I sang. I prayed. I thought about what the kids would say when they got home. I squealed when I accidentally knocked the roller against the ceiling. And I listened to commercials. The same ones, over and over. I don't know if it was the paint fumes or the informed voices that caught me up in a quiet, contemplative state, but those advertisements succeeded in capturing my attention.
So, in the four-plus hours I listened to the radio, I discovered what is important to our culture. Food. Coffee. Cars. Sex. Medication. Entertainment.
Each commercial was trying to prove something: we can be happier if we buy the product they advertised. Now I know many of you reading this would tell me this is nothing new, but yesterday it was new--to me. I'd blocked it for so long that the self-absorbed, material personality of our culture shocked me a bit. I thought about all the starving children in the world and I felt guilty for thinking so much about material things, things that do not matter to my survival.
Now don't get me wrong. I don't think any of these things in themselves are bad. But I do think it's easier than we think to fall prey to the mighty advertising voices. So what I'm wondering is...can happiness be bought?
My husband and I are renovating our house. Lots of money is going into this endeavor and in the end, yes, I believe I will be happier with my home. I bought a bagel at Dunkin' Donuts the other day. Cinnamon-raisin with cream cheese. Mmmmmm. Yup, it made me happy.
This has to be wrong. Or there has to be a line. But where is it? What do you think? Can happiness be bought?