"Is to start with a large one, and work down from there." --Unknown
Photo courtesy of Ryan Bayona
afternoon, J was talking to me about high-end car racing (as he is wont
to do), when he uttered the above racing aphorism. While I had heard
the statement several times before, it really struck me for two reasons
this time around:
1. Racing is ridiculously expensive.
2. When you get right down to it (and forgive me, J), it is ultimately pointless.
Much like Felix Baumgartner's skydive
from space last year, car racing is something that people spend an
inordinate amount of money on, basically for bragging rights.
course, I recognize that there is so much more than that to racing,
sports, ridiculous sky dives, etc. If there weren't, we'd all just sit
on our couches all day watching the Kardashians.
But, it does have
me thinking and wondering about how much money one should be willing to
invest in a passion. The people who invest countless dollars into
racecars do so because they absolutely love it. They derive more joy
from racing than I do from ice cream. If they've got the large fortune
to work down to a small fortune, why not use it for their passion?
On a small scale, J and I do both have similar money-gobbling passions. He is restoring his 1976 BMW 2002.
(Pictured: Not J's actual car)
the 10 years I've known J, the car has not run under its own steam. It
is currently in pieces in our garage, and J loves to spend hours
breaking it down into smaller pieces so that he can once again put it
back together later on. Between the hours he's spent, the tools he's
bought, the parts he's purchased, the moving expenses he has incurred in
transporting it several times, and the cost of the body work he will
have to farm out, the amount of money he has spent on this car is a heck
of a lot higher than the car's worth--even considering the level of
geeky car love this particular BMW engenders in car types.
I wouldn't ask him to give up this passion, or the money and time he has spent on it. But it is kind of illogical.
For me, I spend a ridiculous amount of money and time--well, not nearly as much time as I'd like--making quilts:
though I could purchase pre-made quilts for a great deal less than the
cost of my fabric and sewing equipment--and reduce the number of heart
attacks that threaten me whenever one of these quilts needs to be
cleaned--I still prefer to do my own sewing and spend more than I have
to for my warmth/decorative needs.
Thankfully, we don't live in a
completely logical world (I imagine there's no racecar driving on planet
Vulcan), or else there would be a lot of wonderful (but ultimately
pointless) stuff we'd miss out on.
We should all have a passion
that we're willing to spend money on--even if all it truly does is make a
small fortune even smaller.
What passions are you willing to spend money on?