Tag Archives: oshin

I’m better than you and I can prove it

Sweetie boyfriend J is coming tomorrow and knowing how he likes things neat and clean, I decided to bust out the rags to clean up the room.
Cos we all know how he gets all uncomfortable with the usual state of my room. Meaning dusty, untidy and generally a mess.

So I got down to my knees to clean the floors and walls Japanese style. I immediately thought of this really old Japanese drama series, Oshin, where the protagonist spends alot of time cleaning the floor that way cos that’s the only way to keep the floors clean to the Japanese. I always thought it’s a particulary cruel way to spend your time.

But I actually felt quite good cleaning the floor that way today. It felt good preparing the room for him since he is flying across the country to be with me. And it feels good to clean things the right way. It shows my devotion. My committment. My love.

I felt… righteous.

That this adherence to absolute floor cleanliness is a reflection of me somehow. That I’m disciplined? Tough? Worthy?

Maybe that’s how it all starts.

You gain emotional validation from the material and it strikes a chord with your values/beliefs/morality and somehow your brain scrambles to rationalize this connection.

Maybe that’s why Americans shop so much.


It’s a stake in the ground. To buy a bag/shoe/shirt that shows how smart/stylish/wealthy she is.

I used to think the need to use material stuff to reflect yourself was pretty sad. But is non-material ways to validating yourself just as bad?

Is travelling another form of showing off? Especially when you get the feeling people eagerly post theirĀ  fab travels photos on Facebook not so much to share but really to show off.


Are we really all just doing the same albeit in different ways?

Maybe this need to validate yourself is not “bad”.

It’s just human.