Consumerism, or: the autoerotic asphyxiation of daily life

I love stuffing. I didn’t always. I think I got it introduced to Thanksgiving because we usually had it at Christmas and I argued for twice the stuffing. I’ve never been a fan of Thanksgiving. Aren’t we going to see each other in a month anyway? Not to mention we went from Thanksgiving pilgrims and happy Natives in second grade to the Trail of Tears by seventh. If you don’t want teens and young adults to rebel against the system, don’t teach them about it. Really. Just leave every bad thing out of the history books. It works. Anyway. Stuffing. Love it. When I was in college, I’d eat Stove Top two meals a day. I didn’t care. Just ate stuffing. Actually, that weird photo of me from that era with the shaggy but stationary hair and pallid skin tone make sense now. But, now—and going back decades—I can at least look forward to Thanksgiving because there’s stuffing. Now Thanksgiving is just a precursor to Black Friday. Remember when Cyber Monday was actually a real thing and not just an afterthought? It was a year some time in the aughts. I’m sure there’s an interesting social history of Thanksgiving and the idea of traveling back home holidays. It’s not Home for the Holidays, which is fantastic film but not an interesting social history of the holiday. We culturally perpetuate the holiday. It’s reinforced by media and business, but we buy into it. The “friendsgiving” movement? It’s buying into it, at a base level. We reunite with people on a specific day in a specific month. So how to navigate that consumerism? It’s obviously worse with Christmas and the December holidays, because those all can involve gift-giving. I’m 290 words in and I haven’t gotten to the whole impetus of this post—the difference between They Live and Repo Man. Obviously, Repo Man’s food tins were a constraint, but Alex Cox ran with it and created this wonderful deconstruction. On the other hand, John Carpenter intentionally makes his commentary, but it’s not a dialogue. He’s bemusedly musing, complete with the satisfactory conclusion. You’ve got to be aware when you’re joking about They Live because you have to acknowledge you live in Repo Man. Not the flying car stuff either, just the mindless consumerism stuff. Though, I suppose since I’m talking about it in relation to stuffing, I don’t get Stove Top anymore. I get a special recipe with dried cherries and so on. It’s been iterated to perfection. So I guess you have to be aware of the consumerism and engage on it to improve it? I don’t know. I just wanted to write about movies.

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