The following is a blog swap post from Joe at Retire By 40, where he writes about his journey to early retirement and other fun stuff along the way. Check out my Biggest Financial Pet Peeve: Greedy Banks over at his site today! Entrepreneur Fridays will return next Friday.
One of my pet peeves is our whole Supersize Me culture.
Whenever I go into a McDonald’s (rarely) to get a Big Mac and hear “you want to supersize that?“, it bugs the heck out of me. These are just empty calories that nobody needs. The extra large drink and fries contain 1020 calories, almost twice the 540 calories from the Big Mac. I’m sure the marketing genius who came up with supersizing is quite proud of him/herself to make that extra $$$ billion for the corporation. Yes, all that extra calories only cost an extra 50 cents(?), but do we really need that?
So we started young and moved on up with our supersize culture from there. We have all been indoctrinated to think bigger is better. The car companies spend millions of dollars to convince us that big SUVs are more prestigious, safer, tougher, and roomier to keep up with our supersized bodies. We all covert a 6 bedroom, 3,000 square ft. house with a 3 car garage to park that hulking SUV in. Then we join Costco so we can buy bulk food and discounted electronics. After all that, we have The Cheesecake Factory and Romano’s Macaroni Grill kicking it up a notch and making humongous servings of food. Believe me, I have stuffed my face at The Cheesecake Factory and it was damn good, but my body didn’t need all that calories. It’s hard to say stop when there is a delicious pile of food in front of you, so I just avoid those restaurants these days.
Luckily, we have realized that bigger is not better. We live pretty modestly in a small 2 bedroom condo, share a car, and mostly eat at home. We are trying to find a happy median where we can say enough is good and bigger is not always better. Living a little more modestly saves us a lot of money and I believe we are healthier with this lifestyle. We are not minimalists, but we reject the Supersize Me culture as well. It’s still annoying to hear a coworker brag about his huge McMansion with two kitchens and the kegerator. Oh well, different strokes for different folks. That’s it for my rant today.
What about you? Are you keeping up with the Joneses and wanting a new Ford F350? Gas price is getting more expensive again, but bigger is better right?