4 October 2010

Lesson from a Razor

I was having a light conversation with a co-worker in one of our break times one time when the topic of discussion went to shaving. He asked me how often I shave. I told him that I shave every other day. He was curious because he runs the razor over his face every day but still have a 6 o'clock shadow a few hours after shaving. We compared shaving styles and the basic difference was that I shave against the grain while he doesn't.

I told him that he must shave against the grain because it cuts deeper. I concluded that this is the reason why his hair grows faster than mine. He was hesitant at first but I encouraged him to do it if he wants a cleaner and closer shave. And so he did.

Big mistake.

My co-worker is actually a mestizo. While his mom is a Filipina, his dad was an Arab. The reason why his hair grows faster is genetics. Aside from the fact that going against the grain did not really work for him, he had cuts all over his face. All because of my advice.

I learned one important lesson that day and that is: what works for one may not work for another. Even for the same problem, solutions differ from one person to another for the simple reason that every human being is unique. Not just biologically but also in history and values. We should not insist on what we think is right because our biases can impede in the recognition that the other person is different.

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Post Script: I did learn that lesson but the fact remains I still don't practice it. I still try to impose my idea of what is right. I am not perfect, I am a work in progress. I am working on it.

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