I took a break from my most recent Worst Product Ever rant to write something more encouraging about moments of complete contentment.
But now weâ€™re back to jewelry made from the ashes of your beloved Shih Tzu, Buttons. If you drop the â€œzu,â€ then you know whatâ€™s really hanging around the necks of this womanâ€™s clients.
I first complained that this canker of commerce was a natural outgrowth of pet pampering and pet worship, and went on to discuss neurotic or exploitative business ideas. My third gripe is really a plea:
Use your creativity to bring beauty, peace, and hope into the world.
The Japanese entrepreneur who created this business is obviously quite creative. She saw an opportunity, and she created a product that caused enough stir to garner media attention in the U.S. Multiple internet sites have posted stories about her dead pet accessories. Despite the sarcastic tone in most of the stories, her media footprint is impressive.
I guess I wish that she had sent her creativity cantering down another avenue.
In the sixth grade, two of my friends orchestrated an elaborate lie for the sole purpose of convincing one of the less popular boys that he should have started his menstrual cycle. They asked him if heâ€™d â€œshot his dot.â€
Ten or fifteen of us were in on this mean-spirited prank, and to this day, I wish Iâ€™d told Billy the truth when he asked me about it.
This is another case of creativity misapplied.
Yes, boys are cruel. Yes, middle school boys are particularly so. But lying to Billy took creativity: Who ever thought of boys having a period like girls?
It took persuasion: The ringleaders had to talk the rest of us into joining the ruse.
It took leadership: Someone had to give marching orders.
It took organization: Someone had to arrange the meeting and outline the plan.
It took cleverness: Someone had to foresee that Andrew wouldnâ€™t trust the ringleaders, who had picked on him in the past; other boys were needed to lend more credibility to the deception.
What if the two ringleaders had brainstormed ways to include Billy, despite his social awkwardness? What if the entrepreneur had created a memorial fund for dead pets to fund the training of more seeing eye dogs? What if she had partnered with local animal shelters and connected grieving pet owners with homeless animals?
What if she had created a community where pet lovers could discuss all the benefits of opening one’s home to a pet then used revenue brought in from advertising to donate animals through Heifer International? What if she compiled research to prove that owning a pet leads to higher quality of life and then dreamed up ways to let invalids, shut-ins, and people in long-term care centers interact with dogs, cats, and pot-belly pigs?
How will you use your creativity to bring beauty, peace, and hope into the world?