Trivialities Matter

Trivialities do matter. "Which trivialities?" I hear you ask. The little stuff is anything you can find on Pinterest. It's clothes, nail polish, the latest movie, which celeb is with which celeb. Why on earth does that all matter? I'm not saying it's more important than which country is at war with which country. The little stuff is a happy distraction from the bigger issues of life.

I watched The Devil Wears Prada recently, with the extraordinary Anne Hathaway (from the coolest movie of the year Les Miserables). It sparked a question about values. Andy starts by trivialising anything appearance based. She then becomes obsessed with anything outwardly aesthetic because that's her job. She made major sacrifices in life to succeed in the world of beauty. Fashion and other lighter stuff should make us happy, not run our lives.

We can't disagree with her basic realisation at the end of the movie. We won't die from wearing the wrong length skirt or shade of sweater. It's not the end of the world. It's not worth changing your life over.This was just one example of stuff that probably isn't prioritised as high as world hunger or wars. Pop music and movies are typically not the be all and end all either. Plenty of things get more attention than people think they deserve. But the little things are here for a good reason.

Despite this clear triviality of appearances, there are some benefits. We live in a serious world with serious issues that make or break people's lives. And we do get bogged down in the depth of life. That is exactly when we need enjoyable distractions that don't have the pressure of great consequence. A new style of earrings won't make me a new person. A song on its own won't fix you (to quote a popular band's classic). They still matter because these things make us happy. That is enough consequence for some days.

The little stuff matters greatly. Crazy movies and giant earrings put a smile on a face. Eat, Pray Love is as escapist as Andy Sachs' wardrobe. So why not? Who cares if something isn't very intellectual? Despite the myriad of dilemas we cannot control, it's sometimes easier to control the inconsequential stuff.


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