Materialism and Friendships — When Stuff Is Better Than People

We all probably know those people whose jobs take them away. And I don’t mean, they moved to the next city over. I mean they literally, moved AWAY, to like Timbuktu or someplace. I, for one, used to be baffled by this. Why would somebody give up their home and their friends to move someplace where they didn’t know anybody, just for a better job?

I understand that when it comes to supporting yourself/your family, you do what you have to. Better to be happy in another land than to be starving at home. But that aside, the whole idea of “Striving” for a better job, in some situations, could be a helpful insight—value of materialism over relationships.

It is said that no man, on his deathbed, looks up at the cracked plaster of the ceiling and says, “Wowzers, I wish I had made more money. I wish’d I’d gone to a couple more of those board meetings. I wish’d I’d have sold a few more vacuum cleaners, and written more instruction manuals. Yes, I think then I’d be ready to go.”

Zig Ziglar once said, “Money won’t make you happy…but everybody wants to find out for themselves.” 😀

So what place does materialism play in friendships?

A study was done in which it was discovered that people who talked about their stuff were more liked that people who talked about experience.

Quoted from the article (I added the bold):

Findings from a 2009 study at San Francisco State University, reported at a Society for Personality and Social Psychology meeting late in the year, showed that since experiences tend to include other people, the memory of that experience and the time spent together brings the participants closer together – the bond formed over the shared experience tends to be lasting.

On the contrary, purchases are usually made alone, and with no one to share the joy, the excitement of a new purchase is much more short-lived than the excitement of an experience, which can remain in one’s mind for a long time.

You can read the full article here.

So what is this all getting at?

The American Dream. Owning a car. A house. Having those three acres of land. Neighbors? The neighbors have their own lives to live!!! Happiness comes from owning that Mustang you’ve always dreamed about, and going to college so you can make more money. Happiness is about your 42″ television, your iPhone, your Ray-Ban sunglasses, your bright red Chuck Taylors. Home is where the heart is, and so is the bank. Friends? Ehhh…they’re nice. But—to quote the barnyard animals from Garfield & Friends: “Friends are there to help you get started…but when you’re already started, who needs ’em?”

Tongue-in-cheek? I’ll let you deduce that. 😉

Written in good humor,







2 thoughts on “Materialism and Friendships — When Stuff Is Better Than People

  1. Wow, I thought I was happy, but reading your post made me realize that it can’t possibly be. I have a 36″ TV that’s two feet deep and takes three grown men to move, don’t have an iPhone or Ray-Bans and I don’t even know what Chuck Taylors are.

    Now I must go feel sorry for myself and whine about everything I don’t have.

    Tongue-in-cheek? Maybe 😉

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