Re: David Green

Naomi Gold (
Wed, 15 Apr 1998 13:35:13 -0400 (EDT)

Thanks for posting this letter. It's a refreshing perspective in a
culture which places so much emphasis on acquisition, and which gives us
the continual message, "You ARE what you HAVE." There is, by the way, a
lot of information on the internet about what has come to be called
"voluntary simplicity." Now the "simplicity" of the letter's writer isn't
exactly voluntary, but the point of the voluntary simplicity "movement" is
to break out of this culture's hard-driving emphasis on buying more, newer
and better things.

On Wed, 15 Apr 1998, Dale R. Reed wrote:

> Figured some of you would enjoy this letter as much as I do. Dale
> Letter Published in the Tuesday, 14 April 1998, Wall Street Journal
> Letters to the Editor.
> I am a student and clerk here in Washington, D.C. I make $10 an hour,
> which adds up to, including cleaning the office on weekends, about
> $200. That's only $800 a month and D.C. is expensive, but I do all
> right. My efficiency apartment has two big windows. Once a month I buy
> daisies from a street vendor for three bucks, and they last for awhile
> if I change the water and cut the stems. I don't have a TV or a car nor
> do I do drugs. I ride a bike, patch my clothes, eat mainly rice and
> lentils, sit in the park, hold hands with my girl, and sometimes eat and
> laugh with my friends. I have a fine time, thank you.
> I don't like to hear people writing that life on a modest income is
> hell, or degrading. Live is always what you make of it. Before this
> job I worked as a busboy. The head busboy had been at it for eight
> years. I don't think he could read very well, and he could barley speak
> English, but he was a hard worker. He and his wife have a nice place,
> their son is doing well in school, and they have saved a remarkable
> (well into six figures) amount of money with the hope of moving back to
> El Salvador.
> Life is hard and we should never be without compassion. However, this
> is a great country and these are remarkable times. With a little
> imagination, a lot of hard work and modest goals you can make it here.
> David Green
> Washington
> --
> $ Seattle, Washington U.S.A. $