Tuesday, August 21, 2007
The "M" Word
Oh! The root of all evil, bits of coloured paper that we spend all of our lives labouring over, and something that people claim to hate but we secretly all love it to death: money. I think the older you get, the more the importance of money hits you.
I was five or so when I wanted pizza for lunch instead of leftovers from the night before, I asked for it and my mom said no. "I'll buy it with my own money then!" I exclaimed and dug out my savings from the odd five dollar bill that my dad sometimes gave me. Of course, my mom retorted by yelling loudly, raving about how I haven't even started making money and I was already spending it lavishly and how I'll grow up to be an idiot that only knows how to spend money and not how to make it. The little five year old me tucked the five dollar bill back in my pocket and sat down spooning the leftovers in my mouth, angry tears threatening to fall. Money did not feel too important back then.
I was seven or so and it was my birthday. My dad asked me what I wanted and I said I wanted Pokemon figurines. We went to Zellers and I picked out a box of two 11cm stuffed animal looking figurines in plastic for $11.99. We came home and my mom yelled at me for not picking out something more practical and wasting money on toys like these. She yelled at my dad for buying it for me. Money did not feel too powerful back then.
I was eleven when our class went on a fieldtrip to the province capital. To go there, we each got a box of chocolates and had to sell them to raise money. If you didn't sell them all, then you had to pay for what you didn't sell. My mom and I went to the Skytrain station near where we lived. I stood by the staircase where people left the station and shouted "Chocolates for sale! $3 a box!" Some people bought them from me out of pity, since they had to do the same when they were kids, I got kicked out of there by bus drivers and Skytrain attendants numerous times for selling the chocolates there without a permit. None of my friends had to do this, their parents worked in nice offices and their parents took the huge box to their offices and got them all sold in a day. My mom worked in a factory (still does) and my dad worked as a lowly paid cook in a small restaurant (still lowly paid, not the same restaurant). Their co-workers would never fork out $3 for a small pack of chocolates. My friends lived in nice houses and their parents own two cars. I live in a small apartment and have ridden in public transportation my entire life. Money began to become something important.
Now, my computer is constantly lagging with a RAM of 128MB, I've had it for six years and I want to get a laptop, my parents have said no. I took my Learners driving test today and passed (written test). My mom complained from the moment we left the house (and she's still complaining now) about what a waste of money and time it was. She told me that she didn't think I should drive until I'm 22 and driving lessons would be a waste of money since she didn't think I would be able to get my Novice License with only 20 hours of driving instruction. "Also, I hear of new drivers crashing their fancy sports cars all the time," she said. I don't have a sports car, in fact, we don't have a car, period. I have no college fund and since I went to Asia in July, I can't find a job and I've been looking since I returned. Money feels indeed both powerful and important now.
I think I've become a bit obsessed with making money. I've started writing on Helium, a site that pays you when people read your articles. I'm making pretty much no money right now, please click on the link below and read my articles. If you want to join, please give me your email so I can refer you and earn some extra.
My Helium Account
I'm about three clicks away from adding Google AdSense to this blog and I really don't want to because it would defeat my purpose of having this blog. Plus, I think I'd make about three cents each month with the amount of traffic I get. *Sigh* Money, money, money...