In the United States, we are lucky to have massive convenience at our fingertips. I was talking to one of the instructors for the urban survival course, who is from Sweden, on a car ride. He was blown away by some of the things I told him about the levels of convenience and comfort in the United States. Things I completely took for granted don't even exist there. I thought some of you might be interested in hearing about some of the insights we discussed.
Before I left for the course, I was walking my dogs a mile or two every day with my dogs, but that was about it. I thought it was enough but I learned during the field exercises that it wasn't even close to the physicality required during an SHTF situation. But I digress. Let's get back to convenience.
A caveat before people respond indignantly and tell me about all the inconvenience with which they deal every day: this is an opinion piece. Obviously many people in America still work out hard and have manual jobs. But when two-thirds of American adults and 30% of American children are overweight or obese, you have to see that you are not in the majority.
And it's the majority here that I'm discussing. Between a combination of low-quality food and extremely sedentary lifestyles, the majority are killing themselves with convenience.
The American Culture of Convenience
The first thing that struck me when I landed in the Balkans was how different their lifestyle is from ours in the United States. But the longer I've been here, the more obvious it has become.
In the United States, depending on where you live, everything is dropped in your lap.
Food can be quickly acquired by shouting your order into a microphone and driving around a building, all without you having to leave your car. And if you live in a larger town or city, with the advent of services like GrubHub and DoorDash, the food delivered to your home is no longer the domain of pizza chains. You can have your choice of practically any restaurant in town brought right to your door within 45 minutes.
But it isn't just about food. Instacart offers pick-up services from a wide variety of stores, including places like chain grocers, Wal-Mart, and Target. All you have to do is drive up, let them know by phone that you've arrived, and pop your trunk. Poof. Your shopping is done. In some cities, you can even use services like Instacart to have these things brought to your door.
Amazon has brought us practically anything else we could want with two-day shipping, regardless of where you live in the country. Gone are the days of scouring half a dozen stores to locate the whatchamacallit you needed. A quick search on Amazon and One-Click ordering and it's yours within 48 hours and you never moved off your comfy chair.
If you need to go somewhere you don't even have to drive yourself or take public transit. Uber or Lyft will happily send somebody to pick you up and drive you anywhere you need to go for a reasonable price, and you can watch the approach of your driver from the convenience of your phone.
Entire billion dollar industries are evolving to make our lives more convenient and easy every single day. Imagine how stunned our hunter-gatherer ancestors would be to discover we don't even have to leave the house to be clothed and fed in epic abundance.