For the past few years, a couple of characters have been duking it out in my head. In the right corner, the care-free, young dreamer with a major case of the I-wants: Ralphie of a Christmas Story. In the left corner, Suze Orman, the wiser, pragmatic financial advisor who reminds me on a weekly basis to be more reserved about money, resist the urge to spend like a drunken sailor, and prioritize those needs over wants.
More than anything else in the world, Ralphie wanted a Little Red Rider BB gun for Christmas. He rattled off all the great features of it to anyone who listened. My Inner Ralphie wants a Cervelo P2 with Ultegra, FSA cranks, and Fizik seat in the worst possible way you can imagine.
Then there's Suze and her "Can I afford it segments?" People call in with their heartfelt desire for a material item. Then she asks them to "show me the money!" The callers divulge their living costs, savings, and debts like they're in a confessional. I've been watching this show long enough to know if she'll "approve" or "deny" the purchase. Kind of fun to play along.
So I could easily hear My Inner Suze glow about that P2. "Oh I hope you can afford it. I wanna see you cruise down PCH all aerodynamic in your Lycra bike outfit! All right, show me what you've got girlfriend!!" My response last year would've been something like "Well, I've got a small savings ...and...er...uh...an empty GU wrapper." Oh, I could hear scream "DENIED!"
It's not easy being me sometimes. My Inner Ralphie and My Inner Suze have gone a full 15 rounds. The final bell has rung. They were formable opponents.