Friday, November 04, 2011
Born On Second, Did Not Hit A Double
From a personal standpoint, it's a weird time for me economically. I was in the Top 5% for a number of years before I made the first of a series of life changes, and now am in a polar opposite situation mostly by choice.
I'd always been an odd fit for my old economic strata: I retained the same modest house I'd bought when I was making 1/3 of my ultimate income, didn't refit my kitchen with marble and stainless steel or whatnot, etc. I was also a vociferous advocate for a more progressive approach to doling out bonuses and other silly commie things.
Thing is, I never forgot how I got where I was. My parents worked wicked hard to move us from poverty to upper middle class success. They sent me to a great school. They helped me during the recession as I got on my feet after graduation.
I also happened to get lucky being hired for pennies as a graphic illustrator--thanks, Colby College, for giving me so many extracurricular opportunities that I could learn enough design and illustration to fake it. I then quickly added network administration (more up my alley) to the job, was internally hired as a technical instructor, raced up through ranks, became a director, got to write my own ticket...etc.
I mean it when I say I got lucky. My first experience being hired evaporated before I could even start: the company moved out of state right after I was offered my job. After 11 more months of unemployment, a great company took a risk on a philosophy and Russian major.
Make no mistake, I earned my success. I paid my dues, I worked hard, I learned a lot. I had a certain amount of skill.
But as NTodd's Pa once told me, the secret to making it big is luck, timing and talent. In. That. Order.
You can of course have a lot of luck and good timing, but if you can't take advantage of what's tossed your way, success will be elusive. More pertinent to the vast millions of the 99%, you can work your ass off but without the 1st two elements, you are, well...shit out of luck.
I have had a lot of luck and decent timing in my life. Lucky in what country I was born in (that Socialist Whore is right on the money) and in which parents I had. Great timing in buying a Freep one day and seeing an ad for the company I'd end up working at for 17 years.
So yes, 1%ers (and everybody else, really), you're very special and talented. Good for you. Just remember there's more to it than that. Maybe then you'll understand why you need to kick in a bit more if you're rich A Job Creator and why The Poors aren't inherently lazy and do deserve to have a fridge and maybe even a phone. We can't all be spotted a couple extra bases...
November 4, 2011 | Permalink
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