Saturday, August 11, 2007

Bad Weather and Irrational Behaviour

The Typhoon #8 signal was hoisted early on Friday afternoon bringing the working week to a premature close. The usual chaos ensued as everyone tried to head home on at more or less the same time.

One of the more interesting phenomena that happens every time the #8 signal gets hoisted is the dash for the supermarket. Huge numbers of people joined very long queues to buy enough food to feed an extended family for several days. Why they do this is beyond me. Buying enough to last for a day is both understandable and sufficient. Buying so much food that the supermarket shelves still look unnaturally depleted two days later is irrational. I have never seen a #8 signal stay hoisted for more than a day. So why do people buy so much more food than they are likely to need?

No comments: