Thoreau went to the woods to suck the marrow out of life; here, I hope to drain every drop from the books I read, rather than tossing them aside and saying vaguely, “Oh yes, I read that once,” when they come up in conversation.
I’m a Christ-follower, a wife, a mother, a wannabe novelist (with a complete manuscript, no less!), and—of course—a reader. Stick around, poke around, speak up, and enjoy…and definitely recommend your favorites, because my mile-long to-be-read list could always be longer!
Emulation and “Taste Cultures”
I picked up a book from the library today, Not Buying It: My Year without Spending by Judith Levine. I think that pretty much explains the premise.
Anyway, in my reading this afternoon, I was struck by how differently we choose to spend our money: the author compares herself dropping money into the hat at a library reading to neighbors who buy snowmobiles and guns. In her eyes, the way she spends her money is superior…because she thinks her likes are superior.
That’s probably not earth-shattering, but I had never approached it quite like that, and then she explains further that we spend the way we spend to emulate those who care about what we care about. A child wants a certain lunchbox because everyone else has it; I want to have a garden, can my own food, etc. because people (specifically bloggers) who I admire do the same. We emulate what we see in others in hopes of getting what we think they have.
I like the way she puts it here:
“I’m not keeping up with the Joneses who drive the big trucks, but the Joneses who grow organic carrots and drive beaters like ours…In our little sub-culture, not consuming gives Paul and me cachet. Soon our Joneses may be keeping up, or down, with us” (35).
I think she states it more eloquently than I have, so I’m sorry if I have been confusing.