We’ve evolved into a throwaway nation; if something no longer works, chuck it, get rid of it, forget about it, replace it. Aside from that latter half of that sentence sounding like a bad Daft Punk song, is the fact we no longer stick with old things a fundamental problem in our society? If a hairdryer breaks, depending on how much money we have, we are more than likely to replace it rather than fix it. “That just helps the retail culture” I hear you say, yet I am not simply likening throwaway culture to possessions and material items, but jobs and people also.
If struggling with a friendship the view is often adopted ‘it’s not you, it’s them, you deserve better, they don’t deserve you, so move on, forget and find someone better’. I struggle with finding someone ‘better’. Labelling a person ‘better’ than someone else is not the same as likening one toaster as ‘better’ than another. When you can apply and assess pecuniary value on a material possession, it is of course not applicable to people. The reason I am considering this whole notion of throwing away and replacement? My friends and I are graduating in a month and the majority are about to embark upon a job hunt. In a dog-eat-dog world once a job is found, it is incredibly hard to let go.
Out of fear of not finding anything else, something more suitable or even ‘better’, we are often stuck in a rut, and only at 20 years old I am a little concerned about my standpoint in jobs in the future. The end of my television life has abruptly ended; that’s right The Apprentice has concluded for this year, and yet I am constantly thinking of the future of ‘what if’ and ‘what will be’. I’ve always been taught that enjoying a job is far more important than resenting a job and sticking with it for pay, practical reasons only.
However how true is this? In the current climate beggars cannot afford to be choosers. Excuse the expression likening us all to beggars, but we are about to embrace a scrum for minimal jobs, internships or part time job ventures. To get to where we want to be in the future, we often have to accept and be patient with things we are not comfortable or content with. A familiar part of life, having to do things we don’t want to do can hopefully lead us to where we want to be, and in my eyes that is a job that pays the bills and that is enjoyable and fulfilling at the same time. Am I delusional in wanting this? Following John Stuart Mill’s utilitarianist ‘quality of pleasure outweighs the quantity’ principle, in my head if a job is broke, and I’m not happy, then I’ll fix it…either by searching for other opportunities within the company or if worst comes to worst, looking elsewhere.
I’m not going to leave ‘broken friendships’ behind me like a trail of metaphorical carcasses synonymous with that in a horror movie, but I guess i’ll have to embrace that change is natural, and that fixing things that aren’t right is a part of human life. Instead of a throwaway culture, I postulate a fixing culture; if it’s worth fixing. Whether this is all just an element of my disney-like-mind is another matter. What do you think- Throwaway or stowaway?