Let's talk about money. There are a lot of people who think that if they are happier when they make $20,000 a year than when they make $10,000 that making $40,000 will make them happier yet. They might be right. The problem falls down when people who are making $100,000 a year think they would be 1,000 times happier if they had $100,000,000 . I'm pretty sure they wouldn't be happier at all.
We had an experiment of sorts last week when the whole family stayed at the Copacabana Palace. Ronda had asked if we were coming to Brazil, and after hesitating a bit - because when you found a start-up, especially in a competitive field like video games, you do try to conserve funds, I said, yes, Julia and I would come. It is important to support your children, even if it takes some sacrifices. It was only then I found out that someone else was picking up our expenses for the sort of vacation God would go on if he had the money. The moral of this story is either a) always support your children or b) I am very lucky.
Rio was lovely. We had terrific food at both a Michelin star restaurant and at some small local place that served traditional Brazilian food, fed monkeys that came down from trees to take fruit from us, sunbathed at beautiful beaches.
About 100 times each, we told Ronda,
This is all very appreciated, but not necessary.
We all agreed at the end, that it was fun but we were very glad to return to our respective homes. I think we all had a very liberating revelation of something we had always suspected. That is, that we really don't need a lot to be happy. We can enjoy outstanding service, but we are not dependent on it. That is a very, very good thing because I have seen too many people sacrifice what matters in life for money.
You don't need diamonds or special treatment to make you happy. Most people know that, but they see a thousand ads a day that try to convince them otherwise. If you start believing the hype, then you are willing to work at a job you hate, spend too much time away from your family, tolerate indignities from your boss or customers, make unethical choices, all so you can maintain a certain lifestyle.
As with many things in life, what at first glance seems like a disadvantage is really in our favor. Since, in our family, we have all had times when we had to do without, not fly first class, find our way around without guides, greeters, drivers and a hundred other accommodations, we know not only that we can but that sometimes it can be quite nice.
Freud was right. The only two things you really need to be happy are this; to love and to work.
Everything else is just frosting on the cake.
Speaking of work - I have a day job, making video games that make you smarter. Download Spirit Lake or Fish Lake. Improve your math skills and learn some Native American history. Good stuff !
If you're already too smart for your own good, feel free to sponsor a game license for a classroom or school.