner rebellious bad-ass and listen to a lot of Rage Against The Machine and I write.
Below are a few typically American ideas that I constantly question. I came up with the list below after a few encounters one too many with people talking about the TV show Glee, $100 jeans and how horrible our world and economy is right now.

What is the motivation to possess a large home? I have been reading the book Little House on a Small Planet and I definitely know that a small house is for me. When I visit some of my friends or family members that have large homes, I just don’t understand their reason for choosing such a large house. Besides the heating and cooling costs, I just can’t imagine being in debt for the rest of my life for a house.

Why do we need to work so hard to buy useless things? I recently overheard a conversation between two men about overpriced jeans. They were talking about how reasonable $75 is to pay for jeans! I usually pay around $4 for my jeans, at Goodwill.

Why are we afraid of being entrepreneurs and taking risks?
Our country was founded on risk-takers, and our economy thrives and depends upon entrepreneurs and those willing to buck the system. So why have we gotten so dependent on being complacent and toeing the corporate line? When I have talked to people about my ideas to self-publish some of my writing, I have been met with loads of skepticism. I think we’ve been groomed to believe that we need the corporations to support us and take care of us. What few people realize, is the world just does not work that way anymore. Very few people stay with one company until they retire anymore and even fewer companies actually take care of their employees.

Why do we look to the TV to entertain us?
Instead of reading, volunteering, spending time with loved ones or doing just about anything else productive, why do we prefer to sit in front of what my grandma called “The Idiot Box” & zone out for hours? When I am with a group of people who watch TV regularly, I hear them talk about characters on shows like Glee, Mike and Molly and countless others as though the characters are real people. I just don’t get the appeal. I’ve never been much of a TV watcher. There are better things we can do with our time.

Why do we take more than we need?
Like little kids that have been let loose in a candy store, Americans tend to take WAY more than they need. From houses, to cars, to food and other material possessions, we tend to overdo things. Thanks to the last financial crisis, I think the society as a whole is finally starting to see the light and realize that more is NOT better. More is just more. And it’s unnecessary.

This post is mainly a rant for me. It’s a way for me to vent without hurting the feelings of those close to me who don’t embrace my ideas and basically think I am weird or feel sorry for me when I say I have no cable TV, my husband and I share one car and I purposely shop for my clothes at thrift stores.
I feel better now that I’ve gotten it off my chest.

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