I just want to know why

I don’t have kids but it seems to me that children go through what I call the “why” phase. They want to know why regarding everything. Why do you have to wait for things to cool down before eating them? Why can’t frogs live in the bathtub? Why do we have to wear clothes? Why can’t you touch a rainbow? Why don’t fish fly? Kid’s minds work in the most fascinating way. It seems that as we become adults, many of us lose this curiosity.

I like to think I have not lost my sense of curiosity. I’ve always been one to ask a lot of questions of others, and I have many “why” questions of my own. I’ll throw a few of my curiosities out to the readers to see what you think.

Why do so many people wait until the last minute to register for events? Even after the deadline has passed, people still try to register. There is a deadline for a reason and it most often has to do with planning. Particularly when food is involved, a deadline is very important so caterers can plan, and so the host organization doesn’t get stuck paying for too much food, or end up coming up short on food because people show up who didn’t register at all. Why do people get upset when they sign up for an event, don’t attend, and are still expected to pay for it? Someone has to pay for their reserved space, or the host organization has to take a loss.

Why are there so many people who don’t like their job? Where you work is a choice, so you can make the choice to move to another job. If you aren’t qualified for anything else (which is highly unlikely), then you can make the choice to get training for something else. Choice is priceless but it seems to be often undervalued.

Why do people talk about sleeping like a baby when they have a great night’s sleep? It doesn’t seem that babies sleep great. Maybe the baby perceives he or she is sleeping fine, and it’s the parents who perceive the baby not to be sleeping well because they are up every few hours. Maybe babies sleep without worries and so when they are sleeping, it is a better sleep. Either way, why is that phrase used? There has to a better analogy. I will just stick to the simple, “I slept great!”

Why do so many people complain about parking? Does everyone expect to be able to park directly in front of their destination? Why? Walking is good for us. Maybe we should change our expectations. Expect to park at least a block away from the door you intend on entering, and then when you snag an up-front space, consider it a great day.

Why are the people of Alpena such an amazingly giving crowd? It’s true. Think about all of the successful fundraisers and benefits that are held, or the number of people involved in service organizations. We really are a giving, caring, and kind community. What makes us different than other communities? It’s a great characteristic to have, but why us? I know, I should just be thankful and not ask why but I can’t help it. I’m both grateful and curious.

Why do some people who smoke flick cigarette butts on the ground? Often while driving someone in the vehicle ahead of me tosses out a cigarette. I have trouble understanding how this even started. Most of those same people probably wouldn’t toss out other trash, so why cigarette butts? It makes no sense to me. Is it because they don’t want to start a fire in a trash bin? I may never know why some smokers think the world is their ashtray. This is nothing against smokers, just a curiosity about smokers who fling their little butts anywhere and everywhere.

I have many more curiosities. But my word count is limited. Curiosity is a good thing. What things are you curious about? Huffington Post published an article in November 2014 that listed five benefits of curiosity. Benefits included stronger relationships, maintenance of a healthy mind, less anxiety, more happiness, and greater knowledge. All of these are very positive things to have in your life. Maybe it is time we all became a little more curious.

Jackie Krawczak is president/CEO of the Alpena Area Chamber of Commerce. Her column runs bi-weekly on Tuesdays. Follow Jackie on Twitter @jkrawczak.