Today, yours truly has a confession to make! To be frank, it’s not always easy to accept one’s own mistake and make a confession. It takes a lot to say: “Yes, I have erred”. Yes my ardent readers, yours truly has erred! I have overlooked one of the cardinal principles of Marketing and Promotion. Instead of catering to the needs of his readers, yours truly has been a culprit of self-indulgence. I have been writing drivel that has very little or no significance for my ardent readers. Some of my most ardent readers would say: “That’s what blogs are for, to express oneself candidly”. But, then there has to be a limit for such self-indulgence or one is ought to squander the good-will! My ardent readers, I have been paying the price for my marketing myopia, as one of my peers once blatantly pointed out! The ‘Opportunity Costs’ involved have been too high. Yours truly’s self-indulgence has cost him immensely, especially in terms of mass-following. Only my most ardent followers with their inexorable levels of patience have somehow managed to hold on. But, the wait has been too overwhelming and yours truly cannot afford to lose on his readership any further come what may!
In order to avoid any confusion this time round, let me first explain my ardent readers the meaning of ‘Opportunity Cost’. Who better than a resilient opportunist like yours truly to talk about ‘Opportunity Cost’? As per Wikipedia, “Opportunity cost is the cost of any activity measured in terms of the value of the best alternative that is not chosen”. And I am the one who is infamous for complicating matters. Phew! But, what is opportunity cost in layman terms, or more precisely in student terms? Frankly, it’s not as complicated as some of the most revered sources of reference make it appear. Simply speaking, it is the sacrifice related to the second best choice available to someone. Unlike the ancient times, people these days are occupied with loads and loads of things and they often fail to prioritize or even if they do, they just cannot do it with utmost efficacy. According to yours truly’s observation, the ability to manage things decreases with age. Starting from our childhood all the way to adolescence, the ability to strike the right balance between our various tasks is at its highest and then it starts to decrease gradually as we become less and less receptive to changes.
What is the opportunity cost of attending a long boring lecture? It strictly depends on the nature of the student, isn’t it? A studious student would proudly reply: “A couple of hours in the library or on the study table doing research”. A lazy student would answer: “a couple of hours in the bed”. A pretty damsel would say: “a couple of hours in front of a dressing table getting ready to blow someone’s senses”. A lover would murmur: “some precious time with his lover”. A couch potato would retort: “two hours of my favorite daily soap. A cineaste like yours truly would say: “a chance to watch a cinematic classic” and so on. Opportunity cost for missing some monotonous lectures at college can tantamount to great fun: a day spent with loved ones, rendezvous with one’s favorite star or idol, a date with the person of one’s dreams, a chance to see one’s favorite speaker or performer in all his glory, an opportunity to appear for an audition or participate in a national level event, and much more. The basic idea is to kill the monotonous and the mundane in search of the eccentric and the sublime.
Every decision that we take in life has various opportunity costs associated with it. For an average Indian, the opportunity cost of a half-hearted attempt in entrance-exams is a berth in one of country’s most prestigious institutes, and consequently a lifetime of struggle, disappointment and failure. The opportunity cost of being righteous is the animosity of the corrupt and the unrighteous—who generally constitute the majority of power in any country. Similarly, the opportunity cost of Marriage, my ardent readers, is Freedom. In this world, nothing comes for free; everyone has to pay the price for every thing or favor that comes his/her way. And in that regard, the world is too simple a place. Life, in a nutshell, is the summation of the outcomes of the decisions that we take in life. But remember, in actual life, 2+2 doesn’t always come out to be 4, and that’s what makes life a Real Challenge.
And with these words, time has come to bid goodbye to my ardent readers. Before signing off, I would like to inform my ardent readers that owing to the fast approaching examination fever, yours truly may not be able to post as frequently as he usually does, but rest assured that out of the ‘Sane’ lot, yours truly is most prone to taking risks and least concerned about the opportunity costs involved.
Posted by Murtaza Ali at 4:48 PM