Rebeccus Farcis

Rebeccus Farcis means "Have Fun", in err.. the yet to be discovered Martian.

Insurance: Unexplained

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Fact: Insurance, as a practise, started in China.
Friends and ladies, THAT is as much fact as you’ll find in the next 1000 odd words henceforth.

Any of the fine audience reading this page subscribe to the school of thought that, roughly speaking, goes thus: “Insurance protects my house, my life, my wife”, proceed at your own peril. The remainder, the ones who swear by any of these – “We don’t need papers, 100/- to these policemen will do” or “Company provides insurance”, best one “WHAT is insurance”, yo mates! Here we go.

Insurance simplified.
Insurance was started in China. A wise man in the Ghanzhou province, with nothing better to do, started a call centre. Outsourcing was unheard of in those pre historic times, so the call centre agents, sitting peacefully in their bright red skin kimonos imported from Japan, had practically nothing to do too. Thats when one bright young Chini bhai had this idea – he started calling up random populace, tormenting them to pump some money into their call centre, he promised that the company would take care of them when sick. Thus was born the world’s first insurance company. The rest of the world soon followed cue. Over these millenia, the practise of insurance has seen considerable changes, mostly for the worse, but the precious ancient Chinese practise of calling up random populace and annoying them into buying your policy has stood the test of time.

Now, what is insurance? Precisely defined, insurance is a practise of offsetting a tiny, negligible part of a great risk, that you most probably wont face, for an astronomical sum they call premium. You pay a huge portion of your bank balance to a dubious entity called the insurance provider (or the insurer, as they like to call in the technical parlance), the insurance company for laymen, for a promise that the insurer will, at some point of time in the future cover your losses, terms and conditions apply. Its this T&C that makes this industry so interesting.
We move over to the types of insurance.

Property Insurance: Self explanatory. Insuring your property against damage.
e.g take your car. You pay a handful of lakhs for the car, another handful of lakhs for its insurance, so as to escape the watchful eyes of the traffic police, not to cover it against any damage. Now, one unfortunate day, when you kiss the girl next street, rather, the bonnet of your car kisses the bumper of hers, you tend to face an expensive ordeal in getting your car repaired. This is where insurance comes in handy. For all the lakhs you’ve paid as a premium to this entity, they land in your garage once you’re done with getting the less important parts such as the engine and and radiator repaired, and willfully pay you sum sufficiently large to replace the bright flashy new age LEDs that act as your headlights.
Or, take for example, insurance on real property, say your house. You economize by opting for glazed tiles instead of Rajasthani limestone for your flooring, and pay the difference as premium for your house insurance. Now, one fine day you read of a possible Leonoid meteor shower – the news channels also blare how fortunate you really are that your town is witness to this incredible astronomical phenomenon. You stay up all night to witness this once in a 1000 lifetime celestial spectacle – in due course of which, to your horror, you realize that a fragment of this blessed comet is falling over your head. Not exactly your head, but your home. Not exactly your home but your courtyard – you also realize that this glazing ball has a great velocity which fells a tree, the tree in turn fells an electric pole which falls over your house and razes the North East part of your home. For 10 days following the following morning, you rein in men and sweat your brow to rebuild that entire North East of your home – the puja room, the kitchen and the attached store room – the insurance adjdicators will finally make their presence felt by paying for the glass to the ventilator of the store room.

Liability Insurance: This is the funniest part of the entire industry. These encounters usually ensue in the court of law.
Take an e.g. You happen to carry a weak heart, one ill fated evening, you face a cardiac arrest. Seeing this, your neighbour faces a cardiac arrest himself. You miraculously survive, he doesn’t. He also happens to be the sole breadwinner for his family. Now, his family sues you in the court of law as your heart attack was the proximate cause for his cardiac arrest. And damages in this breed of insurance amount to millions of dollars in the name of mental trauma.
Another example, you are driving along the road ogling at every female driver/passenger/roadside vendor. Unexpectedly you encounter a pup on the road, kind-hearted that you are, apply handbrake. In the ensuing melee, you bump into your steering wheel and scratch your nose. For this physical disfigurement, you contemplate suing the pup. Seeing as you feel it would look a trifle odd dragging a silly pup into the court, you contemplate suing his mother. Patting yourself on the back, when you start the engine, you realize that the mother is also a dog, a female, dog. You drive to your family attorney and seek his advice. Brooding and deliberating over endless cups of coffee over this fiasco, the attorney prompted you ultimately conclude at suing the owner of the pup for $200004.76 as damages – $200000 for the attorney as his fee, the rest for yourself. At the end of it all, you drive back home complementing yourself for a nation building exercise exercised.

Health Insurance: Takes care of your health.
e.g You diligently pay half your salary to the insurance agent, every month, commencing the day you turned 25, to the month you end up retiring. At the ripe young age of 61, when you feel you’ve got a cataract, you rush to the nearest weekly government run free eye camp and get yourself operated That’s when this insurance helps you procure frames for your glasses, for free.
So, the next time when some random number calls you requesting you to make an investment, proceed at your own peril.

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Written by Srinivas

June 28, 2010 at 6:34 pm

Posted in Fun

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