Many of you probably wouldn't believe how much this tiny, miniscule column can impact the rest of the country. I very often have to go to great lengths to discover the effect one or another of my columns has had on the nation. This week, that task was made much easier when I discovered an article in the esteemed capital city newspaper of our own province. There, in the standard black and white newspaper format that we are all accustomed to, was an article on a survey that was undertaken across Canada noting the amount of money children receive from the tooth fairy.
My most dedicated readers will instantly recall my column that addressed the amount of money left by the tooth fairy having risen to an all-time high of $3.07 per tooth. You have no idea of the comfort it brings me to see that a reputable polling company would have undertaken a survey to determine whether or not there was any consistency across the country regarding the amount of money left by the tooth fairy.
Newspapers are famous for writing articles about subjects that poorly paid columnists likely brought up in the first instance, but are never credited for in the actual article. I presume this to be the case, but I have no way to prove that the survey I reference came about because of my column. On the other hand, you have to ask yourself if there would actually be two people in the country who would write about the subject of the amount of money left by the tooth fairy within one year of each other, without one of those people having borrowed the idea from the other.
It is interesting to note that the survey found that the average amount of money left by the tooth fairy in some areas is actually 39 cents higher than the average I spoke of in my column. This is easily accounted for by the fact that the survey was undertaken nearly a year after the original piece on the subject was written. I'm no economist, but a 39-cent increase in the amount left by the tooth fairy over the course of the year might easily be attributed to indexing or some such other economical term.
When these things appear in the paper, it takes me from the more important subjects I should be writing about, such as world peace, differences in religion, or why we call St. John's "sin city."
My readers deserve to be stimulated by more important topics than the average price of a child's tooth left under her pillow. I couldn't agree more. But most of you should be aware by now that I am a steadfast advocate of all things that require to be challenged. In all honesty, while I should be dealing with something more important to you, it is also important to let you know that no challenge is going to be left on the table simply because it may appear completely unimportant or meaningless. In fact, you could come to the conclusion that this was one challenge I truly needed to sink my teeth into. I wouldn't come to that conclusion myself mainly because it is a pathetic attempt at really bad humour.
It was also interesting to note from the survey that Quebec children were the least likely to receive any money from the tooth fairy. A full 13 per cent of Quebec children never get any money for their teeth, and when they do, they only receive an average of $2.06/tooth. This is a far cry from the $3.46 that the average Atlantic Canadian child receives. That figure represents a 19 per cent increase over the national average of $2.80/tooth, proving once again how overly generous Atlantic Canadian fairies are compared to the fairies in the rest of the country.
This is fun to talk about with your friends and neighbours after you read this column, keeping in mind that you may not want your children to see it, lest you inadvertently reveal that the tooth fairy places more value on Atlantic Canadian teeth.
All the same, while the world around us is self-destructing in ways we never anticipated, there is comfort in knowing that a fairy is looking after your child's financial future, and that our fairy is doing a better job than their fairy. How often can you say that?