As most readers already know well, any pretensions I might have toward radical political positions are completely undermined by my enthusiastic enjoyment of capitalist consumption. To be fair, for me it's less a matter of consumption for its own sake, or of the quantity of consumption. Instead, my joy comes from playing the capitalist game as well as I possibly can. Indeed, for me, the 'deal' is almost as important as the object itself.
The high point for me probably came right before the metaphorical internet 'bubble' did its metaphorical 'bursting'. This was a time when even companies that sold actual tangible products had decided that the 'new economy' dictated giving everything away. This made it possible - for a while - to purchase new technology items and then sell them 6 months later on eBay for more than one had paid for them.
So it saddens and frustrates me to find that our new lifestyle just doesn't lend itself to much consumption. I have found the deals, I just don't have any reason to carry through with the purchases. And by 'reasons' I mean to say that even within the terms of constructed capitalist desire and fetishisation, I still can't find a way to 'justify' a purchase. Here are a few items on my list:
What I want: Nokia N95 Mobile Phone
Why I want it: 5 megapixal camera, micro SD, gps sat-nav, wifi, voip, and the list goes on, i.e. it is the cool phone right now, and will be for about a month (here comes the iPhone)
The deal: it's going for £200 or more with expensive contracts, but there's this thing where you ring Vodafone directly and order a pay-as-you-go SIM at the same time, and then....well, trust me, it's quite a deal!
Why I don't 'need' it: I use my mobile for about 40 minutes and 30 texts a month. I have no one to call, really, and those that I would call aren't on their mobiles. In the states I used 750 minutes a month regularly, but not so now.
What I want: BMW 120d M Sport 3 Dr
Why I want it: RWD BMW goodness, in better-looking 3-dr shape, oodles and oodles of torque, and unbelievably good mileage (around 60mpg combined) and emissions (band C), and £170 gets you free maintenance for 5 years
The deal: around £3k under list through broadspeed
Why I don't 'need' it: well, we've had a car for about 6 weeks now, and it hasn't changed a lot. It looks like we're averaging about 30 miles driven per week, and that's usually taking the car to parking places that don't score high on the Rebecca scale
What I want: Panasonic PHD10 42" Plasma
Why I want it: Panasonic commercial plasma panels are simply the best, in my well-studied opinion, and this is the brand new 10th generation panel in HD
The deal: AV-sales have outdone themselves on a package that includes delivery, along with Panasonic's new 3 year in home warranty
Why I don't 'need' it: We don't watch anything in HD, and the picture difference in SD will be no better than what we already have