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The root cause of the world's problems 

I'd like to say a word about torture. We hear a lot about it these days; it's all over the news. We recoil at the thought of torture. And yet, every single, solitary day, we are all being tortured. Now, you may wonder, "How is that?" And that's probably just because you haven't yet realized how you're being subjected to it. This particular torture is probably responsible for much of the suffering and pain in this world. If we could just face it and take care of the problem, then finally, we could all make the world a much happier place. Still not sure what I'm talking about? Well, here it is.

For years—no, decades—we have all been subjected unwillingly to the same, stinking, horrible songs played in stores and businesses over and over and over and over again. It is literal torture. Play it one more time, and I will talk way beyond my name, rank, and serial number.

How in the world did people ever buy into this myth that we all want to hear the same songs day in and day out, week after week, month after month, year after year, decade after decade? And not only that, but they are played loudly. The same horrible songs by horrible singers like Rod Stewart, Kim Carnes, Rick Astley, and even tunes that once sounded nice began to grate after the first hundred times or so. The first thousand times, one feels annoyance. The first ten thousand times, one feels nausea and revulsion. After perhaps a hundred thousand times of hearing the same songs over and over again, one starts pondering termination.

Now, you are probably all realizing, hey, this guy is onto something! And I swear it is responsible for people dreading going into work, people quitting jobs early, people unconsciously spending the shortest time possible in stores buying things (I'm sure the store owners would like them to spend more time there). This is probably what has contributed to the exploding popularity of online shopping.

So, dear store owners and business owners, please get a clue and stop torturing us, unless you would like to keep pushing your customers over to Amazon. You think millennials are killing department stores? No, these store owners are contributing to their own demise! At the very least, if you absolutely must play music, please select from a variety of tunes without lyrics; there are a lot out there to choose from.

I'm begging you, stop torturing your customers and your employees, and let's make the world a better place.

Thank you for listening. Now, I think I will retreat into a dark and quiet room.

Next up, a word about advertising.

Mike Robertson

San Luis Obispo

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