Wednesday, 5 August 2009

the value of a buck

many of my friends have said to me that if you are generous with your money, money will be generous to you. over the years i have never paid much attention to the true meaning behind their unanimous belief. but in times of financial deprivation, i like to think back on these words and take a minute to reflect on how nice it would be if it were true.

and now the confession. i am a prude. when it comes to many things, and even more so when pertaining to money. i don't believe in 'giving is better than receiving' or 'sparing a buck for the homeless'. stuff like that. i can't say it's inhumane or immoral of myself, though. as much as i am stingy about my money upon others, i am a hundred times more strict on myself. for as far back as i can imagine, i have spent minimally on unnecessary things, and this habit has grown to obsessive amounts as i have aged. for example, during my year in london, i spent the bare minimum of 7 pounds a week on groceries (sometimes going to 10, but still), and i never ate out. why though? i could obviously afford eating more than shit-quality spaghetti and rice every week, and i could definitely have used some good food once in a while. i'm beginning to wonder if i'm borderline sadomasochistic in a sense :o

i digress. the point of it all, i accumulated a significant amount of cash over the years, while 'saving' up my money, and it felt really good. it felt kind of shitty having to dodge friend's when they were arranging to eat out. or decline a movie every so often. but it felt like the money could be used for better ends in the future. or at least i thought at the time. at some point, i even compared with friends, some of whom spent cash so eagerly, their scholarship money would end up at nil at the end of the month (well on one hand, these people did have some crazy awesome stuff, like playstations, kickass guitars, lifesize models of darth vader and authentic katanas. really. who buys katanas. freaking. ninja. epic.). and i would sigh internally at these people who spent so much, but their money is theirs, and i have no intent on lecturing them on the value of a dollar, they're more than well in the know than myself, as i shall prove in a bit.

fast forward to the now, and the people i mentioned are working. making more money than i could hope for, and steadily accumulating it faster than they need. more power to them. as for myself, i haven't even started working and am one million bucks in debt (even counting the cash i saved up for rainy days), still eating crap-quality pasta and rice on a daily basis just trying to save that extra buck. how does that work out?

don't get me wrong, i'm not bitching about my financial situation. i am, though, conveying this message to those who would be scrooges as myself - it's not worth it. treat yourself to those things you deserve, and treat your friends just as much as you would yourself, because if you're generous with your money, it'll be generous in return.

p/s: i realise that a lot of this 'generous with money' crap won't make sense if you're not of a similar background to my friends and myself, so if you don't get it, :/


Anonymous said...

penny wise, pound foolish? :P


etc said...

indeed. such are the woes of the financially challenged