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You need a winter kimono, so buy this Boa Hanten from Sasquatchfabrix and ring in the New Year by scratching that line item off of your to-do list. Although I’m not sure where winter kimonos fit into Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (that’s a lie: they’re at the bottom, but Maslow can fuck right off with that bullshit), I do know that owning one is a prerequisite for true self-actualization. Indeed, since the so-called “deficiency” needs must be fulfilled before one can proceed to address the “being” or “growth” needs, I think Maslow would agree with me (he wouldn’t: he’s dead and likely wouldn’t agree even if he wasn’t) that dropping 690 USD on a winter kimono is a small price to pay to satisfy a deficiency in one’s physiological needs and ascend to the next tier of salient needs. Now, let’s set aside the well-reasoned and researched critiques of Maslow’s theory and focus on my major criticism, which is that it does not allow for personal developmental growth via the purchase of material goods (hereafter known as self-actualization by acquisition). There is scientific evidence that buying stuff you like can make you happy. Obviously spending beyond your means or merely for the purpose of conspicuous consumption does more harm than good, but these are failures of self-regulation, not intrinsic pitfalls of materialism. Know thyself and purchase accordingly. Eschew the false promises and feigned pathos of Madison Avenue ad wizards. Forswear the frothing at the mouth recommendations of sponsored influencers. Ignore the inane ramblings of self-styled fashion bloggers, who command you to splurge on random niche pieces like winter kimonos, despite the fact that you own a grand total of zero regular kimonos. Those guys are the worst. Self-actualization by acquisition should not be influenced by and cannot be achieved through external forces; only answers generated within the self may solve the questions asked by the self. Ergo, actualization is inherently incumbent on the individual and his or her decisions regarding what material goods to acquire. Okay, I’m spinning such bullshit right now that it’s giving me flashbacks to my college days, writing rambling, indecipherable analysis of circuitous, impenetrable texts. The most important skill you can develop at university is the ability to stretch one hundred words worth of content into two thousand words worth of bullshit. Obviously I would never abuse that ability in order to transmute a passing observation about a fancy garment into a full blog post via some form of linguistic alchemy. That would be unprofessional, unscrupulous, and downright unethical. I have the utmost respect for my dear readers and -- oh, wait, I’ve reached my target word count. This is Rhys Bufford, signing off -RB
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