Thursday, January 21, 2010

Can't Live Without

I have a Facebook page and with it, lots of old schoolmates as friends. Many of those friends post different things-- little trivia, weather announcements, or mundane bits about what they ate for lunch or where they are headed to for the day or critiques of certain players on sports teams (snore). Every now and then, someone will pose a question and people respond with answers, like one friend asked what kind of cheese you liked; someone else asked what your favorite color was; but the one that cracked me up was: what you cannot live without (cannot be a person).

You'd think, if someone asked you that, you'd come up with things that if you didn't have, you'd die. Would you know, the majority of people said "coffee"? Please. Like you'd really diiiiiiiiiiiiiieeee if you didn't have your coffee. I guess I'm just on a different wavelength than some of the people that answered that question. I don't have lots of money, or a cushy job or live in an environment where I push a button and things magically appear. I am almost painfully aware of how delicate life can be, how one wrong move can bring things crashing down upon my head. How the wrong thing done in the garden can ruin rows and rows of corn, thus ruining months of planning and back-breaking work of tilling and planting. How not planning ahead and preserving food from the garden can leave us with empty bellies in the middle of winter. How not having proper working chainsaws can leave us shorthanded with firewood on a cold, blustery day.

If you asked me what I cannot live without, my answer would most certainly not be "coffee". First thing off the top of my head, was my glasses and my hearing aid. When I wake in the morning, my vision is all blurry until I pop my "eyes" on, and the kid that tries to talk with me before I have my hearing aid on will get a "wait a minute" until I get my "ears" in. Second thing would be food and water. That's a no brainer. Third would be shelter, fourth would be wood for either heat or cooking.

Maybe it was supposed to be a silly question, to see what people just have to have, but for me, we don't live that way. We have long lived without the lifestyle of being able to buy what we want when we want; we fix before we replace; re-purpose before discard; live without if we cannot afford it. Do we suffer? No. We have a good life. A good life. One I would not trade for anything. And definitely not for a cup of coffee.


raychelle said...

whoo whoo whoo YOU inspire me :) that's the middle class culture - full of gadgets and things we just "have" to have... but what we all don't realize is that those gadgets are also a pain in the ass, they falter, they break, they waste our time, they add to the landfill, they cost money, and most of all, we don't realize we lived much more easier/simpler without them in the first place :)

you go go go girl!!!!

Throwback at Trapper Creek said...

Well said Jenny!

Wendy said...

Awesome post, and so true. Most people in our society have never had to live without those things you listed. For most folks, the grocery store is just around the corner, right?

For me, the list of "can't live without" is shelter, water and food ... in that order, because if I have a base of operations, I'll be able to find all of the other stuff.

Including coffee ... well, maybe not coffee, but definitely something that would be an adequate substitute :).

Marijo said...

Hi Jenny,
Good post. I don't get it about coffee, sure I do like a cup of coffee once in a while but if I'm tired I know I need to get extra sleep not daily coffee. Starbucks is making a boatload off of this fad.

Have you noticed that in movies cups of java have replaced cigarettes? characters almost always have a mug in their hands. Wish they were real mugs not disposable ones.
I enjoyed meeting your family! they are so cute!


Carol said...

I think it's because we are taught, in this hideous culture of ours, that we need to have 'things' to prove our worth, demonstrate our happiness and to show how successful we are....and it's just not true!! A happy family who sit down to eat together, laugh together and share are richer than anyone with a posh coffee machine, expensive art on the wall and who work all the hours god sends!

Have you ever read Tuesday's with Morrie by Mitch Alborne (SP)? If you've not I suggest you give it ago...I think you will love it!!

C x

Gringa-n-Mexico said...

Boo-YA Jenny! You tell em! :P And yeah, I guess if you take the question to heart and not in the lighthearted sense you're pretty damn right! For Me it would of course we water then food but I figure they're givens, so after that? . . . . Well hell I don't know! After food and water I don't know if there ISN'T anything I couldn't LIVE without. I guess. . . clothes. I really need clothes to get around and do things, work ect. I could live without underwear I guess but I'd at least need a mu-mu or SOMETHING so that I wouldn't get arrested.

LOL good one girl, good one :)

lady macleod said...

Good post and something we all need to remember no matter how lucky we are at the moment. I was reminded of this in a bit of a different vector when I found an article describing the number of people who were "depressed" after seeing the film Avatar and some were "thinking suicidal thoughts". Are you kidding me? It's a movie! I wrote a little diddy on that as well.
Your point is well taken and I try to remember to be grateful every day for the important things even though I do love my coffee. :-)

jenny said...

Ugh! I posted individual remarks to everyone's comments and Blogger ate them!

Thanks all for your supportive comments!! I love hearing from you and it's nice to know that there are other people out there that feel the same way as I do.


Keri said...

Right on, Jenny! The first thing that came to mind for me that I cannot live without is my family! It's sad to see how materialistic our society is. These people will never know how LUCKY you and I have the GOOD life with our families. =)