Bought a couple new computer games a few days ago. So I have been spending my time trying to figure those out. I bought those games as online downloads. So I don’t need actual CDs for the games anymore. With as fast as new Windows programs come out anymore, I’ve been burned a few times when my old games wouldn’t run on my newer programs. I’ve decided I’m just going to subscribe to online gaming forums and just buy my games as downloads and let the forums do the dirty work. Seems to me that eventually I may not have to own much of anything besides some furniture, some clothes, a couple computers, a smart phone, etc. I am definitely looking forward to when driverless cars go mainstream and I don’t even need to own a car anymore. Seems to me that by the time I get to be in my late 60s (my parents age) I just won’t have to own much of anything if everything keeps getting digitized. I can dream, can’t I?
I’m still trying to simplify my life. I have pretty well adapted to minimalism. But sometimes I still hold onto books even though 80 percent of what I read anymore is online articles and audiobooks. Even these I’ll probably give away if I end up moving. Ideally I’d like to get down to where I could throw everything I own into my car and be on the move within an afternoon if need be. As far as a bed or shelves are concerned, I can pick up different ones for cheap at Wal Mart or Salvation Army. I have never been nostalgic about furniture or most of my possessions.
I really don’t mind not owning much. I could never be a hoarder. And from what I’ve seen, more and more people my age and younger are becoming like this all the time. I imagine some people are worried about the Millennial generations being chronic renters and that it might be bad for the economy. But, who wants to sign a 30 year mortgage on a house when a job could be outsourced or automated at a moment’s notice? My brother owns a cool house in a good neighborhood, but he’d be in trouble if he got laid off from his company and had to sell his house, take his four kids out of school, and drag the entire family across country to find a similar job. Even my friends and relatives that have kids have fewer kids than their parents and grandparents had. My generation may not be putting down physical community roots as much as previous generations. But humans have traditionally been a nomadic species, going wherever there was better hunting or farmland. I don’t expect this to change. But thanks to the boom in communications tech, it is so much easier to stay in touch even if you are on the other side of the planet.
It’s amazing just in my own life how much “stuff” I don’t have to own now compared to fifteen years ago. I used to own over one hundred music CDs, dozens of DVDs, several shelves of books, etc. Now I have access to a much larger stash of music for 10 dollars a month through Spotify. I have a larger book collection now even though over 90 percent of my books are now e files that I got for free. I have access to pretty much every movie I could ever want through Netflix, amazon, youtube, etc. I don’t need an address book as long as I have a Facebook account. I buy most of my clothing online anymore. Even though it costs a little more this way, I can find exactly what I want as long as I’m willing to look. I’m no longer at the mercy of Wal Mart, K Mart, JC Penney, etc. I literally haven’t been to Wal Mart since last fall because I can shop from home on my computer anymore. And I love it. About the only things I don’t buy online now are groceries, gas for my car, and my prescription medications. Even with my medications, the only time I actually deal with a human is when I go to physically pick my stuff up. Who knows what the next fifteen years will bring? I can hardly wait to find out.