I've just about had it.
I'm at the precipice.
Seriously. I think I'm entering my Solitary Yurt Dweller phase.
I watched Story of the Weeping Camel...and I felt jealous of a family of yurt-dwelling shepherds in the Gobi Desert.
Wordsworth wrote "the world is too much with us."
He was writing about the burden of self-imposed "progress"...a society spinning out of control by the force of its own innovations.
I exist in a world of periphery, and have felt for some time that that's the actual world. It's where all the Scratch-and-Dents collect to catch their breaths or be Not Quite, or to patch their wounds. It's where the clean-up seems to never end, but there is a comradery of humanity and imperfection.
What of the speeding, bleeding blur of Modernism and Progress that spews out its casualties like so much flotsam and jetsam at ever-increasing frequencies? This is not the life I can endure....tried it, but it's not sustainable, that speed, that acceleration. On the sidelines is where the real action percolates...the slower sort beyond employee of the month plaques, easier this, more convenient that, disposable everythings.
I just got back from a quick trip to... (It's becoming more bizarre)...the grocery store. Right there, above the refrigerated eggs and next to the kosher sauerkraut, a sign above a vacuum sealed stack of packaged food, "Ready-to-eat pancakes...fresher than homemade!"
(Have we truly sunk to this subterranean low of marketing suggestability??)
These were not frozen pancakes, or pancake mix, or pourable pancake batter...these were refrigerated ones...in the gourmet fridge pickles section. And just how does one get something fresher than homemade? eat it at the source before any preparation at all??
I opt out of eating live chickens or anything else fresher than homemade.
I go now to my rebellious and quickly-vanishing world of stirring my own pancakes, having a conversation on one of those old fashioned numbers called a wall phone, to catch up with people before their last names, zip codes, spouses, presidents, diseases, or jobs change again.
Here are the things I'm getting sick of being convinced I "need"...
A certain level of income.
A college degree.
Phone, any sort, especially with gadgets and options.
All on-grid appliances. Time-savers. Things with electric plugs.
More than two changes of clothes.
More than two pairs of shoes.
Makeup (that's pretty much gone now, anyway, in my case)
TVs, all electronics, including gaming and music devices.
House with mortgage. Oops, already said that!
Credit cards (even the paid-off sort), checkbooks, drivers' licenses, forms of I.D.
Entree and three vegetables three times a day.
Mail (with the exception of seed catalogs and snail mail from friends!)
Sheets, curtains, stuff. (Well...at least the stuff)
I think I can do pretty well with a good sleeping bag, a can of Sterno, and couple of good pots, a roll of clothesline and the dried contents of the bottom shelf of my pantry. A good water source. Something for soaping up myself or my clothes periodically.
Oh, and some sort of gun that shoots ratshot. So I can sit on the front porch and take aim at any IPods, GIS, Blackberrys, or other atrocities of progress that parade down my street.
I hope my husband gets home soon, before he finds I've hauled all our household belongings to Goodwill, traded our house via craigslist for a year's supply of good tarps, and there's a camel standing in the empty garage.
I'm in a mood, and just in time for shabbat (and some much-needed rest...can you tell??) Let's see if this, too, shall pass.
(I secretly kind of hope not...)
Everyone have a restful shabbat...hug the ones you're with! :)
Brief update. I've had a few hours of sleep since writing this post.... Ummmm...?? Well, I guess I explored my inner ascetic? I'd make a "kinder, gentler" list upon more rested reflection, but I do often ask myself when all these "needs" became so concrete. Not that I want to work a pump handle or haul buckets when I need water, and I sooooooo love a hot shower or bath! And that soft bed came in really handy right now, ahhh :) Well, Yurt Robbyn lurks inside to tame the more spoiled version of myself from time to time, which is a good thing. And at last check I found one happy husband relaxing in the living room, and no camel in the garage...
Later note: Thank you to Latigo Liz for this Lemonade award for Attitude/Gratitude...I'm grateful!!