Shearing the sheep

“Shared joy is double joy; shared sorrow is half sorrow”

Swedish Proverb

My son was playing with another child. I asked him to share his toy sheep.
‘Buzz, buzz, buzz’ he said.

We will work on that.

I am learning how to share too.

My friend (who is a neighbour) and I have come to an arrangement that instead of buying something we will borrow from each other whenever we can. We are even coordinating our purchases and funding the new stuff from the sale of underutilized things that neither of us use enough to continue to own. Renting is the new black for that once in 10 year waterblast of the house prior to repainting.

We’d like to get to the point where we can forget ownership completely. We shall simply know that we have a juicer that is available whenever we choose to make fresh juice. It’s stupid for us both to have an angle grinder, a chainsaw, a wheelbarrow and a water-blaster languishing in our sheds. If you opened every kitchen, attic and shed in the street and laid the contents bare there would be so much redundant stuff!

We talked about how we both feel very awkward or inadequate if ask to borrow compared to how good we feel when we get to give and share. The irony is that we both teach our kids to share – that sharing is good, but our TV box works even harder to tell us that buying stuff is the only way. Sharing after all is defying consumer culture.

But, just imagine the benefits if we all shared and helped each the way we tell our kids to.

As I said to the boy ‘if you have a sheep to shear shear it then share your clippers with your silly Dad’. He’ll get that language joke in about 7 years.

Together with my friend, his daughters and my son we are learning that sharing is a balm for the ills of the world. You should feel good when you share and borrow not inadequate, self conscious or guilty. Those feelings should be reserved solely for people compensating for inadequacy by wasting all their money on status symbols or greedy guts businessmen wasting all the resources that mother earth offers us.

Borrow, share, rent, lend, swap and trade. Drive the second-hand economy and feel damn proud of yourself doing it. You are a straight up, stone cold, undercover hero!

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