Monday, October 29, 2001

A good lesson was to be had on Sunday. I was out with Brianna when we got to feeling a bit peckish. We stopped in a small convenience store and each picked out a chocolate bar. We walked to the counter, plopped our soon-to-be-consumables onto the counter only to hear the clerk demand two dollars and twenty cents. Astounded at the price (I was expecting MAYBE a dollar each at the worst), I asked the good fellow how much they were each. "A dollar and ten cents," he replied.  I was astounded. "No thanks, I didn't think they were that much." With that, I turned and walked out. 

Afterwards, I asked Brianna if I had embarrassed her, to which she replied that I hadn't. Yes, I was shocked at the price (I'm sure that I *must* have Scottish blood in me somewhere) but more importantly, I wanted to teach my sensitive, people-pleasing, compliant daughter a lesson. Even when you are at the counter with the merchandise in front of you and the transaction almost complete, there is still time to call off a deal and walk away. 

There will be a time in her life when she will be negotiating some sort of trade, barter or compromise. She will be negotiating for something much, much more valuable than a chocolate bar. Somewhere in her head (all but drowned out by the other negotiating party and extenuating circumstances) will be the Voice of Reason meekly interjecting with "I don't think this is right." I want her to know, understand and believe that it is never, ever too late to walk away from a bad deal. 

Even after the deal is done, if the consequences of remaining in the deal are worse than the penalty, just walk away.

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