The International Writers
Magazine: Life Style
and Fail Again: the choice is yours
used to feel really great. Then I started to watch TV on a regular
basis. I didnt know it previously but Im ugly, have
bad hair and dont possess the latest gadgetry that will
make me supremely happy. My diet is lacking, my fingernails poor,
my eyes faded, my skin sagging and my taste in food, fashion and
lifestyle choices questionable. Im a total mess! I should
do the world a favour and end it all now, the sooner the better.
Im a complete and utter failure.
Or so Im
led to believe. We are what we wear? Dont believe a word. There
is nothing proper about lifestyle propaganda. TV commercials talk about
the miraculous wonders of the newest worthless household gadget, the
latest tastier-than-tasty fizzy drink or the better-than-ever overpriced
designer label clothes. Luxuries that we can do without? Of course not.
They are the necessary, must-have, must-be-seen-to-have lifestyle products,
all because some beaming sportsperson, celebrity or movie star endorses
I used to quite like the music of The Beatles. Now I hate it. That was
because Nike shoe commercials used some of their songs to grace their
fantastic products on TV. I now no longer think of wonderful youthful
idealism when I hear particular Beatles songs just smelly
feet and mass-produced footwear. If you do not possess the latest products
on offer, then you are a failure. If you do possess them, you will feel
an even bigger failure because by that stage you will have bought into
the lie and will be wanting the bigger, brighter, better versions of
the older products that were supposed to be the biggest, brightest and
best that could ever exist.
Six months ago you ran out to buy the latest miracle product to hit
the shelves. Now you are told that that particular cutting edge commodity
is obsolete and useless when compared to the super-improved-edge version.
Or do they mean that YOU are obsolete and useless? You dont have
time enough to begin to get that hollow feeling because the message
Retail therapy? Some therapy! Advertisements create a thirst that can
never be quenched. And for those who crave, its an expensive endeavour.
Billions are spent telling us that somewhere at the end of the rainbow
there is a pot of gold and the hapless consumer in the quest spends
trillions. But as day fades to night, the rainbow disappears, and illusion
gives way to reality: you may find that there is no gold.
There is nothing that can make teeth any more whiter-than-white, skin
any more smoother-than-smooth, and hair any more shinier-than shiny.
Wearing the appropriate designer label product will not miraculously
turn us into bright, young things and, believe it or not, drinking the
right type of cola will unfortunately not suddenly make us Gods
gift to men or women, despite what the happy, smiling faces say.
But it is all about freedom of choice, isnt it? I can now go and
buy some Botox, miracle facial cream, a fantastic plasma screen TV,
a wonder hair strengthening shampoo
I nearly forgot a newer
super improved version of a credit card that will enable me to shop
till I drop beneath an even greater burden of debt. Of course you may
say the ultimate choice is that you can either take it or leave it.
So I think Ill leave it. After all, Im already happy
or perhaps I only think I am.
© colin todhunter April 2007
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