My Definition of Wealth

Automatic Pool Cover.

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Fantasy Wealth vs Reality Wealth

Wealth, to me, is just a fantasy. It is an incredible amount of money that you win and don’t earn. A game I play if I drop a dollar or two on the lottery. In my mind I see big houses overlooking the water in different places, being able to redecorate without first looking at the price tag. Designing a swimming pool so that at night when I went to bed I could picture its beauty and smile into my fancy pillow. It’s not ever having to think about money for anything. Travel? No problem, I would have a private jet. Drive my car when I am scared to drive at night? I would have a driver. Lovely, original art on the walls, gifts to nice

Handkerchief

people who I don’t even know; giving to family and friends is of course, a given.

I realize it’s a fantasy, I know I’m never going to have the money to buy such things, ever, but for a dollar per dream, it’s worth it to escape reality. Wealth, in my fantasy, is never having to worry about money ever again. Wealth in my reality is everything I have, a loving family, some great old friends, my gorgeous nine-year old shelter dog and an old handkerchief that belonged to my father when he was alive, soft, thread bare but always with me in my pocket.

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“MTV, Teen Cribs” ( or I Want To Throw Up)

I actually WATCHED a show on television  (I couldn’t make this up if I tried) where teens show off their, mega, opulent, oversized, disgustingly big rooms/suites. The suites are housed in super big houses, near billiard rooms, bowling alleys and ice skating rinks. Seriously. No joke.  I am both fascinated and nauseated by this show, mostly nauseated. Okay, definitely all nauseated and totally disgusted.

The viewer is welcomed into the homes of these super- rich teenage kids and their ridiculously over indulgent more rich than rich parents. I kid you not. I have never seen anything like this in my life and I hope never to see it again. Once, twice was enough; more than enough. Kids have aquariums based on the movie Finding Nemo; they have home theaters, fully stocked concession stands  arcades, spa rooms,  backyard jacuzzi spa and slide sections so that “even when it’s snowing we can still go in.”  They have their own grotto, in case you were worried. Oh look, how quaint, they are making home-made pizza in their own pizza oven outside situated next to more grills than I could count. We’re not talking English Muffin pizza’s here.

There were hockey rinks, soccer fields, a gym with a working scoreboard. What house is complete without one? They have their own performing studios, and an “every day is a holiday” theme so they can keep the Christmas tree up all year-long. I’ve seen a chair museum in place of a dining room table,  psychedelic, modern, artistic mansions, no MANSIONS. These homes are described by their parents as “having a place where we all feel comfortable.” Give me a break.

This disgusting show of über opulence is so crude that over the top does not quite describe it. Over the top is an understatement. I actually had to text my teenagers to see if this was a real show or if it was made up?  Apparently, it’s real. Real if you live in a fantasy land, on another universe, in another galaxy. After watching this show it seems that Michael Jackson’s Neverland was nothing more than a quaint and cozy little shack.

Is this the standard we want our children to aspire to? Does the plethora of material riches, I mean crap, make them any happier? Don’t even answer that! What are these parents THINKING?  I’d be embarrassed to show off a ridiculous  mega-mansion like any of those shown. I would be ashamed, and I should be. So should they.

Kick these families out of their glamour galaxies, show them the real world, where most of us can barely live, can barely make ends meet. As for the teens? Kick them out of their go carts, scooters, Segueways and disco ball rooms, and hand them a book. A book about the real world, unemployment, financial troubles, poverty. Real people.

After not being able to watch another second of this show, I was grateful to find  a show on NBC about how a community helped a special needs family and their mom. Which show would you want YOUR kids to watch? “MTV Teen Cribs” or “America Now, A Circle of Helping Hands?” You make the decision, you do the math.

After accepting that “MTV Teen Cribs” is going to stay on television, all I can seriously hope for is that these RICH families do a lot for charity. That they give to those less fortunate than themselves (which is probably 99.9 percent of the world), it may sound idealistic but it’s the only hope I’ve got.