Thursday, May 31, 2012

Reading nook and the dangers of internet purchasing

Everyone needs a little place to read, even babies. Or rather a place where you can try and read to them while they manhandle the book out of your grasp and start flipping the pages as fast as possible and yelling "Geeee!" anytime they happen to see a picture of a cat. 'Geeee' of course being the word for Kitty.

But our current nook is made of a bunch of folded blankets that slip around and hurt my tailbone. So on a post-cabin internet-hungry spree I impulsively purchased two Shikibuton trifold mats. In my mind they will be folded up for a cushiony seat with one segment up against the wall as a backrest. I have justified all of this by recalling sleeping on the floor in the baby's room when he's been sick, on a pile of blankets, making miserable nights that much more miserable. Reading, sleeping, slumber parties. Now... will this be the miracle solution I'm hoping for? 
How could it possibly be, when I am partially impulse-purchasing out of a completely different impulse?

Now, on to the addiction to internet purchases after returning from a week at a cabin:

It can be like wanting to gorge on cheap chocolate. It is a terrible thing, realizing that while you were away you reveled in being internet-free, but upon return can't get enough of it. And purchases... There is an inherent daily insidiousness in modern life with the ease of purchasing over the internet. And the prevalent belief that we "deserve a little something" because we've been working so hard or are stressed out even if you don't have the savings to cover it. This is something I think about all the time. I believe that the invention of the credit card, and the high interest rates similar to mob loan shark status that they charge to students, and the fact they target you as soon as you get into college and are feeling wild and careless, is a tragedy in the American culture. And I am not a victim—I am a partaker. The one thing I will say is that I do not purchase anything I cannot afford at the time, except under extreme circumstances such as when we needed daycare full-time while I was sick. What would have happened before credit cards? I suppose we would have asked for a loan from family, friends, or gone to a hopefully friendly bank a la Jimmy Stewart in "It's A Wonderful Life". No matter what, the interest rates would have been lower. (Sidenote, we were thankfully able to pay it off in a few months.)

I am a responsible consumer for the most part. But I desire many things and that desire can be awful and absolutely worthy of self-criticism. It is worth pulling back and examining your purchases to see what is necessary. On returning from the cabin I also purchased the Czech movie "Kooky" because I am addicted to puppetry and claymation. 

I have so much to think about. I have so much to examine. After a week away and many deep thoughts that I am still processing, I return to discover there are more deep thoughts to untangle. Which I think is exactly the way life should be led—riffling through the layers and seeing the pulsing heart of your desires and life.

By the way, here is the trailer for Kooky. It is both the most wonderful movie and simultaneously interminable, leaving you thinking, "God, when is it going to be over?? Maybe I'll turn it off. But this scene is so good. I'll just watch the next one". It's like hiking a path to continuously see what's around the next corner.

1 comment:

  1. Kooky needs a nook too. Every kid should have a nook that has a nook within a nook for a kooky to read a book that is appropriately sized for kooky, both the kooky nook and kooky book. But the pages should be on hinges so the kid can turn the pages for kooky without having to hold the pages down. Or maybe a pebble holder would do.