Lately I’ve been feeling a little unsure… not like “What’s the meaning of all this?” unsure, like “Would you like fries with that?” unsure. I think I might be experiencing some sort of option allergy.
Normally I relish choices. Choices make me feel empowered. Choices make me feel special. Choices make me feel like someone cares enough to ask which way I’d like to go.
But we can all agree that it’s possible to have too much of a good thing, right? Right.
So I decided to conduct a little field test. Just a random sample experiment, supervised and conducted by this girl. I wanted to know if I was overreacting or if my choice fatigue was legit.
I picked the day. I went about my business. I recorded every question I received. And now, my friends, the results of one Super Scientific Study on Question Asking In These United States…
The morning started with a quick grocery run so, of course, I was confronted with the seminal question of a suburban existence:
QUESTION 1: Paper or plastic?
OK, fine. I saw this one coming and was prepared. But apparently markets have juiced up the choice machine, because I was then assaulted with:
QUESTION 2: Would you like carryout service? (I had purchased 1 item weighing approximately 6 ounces.)
QUESTION 3: Would you like game pieces for our ongoing Scrabble promotion that you have approximately 1 in 1,845,391,046,775,475,201 chances of winning?
QUESTION 4: How would you like your change? (I paid with a five dollar bill.)
Again, I can accept the aforementioned. Establishments are trying to step up their service game and I certainly can’t hate on them for that. So I quickly and quietly completed the inquisition, took my one item and change, and departed.
Back to the kitchen for some recipe testing and only a few questions here:
QUESTION 5: (From a telephone solicitor) Would you like to take a brief survey about your television viewing habits? It will only take about 4.8 hours of your time.
QUESTION 6: (From a certain little dog) Why can’t I have any more of those bacon treats that you gave me last week? (OK, we won’t count this one.)
And then it’s off to the local post office.
At the post it’s a questionpalooza of stamp choices, decorative mailer options, extra service selections and the now ubiquitous change format inquiry (again, I paid with a five dollar bill). I refuse to torment you, my friends, with the ugly details. Suffice it to say that the slots for QUESTION 7-13 have been filled.
I’ll admit that I was weakened by question fatigue at this point, but I opted to stay strong and push ahead. It must have been during this moment of weakness, though, that I made the fatal flaw of deciding that the next stop would be our local movie rental shop.