Monday, June 01, 2009

Overheard at BookExpo

As usual, I attended Book Expo America this past weekend. I didn't have a chance to do much scouting for new personal finance books, but I did manage to score a free copy of Chris Anderson's new book, appropriately titled "Free: The Future of a Radical Price."

The most interesting money-related moment of the show for me actually occurred in the bathroom. There was a very friendly attendant working there who was chatting with all of us waiting in line. Here's what she was saying while I was there, more or less:

I'm working here from 7 AM to 7 at night. No, I don't mind at all. I have another job too!
I go home after this job, I sleep for 2 hours, then I get up and go to my other job, cleaning offices at night. It's ok-- hey, my kids are all grown and out of the house.
I thank God that I have even one job in this economy. Nowadays, I laugh to see all these rich people who are scared! I see it in their faces, they're scared.
And to think, I used to feel intimidated by rich people. That's why they build all those tall buildings, so they can sit in them and look down on everybody...

Contrast this to another conversation I overheard, between two well-dressed young women who worked for publishers.They had obviously just run into each other after not seeing each other for a while:

Woman A: Hey, we have to get together! We still haven't done our Brooklyn thing!
Woman B: I know, I know! But I'm really broke again.
A: And I'm really busy...
B: Well, we have to find a time. Around the 15th of the month is a good time for me.
A: Ok, we'll find a time...

I guess Woman B was scheduling her social activities around payday. It's just fascinating how different people can be in their attitudes towards money and time!


Sicilian said...

Excellent observation and excellent comparison. . . . . I am always amazed at how people handle money. . . . . it isn't how much you make, but how much you spend that is my motto. . . . .

KB said...

I admire the attendant for working so hard and having such a positive outlook about his jobs, but I do have to wonder how long he could go on functioning with only 2 hours of sleep each night.

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