Today is 11/12/13. Last year, we had 10/11/12. Next year, we’ll have 12/13/14. And then….that’s it for another 98 years. This is the second to last sequential day of our century. It is, thus, a very significant day.
Now, we don’t blame you if you are reading this and thinking to yourself: “Oh c’mon. These are just numbers, they are meaningless. Who cares whether the date is sequential or not!” You are absolutely correct. These are just numbers and they are ALMOST meaningless.
The only reason they are meaningful is because we are assigning meaning to them. There’s nothing else to this day other than the meaning to which we assign it. That’s not so bad because, in my humble day, almost every day is an important one. In fact, just about every hour and most minutes are important. Time is the one commodity that is not purchasable, is not fungible and is not tradeable. Time is, truly, among the few “invaluable” commodities in our consumer marketplace. You might be able to buy what some people call “love”. You might even be able to buy “happiness”, in its most shallow versions. But you simply can’t buy time — especially expended time — until someone invents a time machine. Time is invaluable and each of us should treat it accordingly.
So what does this have to do with consumer protection? Here’s the connection. As a consumer, you are bombarded with messages, tricks and other psychological devices to get you to part with your hard-earned money. Every day, every hour and just about every minute is subjected to messages to buy things or services. The messages are often subtle, but they are there and sponsored by the very large companies whose aim is to offer services/products and make money from them. Have you been on the Internet today? You are being sold. Have you opened a newspaper or magazine today? You are being sold. Have you been driving/commuting today? You are being sold. Have you turned on the TV? Do we have to say it again?
Psychologists are hired by large retailers to figure you out so that they can sell more effectively. Don’t believe me? Check out this article that lays it out for you in black and white. You are being seduced, engineered, dreamily-lured and peer-pressured into making purchasing decisions on a daily basis. It’s up to you to recognize the signs of seduction and just say “no”. Sequential days may or may not have meaning, but at least you are assigning that meaning to those dates. We urge you not to assign meaning to things because someone else is telling you that it is important — and you are being told that literally every minute of the day.