Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Losing the Trappings, Finding the Meaning

I haven't the heart to blog these days. It's a sign of these tough economic times when a raging shopaholic has completely lost interest in the consumption of fashion and luxury goods, even when said goods are now steeply discounted and practically being flung at her from every direction. In fact, I've hardly purchased a thing in the last few months.

As I ponder this newly thrifty state of mind, I realize that I don't feel as if I'm depriving myself or missing out on anything. Sales be damned, I'm just not into buying these days. Beyond just the shift in consumer behavior, one of the more fascinating effects of the recession (touched upon in Fareed Zakaria's cover story from the October 20th issue of Newsweek) is that the need to change our wasteful spending habits has forced many of us to really evaluate what is truly necessary and what isn't, and on a grander scale, what we value in our lives.

One example: As more and more of my friends curb their spending, I've found that it's actually enriched my social life. Because our activities now revolve around getting together in our homes rather than spending money at bars and restaurants, I'm rediscovering just why I enjoy my friends so very much, remembering that it doesn't matter where we go or what we do -- it's simply enough to enjoy good company. There's something about visiting people in their homes that's more conducive to reflective conversation, spontaneous laughs, and self-crafted fun. There's a warmth to it that might otherwise get lost in the noisy din of a restaurant, made less vivid by that one drink too many at a bar, or diffused by so many strangers jostling past us as we make our way to some ultimately unsatisfying destination.

In getting back to basics and getting rid of the unnecessary noise in my life, I'm less inclined to engage in the wanton spending I've so wholeheartedly endorsed on this blog for the past year or so, and thus, entries have been few and far between as of late. My conscience is having a hard time pushing product when friends are losing jobs, our parents are facing retirement suddenly stripped of the security they've worked so hard to attain, and my morning commute is fraught with fears about my own future.

I'll continue to post every now and then for the few of you who are lucky enough to continue spending unfettered, or for the savings-minded reader looking for a good deal. You can expect lower price points and more sale coverage. For now, I'm sending you all warm wishes, good health, and good fortune in the year to come.

Happy holidays.



  1. Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your thoughts about consumption with everyone who reads this blog. It's feels good to see that other people realize that consumption is something that should be done consciously instead of on a whim. Everything in moderation. With fashions and trends changing so quickly season to season I always get an urge to buy every pretty new thing I see. It's definitely time to think about how full my closet already is.

  2. Took the words right out of my mouth. These days, if I do make a purchase, I enjoy it a lot more and feel less guilty about it.