Imagine you’re on a train and almost immediately after it’s departure, you feel a gradual brake until you’re at a complete standstill. Right on cue, the conductor’s booming voice comes onto the P.A. system, and informs the passengers the reason for the delay. There’s momentary grief yet simultaneous relief, and the passengers continue in their activities.
The conductor’s voice reappears on the P.A. system; the passengers are aglow hoping for some new news: instead they’re greeted with the same message as before—without change in inflection or wording. The passengers, noticeably disappointed, eventually become agitated after the same stale message is repeated two more times shortly thereafter.
I experienced the aforementioned development on a Sunday afternoon train ride to a family dinner, and realized that the passengers’ gradual annoyance was substantiated: they were hoping for a new message, and were left disappointed when their expectations were not met. The solution? Keep…
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