I had originally pledged the three thousand dollars to my cousin's college fund without a second thought. If anything, a secret part of me was already a bit embarrassed in anticipation of the flood of thank you messages I thought I might receive.
This reaction of theirs was a surprise. Bitterness, alienation and sarcasm.
I went to relatively cheap state university, certainly no Ivy League. It cost about ten thousand dollars a year for the program I was in, which is not much cheaper than it is now for state school. I worked at McDonalds and Office Max, both for minimum wage which at the time was less than six dollars an hour.
The college costs were paid for by taking out loans. I borrowed carefully, and for many years after college I paid it BACK, carefully. Law school was paid for by loans again. State school. Again.
Ramen. Cheap TV dinners. Subway, bus, or walk everywhere.
I got hired by a law firm. Worked my ass off and succeeded. Got headhunted by a bigger firm. Made money. Paid off my loans. When I get paid, a huge chunk goes to my daughter's future. Her college, her trust fund, my wife's trust fund, in case I die.
That's being responsible.
I made six hundred thousand dollars last year.
That three grand is a symbol of a trip to Europe I never took in 1999. It's a symbol of me walking in 2002, when he bought an SUV in a city where he doesn't even need a car. It's a representative of me eating a Hungry Man dinner while he wined and dined and tipped like a rockstar.
My kid is three years old and already has a half million dollars in her trust fund, interest growing
I'm not lucky, I worked for it. And I'm working for it now. If you don't get this, you don't belong in my life. You don't belong around me, because I do not want my success to rub off on you. I am just tired. Tired of all the losers, leeches and bums who get angry at me for my success.