It almost feels like a life stage: during the last three years, I learned to Consume Well. By "Consuming Well" I mean either consuming something that gives the most satisfaction or causes the least suffering. I learned the best local snacks (bluebird), uppers (victrola), and downers (stumbling monk). I started shopping maybe 75% at farmers' markets, and when I did eat meat, I ate sustainably fished or humanely-treated animals. I bought used furniture and smart brands of clothing and Seventh Generation toilet paper. I got to be a pretty good consumer. If I'd stayed on this path, I probably would have gotten good at wine.
But man, that is about steps one and two on the game of life! That's like learning how to be an artist by sharpening pencils really well! Consuming Well is like knowing the best brands of baseball bats: useful, sure, but only under certain circumstances, and it won't do the work for you.
I'm glad I've gotten better at Consuming Well. It's fun, and it helps bring people together. But I've been asking myself in many areas: can I create, or maintain, or improve here, instead of just consuming? And you too: can you move beyond Consuming Well?