I've Reached my Kitsch Limit

by - Sunday, April 17, 2011

Ok, I kid you not, I think I have finally seen that piece of cultural sludge that made me hate television (also, America). I can handle a whole lot; I don't particularly love Jersey Shore, but I never saw them as abominations or anything, I regularly tolerate my boyfriend's horrible music, and I even enjoy a lot of reality tv. A lot.

But this is just too much.

TLC has started showing "Extreme Couponing" (or some equally doushey name). Firstly, it repeatedly features the pronunciation of coupon that makes me want to rip my ears off; come on, it is Q-pon not coop-on (I don't care if this is correct or not. If you can't say a word without compromising your dignity, just skip it).

Worse still are the people they feature on this show; these people are like obsessive compulsive hoarders. One guy had like a thousand toothpaste bottles that he proudly claims he got for free. They all have "stockpiles" of essentially the same stuff; paper towels, toliet paper, and various plastic packaged foods which offer the body nothing but the pride of bargains (cereal and candy bags seem to be a cornerstones of every single collection). And there are people starving all over the world.

These people are so concerned with getting a bargain that they are more invested in the money they save then the money they uselessly spend. On an episode we saw today, twins went on a joyshopping trip for their birthday, buying 58 bottles of antacid. Neither of them get heartburn, but one exclaimed "with prices like these, who wouldn't buy this!" I wouldn't. I also don't shop at Costco or in bulk, so if there is a zombie apocalypse I guess I am biting the bullet.

I am still not sure why these people bother me so much; it feels like the worst of what America is to me, being more concerned to get everything you can with as little effort as possible rather than getting what you need in a practical reasonable way. You wonder how these companies can afford to be giving their product away (I can only imagine part of this comes from excessively cheap labor, both by mechanizing work and treating workers really badly). I wonder. looking at their stockpiles, if people like that could work full time for charities or foodbanks as a way to save money and give to someone else, but that certainly doesn't seem like anyone's plan (and even the ethics of that are pretty damn suspect).

You also wonder if this is just another mental problem that will be diagnosed in a few years, where the excesses which are available to us take over our existence (I think its significant that their homes have been taken over, but so have their bodies and seemingly their lives, as doing this seems pretty time consuming). Anyway, it skeeves me out, and for the first time, I just feel sick of television and America and the whole deal of it.

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  1. there is one extreme couponer lady that does donate to her church's food bank, but what i find hilarious is the fact that she buys cat food and cat treats........ and doesn't own a cat.
    what's the point in buying things you don't need? that's what i don't understand. now if they only shopped once every 3 months, i could look at it differently, but they go every week

    (from mindy)