A friend of mine posited a very intriguing question: What would you do/buy with the following amounts of money:
Here’s the catch: No standard answers like “invest it to make more money” or “pay off debt” or anything like that. Responsible answers are perfectly fine, but nothing that doesn’t involve an immediate payoff of some type. Saving for a house is out. BUYING a house outright is in. Investing in stock is a no-no. Opening your own small business is go. Don’t blame me, these are the rules. I didn’t make ’em. I agree with ’em, though.
This one could go one of two ways. The selfish part of me immediately shouted “VIDEO GAMES!” I know, I am a walking, talking stereotype… but Mario Kart 8 and the latest Super Smash Brothers are coming out. I could get both for that. Maybe even have enough cash left over to buy a Diet Coke afterwards, too. The part of me that stupidly didn’t buy KLynne a card for our anniversary says that I should buy her something shiny. This same part, for the record, says the same thing for every one of these values, just increasing magnitudes of shininess. But that’s a story for… well, not this blog. You all know that I’m a screwup and there isn’t a story there.
Besides, I know that at least for Mario Kart 8, KLynne probably wants it more than I do.
My friend who posted this said that a new mattress would be peachy-keen, and I’m inclined to agree. The mattress that we have in our bedroom is old, getting worn out, and tilts directly toward the floor on my side. This is because of a few reasons, the biggest (ha!) being that I’m a wide-ass fatty who is nonetheless pushed to the very edge of the mattress by a 20-some-odd pound dog. What can I say… whatever the dog wants, the dog gets. Unfortunately, the dog wants to sleep damn near horizontally between me and KLynne fairly often. It’s bad enough that I will often sleep with my hand clinched to the headboard to steady myself. We have a newer mattress (I FINALLY upgraded from my old twin mattress shortly after I started dating KLynne, go ahead, snicker at that) but I USUALLY like my mattresses firm (like cement) and… she doesn’t. The newer one lives in the guest room where my bro is staying.
So, this one might’ve been different a little while ago. I could have picked a thousand different things.
Then my friend Alex took me to a Harley-Davidson Boot Camp. The Boot Camp, for those of you (like me) who didn’t know what it would be, is basically where you are invited to an HD dealership, shown the wares without being pressured, and fed hot wings and shitty beer. The big thing, though, is that it was tailored toward non-riders and featured a simulator- an actual bike in a stand that was rigged not to give power to the wheels, but still function in all other ways. I was shown the proper way to mount the bike, give it power, and shift. Shockingly, non-manual-driving me was able to shift the gears without stalling the thing out once. I’m not gonna lie, it felt good. It looked fun. Aaaand… I want to learn how to ride. I think I’d really like it. Of course, a bike is necessary. I don’t even (necessarily) want a Harley, but something that looks like a classic road bike and won’t set me back financially too badly… maybe $8000 in bike and the rest in buying the appropriate training and gear.
This is the most responsible thing on the list. With one hundred thousand dollars, I would quit work for a year or two. (Wait, the responsible thing happens soon. Don’t worry.) I’d then proceed to go to school full-time. Pay my tuition up front, hit the books, and get that oh-so-elusive degree. I’d go from the one-or-two classes per term (hoping to ramp that up to three, we’ll see) to a full credit hour load. My time would be spent deep in study. With that much cash, too, KLynne could pay for her classes, too.
Ironically, a windfall like that would, I believe, actually force us to be more responsible with our money. Having a fixed income would necessitate simplification of our lives. We’d be made to save money by consuming the media that we already have access to, set strict budgets to make sure that things don’t run out, and (since I’d have a little more free time) let us get things organized. With both of us clutching shiny new degrees after the few years of work, we’d be in prime position for me to go to Pharm school and have KLynne act as primary breadwinner for a while.
This is the big one. With a million dollars? I’d want the vacation to end all vacations. We’d get a nice RV. We’d drive across the US (and maybe even Canada), doing all of the tourist-trappy things that we’ve always wanted to do. We’d visit the National Parks. All of ’em. We’d go geocaching across the US. We’d do it all. And then? We’d go overseas. Visit where KLynne lived during the early 90s in Germany, then branch out to the rest of Europe from there. We’d take all the time that we could, see everything possible that we wanted to, take a schload of photos, and have a million stories to tell for the rest of my life.
That, my friends, would be the best.