What do you think about when you hear the word “prejudice?” Most people gravitate toward things like race or religion. But, the reality is that we all have prejudices about a great number of things, both large and small. This is a story about how I learned (relearned?) that “Prejudice MakesYour World Smaller.”
I’ve lived me whole life in Oklahoma, but I hate country music. When I was in my formative years I would never have listened to any George, Straight or Jones. Maybe Boy George, but I don’t think that counts. Anyway, recently my wife and I took a trip with friends to Nashville, Tenn.
“Nashville?” I asked. Who the hell goes to Nashville for a vacation in January? Spoiler alert, lots of people, I mean a ton.
Because this was (sort of) a 50th birthday trip for my wife, I shut up and went along. However, I did NOT pack my Stetson or boots (yes, I do own cowboy boots, I live in Oklahoma, duh).
We arrived early on a Saturday morning, and had brunch -which included a bloody Mary - made with bourbon (who knew such a thing existed?),which was delicious by the way. We were too early to check into our hotel, so our group decided to go to Broadway and check things out.
My friend said, “Let’s go see who’s playing at Luke Bryan’s!”To which I replied, “It’s 10:30 in the morning.” She promptly informed me that they started live music at 11:00, in the morning, at something like 50 bars.
So, after a full day of drinking beer and listening to (yet another cover of) “Way Down Yonder on the Chattahoochee,” we proceeded to theGrand Old Opry. I was searching for Minnie Pearl, but evidently she’s no longer doing that gig anymore.
It was definitely not my speed, but the place was sold out –as it had been the previous evening and would be the following. I did hear two new (to me) artists that I enjoyed, Marcus King and Maggie Rose, but I wasp laying solitaire in the lobby when Crystal Gayle closed the show. Sorry.
What is my point with this whole story?
I ignored Country and Western music because I didn’t like it(prejudiced). No harm there, right?
Well, if I had followed my prejudice to the extreme, I would have missed an incredible time with my wife and friends and some great new musical talent. I wouldn’t have realized the popularity of the genre.
Did you know Nashville is the 22nd most popular destination in the US, ahead of Los Angeles and Austin. Who knew? Like I said before, lots of people, evidently.
The same concept is true in our businesses. What prejudices are you holding onto? How long has it been since you revisited your preferences?
As quoted from the Anne Frank Foundation, “Prejudice MakesYour World Smaller.” Take a chance on something new. You won’t be disappointed.