As we’re approaching the last days of 2016, I’m sure many of us can look back on this year as being a real eye opener. While having lunch yesterday with a colleague, I asked, “Just one year ago, did you ever expect our world to be in its present state?” The answer was a quick and determined, “No!” I couldn’t help but fully agree in knowing I’ve had my own shocking surprises this past year.
No matter what anyone tells you, people are people and can change as quickly as our North Iowa winds switch directions. In spite of some very deep disappointments I’ve had with a few, I can say there’ve been equally lifting words and deeds from some of the nicest people you’d ever want to meet. As we all grow older and hopefully wiser, we become adept in recognizing those subtle cues people exhibit which are the tell-tale signs of hidden agendas. Words that come out of the mouths of some are really not the true, and oft times deep-seated feelings of the speakers. Speaking with a forked tongue seems to have become more in vogue these recent years.
While preparing my office for another year of doing business, I had to make several stops at businesses to pick up new office supplies for the coming year. I’m not naming names, but there’s a store which unsettles me every time I go there. It seems the few times I darken their doors, they’ve changed the location of supplies that I’ve always purchased. I finally found what I was looking for, but it really annoyed me to the point I mentioned something to the manager who pretty much brushed me off by saying something absurd like, “It’s always been there.” “Well it wasn’t because I remember where it was last year.” I retorted. I can’t begin to recall how many people over these years who’ve complained to me how they really hate shopping in stores that keep changing where they stock products. I know why they do that. It’s because “corporate” wants everyone to explore more and possibly see something they’d want while looking for what they went there for in the first place. It’s all part of the psychology of shopping. I read a laughable article some time ago about how companies set buyers up to purchase more just by the location and height of their products. I wish now I’d saved it to share with you.
I’m staying hopeful the real estate market is going to remain strong in our area this coming year. There’s been some spiking going on in certain price ranges which I hope averages off, or those prices may deflate as fast as they’ve inflated, and you know who’ll be paying the price—those poor buyers sitting there with upside-down mortgages. The 2007/2008 mortgage crisis was something I’ll not want to go through again. Just think, next year will be its ten year anniversary and we’re still seeing those toxic assets being listed by banks or their contracted vendors. Scary isn’t it? While walking out from our lunch yesterday, I couldn’t help but ask, “Do you think next year at this time after asking you the same question, we’ll be sharing the same answers?