Money is hereditary. Not the presence or absence of it, but the instinct that governs either. I sincerely hope that like all genetic gifts this one is also significantly affected by the environment and can be learnt or unlearnt up to a point. Because if it can’t, I am doomed. I am terrible with money, the condition seems to be entirely independent of my wishes or actions.
Yet, I am not fundamentally undisciplined. Inside (and not that deep down either, unfortunately) I am that annoying straight-A student who needs kicking, wholesome Hilary the class monitor, Hannah the head nurse, Her Holy Martyr Edith of the Clipboard. So my first response is usually one that propitiates authority and seeks approval (any other kind needs this one to be suppressed first). At best, I am Hermione Granger. Nor am I a stranger to grown-up financial responsibilities – I’ve dealt with them all my adult life and not done too badly either.
Nevertheless, money runs circles around me and then rushes off cackling, to leap recklessly into the nearest black hole. After years of blaming it on unlucky wallets and wasting small change on the obsession with keeping one coin for luck in any unused bag, I’ve realized that the lucky coin should be inside you not your bag. So, to neutralize the birth defects, everyone should be taught practical finance at school. Failing that, what the world needs is financial counselors, a combination of shrink, accountant and life coach who will be the change you want to see in your bank account. Oprah had the right idea with her Debt Diet and panel of advisors. That should be a real, regular, accessible job. Maybe it is…
If I was really Hermione Granger, I could just wave a wand. Money, like food, is probably one of the five exceptions to magical transfiguration (ref: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows), but maybe genes are not.
Money is the stupidest thing we do as a species. And we spend our entire lives ruled by it.
- ► 2011 (32)
- ► 2010 (32)
- White tigers, slumdogs and softening of the brain
- The sun also rises in Burdubai
- The Englishness of America
- The debt gene
- A curious lack of bonhomie
- So was the winner of the marathon a perfect 10?
- What's that song?
- Don't you point that word at me
- TFN nights: Chinna, chinna asai
- Day seven: Diamonds and rust
- Day six: All the roadrunning
- ▼ January (11)
- ► 2008 (83)
- ► 2007 (48)