THE NEFF ZONE -- BY JIM NEFF
CADILLAC NEWS -- MARCH 26, 2022
Humility can be a wonderful thing. There is nothing that can reduce your hat size faster than a big slice of humble pie. On the other hand, course corrections can be exciting and illuminating.
For instance, you might think the phrase “money can't buy happiness” is pretty much true. Well, you'd be wrong. “Money can buy happiness after all. A recent study found that happiness increases linearly with reported income.”
Why is this true? There are a couple of reasons. One is increased comfort. “As someone earns more, they may have the ability to purchase things that reduce suffering.” Another is more control. “Having a sense of control accounted for seventy-four percent of the association between income and well-being.” (https://www.visualcapitalist.com/chart-money-can-buy-happiness-after-all/)
If making more money leads to more happiness, you'd think people would be thrilled to get a promotion at their workplace. This, however, is not the case. “In the latest revealing survey of office workers from several countries, seventy percent of respondents indicated that they'd pass up a promotion in favor of the opportunity to work from anywhere, any time. Success now means having more control over when, how, and where you work. Success means using your preferred devices and tools to maximize productivity.” (https://www.inc.com/marcel-schwantes/70-percent-of-employees-are-saying-no-thanks-to-a-promotion-heres-what-they-want-instead.html)
You'd think having control over your work situation (and income) should be a good thing, right? In today's modern monetary world you could be wrong if your “wealth” is in cryptocurrency. Making that money is one thing. Keeping it could be the problem.
“Your bitcoin can live on, even if you don’t. Sixteen percent of US adults say they’ve used crypto, and it feels as though these digital assets are everywhere. Crypto is new and exciting. But crypto investors aren’t necessarily thinking about what might happen to their digital assets in the event of an untimely death.”
If you think you're in line to inherit Uncle Zelmo's crypto fortune, you may be out of luck, “There aren’t currently established ways to ensure that crypto is passed on to the next of kin. Crypto investors could die and leave their heirs locked out of a valuable source of financial support and no way to get it back.”
See, the accounts are protected by something called private keys. “Private keys work like passwords, and are made of unique, extremely long strings of characters that unlock your crypto. Unlike other types of passwords, however, private crypto keys can’t be recovered once they’re lost or forgotten. That means that without those keys, people who are entitled to inherit their loved one’s crypto won’t be able to get it.” All the details about this dilemma are at: https://www.vox.com/recode/22971265/bitcoin-wills-estate-planning-cryptocurrency-nfts-death.
Crypto can be confusing, but you'd think we Americans would at least know something about ourselves. Not so fast. “When it comes to estimating the size of demographic groups, Americans rarely get it right.” YouGov looked at forty-three different groups. “When people’s average perceptions of group sizes are compared to actual population estimates, an intriguing pattern emerges.” We're wrong most of the time.
For example, respondents said Native Americans make up twenty-seven percent of the population. It's actually one percent. They thought sixty-five percent of the population held a high school degree. It's actually eighty-nine percent. They estimated that thirty-four percent of adults were left-handed. It's actually ten percent. The revealing and sometimes humorous results are at: https://today.yougov.com/topics/politics/articles-reports/2022/03/15/americans-misestimate-small-subgroups-population.
When it comes to statistics like these you may think nothing could be more boring. It turns out the most boring thing might be studying the subject of boring. “The most boring person in the world has been revealed by University of Essex research. It's a “data entry worker, who likes watching TV, and lives in a small town.” Researchers also found the blandest jobs and the dullest hobbies. To see these go to: https://www.essex.ac.uk/news/2022/03/18/the-most-boring-person-in-the-world-discovered-by-researchers.
Sometimes, learning something is not what you think can be fun. Now, you might think the Japanese conglomerate Kawasaki would be concentrating on motorcycles. This is not entirely true. “The motorcycle manufacturer's robotics division has now surprised its fans with one of the weirdest electric vehicles in existence. Kawasaki has revealed a rideable robot in the shape of a goat.” See it in action at: https://youtu.be/ApzHdofI0kE.
“Kawasaki's electric goat is equipped with a handlebar, can carry riders weighing up to two-hundred pounds, can kneel in order to allow a more comfortable mounting and dismounting, and its horns are accentuated by LED lights.” (https://www.notebookcheck.net/Kawasaki-unveils-a-bizarre-ridable-robot-goat-instead-of-a-new-electric-motorcycle.608603.0.html)
Another surprising item is a recent study about pizza. You'd think cities like New York or Boston would be major players in the pizza game. I bring good news. “Detroit is the number one pizza city in America. It's the pizza capital of the United States."
Detroit has “...the biggest appreciation for a variety of pie styles. It ranks number one for barbecue chicken pizza searches, number two for Chicago-style pizza, and tops the rankings when it comes to the Detroit-style pizza: a thick crust square pizza with crisp corners of brick cheese first originated by Buddy's Pizza.” (https://www.freep.com/story/entertainment/dining/2022/03/22/detroit-pizza-best-america/7124925001/)
Finally, close to home, you'd think the story of KISS coming to Cadillac in 1975 would be off the radar by now. Actually, the tale just keeps matriculating along. It's a legend that is more popular than ever. To illustrate the point, an item this week on eBay reads: “Kiss 1976 Log Yearbook from Cadillac Michigan signed by Gene Simmons in black sharpie and Paul Stanley in blue sharpie. A true piece of Kisstory! No rips, tears or missing pages.” The asking price is$1,987.51.
Jim Neff is a local columnist. Read Neff Zone columns online at CadillacNews.com and NeffZone.com/cadillacnews.