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A parable about advice… (not just financial)

A Parable About Bad Advice and the Dangers of a Simple Quip

This is a story about the danger of flippant commentary and lousy advice. A few years ago, I carpooled with a wonderful guy we’ll call Jack for this story.

After an amazing vacation in Florida, I told my friend Jack about the free tickets we received to visit Paramount Studios in Orlando. We got them by attending a “Time Share Condominium Sales Pitch,” as suggested by my father-in-law. I must say that it was both entertaining and disheartening as I saw numerous people getting trapped into buying these timeshares, despite my strong belief that they are not a wise investment. The salesperson was overly aggressive, offering us various incentives such as paying with Canadian money at par, using our credit cards, or checking in immediately at the resort. However, I stood my ground and refused to give in. We eventually got our free tickets and left.

parable about advice
Careless Talk Can Be Dangerous; Especially Advice!

Jack thought it sounded like a good idea because he and his wife were going on vacation to Florida in a couple of weeks.

Fast forward to the day after Jack and his wife returned from their Florida vacation. The conversation was mostly about how much fun Jack and his wife had while in Orlando, so then I said, “How about that Time Share sales pitch? What kind of a shmuck would buy those things?”.

After a long pause, Jack said, “Well, me, I bought one…” I think my jaw dropped to the floor, and I might have said two words for the rest of the trip to the office.

I never mentioned time shares ever again.

Moral to this parable about financial advice?

Advice is dangerous to hand out, and you had better be ready to take the heat when the advice goes wrong. Also, you would be surprised what people listen to and attribute it to as Good Advice.

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