Be Green Blog #4
Black Friday! CHEAP STUFF ! WHOO ! I thought really long and hard about this green challenge and what it meant in terms of Black Friday. So Black Friday is always the day after Thanksgiving and it is when most stores open at midnight and sell a majority of their items for “cheap”. I think the general mood for this class and for this challenge is something along the chants of “die, consumerism die!” which made me question how bad Black Friday is. I love this meme:
And it gave me a real chuckle as well as a sad reality check that people really hurt each other over materialistic goods. I thought about everyone buying things they don’t need just to buy more again later. But then I started thinking about when I went Black Friday shopping. To me, Black Friday was not about buying ME new things, it was a day I got to shop, after saving up all year, and I was able to afford presents for my family members that I normally wouldn’t be able to buy them. Black Friday is not only a time for greed, but also a time for giving. It is a small window of opportunity for financially struggling people to be able to give their loved ones something. They are warriors, fighting through the crowds, the long lines, and the rude and dangerous people just to return home and wrap up their gifts a month early. People think Black Friday is so bad but maybe that’s from a financially stable standpoint. I know what it is like to eat ramen noodles on Christmas, and I know what a tiny gift on a Christmas morning can do for a poor little boy.
This Black Friday was broke, so despite temptation to spend I really could not. There was only one thing I wanted, it was a dollar bottle with a cork top. Anyone who has ever played an RPG game with mana and health potions would have seen this exact type of bottle. It was gorgeous to me, the epitome of my childhood- for only a dollar! But I remembered this challenge and I thought about it. I really wanted this bottle for what? I don’t have any mana potions to store. It made me realize that even someone as excluded from mainstream society as me still has the urge to buy things without any real purpose. It made me sad to walk away from that bottle but I knew I really didn’t need it, I wanted it.
This weeks reading was about how Japanese teens create their own style of fashion. Their style is not handed to them from some elitist company that only hopes to change the style afterwards. No, these schoolgirls have the power to decide what they think is beautiful. Although seen as garish though an American lense, I applaud these schoolgirls. When I was in high school (in the ghetto) I got bullied a lot for wearing bright, colorful, flamboyant clothing. Everyone I knew conformed to some mainstream idea of style and I wish I went to school with these girls because maybe we could have shared fashion ideas.
Inside Source: Yuniya Kawamura. "Japanese Teens As Fashion Producers of Street Fashion." Reader