Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Is it Just Me?

\When was the last time you bought shoes that cost Php 6,000? I really need to know because I need to know if I am the one who’s insane.

My best pal in the office is obsessed with brands. When I left him in his cubicle, he was browsing through the Macy’s on-line catalogue looking for shoes. The one he wants will cost him between 6-7K. Given, he’s only shopping online because he’s got a friend in the US who’ll be sending or bringing the stuff home for him, so that’s saving on the shipping cost. Yet still. Six thousand friggin’ pesos. And looking at the shoes, it isn’t so extra-ordinary. Looks like Rusty Lopez, except the tag will Say Kenneth Cole. It’s not like he doesn’t have tons of Kenneth Coles and Lacoste shoes. Add to the fact that men’s shoes rarely change designs. If he was a girl, with styles and colors to choose from, I may (stretching it, but I may) understand. I may have also overheard him wanting to buy a Diesel belt worth 2k. So you see, it’s a disease.

Some would say it’s because they can afford it, so they buy quality. I think that’s exclusive thinking. Stuff made by some illegal laborer in Pakistan or China or your very own Philippines will be pretty much the same anywhere. It’s the tag that makes the difference. I think people who can find quality for lower prices are much smarter people (or just practical -- which is called for in these hard times). Anything more than what’s necessary is flamboyance and frivolity to me.

I hadn’t always been poor. There was a time we had a choice to buy brands. But thank God my parents quickly veered us away from that godforsaken path or else I would feel miserable not being able to afford it anymore. I don’t mean to be hypocritical, because I do own branded stuff, mostly given by my Tita from the US (or secondhand from ukay-ukay). But the difference is, I don’t search for it like some heat-seeking missile. And to think I felt guilty buying my 800-peso shawl from Zara. Will never compare to buying two pairs of shoes worth P6,000 each as it happens.

So am I insane?

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