Saturday, April 14, 2007

Midnight seranade and consumerism...

A little while ago, a neighbor had a serenade for his wife. It’s impossible not to notice as the apartments where I live are close in proximity and the music unusually loud. What called my attention however, wasn’t so much the serenade as the musical pieces that the musicians were playing – pieces that are played OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN at each party.

After 19 years of living in Costa Rica I know all five songs by memory. It’s a little bit of a let down whenever I hear the trumpets begin to sound -- kinda like those electronic greeting cards that play the rickety music when you open them -- the kind you usually receive through the old traditional snail mail. Anyway, these Mariachis seem to move about in ant-like formation from one place to another in a hurry to move on... somewhere else.I don’t know what pleasure anyone would get from hearing this kind of thing. No doubt there are classy Mariachis because I have heard them while in Medellin, Colombia. At the end of such a delightful concert even I would feel grateful, even though it was not intended for me. Imagine? When something is so magnificently done, you can’t help feel part of it even when you’re not.

This reflection must serve for some kind of self-evaluation I'm sure. What things to I do that are somewhat mechanical … where I just want to do the minimum and move on? I mean sometimes we get so wrapped up in the routine of life that even the special occasions are treated in a routine way. How am I like those commercialized serenades or those CONSUMERISM birthday parties where the parents take every body to Burger King, MacDonald’s, Pizza Hut, etc., with those same games, same cake, same children’s music, same piñata, the same food and the same convenience of not having to clean up the house afterward?

Yeah, I guess kids don’t seem to care one way or the other whether we go the way of the "generic" or something a little more real… but to me it just leaves a huge void and perhaps some indigestion too. Ufff! We only live once, so why not do it with individuality? Aren’t those we love worth a little more originality?

-- Troubled Reflector © 2008

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