It’s 07:49am and I’m standing on an escalator, flanked on both sides by streaming commuters and flashing LCD screens. Easyjet suggest I go skiing. Armani want me to know that their new mobile phone has ‘night effect’, whatever that might be. I deserve more TV channels, and Virgin would love to supply them to me. I am barely an hour into my day, and already I have seen dozens of these visions of commodified happiness. Where, in all this buzz of hype, is the promise of real life?
The consumer dream is, in essence, the promise that happiness will come to us through our consumer choices. I will be a more fulfilled person if I have a larger house, a faster car, and newer clothes. I will feel better about myself, and others will like me more.