Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Taking time to smell the onions

Convenience foods simply cut to the chase - as if the only point in preparing a meal is having something to eat. But when you cook, you discover the rewards in slowing down and taking time to smell the onions.

Almost Vegetarian
Diana Shaw

I went to my 10 year high school reunion this past summer, where I saw a former classmate, Joey B., who has been living in Spain the past 2-3 years. Whilst back in the States for the reunion, she was also heading down to Arizona, where she was going to put her house up for sale. "I'm done with the US." she said, "Finished. I'll never live here again." Very curious, I asked her her reasoning and what she said resonated with me bigtime.

"I'm sick of the Rat Race. In Spain, I live in a small apartment, teach 20 hours a week, and I am superbly happy. I'm done with the US," she said. It must be all those siestas!

Seriously, though: The Rat Race.

It is so easy to believe The Lie, which I believe fuels The Rat Race. That we need to have this, and that, and that other thing, to be happy or satisfied. Meals needs to be done in a snap and spending time washing dishes afterwards is a sheer waste of time. Isn't that why we have microwaves and dishwashers? Leisure trumps work (in any form), hands down. Why would I want to have kids?? How would I do this-and-this-and-this-and-this with the responsibility of a child? Let's go shopping! Wheeeeeee!

No wonder why we're all fat and so self-absorbed.

A nebulous stew has been simmering in my mind for the past few years. I feel like I'm onto something, but I can't exactly describe it. (Yet.) Why do we make life such of blur of movement? How can we change it? Getting away from the Race is very appealing to me, but I'm not fully sure how to escape. I'm not even sure if I am in it, or only affected by it: we are absolutely steeped in the culture of the Rat Race.

The first step of freedom is becoming aware of it. The second, I believe, is to start thinking outside of the box, or the confines in which we live. How can we cut back? What can I get rid of? How can I sloooooow doooooown? And another thing, I say ditch all those "living" magazines. They're just out to make a quick buck on all the suckers who want to know, "how to really be happy".
Yuck - gag me with a spoon.

The End.

(Hi Vicky)


Janna Finch said...

It is hard to escape, especially when you're not exactly sure what you're trying to escape from.

My husband and I have enlightened moments where everything is clear and we "see the light." But the blur you talk about too quickly comes back and we're right back to the same spot.

Baby steps, I guess.

A. Borealis said...