Any time an exorbitant amount of money is up for grabs in the lotto my coworkers and I get to talking about how we would spend the winnings (after taxes). As a kid my answers matched that of what my coworkers would say: several houses, cars, etc. because at that age you’re not aware of anything going on around you and, unfortunately, money does make the world go round. So I’m going to outline how I’d spend my winnings.
1) I don’t want a house; I don’t need that much space nor the headache of maintaining it. Plus you never actually own the home. It can be taken via foreclosure because while the house is completely paid for the land isn’t. I’ve been homeless; it’s not fun.
– Growing up, I had “white picket fence” fantasies. Then I learned how shitty the economy is and continues to be. My mother owned a piece of land in Tampa, Florida. My brother & I had plans for it that included building a summer house for both our families. Rather than pass down a house, I’d give my kid(s) land. Maybe they want a house; let them build one instead of dealing with the burden of possibly having to sell the house they grew up in.
– I wouldn’t uproot my mother; she’s happy where she is. So I’d pay 5-years worth of rent in one shot and do so until she passes away while making sure her fridge and pantries are stocked.
– I’d either do the same for myself or just buy an apartment which would make it difficult to kick me out of (unless the building gets sold and the new owner wants to be a dick).
2) “I can’t drive but anyway what do I need a car in New York for?”
-This is still somewhat relevant. I’d learn to drive to buy a car to build with my brother who knows how to. In fact, it would be a bonding experience for my brothers and I. I’d buy the car they both want and “hook it up.” Hey, I may not like The Bronx but you can’t take The Bronx out of me.
– I’m typing this on the train which I sometimes do when the urge to write strikes; why hinder that?
3) Being poor humbled my choice in foods, clothes, etc. When I have more money than usual I splurge on food. I bought Levi jeans for the first time in 2014 because I didn’t need to rely on my tax return as a financial leash. Knowing I don’t need materialistic items has proven advantageous which means my fridge and pantries would always be stocked not with pretentious labels but of things I otherwise could never buy because it used to cost $2 more than it’s competition.
– Steve Jobs dressed like he shopped at thrift stores. Martina McBride, a platinum selling artist, still shops at Wal-Mart. Mario Batalli wears the same thing every day. I’m more than happy to get my clothes from chained stores so long as I look sexy as hell.
4) I may not have any kids yet but for each I’d make sure to put enough away to pay for the equivalent of medical/law school and increase/decrease accordingly (meaning following tuition inflation trends & whatnot).
5) “Gotta make that money work”
– A small amount would be spent on stock investments that make sense like Google or Apple or whatever pops up now that we know will be of use 20+ years from now.
6) I’d go back to school to earn that little piece of paper dedicated to let society know I’m marginally qualified to do something. Not for one subject, but several. Finish law school, go to film school. Put the papers to work and perhaps write the next (best thing since) Law&Order.
Once all of that is said and done I’d consider going Preston Waters on the world. Priorities come before play. You don’t learn how important that is until you’re trying to rub pennies together hoping they turn into green paper with dead white men on them.