Boutique culture

Why not base our culture on an authentic boutique instead of a convenience store?

Our modern culture is similar to shopping for commodities.

Shoppers fling items, hop from one section to another, show bad behavior and bad attitude. Everything is commoditized. If you don't like something, there is another one nearby. There is an illusion of choice, and a line of almost similar things for you to try. You will be tempted by slick ads, flashy signs, and smiling salespeople. The final decision is arbitrary, even though we think it is rational. There is no joy.

What type of personality do we develop from this experience?

The dominant culture of our Neoliberal times is of disposable fleeting emotions and connections, hopping from one person, product, and experience to another, and arbitrary decisions.

Contrast this with shopping in a boutique, where a few select items are presented to you, and you are expected to engage with the products and the salesperson. You don't go to a boutique with an attitude, fling things around until you find what you like, and arbitrarily select one. You are expected to smile, sound interesting, and generally behave. There is limited choice. In return, you enjoy the experience, get an indefinable joy, and the end result brings you happiness.

Why should our culture not be like going to a boutique, instead of shopping at a commodity convenience store?

To complicate things, most boutiques are just disguised peddlers of commodities. There is a lot of fake luxury for the middle class. This applies to shopping and our culture. Buyer beware!

Let us change our existing culture modeled on joyless soul-destroying disposable convenience store shopping where we act like we are in a convenience store, and walk around with a bad attitude, and flip from one thing to another without any engagement or joy. Let us stop treating everything and everyone around us as commodities.

Convenience culture starts with flipping through hundreds of photos on social media, flipping through piles of identical clothes, trying every new eatery and bar, rush from one event to another for Fear of Missing Out(FOMO), and flipping online through clickbait. The end result is that we lose the ability to like anything, be connected to anything, and just downplay everything. The end result of this convenience culture is that we are bored out of our minds, in a joyless existence, and just wait for the next shot of shocking product or behavior to wake us up from our zombified existence.

If you find yourself saying that there is plenty of what you want around, and you are spoilt for choice, you are immersed in Commodity Culture. Your life is a convenience store.

Why not base our culture on an authentic boutique instead of a convenience store?

Starting now, be nice to the people you interact with, treat everyone with genuine interest, learn about the world, engage deeply, and don't assume there is an endless choice. Be an interesting person. Be an engaging person. Be a cultured, sophisticated, well-read person who has experienced life. Above all, be authentic, not a fake neoliberal polite hypocrite.

This is not about acting 'pricey' or giving yourself labels like 'selective' and 'exclusive', or becoming a snob like most people in boutiques are. It something bigger, yet more subtle. This mindset takes a long time to develop. You can't say it three times, put yourself into a spell, and call yourself cultured as most people in the NeoLiberal world do.

Do it to bring joy, fascination, and happiness back into our life.

A Boutique culture is the culture we need for our times.

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