Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Topsy-Turvy World

 I live in a world turned upside down. They call it the planet Earth...and I simply don’t understand the gift of intelligence with much of what I see of the use it’s being put to. Life isn’t too complicated...most of the time, and many issues can be resolved by the application of common sense. I go again assuming that sense is shared by most, if not all, thus making it “common” when in reality it seems the only person using it is the one I see in the mirror. I’ll wager it’s the same for you...and since we all have mirrors...well, I can begin to see where the idea of it being common came from.
   In a world that made sense (not this one), certain things wouldn’t happen. I take that back...a lot of things wouldn’t happen, but if I start there I’ll never stop writing. Instead, let me focus on a couple of examples that prove my hypothesis that the world is indeed upside down and one-third of the population jumping at the same time just isn’t gonna be the fix I hoped it would.
   Let’s go to the bank and make a transaction. We’ll go on a Tuesday in the late afternoon because there will be no line...and every window will have a teller. Life is great at the bank on Tuesday afternoon. Now let’s go back on Friday between eleven a.m. and two p.m....because we are on lunch and we need to cash our check. The long line we encounter is expected...everyone is on lunch and needs to get some money. However, the ONE teller working during this time has turned the world upside down. Only the brightest branch managers can master the art of sending away all the help during the busiest time of the week. I’m just glad they fired all those other dolts that were scheduling the teller’s lunches around the rush...I mean really...I’d be pissed to walk in the bank on Friday...and think it was Tuesday instead. Who needs that kinda stress?
   That’s just the tip of the iceberg though. Mentally gifted bank managers is the least of my worries. Try this on for can throw a football with incredible speed and accuracy, and do it while avoiding a group of very large men intent on doing you harm. For being able to do this, we will pay you millions. However, if you are entrusted with the education of our future, or charged with keeping us safe by upholding the law, or selflessly put your life on the line to rescue total strangers...well, we’re gonna have to sit down and “discuss” this money thing.
   I like sports...I really do. Loved playing it in my youth, and like watching it now. However, I think the amount of money we pay athletes to do whatever it is they are doing is absurd. Erase professional sports from life’s equation and we’ll find another means of entertainment. Erase teachers, cops and firefighters from existence and we have a much bigger problem than deciding what to watch on Monday night instead of football. I have no idea when our value system tipped on it’s ear, but let’s tip it back for a moment and see the world right side up. 
   Imagine a world where the million dollar jobs were those of teacher, police officer and firefighter. Everyone would want to have one of those jobs...and aspire from childhood to get them. However, like sports in Topsy-Turvy World, only the absolute best could would qualify. A masters degree would only get you in front of a kindergarden have to do better than that if you want to get in front of six graders...and start making the big bucks. NFL training camp is where we weed out those that qualify to carry hose into a burning building or run down a robber. Can’t bench press three hundred pounds and run the forty yard dash in four-seconds...then you won’t be carrying a gun or an axe, and the only badge you’ll be wearing is mall security...if you’re lucky.
   I know...there aren't nearly as many professional athletes as there are public service maybe we won’t set the bar that high, but my point is we have to set it very high indeed if we’re going to pay out the big bucks. Every cop and firefighter will be the finest physical specimen society has to offer, and every teacher will be a mental juggernaut specifically set to unlocking the youthful mind. If you choose to be a professional athlete, a yearly salary of eighty-thousand dollars is a decent living for throwing balls and playing games.
   Yeah...imagine all that AND a teller at every window during the Friday rush. We can still call this the planet Earth if you like...except things will make sense.


  1. I can relate to the mentality of the manager sending to lunch during the busy period.
    My local grocery store does a similar thing, but doesn't limit it to Friday. I often wonder why they go to expense of installing 20 check out lanes when they insist on using only 3 of them? Oooh Christmas eve they open an extra 5 lanes, but they are still running at less than 50% of capacity. While I am on the topic, they always choose the busy period to throw the new cashier "in at the deep end" for their fiery baptismal first shift. OK enough complaining on someone elses dime.

    Your point is very well made and entirely accurate. Sportsmen are overpaid, everyone else is undervalued and waiting in line unecessarily sucks.

  2. Thank you Ian for reaffirming that I'm not the only one observing this...:-)