Thursday, December 16, 2010

Don’t Eat All Your Seeds

A blog discussion showed up recently asking if rich, middle class, or poor people were temperamentally different. I considered my rich uncle and what set him apart.

First. He worked very hard.

Second. Uncle saw opportunity where some of us might not. He grew up in a small mining community where he and his brother were butchers. A comfortable enough profession. They started buying up mining sites by leveraging their incomes and getting loans. Of course there were risks and deal making involved. Strikes, legal issues, overhead. My uncle plunged in and dealt with politicians, bankers, the educated. He learned to pilot a plane, play golf, and make a dignified impression. He was willing to act quickly and gamble it all.

Third. My uncle thought of money and time as commodities used to increase value, not to spend solely on pleasures. So in his 90's Uncle still painted his garage, and Aunt still cleaned their home. They were willing to go through the discount racks at better stores to purchase clothes, or travel that extra 15 miles to a small town hairdresser for a $20 dye job and trim.

Most of us like our comfort and so remain where we are. It takes huge effort to break free from the status quo. We have to fight the naysayers, those that ridicule big dreams, accusing us of being snooty, and perfect the social skills needed to navigate unfamiliar territory. Plus we may very well have to move away from the ‘hood.

I was amazed as we drove through a rough area of Philly recently, to notice amongst boarded up and abandoned houses, Direct TV on every rooftop. A prime example of exchanging the present for the future.

Moral: If you eat all your seeds you have nothing left to plant.

1 comment:

  1. Food (bought at a bargain rate to be sure!) for thought. A Hooked fan!