I am no longer blogging here at Little Nuances, but I would love for you to join me on my author website www.leewarren.info.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Counting on Each Other

I’ve been doing the same thing that many other pet owners have been doing in recent days—I’ve been checking the Menu Foods website and the Iams website to see if any of the cans of cat food I have in my possession are from the plant that produced the contaminated food that was recalled last week. I feed my cat Iams because it contains low magnesium. How ironic would it have been if I truly had given her food that would have harmed her? Thankfully, none of the cans left in my house came from the plant, but who knows if I gave her any last week or the week before?

Have you ever thought about how much we depend upon each other? I don’t mean family and friends, but society at large. If one person working in a factory makes a mistake, the results can be disastrous. Sixty millions cans and pouches of contaminated pet food were recalled. The recall affected 51 brands of cat food. Depending upon who you believe, somewhere between 14 and 845 pets have died as a result of the contaminated food.

But thinking beyond just the pet food disaster, all of us count on others we don’t know every day to stop for red lights and stop signs, to yield when instructed to do so, to not drive while intoxicated, to obey laws for the safety of the public, to obey law enforcement officials and other authority figures. And we count on strangers to do their jobs. When we purchase cars, and electronics, and clothing, we expect them to be crafted well. When we buy food in restaurants and markets, we expect that it was handled properly.

On and on the list goes. And the more you think about it, the more spooked you might get. As for me, it makes me want to be as focused as possible on doing what I’m supposed to be doing. I never want to do a job simply to punch a clock. And I never want to get complacent while in potentially dangerous situations—like behind the wheel of a car. I don’t want to float through life on auto-pilot. I suspect I’ve failed at various points in my life in all of these areas, but whenever something like this pet food situation occurs, it’s a reminder to re-focus.


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