I'm sure we're all aware how audaciously tacky it is to talk about money, right? Well, coming from a girl who generally wears multicolored mismatched socks with wedge boots, a gray sweatsuit, and some sort of seasonally inappropriate tank top, money is EXACTLY what I want to talk about today! This week was quite tense in my household for a few reasons. For one, I'm short over half my rent (which was due Saturday), another reason was that I took a (much needed) social media break, so I have absolutely no idea what's going on in the world. Good or bad. This gave me some time to reflect on life and a little bit about myself and my values. Oddly enough, it wasn't as stressful as one would think. Eh, I'm not really a stressful person to begin with. Anywho, I decided to include a chapter about money in my upcoming book, so if you want a more in-depth perspective, stay tuned! I will however, scratch some of the surface since it's quite pertinent to my current situation.
Artist life can be tough. Even tougher however, is freelance artist life. The toughest of them all you may ask? Well, it's probably whatever the heck it is that I'm doing. I've never really been good at sales. When I use to work at a cell phone store many moons ago, my mentality was, if a person wants a phone, they'll buy a phone. They don't really need much of my convincing to persuade them either way. I didn't really give a crap if anybody bought anything. Any chance I had, I'd be more inclined to give stuff away for free. This is sort of the situation I'm in now. I love the fact that I have a website that can reach so many people. I love the fact that I can put out my writings each and every week, as well as videos and photos. I find advertisements and product placement to be extremely distracting, but I am aware that this is how a large percentage of blogs and websites make their income. Everything seems to be about sales! What is a person to do if they don't want to sell anything though? What I really want to do is just give everything away. But that seems crazy right? They say if you're good at something, never do it for free. Why the heck not? Why is it so crazy if a person doesn't want to make money? I do realize that money is a necessary evil in society, so meh, I have to make atleast enough to live. This is when I thought of the "donation-based" idea. Whoever has money and likes my content could help keep it going. Those who don't have anything shouldn't have to miss out. Eh, in a world of go fund me's trying to keep children alive and global disaster relief, nobody seems to be overwhelmingly donating to the arts. So how then can I make this all work? That is my current artistic conundrum.
It's funny though, in spite of my distaste for money, I've discovered over the years that I actually do enjoy the fancier side of life. I LOVE eating at fancy restaurants. I LOVE staying in hotels. I love traveling all over and having spa days. The weird thing is, I've never really liked having actual money. When I have it, I just try to get rid of it as opposed to hoarding it (or "saving" as people like to call it). I usually spend money on everything I want, but nothing I need. In a perfect world, I wouldn't have to use money at all, I'd just use the barter system or something like that. Whenever I do find myself doing something fancy, it's probably because of a loophole discount, referral credit, friend of a friend, me knowing an employee, or a number of other things...rarely paying full price. It's not that I'm some sort of career scam artist or anything, I just never liked the figure amount associated with the almighty dollar bill, so I'd rather find a way to get stuff as opposed to the money to buy stuff. Some say age ain't nothin but a number, well I say money ain't nothin but a number. A number that separates people by a thing called "class". A number that could mean a world of difference to the privileges and disadvantages a person has in their life. It's all quite terrible. Who invented this?? How has money become the deity it seems to be today? It causes people to lie, cheat, steal, kill, and destroy, all for what? A higher number. Guess what though, numbers are infinite. How can one ever be satisfied?
I took a break from social media this week (including Instagram and facebook) because in addition to my phone being a piece of crap and running out of battery power within minutes of use, I found myself becoming addicted to it. I would wake up in the morning to check. I would constantly refresh throughout the day. It would be the last thing I saw before shutting my eyes at night. I'd say to myself, just a few more scrolls. BUT, just like money, the scrolling is (pretty much) infinite. There is never an end in sight. I know, I know, the comparison is a stretch, but I just like to compare everything to everything else. Why not! Sometimes it's good to take a step back from whatever seems to have a controlling grip on you, whether that is money, social media, or something else.
I realize that I'm quite fortunate to have the opportunity to be as whimsical about money as I am. I don't have kids or anything, I don't have any sick relatives, no real monetary obligations besides my own. Now is the perfect time for me to just figure it all out since there is no immediate rush on me having tons of financial stability. The road gets rocky, but it could be a billion times worse. As I said in my Gettiin' By post a few weeks ago, I want everyone to know that even without tons of money, life can still be fabulous. I'm living proof that you can be short on your rent, and still take a middle of the week road trip to upstate New York to dine at a quaint little Barbecue joint (which was amazing by the way. Highly recommended). Money comes, money goes, but experiences and sharing your talents with the world are worth much more. To me atleast. Don't you worry guys and gals, I'll be fine. I always am (through some miraculous way). Perhaps instead of putting my rent money in an envelope, I'll print out a copy of this blog and give it to my landlord? April fools? I'll be sure to let you know how it goes!
P.s. The above photo is from the Imperial Suite at the Ritz Paris. I stumbled upon this room while researching for my upcoming birthday. A mere $18,000 euros a night! Even while eating ramen for dinner, mental indulgence is the key to my sanity. And who knows, anything is possible if you put it into the universe.
P.p.s. I very much enjoyed my social media break, however, my website traffic took a freakin NOSE DIVE! Out of site, out of mind huh? Maybe I'll hire someone to do all of my social media stuff for me in the future.
P.p.p.s. One thing I got a chance to do last week was look for volunteer work. I've been interested lately in helping out (without the muddying waters of a paycheck). I think I may have found a few promising leads. That's right folks, not sure why, but I'd much rather volunteer than work for the man. It'll all work out, right?