Anticipation and Off-Hand Statements
It is not unusual to hear something like, “But the guy who works at my office said ‘such and such’.” “But I read an article on the internet and it said ‘this and that’!” I have observed people making decisions and acting on something reported by a casual acquaintance or even a stranger. How often do we stop and measure the person speaking, much less the source and agenda of their argument? Why would we, in the moment, take their report as though they were expert on the subject (especially a total stranger on the internet) or that they are reporting it absolutely accurately? When we do not properly weigh information, no matter how zealously reported, we may likely end up with its consequences. Once we take a sober assessment of our personal history, many of us will probably find that we have been the recipient of those things we have anticipated that came out of an off-hand statement someone made.