Broke?… fine. Dependent?… not so much.

30865254_f5cb185b36Hello, good morning, and welcome to the Saturday Morning News Post!

I’m feeling a bit tired this morning and boy are my legs sore! You see, it’s the sweet spot of Summertime in Vancouver right now, which means that it’s not raining for awhile, the sun is shining, and the temperature is perfect; hot but not too hot.

Great weather for biking around town (instead of driving), playing frolf (frisbee-golf), and drinking. Which incidentally, is exactly what I was doing last night. In case you’ve never tried it, an evening of partying followed by biking hard for 30mins in a very hilly city leads to a tired morning.

Anyways, my good friend who I was biking with is a lawyer, and a very sensible guy. The kind of guy who will become a lawyer and then, rather than live it up like,… well,… like a 32 yr-old lawyer could, he chooses to live at home while he pays off debts and consequently saves up to buy a house. A pretty solid plan.

So on this bike ride he said a few things which are ringing in my head this morning; he was talking about our mutual friends who work in a business which is typically contract to contract, 6 months at a time, not locked in to anything while also not receiving any sort of health benefits or pension. “I sure hope they’re planning ahead, because job-wise it’s a different world from what our parents knew. Businesses are not taking care of employees anymore, everybody’s on their own.”

Later on in the exhausting bike-ride (he’s also in better shape than me so I was struggling to keep up and wheezing like a cardiac arrest victim) he went to talk about our “spending generation”, buying nice cars and houses they maybe can’t afford. Meanwhile, a lot of these people aren’t putting away savings for a time when they aren’t working due to health issues, or economic issues, or simply having an out-of-date skillset. “It’s gonna catch up with them,… it has to.”

You may be thinking this guy is a tad too sensible. I don’t think so, to me, “too sensible” is only the case when someone isn’t enjoying their lives, and that’s not the case here.

Anyways, it made me think “Yeah, that would be kind of irresponsible to not save up for that point in time when you can’t (or don’t want to) work anymore, to be dependent on others when you’re older.” And then I thought about my own situation; no, I’m not being irresponsible with the money I make, because,… I hardly make any fucking money to begin with! And then the little dark clouds moved right square over my head and started pouring. You see, when I was just beginning on my path as a professional musician I knew the financial side would be rough but I also knew that following my dream was more important to me than money. And this holds true for me today as well, I don’t have any regrets, BUT now I see that while not having much $ is okay with me, the possibility of being financially dependent on others for the rest of my life is not. The thing is,… these kinda go hand in hand. No?

Well, that was cheerful! I may continue this train of thought next week, but for now I must go play a jam session! As usual, any and all comments are welcome.

Thanks for reading and have a great week everyone!

  • Mufflstiltskin

    I think you’re right J. Dander.
    I think it’s about time you stopped doing what you love and what makes your life worth living for something more mundane, safe and predictable. I think we would all applaud your tenacity. And besides – what is old age without regrets of unfulfilled dreams?
    Now go out there and get an RRSP you loser!

  • Mufflstiltskin

    (Don’t excuse sensibility for one persons dedicated need to move seamlessly from the house of one woman who looks after them into another and the amazing ability to rationalize it.)

  • amanda

    James,do what your heart tells you to do.:-) I am proud of what you are doing! you should have confidence in what you are doing.:-) you are so young and you have planty of times to figure out how you prepare when you get old.:-)

  • james

    @ Mufflstiltskin; Haha. Yeah, upon re-reading the SMNP, I can see that it might look like I’m mourning the fact that I don’t make more money as an artist. But really, I’m not. I’m thrilled to do what I do. I was just thinking out loud about some concerns, which, like I said, aren’t so much about having a low income but just the concern of having to rely heavily on others because of a lack of planning. I don’t know, I’m pretty sure this is just me worrying about the worst-case scenario kinda thing,… pretty useless.

    @ Amanda; thanks for the encouraging words! Rest assured, I will keep on keepin on.

  • John Doheny

    Wow. A 32 year old lawyer who freeloads off his parents. Sure wish I’d grabbed that option when I could. Except that, um…my parents would absolutely not have put up with that shit lol. In any case, by the time I was 32 my parents were divorced, so I would have had to sleep in one or the other’s bathtub in their respective apartments.

    As for health benefits, I’m guessing that the amount you earn has excempted you from writing that $54 a month check to MSP for some considerable time. Be thankful you don’t live in the US. My monthly “health insurance” tab is $367, and even then I’m stuck with co-pays and deductables, sometimes running into hundreds of dollars, every time I see a doctor.

    You live in a kinder, gentler nation, my friend. Given your modest requirements, I’d say you’ll do just fine.