I had started a previous post with this title; often I’ll start with the title and then go from there. I don’t think I often change my mind, but I realized that I had started out with a concept which changed en route.
I did talk about branding before, but the topic that I wanted to address now is actually why people stay with certain brands; marketing is everything for me these days, hyperbolically speaking.
I wonder why people are happy to stay with things and I wonder if this lack of novelty or comfort or lack of care translates into happier/more stable marriages.
Then again, people have bizarre attachment to things, oftentimes things that don’t really work. My father had a Fiat spider, a car famous for breaking down. We knew people who also had one. Their carburetor needed to be replaced something like 13 times (maybe that’s my memory that needs to be replaced, but something absurd like that) and they still kept it. Here is a really funny quote indicative of that loyalty:
Fiats in general, and the 124 in particular, are often misunderstood and unfairly criticised enthusiast cars. Those of us that own one or more know better than the lame-brains who use the tired “Fix-It-Again-Tony” moniker.
Oh, sure, because it was fun to drive. When it worked. I already wrote about how my father was trying to teach me to drive it; stick-shift and all, and I ended up leaving in tears and walking home, since he couldn’t handle me messing up his precious car. I forget what my grandfather used to call the car; some Russian word for toy. With all this, why did he stick with it? What price does one pay for the joy of the top down driving through California? For eternal youth? For the same quality that made him chase after ambulances?
And yet, he and my mother had a great marriage and were strong believers in loyalty. My mother, in particular, would defend her family with the fierceness of a mother lion. And no one could say anything against my father in her presence, even if she would have done so if he were anyone else.
So what creates that loyalty? What is the glue? Is it low expectations?
I was talking with someone about what she was taught before she got married, and she was told to have low expectations so that she wouldn’t be disappointed. I think that’s just sad. Wouldn’t it be smarter to talk about realistic expectations? What makes sense in a marriage? After all, if people aren’t getting what they deserve (in a realistic scenario), or chas v’shalom, are getting hurt (getting what they don’t deserve), then they shouldn’t stand for that.
So what is realistic?
That’s another story for another time.