1) A coworker keeps responding to my discussion of my new toys with "Wow, I wish I could afford one of those... I just don't have the money."
A week of few ago, we were discussing various opportunities outside our current positions. It was mentioned that they received an offer from an ex-coworker for an amount of money. They had to decline because it was well below what they currently make. They mentioned thier current salary, as well.
Here's the kicker - this person currently makes approximately 170% of what I make now. The offer they refused was for about 130% of what I make now. Now, I know they have a longer resume - they're something like 20 years older than I am. However, aside from a few details, I am much more proficient at the work we do. I work faster, more effeciently, and adapt to changes much more quickly.
Now, I'm not really bitter at the pay difference currently. I know people around here do NOT get paid based on skill or value to the company. There are, however, two parts to this that really burn my butter.
a) If someone who makes 70% more money than me can't afford a toy, then WTF is wrong with them? Seriously. I can't imagine how mismanaged and screwed up their cashflow is. Ok, their kids are grown. They have a SO. They have a house. They appear to have 2 cars. Where is all their money going?
b) I gave my resume to the ex-coworker before they left. I checked up with them a bit later, asking if they had any openings. I didn't hear anything back, but they gave an offer to this other person. That bothers me.
And then, on to the next major point.
2) I had lunch with an ex-coworker (different one) the other week. I mentioned that I had just paid off my car, and they freaked out. "How did you have that much money?" That sort of thing. Again, this person makes approximately 160% of my salary. If they can't save up $10K over 3 years, WTF is wrong with them?
It is beyond me, really. Perhaps it's just that I had Chichi's financial influence and these others did not. If I want a new toy, I will save up for it. I will start eating cheaper and saving money where I can in order to pay for it outright. I don't buy on credit unless I'm sure I can pay it off when it comes due.
Granted, I had my college paid for. I have no student loans to worry about, unlike many of my friends. However, also unlike many of my friends, if I had them then paying them off would be my frist priority. I hate debt. I avoid it wherever possible. The reason I leased my car instead of buying it was that I hated the thought of being locked into paying for it monthly over 5 years. Leasing, I could do it in 3 and save up the rest to pay it off. Now that it is mine, the pressure is off and I have that much more money each month to either save or spend as I wish. This is one of the major reasons I don't want to buy a house.
I don't know... I may be spoiled, or at least sound like it. However, I've seen plenty of evidence that I manage my money much better than many others do. It's not really all that hard - spend less than you make.