May 29th, 2009

Theatrical Muse: Week 285: Question 285

Name: Conrad Ecklie

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation

Word Count: 787

What have you done to make ends meet when you were broke?

In circumstances some might describe as fortunate, I have never been very poor, very broke, none of those terms used to describe monetary lower class living. In their deaths, my parents both had life insurance, so I went to a good school and lived in a comfortable house with enough food to eat and clothing on my back. I was not a child who wanted many toys, nor an adult, as I am now, fond of every new shiny gadget. I have a computer, which I update every few years, and a laptop, which follows much the same tradition. As my aunt no longer works, I help to support her, just as she worked to make our household functional when I was young. I have a house, the ownership of which has long since passed into my hands, and I have a car, which I care for well and keep running, even though it is getting old. I am quite a thing and tall man, so I by way of habit I eat very little. I live by myself to I use very little water for washing, and not as much electricity as some larger families might. My bills are small and my work does not require large amounts of travel at my expense.

Contrary to so many inhabitants of Las Vegas, I have not succumbed to the temptation to become a gambling addict. I do not gamble for pleasure, and in fact I never gamble except for a few charity poker games that I participate in every now and then for the sake of the lab. I have never been a big believer in the need to spend money in order to obtain happiness, which is, after all, something else I do not indulge in the same way as other people do. I do not feel happiness as the result of the things that most other people seem to find the cause of such emotions, and therefore, to spend money in excess is for me, pointless, and a circumstance that never happens. It never happens unless it is for a good reason for it, and aside from minor things like tire replacements and replacing minor household appliances when they cease to work, the amount of money I spend in one go is rarely significant.

Oh yes, I do indulge sometimes. I do eat on the job when I do not make myself lunch to take to work, but those are simple almost necessities. I buy books and sometimes magazines, I maintain several journal subscriptions, but while these may not be a matter of life or death, they are simple, unselfish things in life, not things that cause great pleasure, that I obtain so I can learn more, or so I may be more efficient in getting back to my job or my household duties. Yes, maybe my monetary circumstances are fortunate in that I work hard and earn a highly moderate wage, I may be fortunate in that I spend little and save much, but that is only money. Introduce the rest of life, and the fact that I sit on a bank account with a satisfyingly reassuring sum in it, fades away into almost inconsequential insignificance. I am a widower, I am an orphan, I may have money but that damn well doesn’t make up for an inch or a nose tip of everything, every single fucking thing that life has taken away from me.

Money does not buy happiness, it only, for those it can bring happiness to, provides a simple, temporary high. Not even having as much money as I do, makes me happy, because it seems worthless, absolutely fucking worthless in the face of everything I do not have, that I once have, and have lost forever. No, if we are talking about money, I have never been broke, but if we are talking about everything else, I have long since been broken and have long since been past repair. I make ends meet, I always make ends meet, but that is a mere function of life, spending money to keep the wellbeing of my person, my house, my objects, my possessions, high and settled. I manage my money efficiently, as I do every other thing in my life, and that is all there is to it. Working as long as I have, working as hard as I do, I earn money, I do not have to worry about being broke, and I have never been broke, so yes, I lead a comfortable life. While I may never have gone hungry or without shoes, I am still aware, I still know, that there are far worse things. That is the absolute truth.
  • Current Music
    Surrounded - Chantal Kreviazuk