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Comfortable Apathy

When you get people's attention, they usually show genuine care and concern. The problem is breaking through their comfortable apathy to get their attention.

Immediately following Princess Di's fatal accident, the legitimate press asked "why don't we do something about these pesky photographers who were swarming her car?"

The princess joined other celebrities in complaining about the rudeness of these freelance photographers for years, but no one listened. It is not that people didn't care, it is just that she didn't have their attention yet.

She does now. Too bad that it took her death to destroy people's comfortable apathy.

Breaking through apathy is like getting your husband's attention while he's reading the paper. "The house is on fire!" She says. "That's nice, could you please pour me another cup of coffee."

Everybody wants our attention. Billboards are plastered all over the side of the freeway. The car in front of us has 10 bumper stickers, and the radio announcer has a "really important message for us."

At last, we get a moment of privacy with our spouse. The phone rings as the children yell "mommy, mommy, come here." You're talking on the phone and the call waiting "beeps" in, as someone knocks on the door.

Apathy isn't all that bad. After all, without it we'd be running around endlessly from one important thing to another. It is nice to know that not everything needs my attention RIGHT NOW! But, some things do.

Can one person really make a difference in the world? Everyone knows that they rate a car engine by horse power. Did you know that bright lights are rated by candle power? What's that song the children sing? "This little light of mine . . ."


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