The cost of living

The cat said to the mouse, “Why do you always run away from me?”

To this the mouse sagely retorted, “Because you’re always trying to eat me.”

It was true. Every time the cat saw the mouse scurrying across the floor there was nothing for it, he had to give chase. And it was true that no matter how much the cat just wanted to be friends with the mouse he could not help but gobble up his would be pal. It was just in the cat’s nature.

We can’t help it, once we get a taste of something good it’s so hard not to gorge ourselves unless, of course, we stumble across something even more mouthwatering. Every toothsome delight has its price, though it sometimes is not so easily espied, it is always there. For the cat the price of his scrumptious snack is quite obvious really ... friendship. For who wants to be friends with someone who eats them. I’ll admit there are some who would, but they are often not long for this world.

We are covetous creatures, jealous of what others have, which is odd because all we really need is a full belly and a warm place to lay our heads. However, life is more complicated than that, maybe because we have made it so or maybe it is because it is the natural course of our evolution. No matter what the cause though, once the basic needs of life are attended to we invariably discover that there are even more things – things we may not have even known existed – that we need in order to survive. Newer, bigger TVs, microwaves that can pop twelve bags of popcorn and refill your drink in the time it takes to press the “on” button, things which did not even exist three years ago yet now that they do life without them has become a dismal and bleak affair. It is a marvel the human race got this far without such glorious inventions like the “Perfect Pancake Pan” or the “Nuwave Oven.” What ever happened to just using the stove and a pan.

At the same time, everything in life has a price. Every indulgence is costing someone, somewhere, something. Whether it’s the consumer’s pocket book, the manufacturer’s time, or the resources allocated to bringing to life the trappings of consumerism instead of being used to make something more productive; like say an IV for a malnourished child dying from dehydration. Everything has a cost, every action a reaction. Simply existing taxes the body. While the costs of survival are justifiable, consumerism brings the overall cost of living to a higher level that is harder to justify. Of course that is simply the way of the world and it always has been. Those who often pay the price of indulgent living are those with less in the first place, the middle and lower classes in America, or the less developed foreign regions of the world.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy living in an America where life is full of opportunities, I’m just not all that surprised when the mice of the world are not overly pleased about being fed upon.

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