Saturday, March 31, 2012

What I'm Going To Do With $25m

There is only one guarantee with Lotto: if you don't have a ticket you won't win. Of course, if you do have a ticket there's a pretty good chance you won't win, too. But ya gotta be in to win.

Everyone fantasises about what they would do with such a large amount of money. Just say it. Twenty Five Million Dollars. TWENTY FIVE MILLION DOLLARS!!

It's a lot of money. Surely enough to set anybody up for life. And with a little left over to spread around. Many times I've secretly wondered what I'd like to do if money were no object. So, here's a list.

I've always wanted to put a couple of hundred dollar notes into the hat/cup/guitar case of a particularly good busker. The best guitar playing busker I've ever seen/heard was a guy in New Orleans who said he had toured with John English. I kinda doubted that, but the man could play the guitar. He was incredible. I watched for ages, chatted to him, and put a few bucks into his pot. Every now and then you come across someone incredible like that.

Without being condescending, I'd like to walk down the checkouts of a busy supermarket and pay for everyone's groceries. Whoever they are, whatever they're buying. Do most people struggle? For most, is it a day to day juggle between bills that can be put off and necessities like bread and milk. In the 21st Century, nobody should be hungry; nobody should even be struggling to get by.

And nobody should be cold in the winter! Every year, tho, there are warnings from the Government and the power companies. Check on the elderly, make sure they're okay in the cold weather. In the 21st Century there should not be elderly people wrapped up in blankets all day and going to bed at 6pm because they cannot afford to run a heater. I know I couldn't help every elderly person, but I'd love to chose a few and put their power bills in credit by a couple thousand dollars and say there...stay warm this winter.

I have a thing for struggling young couples and single parents. They seem to have it tough. Perhaps it's because I saw my mother and my sister in exactly this situation. Recently I've been acquainted with many people in similar situations. I just don't understand why so many people have to struggle to get by. I angst about such things every day. And again, without being able to help everyone, I'd like to take a few well-deserving young people/couples and remove the financial burden that seems to hold them back (to varying degrees) and see what human potential lies beneath the veneer of daily difficulty.

Sure, money doesn't solve all problems. But I'm sure it resolves a hell of a lot of issues. If you're not worried about paying the power bill, putting food on your table, being chased by debt collectors, your car breaking down at every traffic light, your kids having a secure future, or how screwed you will be if you get cancer, then I guarantee those energies will be released onto more productive more creative endeavours. Of course, some people need things to worry about so they don't get ahead (*puts hand up*) and will find other things to stress about. But many, I'm sure, would surge ahead.

So I'd like to give a few, well-chosen people the opportunity to become the best they can be, if unburdened by the financial barriers most face (and I am mindful that financial barriers can sometimes be a hurdle that getting over is part of the challenge, but it's fair to say that a lot of human potential is squashed by financial restrictions).

I've always wanted to dress in my scruffiest clothes, drive my beat-up old Toyota into the Porsche place and play with the salesman. See what kind of attention I get (like Juila Roberts in Pretty Woman). Try and play it so that it looks like I'm never gonna be able to afford that 911 ever, and see how the game goes. And after he dismisses me, drive back in there in my new Audi TT Roadster and just see the look on his face.

The other day I posted this link on Facebook. Since then they've added the video. I dare you to watch that video and not have a lump in your throat. And what's worse is that she is correct. There are hundreds of families going through this right now. If you or a family member gets cancer, you're pretty much screwed. Not only will you have to fight the debilitating disease, you'll have to fight an army of bureaucrats who would prefer you just died quietly and cheaply and quickly. NO family should have to struggle financially when the chips are down like this. How much human potential is lost simply because they cannot afford to fight diseases and government agencies at the same time? For twenty grand and a decent car, this girl's life would be made so much more bearable. She could cuddle her son without worrying whether she could feed him. She could sit at his bedside without worrying if her power was going to be cut off.

Gerry Brownlee spends twenty grand on taxis every few months. You spot the incongruity of the system we have created!

I know what you're thinking. I wouldn't be wealthy for long. But I'm as selfish as the next guy. I'd set myself and my family up first. Modestly, but securely. Then, as pretentious as it sounds, start some kind of foundation to do what little (of the above) I could do. On ten million bucks (20 split between me and Jackie after we buy a massive house and Audis each LOL) at what, 6%? That's 600K a year in interest alone. Surely I could live off that and make a difference in a few lives. And chuck a C note into the occasional buskers hat.

Better go buy a ticket.

1 comment:

Tracey Edwardes said...

Bought a lotto ticket today,,just coz of this cool, thought-poking blog. Oh the dilemma.. !!today it would be so morally wrong to blow it on luxuries or keep it all. I think i would die of to who, what or how it was to be used for. I think an amazing business idea or investment ...(so you could make it make even MORE money to help save the world) would be a wise idea. But i would taxi everywhere to meetings. (-;