Angry, young, and broke, that’s me

If you tell grown-ups, “I saw a beautiful red brick house, with geraniums at the windows and doves on the roof…,” they won’t be able to imagine such a house. You have to tell them, “I saw a house worth a hundred thousand francs.” Then they exclaim “What a pretty house!”
~The Little Prince

Up until a few years ago, I was pretty naive about finances. I seriously thought that my parents had all their shit in hand. And then they left for Alaska, instructing me to handle their mail. This involved pulling it all out of the envelopes, discarding the ads, etc, and mailing it to them.

That’s when I learned my parents were up to their ears in debt. Mortgage, several credit carts, the “usual.” It was a surprise…I thought my parents were smarter than that. Apparently all that being poor when I was a kid didn’t teach them shit. (This has later been validated a hundred times over.)

I look at things in a whole new light now. I see someone living in a house, with a nice car and nice things, and I think “how far into debt are they?”

I know people who are the other way, too. People who live in an apartment and make way more than they spend. Who saved up $8,000 without really trying and bought a car with cash.

And then there are those, like me, in-between. My debt is a drop in the proverbial bucket compared to some. I live right at my means, partially by choice. (Meaning I do have a college degree, with enough ambition I could be making more than minimum wage. However, when it comes to finding employment, I’m the laziest person I know.)

So why the HELL is it necessary to assume someone isn’t “loaded” because they live below their means? Fuck the story behind the comments, here’s what I’m talking about:

What that information I found Hollie and her husband Patricks home and it’s value $80.000 even for Ohio that a cheap low class home. Wait she’s loaded remember…LOL

That’s the value of both of the cars I own, my house is 7 times that amount but I don’t claim I’m rich. Maybe in third world countries she’s loaded but in this country she’s not.

I just wanted to add this—-my son in college has a newer car than hers and he paid cash for it!

Have these people forgotten what it means to live under your means? Maybe VA (the subject of this circle-jerk) likes the house she lives in. Maybe it’s a nice house in a nice place. I’m rather fond of my apartment, ratty though it be. Maybe she doesn’t want to spend the next ten or twenty years of her life paying for a mortgage. Maybe it is as she says it is and she lives briefly in places she’s remodeling?

Just because you don’t dress like it doesn’t mean you’re not rich or middle-class or well-off, or whatever synonym you want to use for “not poor.”

Speaking only for myself, of course, flaunting one’s “wealth” (whether or not you are, in fact, wealthy) just makes one look like a dick. As I mentioned earlier, I have a tendency to look critically at wealth. Until you prove otherwise, I’m going to assume you just like to look wealthy, and your net worth is less than mine.

Fuck, if we go by net worth, I’m probably richer than most of America. That’s either nice or scary, depending on your point of view.

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2 Responses to “Angry, young, and broke, that’s me”

  1. Dargon Says:

    I often find myself wondering if perhaps much of this stems from people being raised with a certain income and spending a certain amount. To be honest, the thing that changed my perspective the most was suddenly not making enough money to meet my daily caloric requirements.

    Those who have always lived in nice houses and worn fancy clothes and always had the money to do so, perhaps they cannot fathom someone doing anything differently, especially someone with the money to actually live a “better” lifestyle. When your monetary decisions have at worst been the fancy red shirt vs the fancy green shirt rather than determining if you can afford to get by with the gas in the tank and actually buy food this week, your priorities are a bit different. VA was even more broke than you or I once, so it’s no surprise her perspective is closer to ours than the dickwads mentioned in your post.

    • cwnmamau Says:

      But at some point any sane person would say “My combined bills will take me 20 years to pay off, maybe I should quit charging shit.”

      That’s why my mother is no longer in the “sane person” club. She’s up to her ears in debt, yet it never occurs to her to, you know, stop spending. Apparently she’d rather work more.

      Then again, the mindset you and I share, that credit cards are for emergencies only, doesn’t seem so common.

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