Monday, October 3, 2005

Do We Overpamper Ourselves?

I took a sort of personality test a few months back in a seminar where you get to measure the importance you give to different aspects of your life. The highest percentage I got was for the ‘self-pampering’ bit. Apparently, I give more importance to me and my happiness more than I give importance to family, religion, love, friends, career et al. What’s even more surprising was that there were a whole lot more of us who had this result and there were just a handful of those who gave the highest importance to career or family or religion. So now the question that has popped in my head quite a few times already is: Are we overindulging ourselves?

We buy clothes/shoes/accessories we don’t need, eat food we don’t need, drink drinks we don’t need, watch movies we don’t need, get massages we don’t really need. Quite regularly we spend too much for stuff we don’t need. You get what I mean? No? Well, all I’m trying to say is that I’ve just recently taken myself out of the box, and looking at my life from the outside, I see myself one day eating bread and drinking coffee that I bought for three times its actual cost. And I wasn’t even that hungry, I just wanted bread and coffee. And boy, I can name other instances like this.

This day and age, every damn thing is overpriced. And three most blatant examples of overpricing in my opinion are bread, movies, and coffee.

Bread: Why are there sosy bakeries everywhere nowadays? I say sosy because I believe try to create that impression. They advertise fluffy, freshly-baked bread in a delightful array of flavors.

Cost: P50/piece give or take.
Frequency: Once in a while. I admit I love them, and I used to hate bread.

Movies: They’ve added everything to give you the whopping movie experience you can ever have. THX, Dolby, a little ambiance, good food, good seats, uh-huh the works, baby. It doesn’t hurt that there are new films once a week, great for business. And add to the cost, the popcorn, tacos, nachos, burgers, hotdogs, sodas, juices and other junk food.

Cost: P200.00 give or take.
Frequency: Roughly once a week. Even movies like Catwoman don’t stop me.

Coffee: They have cappuccinos, frappuccinos, mochaccinos, and all those other ‘ccinos’. Whatever happened to good old black coffee? Underneath all those layers of sugar, cream, milk, mocha, cinnamon, chili (ok, maybe not chili), is that wondrous flavor from that little black coffee bean.

Cost: P100.00 give or take.
Frequency: Daily. Yes, caffeine is addicting, and don’t argue.

Why are they overpricing? Well, there is business where there are dividends. They go on with their business profiting as much as they do because we buy from them. We get sucked into the vortex of shameless overpricing. And for what? For ourselves? For our happiness? Bull.

We put much emphasis on our indulgences, we nonchalantly pay for stuff like these because we want to, we enjoy it, and we can. But another question is, should we? While there are others who can barely make ends meet, and others still whose ends can never meet at all, do we deserve to indulge ourselves regularly? (and that’s another story altogether) Looking at the whole nine yards, I feel guilty sometimes. One, because I pamper myself too much; and two, because there are others out there who cannot and I’m not doing anything about it. But the good of it all, things can change. I’m not sure I’ll be buying any of those crappyccinos anytime soon.

No comments: