Buy Nothing Day 2005
A good friend of mine was kind enough to remind me that today is Buy Nothing Day in North America.
The purpose? For those who choose to participate, this is a day when you consciously take yourself out of the consumption pool, dry off, and go do something else for 24 hours. The website states it a little more eloquently, of course:
For 24 hours, millions of people around the world do not participate in the doomsday economy, the marketing mind-games, and the frantic consumer-binge that’s become our culture. We pause. We make a small choice not to shop. We shrink our footprint and gain some calm. Together we say: enough is enough. And we help build this movement to rethink our unsustainable course.
And if you’re in the UK? Buy Nothing Day is November 26th. Visit their website for yet another slant on the reasons for participating.
It’s not an official holiday of course – what mall marketing director could do anything with something so subversive?
Adbusters is not the only group to promote this way of dealing with Christmas. Type ‘buy nothing christmas’ into google.ca, and you’ll quickly find something to suit every taste, from the Buy Nothing Christmas website created by a group of concerned Canadian Mennonites, to the page created by the fine folks over at The Center for a New American Dream (I have to admit I have a soft spot for these guys – they’ve had a presence on the net for a very long time, and their brochure on Simplifying Christmas was one of the first resources I used ).
Speaking of which, how could I write about this without mentioning books? When I first started researching this a few years ago, some of the first books I read included 100 Dollar Holiday, Unplug The Christmas Machine and Elaine St. James’ Simplify Your Christmas. Now there’s another book I plan to hunt down: The Trouble with Christmas by Tom Flynn. The best part? More than likely you can find these at your local public library.