Advertising and marketing have really figured out how to make you buy their products. When you are constantly surrounded by advertisements and signs, you will become numb to them and they may even loose their effectiveness on you. When you are anchored out away from civilization, you are also removed from advertisements. Your defenses are lowered as you relax and enjoy the world around you for what it really is.
Then you take a trip on your bicycle and explore a new town with plans to pick up a few provisions that you are running low on. All of a sudden you enter the commercial district in this new town and you are bombarded by advertisements! The sheer need to give them money in return for whatever they are selling is compelling and powerful! We went to pick up hair dye at Rite-Aid and along the way we saw a sign for a pizza place. I am allergic to wheat (a horrible allergy to have because breads are delicious and their memory will live on with me forever!) yet I felt compelled to eat there. The dreams of cheese and Italian spices filled my head and my heart desired nothing else than to eat there. Maddie had to pull me away and keep me on task to go to Rite-Aid, but I just wanted a super cheesy pizza.
To prevent impulse shopping, Maddie and I make a list of things that we need. When we go to shore, we look at the list and figure out how much cash to bring for these items. We only take the cash we are willing to spend at that moment and only buy the items that we see on the list.
Having that simple rule will keep me from buying every cheese I see and clogging my arteries as I drain our cruising fund. I am good at following the rules, which means that I can keep on task at the last moment when I would have to let go of our cruising money in exchange for something that wasn't on the list.
Advertisements can't seem to break that simple rule in my head, but they can yank on my heart all the way up to the wall in my head that is that rule.