A little bit of whining

So, I know a lot of rich people.

I guess I don’t know anyone in the .001%. But I do know a lot of computer programmers, a lot of lawyers (employed lawyers), and, then, I guess almost anyone who is employed full time in the private sector looks rich compared to academia. For some reason I don’t really know a lot of nonprofit workers, although given my background and interests you’d think I would.

I bring this up because at this very moment I am housesitting for friends of friends in a large, beautiful house in a very expensive city, and it is making me feel like the biggest, most jealous loser ever.

I made the career choices I made with some very countercultural goals in mind, and it’s not like I don’t believe in those choices or goals, or like I didn’t understand that academic salaries were bad, or that mine was the only paycheck I was likely to be able to count on. But damn it, I want a house anyway! I want to somehow win the cosmic lottery where I both do the thing I believe in, and also get paid real money. And I’ll probably never have a house in a place I actually want to live in, because all those places are very expensive. It’s a goal that seems much further out of my reach than retirement.

So, I am allowing myself this brief moment of whining before getting back to making the best of the circumstances I’m actually in. Which are fine, really. It’s just too easy to casually envy the lives of others.

4 thoughts on “A little bit of whining

  1. Huy Tran says:

    On the other hand, they probably aren’t currently meeting goal #6 on your last post of having a “Debt to Income ratio of 35% or less”. That might not be a fair comparison because a mortgage is typically “good debt” but I wouldn’t be too jealous 🙂

    By the way, great blog! I came here from a post you made on the YNAB forums(or some finance related forums). Do you happen to read Mr. Money Mustache’s blog too?

    1. cr says:

      It’s true, the mortgage is probably substantially more than my monthly paycheck. 🙂

      Thanks for the comment and I’m glad you found me! I do read MMM occasionally, and enjoy it. Welcome!

  2. debt debs says:

    It’s not the be all end all. Home ownership is a lot of work, a lot of maintenance. I can’t wait to be done with it, if you want my honest opinion. Hubby and I are at a bit of a cross roads with this. I feel that the house (and associated costs) is too much for what we need. He doesn’t want to sell (yet). Sorry, I’m drinking your w(h)ine. 😉

    1. That is true, for sure. My parents have owned a house as long as I can remember (they bought when I was a baby) and there always seems to be *something* — x to be rebuilt, y to be replaced, whatever. Plus snow shoveling! There’s something very appealing about just turning over maintenance problems to someone else.

      I guess I see the benefits of ownership as (a) having it paid off before retirement so that expenses are lower then and (b) more predictability — I’m always worried that rents are going to climb beyond what I can afford, which is a very realistic fear these days in the US [you’re in Canada, right?] — rents have skyrocketed since the recession, while incomes, of course, have not.

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