I remember in college how everyone was in the same boat. We were all poor. The word free was your best friend and cheap was the girl next door (let’s keep it G-rated here). A penny saved was a penny closer to a pint at Murphy’s on Logo Night. Dorm food was inedible and Greet St. cost a fortune. Ramon Noodles and pizza created the 6th food group, napping was a God given right, skipping class was a venial sin, and the best things happen after midnight. I remember those days well; I miss them.
And then there’s the life after college. College kids call it the “Real World” but college grads calls it “College, the Super Senior Years”. Yes, it’s only the extension of the college life (boozing, partying, and living it up) but now you’re no longer poor because you have a job.
Sadly for me, working in a Catholic school means being poor. Thus, I fall in between the lifestyles of two worlds. And yet, I can’t really complain. It’s fun and yet frustrating because I can’t always do things that everyone else does because of my financial status. But, I will admit that my creativity to make the dollar stretch has improved greatly. And this is coming from a guy who had lunch leftovers, mash potatoes from a box, and vanilla ice cream with crushed Snickers for dinner. Maybe one day I will make the big bucks, maybe I’ll get the promotion I want next week (it only justify the amount of work I put in currently), maybe I’ll win the lottery…whatever it is, I’m happy and satisfied. Who really needs money when you’re having fun? And for that, I have to thank my friends, my students, and the insane about of free things to do in Chicago. I may not be living the lifestyle of the rich & famous, but I sure feel like it.