The Consumer and the Maker

Creation vs. Consumption is the distinction between childhood and adulthood.

It seems to me that most people want to experience the same stuff.

They want to travel the world, visit beautiful places, sip from that juicy liquid in a crystal-clear glass sitting on the beach.

They want to go hiking and festivals and visit museums and go out with their friends and ingest variations of the same dish.

But in order to get to do these things, you need supplies. You need someone to build the things you require, the things you are going to consume.

The food you eat on the streets of Bangkok — someone has to cook it.

Jay Fay cooking street food in Bangkok. This was part of a Netflix documentary.

Someone needs to write the books you ingest while drinking a glass of red wine after you just come home from work.

You need to be entertained.

But with more of us spending our time consuming, there are fewer and fewer people creating.

And the things we are consuming now are mostly a copy of a copy of a copy.

The movies we watch have become more and more predictable. That’s because we’ve seen variations before. When was the last time you saw a really good movie?

The social media content we consume can easily be placed in categories because this is how we individuals work.

More concerned with staying in our pod ingesting what others created instead of pursuing our own weird interests. We need to stay on the path of least resistance.

Creating things require isolation, time, patience. The reason why this worked out as a child is because we had all of this. We were not bombarded and we did not have to worry. We just did things. Now society views those who stay in isolation creating as weirdos. But these same weirdos built the app you need to order your food, or book a flight, or send a meme to your significant other thus upgrading your cleverness. Someone had to create that.

People are more concerned with selling ideas and concepts, which is kind of what I am doing right now. And we hope that someone can come in and take that idea and make it a reality.

Again, we are adding so much stuff to our plate but we are all eating in the same restaurant. We want to do the same stuff.

While the creator’s mindset might still be there somewhere, we are using it to hone new interests and hobbies we absorbed from other people. And that is because it is easy and it gives you the feeling of progress.

Hipsters interested in philosophy are learning how to cook tacos and grow exotic plants and brew their own beer.

We play games in virtual reality to have a sense of progress.

Then we have kids.

More and more people start to see kids as vanity projects and they pour all of their energy into them. They want them to succeed, go through the system, and have stability. No one wants to see their child hopping trains.

Your kid becomes you. You forget about yourself. It is easy, and you have an excuse that society thinks is noble. But you did create something, right? You brought a new being into the world. But so have many before you. 100 + billion people.

I am wondering what would happen if all the consumption-related apps on our phones would suddenly disappear.

Would people start creating?

I have converted this to a YouTube video essay