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Old 09-13-2014, 01:50 PM   #101
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Having gone to grade school in rural Missouri near the Ozarks and then in Western Oklahoma (which was comparatively wealthy to the Ozarks), I had no sense of the possibility of making it to the top 10%. In fact I had no sense of what that might mean. It was not a goal and I never considered it in my choice of education and profession.
I guess I'm a little different than most on the blog, but I feel almost unbelievably wealthy to be positioned within the top 10%--to be able to retire in mid/late 50's was also unthinkable. So, yes, I feel incredibly wealthy and interacting on a daily basis with those near the bottom reinforces that sense, to me.

I guess one's picture of wealth can be highly relative based on one's early experiences. I went to grad school in California, so it's not like I was completely naive, but the enclaves of SoCal just seemed an alternate almost fictional existence, which I guess it was in part.

In Sartor Resartus, Carlyle writes the key to happiness is to reduce one's denominator, which I took to heart as a non-starving grad student, and I was quite happy in my impoverishment.
Granddad retired early and lived in paradise 2/3 of the year in his cabin in Colorado (that he framed and built when I was 6)--in paradise on a Postal worker's pension, SS, and some savings. He didn't spend much. I always thought he was wealthy since he always carried at least 100 bucks in his wallet, and he was my model for wealth since he did what he wanted to do, which was to fish and help neighbors out.
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Old 09-13-2014, 03:33 PM   #102
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In reality, the original Google garage does not have any cars in it!
As you undoubtedly know, that has nothing to do with my point.

Much of what many people believe has little or nothing to do with researched fact, and much to do with supporting personal beliefs and attitudes that make them feel good. it's just the way humans are made.

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Old 09-14-2014, 10:48 PM   #103
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As you undoubtedly know, that has nothing to do with my point.

Much of what many people believe has little or nothing to do with researched fact, and much to do with supporting personal beliefs and attitudes that make them feel good. it's just the way humans are made.

Ha

And I am certainly one of them.... More than willing to use data and research to prove my point. And totally disregard them when they don't fall in line with my beliefs or anecdotal observations.


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Old 09-15-2014, 05:11 PM   #104
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I was talking to a client about her sons. One had significant income ($300k+), and the other a teacher. They both had about $500k and another $1m in trust. I told the mother that the teacher was "wealthier". She challenged me and I pointed out that if they both lost their jobs, the teacher would be okay for about 10 years and his brother would be broke in about 5 years. It was an eye opener for her to look at wealth not in nominal $, but in relative terms. The sad part is the teacher is looking at retirement now, and his brother, who lost his job 5 years ago, is mooching off his mother (his words), waiting to inherit money.

We who are planning to retire early live below our means and save. A dollar means a lot to us! Those who figure they will work till they die live up to or above their means. Just my two cents


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Old 09-16-2014, 05:45 AM   #105
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We who are planning to retire early live below our means and save. A dollar means a lot to us! Those who figure they will work till they die live up to or above their means. Just my two cents
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That's a good point. I never thought of it that way...but it makes sense. Maybe living it up may be better than us eeking it out? But they live on the edge, with more ups and owns, and more in the present?
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Old 09-16-2014, 07:05 AM   #106
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Those who live on the edge "win" only if they live short lives. They "eat, drink, and are merry" only for a while. When they have a hiccup in their jobs, or incur a large debt (medical etc.), their lives implode and the happiness that they had living beyond their means ends and they begin to exist. Those who live within or, better yet, below their means ride out the hiccups and enjoy their lives, both work and home. The enjoyment of work is due to the knowledge that the job is not needed to pay the bills, but we choose to go in every day.


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Old 09-16-2014, 08:11 AM   #107
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I was talking to a client about her sons. One had significant income ($300k+), and the other a teacher. They both had about $500k and another $1m in trust. I told the mother that the teacher was "wealthier". She challenged me and I pointed out that if they both lost their jobs, the teacher would be okay for about 10 years and his brother would be broke in about 5 years. .....
The lasting 10 years vs 5 years is only true where they are both living paycheck-to-paycheck. If both have similar lifestyles/cost of living then the $1.5m would last the same number of years, right?

Doesn't sound like that was the case with your client tho since the higher income brother is falling on hard times.
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Old 09-16-2014, 02:52 PM   #108
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"Defining Rich in America"

Tadpoles are rich.

And all kinds of nutritious to bigger fish and amphibians.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:02 PM   #109
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Rich is having enough wealth to be FI 5 or 10 times over. Filthy rich is being able to spend all that rich guys money on personal toys each and every year with no worries of running low on fun money.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:16 PM   #110
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Rich is having enough wealth to be FI 5 or 10 times over. Filthy rich is being able to spend all that rich guys money on personal toys each and every year with no worries of running low on fun money.
+1
Yea I would say rich start at somewhere between 5-10 Million (invest-able assets). Depends which part of country you live in.
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Old 09-16-2014, 06:54 PM   #111
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Those who live on the edge "win" only if they live short lives. They "eat, drink, and are merry" only for a while. When they have a hiccup in their jobs, or incur a large debt (medical etc.), their lives implode and the happiness that they had living beyond their means ends and they begin to exist. Those who live within or, better yet, below their means ride out the hiccups and enjoy their lives, both work and home. The enjoyment of work is due to the knowledge that the job is not needed to pay the bills, but we choose to go in every day.
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