Another piece of Canadian pie has been swallowed up by the ravages of time. Canadian Tire no longer gives you Canadian Tire bills with your change, although for now they are still accepting them towards your purchases.

Instead, they offer loyalty cards (in both credit-card size and keychain-size), similar to the ones PetSmart has had for quite a while. I THINK the discount they give you is still the same percentage, and that it's been expanded so you no longer have to pay cash to get that discount.

But somehow it's not the same. Not only do I never have any idea how much "money" I've accumulated, but it's no longer possible to give my kid or grandkid a couple of dollars' worth of the bills to buy a small treat for herself.

I guess you can't always fight "progress", but isn't the trend away from cash and Sandy MacTire bills seriously disenfranchising the youngest members of our society?
... if we don't leave them the Earth? A good friend of mine uses that as a tag-line on her e-mail signature block and although she may mean the question rhetorically, I think it deserves a thoughtful answer.

Simply put, the earth is not ours to leave them. Money, if we are lucky, may be. I would point to two other well-worn sayings. One is something like this: We do not inherit the earth from our forebears; we borrow it from our descendants. The other relates to money: You can't take it with you.

So we look after our world the best we can and the best we know how - it's the only world we have. We try to stay true to our values and we hope our children will adopt some of those values too. As for money, it isn't everything - though it may well seem that way to those who haven't enough to do what they want (or even need) to do. But it CAN buy some things that are of value, like books, music lessons, bicycles, sports equipment, not to mention higher education - it's just a question of where your priorities lie. Kids don't need tons of fancy toys and video games, for example, but they DO need to engage with the world - to play, to learn, to experience, to be loved. That calls for an investment of time, if nothing else, and most parents have to make some difficult tradeoffs balancing time in the workplace making money (where children are not necessarily always welcome)and time spent directly interacting with the children. Very young children live mainly in the present, of course, but their parents have to consider their future too.

So by all means, let's do what we can to preserve the earth. But money - well, it doesn't grow on trees, but I don't consider the root of all evil either. People will use some of their discretionary income to buy themselves treats and luxuries, of course - nothing wrong with that - but hopefully they will also put a portion of it towards making a difference in the lives of their descendants, their fellow human beings, and the other inhabitants of our world.



October 2017



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