Sunday, November 5, 2017

Is the Back-to-Basics Fad Slowing?

Hopped over to Maui this weekend, and of course stopped at the Barnes & Noble bookstore.  One thing my own island lacks is a decent bookstore. Thus I must travel to Maui or Oahu to find the nearest good collection of new books. ..... Oh yes, I'm a dinosaur! I like physical books. E books have their place, but give me a solid paper book for my reference books. 

For the past several years at this bookstore I've seen a growing garden/homestead section. More and more books. But this latest visit has revealed a down trend. Whereas in the past 18' to 24' of wall space had been devoted to this topic, the section has shrunk down to 10'. A tread? Or just temporary shrinkage awaiting a resupply? Is the fad dying? Don't know. I also found a far smaller selection of garden/homesteading magazines on the shelves too. Perhaps everybody has switched to the e-world? 

Life experience has shown that the public jumps from one trend to another. For years the back-to-basics trend has been going strong and actually growing. But so many young people have been burned, failed, struggled beyond their endurance, gone bellies up (plus have broadcast their experiences via social media) that perhaps less others are willing to join the trend. Plus, our current federal government administration is assuring us that climate change is fake, that there is no need for the EPA steps previously taken, coal is good, no need to fear chemical contamination, no need to know about GMO, etc. The overall concern for food safety and stability seems to be waning, although my own state's government is sending mixed messages about this very issue. 

So....are people simply abandoning physical books & mags? Or is the trend that people are embracing the techie lifestyle instead? Gardening/homesteading isn't the life of ease. It isn't a techie lifestyle. So if people are no longer fearful of contamination, of an unstable future, are they relegating dreams of self-grown food and self-sustainability to daydreaming fantasy? Is there less call for the how-to and reference books? Or perhaps it's just easier to ask Siri nowadays? 

Above, a view of Lanai island from the hills above Lahaina, Maui. The island views here can be beautiful. 

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