You can tell because it’s 90 degrees and the air conditioning is running full blast.
Also, the calendar says so.
We expect labels to make sense and sometimes they do. Like when a bag says “Coffee” you expect there will be coffee inside and you’re right to be disappointed (highly disappointed) if there isn’t.
Occasionally things are mislabeled.
Often, we apply our own labels and (especially if we’re dealing with people) we get things wrong, wrong, wrong.
Aside from name tags, most people defy labeling.
She’s shy, he’s athletic, she’s brainy, he’s a lawyer. Any and all of these may be true—but rarely are they all-encompassing. We label people because it’s easy, it’s a short-cut that (we think) helps us understand the world and the people in it.
But when we just see the label we miss seeing so much more.
Companies spend g’zillions of dollars (that’s accurate—I counted) to convince us to buy their product. They spend hours and vast sums of money creating the label (both the literal one on the package and the marketing message) to persuade us that their product is the right one for us. Some of them hope that their label will convince us to look beyond the price, beyond the product itself even, to purchase whatever it is they’re hawking.
When we only look at the label, we do a disservice to ourselves. We don’t really think about the impact the product will have on our life, our bank account.
When we label people, we do a disservice to them and to ourselves. We settle for only a narrow piece of who the individual is (blonde, short, brown-eyed) rather than taking the time to learn more about who they are.
So aside from name tags, let’s let the labels go.
P. S. Happy Fall.