On a day when my eye is twitching,
my to-do list is exploding,
my sanity is fleeting
and my patience is wearing thin--



I am far from what I would consider a financial guru.

Sure, I took a few economics courses in college. And yeah, I skimmed that one pop-culture econ book a few years back.

But my budget page is currently a dicey Excel spreadsheet (though soon to change--thanks, b-f-f!). And as a certain person has discovered, I may get the bills paid on time, but I'm not exactly fiscally informed per se.

And so, while I am quite aware that there has been a global economic crisis as of late--and that as a result, the word financial immediately conjures up grim, dismal, worry, and zero--I would be the last to know how the Dow looks today or the latest bailout proposal in Congress.


I just watched a refreshing TED talk that responds this crisis in a whole new way and asserts that maybe such doom and gloom is not the end of the story.

According to the speaker, post-crisis consumerism has been full of exciting and positive trends that can offer us hope in this time of great anxiety.

What on earth can be good about anything financial today? Take a look at his four basic observations regarding post-crisis consumerism:

He explains these rules in-depth but a few nuggets I found particularly inspiring:
  • 68% of Americans now have a library card
  • People now pay with debit (money you have) more than credit (money you don't have)=living within their means
  • Conservative personal spending is considered trendy; luxurious spending, distasteful
  • DIY projects and products are both on the rise as well as the reuse of existing resources
  • People are now concerned with sustainable living
  • The rise in expectation for fiscal transparency and corporate ethics and accountability
  • Cooperative consumerism abounds i.e. finding ways to connect one's pocketbook to one's community (he cites examples of communities publicly publishing each person's use of energy and how the use has now dropped dramatically)
  • The rise in support for local products and services
Sure, times are hard and undoubtedly people have been faced with really difficult circumstances as of late that cannot be ignored.

But if it has led us to embrace such spending philosophies, well, then I guess there is some silver lining, after all.

Learn more by watching the talk in its entirety here.


Re: The American media

Dear struggling Sirs and Madams:

I know you are choking under the pressure of this Information Age and that many of your counterparts are dying off in droves. You are weary. Burdened. Scared.

And I realize that you are in a tough spot. You must prove yourselves worthy or suffer obliteration. And as each day ticks by, you are surely realizing that no one is really above this media crisis and that sure, it started with small town, no-name newspaper martyrs but now, Big Media Giant(s), even you are at risk.

I get it. You are just trying to stay afloat. Gain a foothold. Keep from drowning. Survive.

So, you are inundating us with information. And big news splashes. And "we've-got-it-firsts." And it is oh-so-easy to get sucked into your pomp and circumstance.

But the thing is--and I really don't mean any disrespect here--but mostly, you aren't really saying anything anymore.

You just distract me with Jon and Kate. Or David Letterman. Or what kind of beer Obama drank with that professor who was arrested when entering his own home.

And I guess I'm supposed to walk away thinking Wow, I am so informed.
And you know what? Sometimes I do.

But the thing is, I really want to engage. To connect. To feel someone else's reality instead of lackadaisically skimming headlines and largely skipping over what really matters.

Because I do that, too, you know. In a strange twist of irony, I tend to ignore the blurbs of truth you print (Afghanistan...skip...Iran...skip...North Korea...skip, skip) because I guess by now I'm just growing a bit weary and burdened and afraid myself.

Weary of too many messages hitting me over the head all the time all clamoring for my attention.

Burdened with the task of weeding through the muck for something worth knowing. Then wondering if even it too is a cover-up or a sham or a media plant in order to distract me from some other larger truth.

Afraid that soon I'll give up in defeat and settle for happy naivete--because who wants to be one of those depressed cynics? Not this girl.

Now, hear me when I say that I take some responsibility for this situation. I recognize there will always be some excuse that makes it easier to just close my ears and drift along in my little comfortable bubble. And that it really is up to me to make the commitment to know the world around me. And further, that I perpetuate your existence by consuming your hype.

I also studied journalism. And I would at least like to believe that you--yes, even you--at one time also believed in the power of the written word. And the ability that you have to really change the world.

And I guess I would also just like to remind you that at one time, you existed as the public watch dog. That annoying, nagging, necessary, voice for the people.

Because we need you. We need a source we can trust to blow the whistle, to ask the tough questions, to make people wiggle in their chair or globally celebrate justice or maybe even move us to tears.

And not to sell more papers or generate more ad revenue or up your number of online subscribers.

But simply to bring the world to our doorstep.

So I guess what I'm trying to say is, we are now blowing the whistle on you.

Please listen.


A very dissatisfied--yet hopeful--consumer


Check us out:

It's fun fact time at work--can you guess which one is mine?

...and can I tell you how great it is to work in a library where they think my dorky ideas are cool?

p.s. Because I can tend to be a tad Type A about things...I feel the need to apologize for my images not cooperating when I upload which causes funky things to happen to image alignment, etc. I can feel your judging cyberspace stares from HERE PEOPLE! (Ahem.) Anyway, please forgive me.



In case you missed it, (in which case, are.you.even.HUMAN?!) Jim and Pam got hitched! It's been five long years, and I will be the first to say that last night did not disappoint.

The pierce-your-heart promo (I'd add a clip from the night but NBC has it under lock and key):

The wedding idea that we are so stealing (says Adam, obviously):

The largest cupcake in the world (totally unrelated but O.M.G! Can you imagine taking a bite out of a foot-long sprinkle?!):

credit: here

Happy weekend, friends.


In response to the dreaded Swine:

...and hey, I just liked the color swatch thing this week, okay? Don't judge me.