Monday, July 26, 2010

Money.. Get Back

Thoughts on money;

The Liege psychologists propose that, because money allows us to enjoy the best things in life – we can stay at expensive hotels and eat exquisite sushi and buy the nicest gadgets – we actually decrease our ability to enjoy the mundane joys of everyday life.

Agree with this.. to a point.

We've stayed at some of the most expensive hotels in the world. In certain situations (say, a vacation in Maui), it's worth it. Flying first class for 7 hours is worth it. An over night stay and a 2 hour flight.. not so much.

We didn't go out for a $300 meal last Friday night, as is the usual practice. We bought some good steaks for $45 and ate at home, and it was very good. Mixing things up is probably the way to go. Yes, a $90 Kobe steak and $110 Australian lobster tail are probably going to be the best meal you'll ever have, but if you have it every week, it doesn't mean much after a while.

I think the "happiness" line is drawn between when you can do something absurdly expensive if you want to, and never having the chance. I think the happiness index rises quite a bit if you know you can, even if you choose not to.

In a sense, it's the knowledge of the possible that makes the difference. I know I could run out and buy a 911 Turbo right this moment.. even if that would be rather foolish in the context of actually retiring at some point.. but I could do it. That knowledge reminds me that life isn't a day to day struggle to pay the bills, with the resulting anxiety that goes along with that. Having once wondered how I was going to pay the rent gives me some perspective on how things are different now.

There's also the security aspect. The economy sucks, but the stress levels are lower if you won't worry about having a place to live if you lose your job for an extended period of time.

Sullivan sez;

But the more I have stayed in expensive hotels, the more I long for my own bed. And the fancier food I eat, the more I yearn for a burger and fries.

Also true, but douchebaggy.

When people with money say that money is nice, but I'll have a big juicy burger and a pile of fries.. they mean it.. but it's douchey to the people who don't have an option. Money is all about options.. that's all it is. That's why I always encourage people to be savers. For many, many years I lived like a college student.. with the exception of my computer.. even when I was making enough money to live a better lifestyle. A little patience and a lot of luck (like hooking up with somebody with a fat bank lol) can make a world of difference.

And at least one time, try that Kobe steak and Australian tail.. and the hotel on the beach in Maui.


Also via Sully;

As more skilled women enter the workforce, and as the labor market position of millions of less-skilled workers deteriorate, we'll see more servants and nannies in middle-class homes. While this future might seem disturbing at first, there is no reason to believe that these armies of servants and nannies won't earn decent wages. But let's just say that this isn't the future most of us envision for our children.

We're already seeing this.. more and more.. and people have to decide which side they're going to be on. The super rich aren't going to change much, other than being richer.. and that won't change life much for them. There's going to be a bigger shift between those in the, say, 200k range and the "middle class".

Remember The Brady Bunch? Mike was an architect with a wife and 6 kids. Alice was their full time housekeeper. That shit is coming back.

Speaking of which.. Chaquita quit to go live-in with somebody, and we have old Chaquita back again, but old Chaquita is on the verge of being homeless Chaquita. Homeless Chaquita is not going to move into the house, so Mr. Chaquita better get his shit together and soon.

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