I am not a man you can say has been gifted with the ability to make money.
There are many reasons for this, none of which strike me as tragic despite the fact that more than one woman in my life has bailed after they realized, that like the early Beatles, I decided at a young age that 'money can't buy me love.'
Also the things I love and do best, writing poetry and short stories, have done me little financial good despite having been published literally hundreds of times. Except when I am thirsty for better wine than I can reasonably afford I have accepted this fate.
Also, I share a medieval attitude toward business as a necessary evil and not a true career. I am not in the majority here because this culture is unthinkingly enamored and impressed by big cars, fancy clothes and sheer dollars. These attitudes are fine in high school but have caused us many, many social problems since. Unlike my more radical brethren I don't blanket-hate the rich. I had super wealthy buddies in Sun Valley during my four years near the slopes and I am in awe of talent that somehow does make the possessor a good living.
For example, I was impressed by Michael Jordan and so applauded his ability to capitalize off the court as well as on. But I have never cared for corporate self-enrichers and still think anyone, including the Seattle Art Museum, that genuflects before pure corruption and takes money from the likes of Kerry Killinger are contemptible, along with the money grubbers themselves. Money without merit is an empty shrine.
Although no Mick Jagger, I have been luckier at love, at least the short-term, one to two a year variety. My marital record is not so good but I sadly feel, in retrospect, I was probably not a guy who could go his entire life with one woman.
I was married 11 years and did spend another six years with a lovely girl, all between 25 and 45, but since, usually within a year I am bored and if by chance I am still enthralled I lose out because the woman has finally discovered my genuine lack of interest in wage slavery.
I can hate the game but not the individual playerettes. I'm fairly tight with all but three of my exes over the past four decades. After all, they were nice enough to try and love me.
It's not all bad though. What I have been truly blessed with over the years is the capacity to make good loyal friends. In my immediate post-armed forces years, as I've written here before, I had some trouble with drugs and availed myself of counseling. The doctor who finally helped me escape addiction and find my way back to productivity and a semblance of normality said to me once, (I don't remember the conversational context 35 years later) 'A person is lucky to have two or three good friends in his entire life.'
I have three or four right now. I've known two of them 15 years and the third and fourth for almost 20 years. My definition of a good friend includes someone you can tell the entire truth to and still not be judged. Corrected, yes, judged no.
A good friend will also lend you money or let you sleep on his and her couch for a few weeks, if need be.
You could trust them to watch your dog, cat or goldfish without worrying the animal will be dead when you return for them. And most importantly a good friend is loyal to you even when you are not around. They tell you if someone is plotting on you, they help you with your resume or worse, your moves.
One of the reasons I've been blessed with good friends for the past 40 years is, although poor, I am generous to a fault with material stuff. If I have wine half of it is my friend's. And you can sleep on my floor and share my food. Money I seldom have enough of to loan but when I do you can borrow.
Basically, I am very loyal to those who are loyal to me and I have kept friends I seldom see because of geography or in one case, legality, for my entire life.
I value my friends more than anyone in my life except my children. Relationships almost always end or mutate into, guess what, a friendship-partnership. The long marriages I know of are less lust and love and more affection and shared values as the years go by.
Maybe I have been blessed with good friends because I value true friendship more than money, status or romantic love. Could success in any area of life be that simple? You get what you give? Now there's a thought.[[In-content Ad]]