Thursday, November 23, 2006

More days

I mentioned it last year and, remarkably, it has come around again. "What?!" you ask. Why Buy Nothing Day, of course. It is both Friday and Saturday this year, depending on your locale. Really, it could be any day of the year. You could declare every Thursday to be Buy Nothing Day. This is not necessarily a money-saving event but rather a planet saving one. At least that is the intent of many. Why now? Well, tomorrow is known as "Black Friday" in the 'States. Unlike the many other associations with Black that are negative (Black Tuesday, the Black Plague, Conrad Black etc.), this is supposed to represent a positive. It is the supposed day where businesses go from being in debt (in the Red) to making a profit (in the Black). And in a country where nobody needs an excuse for a sale

(case in point, what is recognized in Canada as Remembrance Day in Canada and Armistice Day in many other parts of the world is Veteran's Day in the U.S. and darn if you weren't going to find yourself some great deals at Macy's or Walmart or some such place if you honoured the fallen by dropping some coin)

"Black Friday" is another occasion to shop. So it is, that "Buy Nothing Day" was moved from it's original September home to counter some of the energy around this shop-stravaganza. I'll do my damndest to follow the tennets of BND but I question my own dedication to the cause. How could I not as the owner of my very own auto-car, computadora and host of other toys? Still, awareness is always a start. One just has to avoid the scourge of indifference if they want to create change. Indifference is a truly dangerous reaction to evil and sadness in the world. This was the theme of a speech last night by Elie Wiesel. While he spoke from his experience in the holocaust I do not find it any great stretch to see the dangers we still find ourselves in to which we react with indifference. Global warming seems to me to be the big one since nobody can escape it. Still, I, and infinite others, go about the day's business with scarcely a thought. Maybe we should all think conciously about our mantra

(mantra |ˈmantrə; ˈmän-| noun (originally in Hinduism and Buddhism) a word or sound repeated to aid concentration in meditation. • a Vedic hymn. • a statement or slogan repeated frequently : the environmental mantra that energy has for too long been too cheap.).

We seem to meditate on the repetition of "convenience, convenience, convenience". What sort of mantra suits me better? Sadly, I feel like "silly, silly, silly" fits the bill at the moment but I know with some time and concious thought I can come up with something better.

In terms of awareness building, here is some press BND 2006 has received.

Further to awareness, or lack thereof, it turns out that I missed my 1 year blogging anniversary. We are one! With 180-some-odd posts and plenty of useless links. It actually happened on the 17th but better late than never. In fact, our family motto, not mantra, is "Late, but in earnest."

I must admit that I am surprised at myself for continuing this blogging adventure as regularly as I have for the past year. Often journaling has trailed-off with me in the past. Probably because I'm "just" writing it for me. I don't have the responsibility to others that I have here. So, I guess it's time to thank you for figuratively holding a whip to my... fingers and keeping me on task. Maybe a little more of that might help me get rid of the first part of the motto and just be "in earnest". As long as it's not Ernest Goes to Camp. Shudder.


kendra said...

I was aiming to buy nothing today, but ended up going out for breakfast.

Did you hear the discussion on Tapestry (CBC) this past weekend? The following point was made: "It is our own feelings of inadequacy that propels capitalism forward. We buy cream because our faces aren't wrinkle free enough. We buy slimming underwear because our bodies are too fat". I thought it was a fascinating point.

Ryan said...

One espresso and I get the shakes.