In the beginning there were embroidery, cut bones, glass beads and a bit more food than everyone else to establish a person to be a cut above the rest. Throughout the years human beings have proven a bunch that needs that sense of superiority, or even individuality. If you look at the two instances and try to realize their similarities you find it. In superiority one has certain status symbols; in wealth, in intellect, in music, in ‘alternative lifestyles’. Each one contains a mini culture where everyone is trying to be better than everyone else. In some mini cultures such as ravers, a neon feather boa, vicks, glowsticks, and an awesome outfit make you ‘different’, ‘different’ is a status symbol, as are the objects that make it up. Today a woman may purchase a beautiful pair of Manolo Blahnik red satin shoes, this will be her status symbol.
Why do we do this? Why must we feel :better:? Is it because we lack the true internal status symbols? Intellectualists however have their own. In their use of superfluously complex language, and pedantic passion for things to be ‘correct’. That sort of stringent sect must be exhausting. I have tried my hardest to create a new set of status symbols. One that doesn’t depend on making one feel ignorant, poor, or profane. Instead it rests in passions. Instead of saying ‘I have just read *quote ridiculously difficult and long book here* and it was positively refulgant’ or saying ‘oh my god I just bought *quote ridiculously expensive item here* and it is totally fab’ one should instead use acts of kindness. And not as a flaunting thing, only to inspire random acts of kindness in others. I have set up a little communal jar for people to put their pennies in to donate towards communal cookies, and cakes and such for me to bake for peoples’ birthdays. It’s never enough to pay for the supplies, but it doesn’t matter, people see that through community we can… well… eat cookies. That it doesn’t take much, to get much. I also try to instead of talking about mundane and foolish things, though I of course like everyone else enjoy a bit of frivolity and heavy drinking, talk instead about my passions. What do I LOVE? If I truly love a piece, a book, a song, a poem, a piece of art, I don’t bring it up in a ‘I’m so much more knowledgable than you’ sort of way, instead I want to share it. I want to expose people, and I want them to build passions of their own. I have my OWN status symbols. An antique typewriter, an LP player, neither are particularly expensive, though not cheap. But it’s not the things themselves that are a symbol, but rather what they represent. A physicality that is lost to man. In our digital age it is increasingly difficult to feel attatched to this world. I find that a physical act, such as using a typewriter, or listening an LP is far more satisfying than typing on this computer, or downloading to an iPod.
Let us free ourselves from societal and mini cultural status symbols. Go make your own.
Be strong and continue on comrades.