Thursday, November 16, 2006

Why are we here?

What purpose do we really serve aside from the destruction of perfectly good land because we need bigger houses, bigger yards, acreages and massive office buildings? We create the demand for ourselves. Our society has gone from a barter system to money running everything. Everything we do is a symbol of our wealth. The cars we drive, the homes we live in. Even what area of the city we live in speaks to who we are and how well off we are.

Our need for entertainment spurs the growth of multi-million dollar movie, TV and sporting industries. We support a fashion industry that dictates style and colour changes by the season prompting shopping sprees so that one does not look "oh, so last season!" This style "consciousness" even spills over into our homes with each year bringing new "in" colours for your home.

We've lost our ability to think for ourselves. We let these people decide for us what colour sofa we should own, the colour and material we use in flooring, the colours we paint our walls. Even the colour and style of appliances we put in our home. All right, I'm all over that conspiracy - Avocado should NEVER have been considered an appropriate refrigerator colour. Nor should Harvest Gold. But now Stainless Steel is the new white.

Hell, I sat on a blood donor shuttle yesterday with a guy who said that pink is the new black. Huh? I know he was kidding. Smartass that he is. But still. New black? Black is black. Black is the only black we'll ever have. Sure, you might have midnight or espresso but they're just shades of.... black!

I don't want to walk into stores to see monochromatic stock. Entire walls of red shirts in 50 different styles or cuts is not appealing to me. A furniture store with nothing but black leather furniture and tan microfibre does nothing for me. Sure, the argument will be made that those are the colours the store sells the most of. Uh huh. Likely because it's what people see. And they lack the imagination to be able to put together something that would appeal to them individually. Add to that the fear that they're doing something that isn't in style for the minute and you have herds of sheep seeking furniture in black, beige and grey. Maybe the odd Sage, Forest or Navy.

When I bought my red sofa, people thought I'd lost it. A few months later, you couldn't walk into a furniture store without seeing red sofas, red chairs. Red chaises. Suddenly I was trendy. The red period didn't last long. Bright colour is too big a step outside most people's comfort zones. They'll grow tired of it and then what do they do? So they buy the same furniture that is in their neighbors home and 10 other homes on their street and tell themselves they'll paint the walls in the bright colours because that's easy to change if they get tired of it.

The colour of our homes, our furniture, our clothes, our hair, our cars or our underwear doesn't change the world. It doesn't stop wars. It doesn't save lives. Fine, it may make us feel better, but why?

Take my job. My job is created by man to satisfy our need for communication, documentation. We build office towers that require elevator maintenance, cleaning people, security. We put all the big buildings in one teeny tiny little area and demand for parking increases so everyone can take their cars to work. Parking attendants. Parking enforcement. Some people don't drive - transit. Bus drivers, transit security, people to check bus passes, dispatchers, train maintenance, bus mechanics. I think you get the picture. And do Jimmy Choo shoes really make someone a better person?

Our world, our society survives based on our need of other people. We drive the need for our own services. But what purpose do our lives serve? Do we make the world a better place? In my opinion... No.

We're rude and impatient. We consume more resources than we should. We always take, yet rarely give. We make a show of small talk. "Morning Cliff, how are you?" "Fine." Ever notice that most people just say fine? Unless you're fairly close to them. Even then, our default answer is "fine," "not bad," or "good." Do we really care when we ask that question? Likely not. It's just being polite. What would you do if someone said "crappy. My dog died, my house burnt down and I'm dying."

What is our purpose on this planet? are we supposed to make each other miserable? Live in our little homes and pretend no one else exists? Are we supposed to build monolithic towers and go to work in cubicles with people we don't even come close to respecting much less liking? In our search for happiness and meaning, why do we put up with jobs that make us unhappy and stressed? Why do we put up with people in our lives who just drain the life out of us. Why do we care? Why do we love? Why?



At 12:47 PM , Blogger Crazy Beancounter Chick said...

Yeah, why do we?

I care about my friends and my family. They are my life and they make my life complete.

We care because we are good people. We want to believe in the best in everyone, regardless of ourselves sometimes. We leave ourselves naked and exposed for them to use and abuse us. It's not OUR fault, it's theirs.

Let's focus on those we know and trust..where there is no guesswork about love.

I wish I had left those walls up. When they go back up, no-one will take them or me down again.


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