My Saturdays have already been devoted to working on my freelance projects, or some of my almost forgotten WIPs—but today was different. I realized I was running low on prescription drugs and my skin badly needs intense moisturizing. So I went out, met with Kim, had lunch, and after picking up everything we need, had coffee. She’s one of the few friends I’ve got with whom I can share my most obscene and vilest thoughts without the fear of being judged. So we talked. Shared thoughts. And what else is the better way to do this but over good food and cups of coffee? After all, we’re both self-proclaimed Titas.
Tonight, as I sit in my room with another cup of coffee (evening coffee it is), I replayed the entire day in my head.
And I realized a few things.
Not all rewards are worth the trouble. This is the reason why I didn’t pressure myself to graduate with flying colors. I didn’t want to be in charge of anything that the professors would likely entrust the smartest kid in the block. I didn’t want to be pressured by high expectations of the society and my future employers on my capabilities because I know I can do more than what my university transcript could offer. But today, I had no idea why I suddenly wanted that 100-peso gift certificate. So I had to buy a 499-peso worth of products, pay for the items, go back to the promo girl, give her my name and number and allow her to send me an automated text message (and I’m readying myself if in case they’d be sending me more text promotions), and finally go to customer service and show them the text and claim my gift certificate. Yes, I did all that for 100 pesos.
Be that Tortoise in this world full of Monkeys. This world is full of traps. People would tell you what you want to hear, and you’d believe them. Beyond reasonable doubt. Without understanding the underlying consequences once you agreed to what they offer. We saw a booth earlier. Donate a book, receive a P50 discount voucher. Sounds like a deal. I have a lot of books sitting here collecting dust, and this might be an opportunity to make money out of them and satisfy my minimalist cravings. But no, I was wrong. Reading carefully, the booth is actually selling school supply bundles for you to donate and you’ll have 50-peso discount if you (again) donate them a book. As if this store hasn’t stolen yet from all of us, in various ways. Maybe I’ll just donate these books somewhere else.
Starbucks will forever be the symbol of consumerism. I already lost count on how many times Kim and I talked about minimalism, conscious consumerism and sustainable lifestyle. We even shared the same sentiments of not buying the Fjallraven Kanken backpack because we already have useful backpacks (mine’s Anello but I have no idea if this is the real thing). I think I’m getting Marie Kondo’s if-it-sparks-joy-then-keep-it wrong. Because no matter how bad I want to not spend a dime on a ridiculously expensive coffee, I still ended up in Starbucks.