It's been about a year since I sold my television, dvd player, and antenna at a tag sale. I have not missed having a tv AT ALL. I kept some favorite DVDs that I watch from time to time on the computer (maybe 5 times since last August), and I have watched Hoarders, 60 Minutes and Masterpiece Theater on my computer. But I go weeks and months without seeing a moving filmed image.
Today I accompanied someone to a drugstore that I don't normally shop at. I used to love going to drugstores and seeing all the "fun" lotions and hair notions and new products. Today,I had absolutely no interest in looking at new products, smelling containers, or buying a thing. I didn't feel like I was missing out by not knowing the new brands or products, and I felt absolutely no desire to pick up, inspect or purchase junk I didn't need. I think this must be related to the lack of advertising in my life. I listen to public radio or cassettes in the car, I don't watch tv, the shows I watch on the laptop don't have ads, and I have adblocker software on my computer. I see ads in the New Yorker and Elle Decor magazines, but the things they advertise are so far beyond my means that the ads are more like abstract art than a call to shop. I haven't seen an ad for a beauty product in a very long time.
It was a wonderful realization in the store --- the store is there to supply me with things I truly need (and really use) when I have run out of them. It is not there to introduce me to new things that I do not need. And if I'm not being bombarded with advertisements (and television shows themselves) telling me that I need the newest this or that to be an average person, then I don't think I need that or this -- I know what I need it, and I get it when it runs out. What a concept!