Are we having fun yet?
Hey there and happy Earth Day! Hope you can take a moment today to step in some grass, feel the sun or wave at some clouds. It’s not weird—lean into it!
Emily here. In my mind as we approach summer are Fun Times™. This summer feels particularly packed with both overdue and new events: graduations for people two years out from school, weddings for people already married (including mine!), trips delayed and now ignited. These events don’t happen spontaneously, they require pre-work: planning, money and time. We invest upfront with the expectation that these events will bring us joy, memories and meaning.
Often, these plans bring us what we hope for (shout-out to an Unpacker’s bachelorette trip). Other times, we hit the limit on how much joy we can extract from any given event (shout-out to sophisticated marketing for embedding the view that if you pay for something, you should be guaranteed a certain level of fun in return).
So, how much is too much?
My fun-planning limit has been hit, for example, with my wedding. At a certain point, you can’t pack any more fun into a wedding. The wedding industry will tell you otherwise. Once the variables in your control have been decided (budget, location, vendors, guest list), everything else is outside of your hands (who shows up, their emotions, your stomachache, the weather). We might pay for things that we think will give us MORE fun and MORE meaning, but ultimately, this is just gambling.
Here’s an idea: Let’s all stop having weddings and just embrace The Moment Theory. Just kidding, I love weddings. But maybe the next generation could just have potlucks instead?
Water Cooler Convo
Emily: This post was partly inspired by Netflix’s Marriage or Mortgage. The show accidentally highlights some darker economic forces in the U.S. Take it from this TIME thinkpiece: “… it may leave viewers wondering about what’s led Americans to a point where milestones we’ve been conditioned to see as part of the American Dream feel increasingly out of reach.”
Emily: CP, back to our work/vacation beat, I recommend this Atlantic piece on how working vacations are not vacations. “Instead, for those lucky enough to afford and take workcations, the trips can be an exercise in changing one’s humdrum routines by dropping them into a new environment. Think of them as a practice run for the life you want back home.”
Carrie: Remember “bleisure” of spring 2021?
Carrie: Emily, and readers, looking for something lighter? I enjoyed this Julia Roberts interview.
Emily: I rewatched Mystic Pizza the other day and it was a transcendent experience. Would recommend.
Emily: Show and book update alert! Currently reading: Good Talk and Broken Harbor on – would highly recommend the full Tana French series for murder mythery enthusiasts among us. On TV shows, I need a new one! Any recs?
Carrie: Holly Hunter on Mr. Mayor!
Hope your weekend is full of FunTimes™.
Carrie & Emily