By David Berry: In every society, children are raised with a number of cliches that allege to have baked in life lessons. They’re like our inheritance from birth, guiding pillars of wisdom that we can always cling to as emotional life rafts when things are in doubt. In the U.S., those include some true ones like “the grass isn’t always greener on the other side” or “better safe than sorry.”
And those are true. You might have a white car and say “man, that guy’s car is black and it looks really cool,” but what you don’t know is how hard it is to keep clean. “Hey, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side,” someone might say.
But there are numerous others that aren’t true. They’re not even close to true. Like “love is blind” (pffft, my ass it is. You can bet my eyes will be wide open for the whole thing) or “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” – right, or disabled.
But one of my least favorite cliches that isn’t true is “Money doesn’t buy happiness.”
For starters, “money doesn’t buy happiness” isn’t a refrain you often hear from people who actually have money. It’s usually some broke guy trying to coach himself into believing that he can still be happy despite a financial position that shows no signs of improving.
Now to be fair, no one is saying “oh, look at that – happiness is on sale at Target for $49.99. Grab a dozen, Bob!”
- Reliable transportation. You mean to tell me you’d rather wake up an hour earlier to wait in the rain for a city bus and get bumped into by a drunk who smells like piss while you commute for 90 minutes?
- Medical bills: You ever have a heart attack? Sure, you might be happy just to recover from it, but having the money to pay the entire bill will give you enough happiness to ensure you don’t have a second one.
- Good child care: Sure, you could drag junior to a rag tag daycare down the road and mix him in with a hellion who hits all the other kids because “he’s learning how to manage his feelings” – but wouldn’t you rather not?
- Helping those in need: If you count yourself as a ‘good person,’ guess what? Having a good heart is nice, but having the means to do something about it is even nicer.
- Things that take time away from your family: You work 8 to 9 hours a day, come home, cook dinner, clean the house and then…whoops, the day is over. So go ahead, throw shade at the family with a housekeeper, but when they’re done with their work day, they’re spending time with their family. You aren’t.
- Emergencies: Ever have an emergency out of town but not enough cash to get there? Happiness won’t get you there, but money will.
- Knowledge, Education: There are a lot of colleges and universities out there, but the good ones tend to cost more. You can say that Local City Community College is just as good, but if you had the choice, you mean to tell me you wouldn’t go to Harvard instead?
So get out there, work hard, and make some money. It won’t buy you happiness, but…just kidding. Yes it will.