The Perks of College Poverty
Call it a silver lining or the upkeep of an illusion, but sometimes, a college kid has to find the bright side of being totally and completely broke. Unless you have the benefit of a trust fund, most kids in college at some point or another, maybe while checking their online statement, discover they are down to their last benjamin.
A lot goes through your head.
– I will starve before I tell my parents
-Man I am really going to have to budget
-I wonder what kind of prospects my march madness bracket has?
-Is the lotto over 100 million yet?
After the initial shock, and the prospect of formals and social events go flying from your future grasp, any resilient college kid will shake it off, and decide with determination that not all is lost. As long as you can have the willpower to stick to a budget. So how do college kids prioritize their budget?
with the following guiding principle: given the X dollars you make in a week, spend half on beer, and save the rest to the best of your ability.
Food? Scooter repair?
-No. At the end of the day, food can be scavenged, a college gear head can fix your moped, and if you don’t allot half your budget to saving for social events, there is a 100% probability that you will be pissed that you are missing out, and you are going to take that anger out on a bowl of ice cream; Which you bought as an extra grocery item (i.e something other than beer) and therefore violating the only guiding principle of college budgeting.
If you are successful in your budgeting commitment there are a few skills/lessons to be gained:
1. Eating local/organic/fair trade is a dumb marketing ploy targeted towards overprotective mothers.
2. Eating local/organic/fair trade beer is a dumb marketing ploy targeted towards artisan hipsters. Or people from Ashville, NC.
3. Hormone injected fruits and vegetables are not only cheaper, but a helluva lot bigger. $$$
4. College poverty opens the door of creativity not only in the form of cheap food creations, but also cheap thrills.
5. Your willingness to do things for money is high. You will almost do anything. Sometimes that puts you in situations that you would not expect yourself to be in. Like driving around drunk 40 somethings so that they can see if their chihuahua is safe at home.
6. It builds character. That’s what adults tell me.
7. Most people assume your poor because you are in college, so you can usually milk that for all its worth. Or get out of participating in pay only events that you don’t want to attend and bemoan your budget.
8. Well, its only up from here. Its not like you can lose money from being totally broke.
9. You can create lofty lifestyle goals on pinterest without people wondering if you actually can afford it. Like creating a huge pin board comprised of designer clothes and chanel bags like it is something you are pinterested in purchasing. If you could afford that stuff, you would look totally obnoxious, but since you are poor in college, you get a pass.
And after you are done going HAM on pinterest, go into your fridge, crack a beer, or in many a case a twisted tea and be glad that you have a semilegitimate excuse to call it your meal.