Money is weird. I know this sounds like a real high guy statement but, it's just paper and coins. I was thinking about this the other week when I was invited to a conference for work that was all about the great ways that advertising companies are tricking, I mean encouraging, us to buy their bullshit, I mean products. There were a lot of ideas being thrown around that day. For example, one presenter who works for a company I will not name but let's just say they sell a candy bar that sounds like “KICKERS”, they were gloating about how they are using 'borrowed memory structures' (read: nostalgia garbage from the past) to enhance their storytelling (read: stupid commercial) to encourage consumers to invest in feeling good (read: buy their poison).
It may be because I am too sensitive, but I think I was the only one at this event with my mouth agape, incredulous at the absolute bullshit that all of these clowns were spewing. Another presenter compared himself to a novelist when talking about writing his 15 second pop up ads about bras. Yeah, you're a real Haruki Murakami, pal. They spoke about their successes in advertising to people without them knowing that they were being advertised to, and how all of that drove their revenues way up. They spend millions to make millions. It was gross.
I kept wondering what these ad executives are going to do when the break down of society finally comes. When the stock market crashes and the grid goes down. It will be anarchy. Will they pick up a hammer and build something or just sell us on their worth through a 'borrowed memory structure' comparing themselves to The Brady Bunch? There’s no way to know. They’ll probably be fine. Money means you’re fine - I'm apparently not fine.
A couple years ago, as you know, Keri and I started trying to pay off our student loan (and credit card (and car)) debt as quick as possible. This is how much debt I still have left after years of working hard to pay it off: $70,000. More than half of our original amount, which was somewhere around $120,000. I feel nothing. I don't think I'm proud of that or angered by that number. It now just seems like something that will always be there, like air or war or Abe Vigoda.
I have been working incredibly hard on this new business idea with Keri the past 9 months and I'm really proud of the progress that we've made. Our business plan is done and now all we have to do is figure out ten million more things, including funding. But the idea of taking on another lump of debt to do this is disheartening. I long for the days when you could open up a business with $500 and a pack of cigarettes (probably?). Now we are looking at opening expenses that far exceed this $70k we have left and our even the debt we started at; over $120k.
Money is weird. I hate that I need it. I hate that I want it. I hate that I can't get over my hate of needing and wanting it. I hate that college is so expensive. I hate that cars are so expensive. I hate that I have to turn to a bank in order to get the funding we'll need to open this business. I'm not even totally sure why I am writing this. Sort of like how I'm not totally sure why I am interested in paying off this debt or taking on new debt. I think I am slowly spiraling into madness. Okay, I'm going to go eat pennies now.