If you're fond of Occupy Wall Street, you should know that this is "Buy Nothing Day," another project of the Adbusters Media Foundation, those subversive anti-consumerists who cause red-blooded Republicans with elevated blood pressure to stand on street corners screech things like, "take a bath," "get a job," "get a haircut" and "if you don't like it here, move to Russia."
Oh wait a minute, I'm having flashbacks. The haircut and move-to-Russia bits were from the 1960s.
Anyhow, in observance of Black Friday, Adbusters proposes that we buy nothing today.
Now that's fine if you live in Des Moines, say, but just not a useful approach if you live in small-town Iowa, value it and want to keep it. So I've declared this "Buy Everything Locally Day." If I'd gotten up at 3:30 rather than 4:30, I'd have done a logo. If you live in Des Moines, the ultimate anti-consumerist protest would be to drive down and buy something here.
The problem in Chariton and other towns its size or somewhat smaller, somewhat larger, is not over-consumption, it's folks who pile into their pickups and vans and drive to Jordan Creek or the nearest Wal-Mart to spend all their money.
Those who whine "but I just can't find anything here" just haven't looked, for the most part.
Personally, if I really can't find something here, and I am excessively fond of Amish Wedding brand sweet garlic dill pickles, I know where to look. Humeston, Corydon, Centerville, Albia, Oskaloosa --- even Cantril --- any number of places that are picturesque, easy to navigate, and REALLY appreciate consumer dollars.
The bonus in Chariton today begins on the square at 6 p.m. The Christmas parade starts at 7 p.m. There also will be open houses, visits from Santa and all sorts of other stuff.
Since as Emerson told us, foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, I should add that after carping yesterday morning about overlooked aspects of Thanksgiving, I drove down to Kim's and Lynn's house near Centerville and ate for roughly two and a half hours, hiking around the house to settle things down and make room for dessert.
There were 13 of us, I believe, and the menu included (but was not limited to) ham, turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, macaroni and cheese, candied sweet potatoes with lots of marshmallows, escalloped corn, creamed onions, sausage balls, homemade cranberry relish, cranberry sauce from a can (with ridges), rolls, deviled eggs, various relishes, Jello salad with Cool Whip and marshmallows, pumpkin pie, pecan pie, apple pie and rum balls.
I would have stayed longer and perhaps eaten more, but it got to be late afternoon and we were still seated around the dining room table (actually two dining room tables placed end to end) unable to move when we got to telling stories about critters we'd hit with our vehicles while driving back roads after dark --- deer, cattle, a flock of sheep, even (in Germany) wild boars.
That's when it occurred to me it was a considerable distance home, over the river and through the woods, and it was going to be dark soon. So I came home, took a generous dose of antacid and went to bed, overconsumed and still not anixous to see another meal.