Remember that George Carlin schtick about ‘stuff?’ Well, if he was around today he could tacked-on a whole new take on it.
We’ve bought so much stuff, reports TIME magazine, that we’ve struggled to find places to fit it all. The U.S. went from having 300 million square feet of self-storage space in 1984 to 2.4 billion square feet in 2008, according to the Self Storage Association, a 700% surge.
By 2005, one in five new houses came with three garage bays — the third, real-estate agents explain, to store all the “toys.”
The reason for this proliferation of ‘stuff’ is best illustrated by Black Friday when there are bargains galore — deals so irresistible that you buy when you don’t need.
This cheap ‘stuff’ comes at a price.
As a country, we held nearly $1 trillion in credit-card debt this time last year — about the same as the value of all the goods and services produced in South Korea annually.
But more important is the Wal-Mart effect of squeezing everyone along the supply chain so workers end up being unable to afford the very crap they produce, as cheap as it is.
Advice: before you buy anything think about how you’re going to use it, sure, but think also about where you’re going to PUT it.