My conscience has been gnawing at me. I think I may have inadvertently destroyed the CVS corporation. Yesterday, I popped into CVS to buy dental floss. Without bothering to read any signs, I stumbled across a display of floss. I vaguely noticed that there were no other dental products in the section. But, floss is floss, so I scooped the entire display into the crook of my arm. I paid with my debit card, disregarding the total amount and stuffing the unexamined receipt in my bag.
Upon my arrival home, I opened the bag and noticed the receipt. I had just purchased nearly $100 worth of dental floss! How could this be? I’m ashamed to say I had to retrieve my reading glasses to solve this mystery.
What I had purchased was a specialty item. It was a floss designed to not leave those pesky indentations in one’s fingers. Now, who among us has not been plagued with this problem? You want to conduct proper dental hygiene, but cringe at the thought of having your fingers briefly and painlessly reshaped at the last joint.
I had spent my hard-earned dollars (a small portion of which come from royalties) to buy a product designed for a niche of a submarket of a pigeonhole addressing a non-existent need. At that point, it was both my civic duty and personal fiduciary responsibility to return said floss. Being an aspiring author, I felt no need to expend calories. I kept the floss.
Here is what I reckon must have happened next. A marketing manager who had approved an R&D project to rid this nation of the blight of floss-induced finger indentations was leaning forward in his Osaki zero gravity chair, when, suddenly he saw a blip on his 32-inch HP curved monitor.
At first, he couldn’t believe his eyes. His mother had always told him an MBA would make him a slave to the system, that he should have joined the family crop insurance business. Finally, he had proven his mother wrong! The very first store he chose to test market had sold out all units on the first day!
He restrained himself from sprinting to his business unit manager’s office. When he laid the spreadsheet on his boss’s desk, the result was immediate. The boss snatched up the phone.
“Shut down all the floss lines! That’s right, I said all of them. Convert all floss lines over to the new, finger indentation free product. I want three shifts running seven days a week! Unlimited budget for overtime. I’ve discovered the goose that laid the golden egg!”
Of course, the business unit manager, initially claiming credit, would later lay all the blame on the marketing manager.
So, I think I may have caused an innocent man to lose his job, bankrupted a factory, and possibly financially decimated CVS. God only knows how many lives I have destroyed. I owe a sincere apology to all the sick people I may have sent back to the dark ages.