Worry Do

Dear J-

It all sneaks up on you, eventually or otherwise; a little bit here and a little bit there eventually means you’re paying a lot for things you never meant to cost so much. That’s the way it goes. What you need and what you can afford are often two different levels so are you patient enough to wait? Is this really what you’re willing to do? How much are you willing to spend on yourself versus how much would you spend for the kids? And why is there such a discrepancy? The problem is when you don’t manage the money you don’t realize how much you hemmorhage every month in the normal course of things: groceries, mortgage, gas, train pass, day care, long nights spent thinking about what we can afford versus what we’ve been spending, property taxes, fun weekends out with the kids.

You do these things not because you can but because there’s irresistible deals everywhere, or so it seems; man, if only I had that then … what? I remember thinking the German glass was unbeatable and now here I am without any particular usage of the three Leica-R lenses buried in the closet, to say nothing of the full complement of Nikon glass that’s been moved here and there for fifteen years or more. I keep thinking that eventually and if only but the truth is I have little need or use for this stuff, even with the thousand other things going on right now (now that I think about it, I have a way to get nearly my preferred 35mm-equivalent length going with a fast lens on the old D1h I have lying around somewhere …)

For me eBay is an endlessly renewing thrift shop that I don’t have to go to in person to shop from; before I got junk delivered to my door I used to have to go get it myself and often carry it home by hand, which was a rough criterion for how much I could afford and how much I should: can you get it home? If not, reconsider. I tried doing something similar recently and found I wasn’t in as much shape as I remembered, or at least as I perceived. It’s all right. Spend less time worrying about what you haven’t got and think about making the most of what you do.



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