Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Who wants to be a millionaire?

Dinner-time conversation with a friend got me thinking – very deeply. The topic was related to work/ compensation. He said( I paraphrase) - when I was a student just a while back, the prospect of earning this much money seemed great. I wondered what my friends (who were already working) did with the money they earned. Now that we’re here, it’s obviously not enough. Everyone wants more. But I’m not unhappy with what I’m earning. Bonuses, stocks, pay raise, it’s no big deal.

It was refreshing - a relief to hear someone with a real sense of perspective on what matters and what doesn’t. Work matters – doing it well is worship in some ways. Excelling and getting due credit for it isn’t a bad thing. I really believe that the satisfaction you get from a job well-done is pretty good motivation for keeping at it.

But there’s more to life. Money is a means, not an end. A German car for the love of driving is one thing, but a German car as a status symbol is completely something else ( there’s a reason I put the 3-series right next to the Camry and the Accord – it’s such a clichéd thing to own). So are ridiculous McMansions with space for 10 while being occupied by two people and a dog.

Money is over-rated I say. While I'm at it, for the record, I also say that I want a Bose sound system, an SLK and a condo overlooking the Sound.


CAR said...

Ajay, You make sense for most of your post some remarks you made were very personal. I hope you do not mind this rebuttal.

First off, The 3 series cannot be placed in the same category as the Accord. Further, the Accord cannot be placed near the Camry. If you are classifying as motorized vehicles, then yes, Even the Ferrari 430 can be compared to a Maruti 800.

But before you generalize so broadly, i urge you to think again. The 2006 3 series is undoubtedly the best sedan in the compact sedan category. Sure its way over priced but if you can afford it then be assured that you will have the best driving experience in that category. I see you point about it being merely a financial statement but isnt at SLK?( More about this later)

The Accord and Camry are very different beasts too. Camry is solely designed for people who love the washing machiness of an American Car with the reliablity of Japanese engineering. The Honda on the other hand makes certain attempts to provide some driving feedback to driver.

And SLK? I know buying a car is extremely sybjective and you might want it just for it looks but must you settle on a mediocre Mercedes? The Benz had specialised in building luxurious and superfast sedans. All other categories, I fear they have failed.

I think i missed the point of the post.

Ajay said...

DW: I think you did miss my point. I'm not surprised you concentrated on the cars and not anything else :)

I've sat in the older 3-series (not the 2006 one) though I haven't had the fortune of driving one. I haven't even sat in an SLK so the only aspirational value for me is due to the looks of the car.

I'm not comparing the quality of the BMW with the Honda or the Toyota. I'm looking at what statement a car makes -especially when one is not a gearhead like you are. I see too many people buying an Accord or a Camry simply because it is the 'safe' thing to do - quality of the cars notwithstanding. "You can't go wrong with a Honda or a Toyota" is a common attitude.

When you grow richer, that car becomes a 3-series.

Do you drive a BMW simply because you now have money to flaunt, or is the love of the drive a factor? That is a good way for me to put it so that you'll get what I was trying to say.

(Comments longer than posts? This has to be a first for this blog :))

CAR said...

heheh I know. I just wanted to talk cars