Wow. What a week it’s been. Could anyone have predicted this election cycle, including the plot twists and turns that happened weekly during the past two years? Like many Americans, I can say that I have never experienced the divisiveness and hatred that I’ve witnessed during these past two years. Like most Americans, I can also say, “I’m glad that’s over.” But is it, really? Something ugly was stirred up in our collective reality. Can we ignore it? Can we afford to? I can tell you from painful experience that ignoring a festering wound by covering it with a Band-Aid just makes things worse.
Have you seen the article about flossing that’s gone viral on the internet over the past several weeks? This one is about the lack of clinical evidence that flossing prevents tooth decay. When my cousin sent me the article, I thought it was a hoax, but it appeared to be from NYTimes Magazine, no lightweight in the publishing world. As I read it, I grew alarmed, not by the content of the article but by the implications. By glancing at the headlines one could come away with the idea that flossing doesn’t work. What the article actually says is that there aren’t clinical trials to prove that it works.
Why is it that we, as humans, will skip over 54,000 information bytes that give one opinion, but will focus on the ONE byte that opines differently, especially if it concerns something we’re not crazy about doing anyway? It’s one of the endearing qualities that makes us special, I guess.
I don’t know whether to bless it or curse it. I bless it when I need it and it covers a medical/dental procedure. I curse it when it doesn’t and when I pay my monthly premium. Now, what am I getting, exactly, for this big chunk of change? Sometimes I think I would be better off to buy disaster insurance and take my chances. Because that’s what the insurance game is all about: taking chances. It’s legalized gambling. What I’m gambling on, though, is my and my family’s health.
I’m not a gambler; have no interest in Las Vegas, casino boats, and the like. I work too hard for my money to see gambling as a form of entertainment. I have no problem with other people gambling. It’s just not for me.
I suppose, then, it should come as no surprise to me, that I gamble very conservatively with my health. I assume that at some point in the year I or one of my family members will need the E.R., an ambulance, an unexpected trip to the doctor, etc. What if it’s more serious, though? Am I willing to have disaster insurance that will pay everything after $100,000? Nope. That’s too much for me to risk. So I gripe and complain every month as I pay my ridiculous premium.
Why do we buy? There are so many reasons, if we want to be thorough, but primarily, I think we buy things to solve a problem. The problem may be that we need food, that we need clothing, that we need transportation, that we need medical care. It may, of course, be that we need a gift for someone or that we need a pick-me-up. Perhaps we need to maintain the items we’ve already bought or that we already own, such as an oil change for the car or a haircut. No matter the reason, we all buy things. We also usually have a choice about where we buy. That choice is the crux of it all for a business owner.