The Simple Life – Is Ignorance Bliss?

I was feeling a bit down last weekend at work. I work at a library and I was returning some books and I noticed a book called Fruits and its sequel Fresh Fruits. These books are pictures of Japanese teens who dress in strange and provocative ways; some of the people pictures in the book are dressed like clowns, some like cartoon characters, some in hippie style, some in period dress, some in no describable way at all. At the bottom of each page it says a few simple things about each person. Mostly it says what company makes each article of clothing the teens have on (i.e. Vivienne Westwood), a large number of the pictured have clothing on that is homemade or customized which is cool. However what really interested me was the following entries for each person:
“Point of Fashion”
“Current Obsession”

I thought, Wow, how simple life is when narrowed down to these questions. It almost subjects the people pictured to be That simple. All we learn about them is what they’re wearing and “Current Obsession,” I can imagine a Valley Girl saying, like currently, I am, like so obsessed with cats, or I dunno, making clothes (or as one particularly aggressive looking guy said bluntly, “Current Obsession> Sex” Nice.). But that’s it! I can imagine that for some people that IS what life is all about, and it’s so easy! Just what to put on today to look good, what to buy to wear, how to accessorize to fit in with the current trend, and a current obsession, baking cookies or something. How simple would life be if all I had to worry about was what to wear and whatever my current “obsession” was at the moment.

Kind of makes one consider what we have to do, really. I mean, for most of the people I know the stresses they’re under are created by themselves. Instead of just focusing on the few things that they need, to get a job, get an apartment, couch, TV, come home and watch it nightly, go to bed and start over. Stress? The job, perhaps. If the TV breaks, sure. But that seems so easy. Instead of being easy, people want more, to do theatre, to be part of the student government, to have a job that’s hard, have a serious hobby. Wassup with the need to hustle? Why be ambitious? There is so much easy entertainment available: movies, TV, music etc etc, one can spend ALL DAY watching ridiculous videos on YouTube. I’ve been sucked into that before, whatever it was, see something funny, then click on whatever else is on the screen and just end up surfing up the YouTube for half an hour watching completely idiotic videos. One can do the same thing with anything that’s entertaining: watching a camel spider fighting a scorpion, watching a fat chick get tasered by cops, watching people getting beat up, watching some dudes from Russian climbing up buildings like Spiderman, Ask a Ninja, there is SO MUCH stuff on there.

Life could be so simple. We could all be like those kids in Fruits. For a moment I just saw myself in that book. I checked the book and its sequel out and listened to my new mp3 player that evening and browsed through the pictures, looking at the way the people were dressed, their facial features, poses and their obsessions. I thought I could be just like that, going around thrift shops buying all kinds of interesting stuff to put on myself; hell I’m hot, I can model all my rags like a mannequin. I can cycle obsessions of simple things, I can be a beginning guitar player for ages, be all emo, just worry about the simple things in life; go and, ya know, hang out at places, talk about, I dunno, Lost or 24, or the latest designers working for Guess. Not to put down high fashion, I dig it like I dig other art, there’s nothing wrong with looking stylish. But if that’s it, then it’s game over.

Well, after looking through that book I felt better. I’m not sure why, but maybe the post above explains it a little.

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