Sunday, March 19, 2006

Money Can't Buy Happiness and other Urban Myths

My research in pursuit of a redecorating scheme for our tired old den, has led me to the kinds of magazines I don’t normally bother with. You know the ones I mean, those glossy, ad filled tomes filled with rich people posing on their “settees”, in their designer decorated living rooms. I didn’t find anything I especially wanted to copy for my room, but by studying these pictures I did discover the truth of an age old cliché… Money really can’t buy happiness. These people look miserable! Posed under their million dollar chandeliers, their tennis court in the background, and yet, they frown woefully into the camera. Gathered around the grand piano in their room filled with immaculately maintained antique furniture, they frown for the photographer. I can help them. There is no need for them to be suffering under the burden of their bulging bank accounts. To all you sad, miserable rich people: free yourself, send your money to me.

My favorite fantasies, aside from whatever plot I’m concocting in whatever book I’m writing, are “What I’d Do With The Money”. Papa Bear and I are not lucky. Money spent on lottery tickets would be money thrown down the toilet. But every now and then, the old mega ball gets up there where it is no longer resistible even by the practical and mature, and we buy a ticket. Then we spend the next few days before the drawing talking about how we’re going to spend the money. Our plans always include paying off the bills of all our family and friends (as if that helps our chances of winning, our use of the money would be honorable). I always add tearing down the house of perpetual remodeling in favor of building something new and flanked by turrets. Papa Bear always adds a scholarship for all the clan descendants (he’s a nice man).

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