09 September 2006

"Sell" isn't so Bad; Selling is!

In "Why is “Sell” Such a Bad Word?", Brian Clark muses
Sell. Selling. Sales.
Not very popular words, are they?
Quite frankly, I wasn’t initially sure whether I would be banished
from the blogosphere for daring to use the word “sell” in my tagline.
Hmmm.... let me see if I can tackle this from the other side of the fence.

It's not that I have any problem with the word "sell" or the idea of "selling" at all.  What I object to is the absolute requirement imposed on us to sell whatever we do, failing which society will punish us in the severest possible ways.

I grow veggies to a very high standard of organic practice.  I love to grow veggies.  I always grow far too much for our own use.  I am happy to give them away, because I know that people will be getting the best, tastiest, most nutritious food in the world, and because giving away beautiful, sun-ripened veggies is  a way of gifting the gift that the Earth has given.

But if I want to stay alive, to keep a roof over my head, I am forced to sell.

I'll say it again: I have no problem with the concept of sales.  I just don't want to do it.  It's not my thing.  I can "sell" if I have to, for a limited time, but in the long run I am deeply uncomfortable and unhappy doing it.  That's why, in any business venture, I make sure I seek out team members who are good at selling and love doing it.

I also love to teach people about organic gardening, programming, Java, software design, sustainable living, peak oil, alternative energy and self-sufficiency, but I have no desire in me to "sell" these things.

I know, I know; someone is going to tell me that my enthusiastic preaching on these subjects is just selling.  Nonsense, I say! Nonsense!  Selling is when someone actually pays me money for those things.  Up to that point there's no "sale", and my point is that, in the world as it is, I have no choice but to sell.  If I just keep doing things for the love of them, I'll...   well, I won't starve, since I have all those veggies, but I certainly won't be able to afford many of the necessities and pleasure of modern life - stuff like electricity, connectivity, computers, transport.

So.  Its not "sell" that's the problem, but "coerced into selling" that is.

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