A Fool And His Money, An Asshole With A Problem, by Michael Davis – Straight No Chaser #293 | @MDWorld
When I talk about rich, as in wealth, it’s defined by my standards. Others may use a different gauge, but here’s mine: before my family moved into a low-income housing project, my mother, sister, and I (father? What father? I’m black…duh) lived in one room of a boarding house. We all slept in the same bed.
When we made the move to the projects, that was big time. At times growing up, we were so poor that my mother would often go visit relatives around dinnertime so we would be invited to stay for dinner. There were days we had little to eat, and days when my mother would serve mustard or mayonnaise sandwiches. My sister and I would make sugar sandwiches when my mom was not home as our dinner.
One morning meal, which I will NEVER forget as long as I live, was a bowl of Captain Crunch cereal. What, you ask, is so bad about that?
There was no milk, so my mother used water instead.
I was around 6 or so, and I STILL remember how grossed out I was. So that’s the gauge by which I measure poor in my life. Later in life I was shopping for a car, and I was seriously close to buying two Ferraris.
That’s right — two Ferraris. I wanted one for my east coast residence and one for my home on the west coast.
That’s my definition of rich. It’s not anywhere near Gates money, but when you go from mayonnaise sandwiches to stupidly considering buying two “look at how small my dick is” sports cars, that IS Gates rich.
Less than a year after what surely would have been one of the stupidest decisions I could have made in my life (two fucking Ferraris, what an ASSHOLE I was), I could barely cover my expenses. So instead of having an east and west coast residence, I was close to having no residence.
What happened? I made decisions with no regard to anything except my peace of mind. As an example, I walked away from a situation that was paying me a ton of money but made me miserable. Because the corporation was restructuring and the division I ran was not considered core business, I could have left and continued to be paid my huge salary (yeah, my lawyer was the shit) for three years. Let me be clear on what that means: because the tenor of the deal changed by no fault of mine, I could have left, and the company would still have had to pay me my salary PLUS a golden parachute, which in layman’s terms means, “here’s X amount of dollars when you leave because, well, because.” That’s the way it works at a certain level, and I was at that level.
All I had to do get all that money was honor the non-compete clause in my deal. In other words, I would have been paid to leave but could not work in my field for the duration of the non-compete.
OR, if I wanted to leave and work within the industry, I could, but I would leave with nothing. No golden parachute, no three years of salary left on my deal, nothing, zip, nada.
Without a moment’s hesitation, I left it all behind. My team (lawyers, agents, manager) thought I was crazy. Not because it was a bad career choice — Hollywood agents and the like could give a fuck about career choices. Anything you decide to do is fine with them, as long as they get their cut.
I left all the money on the table, so there would no longer be a cut.
Before I left I was working on another deal, but could only do so much before I would be in violation of my contract. For me to peruse a new relationship with another company, I had to sever all ties with the company I was currently at.
For the slow among you (FOX News viewers) that means if you are married, you can’t marry someone else without divorcing the first bitch.
Also consider this: I had no new deal when I left all that money behind. There was no guarantee that there would even be a deal. In Hollywood, nothing is real, and I mean nothing, until there is a signed agreement, and even then it may go away. If I had a dollar every time I was told, “this is a done deal,” I would have been looking to buy seven Ferraris, one for each day of the week.
But the deal closed, and within a month of leaving my previous company, I was setting up new offices at my new one.
That was the good news.
The projects I set up at the new company were eventually successful, but it was a fight every step of the way. Very soon after I arrived, it was clear I was not a good fit for the new company. I clashed with the rank and file on a daily basis.
That was the bad news.
I assumed my clashes were growing pains of a new relationship, but I was wrong, which (and I’m not joking) I rarely am in these matters.
So, what to do? Leave all that new money, not to mention the content I created, which they were (and are) still producing? I couldn’t do that. This was my only income, and as wretched as I was and as fucking dense as they were, I had to be practical.
Michael Davis, practical? That’s like OJ Simpson, smart.
I did not leave empty-handed — I get a cut of everything I created, as long as they use it and they are still using it. The problem with that is the company uses every damn trick in the book to deny me an accounting (but that’s another story) — long story short, I officially now had no income. I went from never having to worry about money to living off my savings, and that’s NEVER a good place to be because it’s no longer savings if you have to live off of it. I figured I could have survived two years without having to worry.
Then I had an very expensive family emergency, and just like that, two years was gone, and now it’s nine months, then it’s six months, and so on. It seemed like every day something horrible would happen and I’d have to write a check.
Hey, shit happens.
Am I smarter today? Fuck that noise, I wasn’t stupid then. I still don’t make decisions based on money when it comes to my career.
Why not? Two reasons: the first is I’m not afraid to be poor, and the second is I have faith in my abilities to land on my feet. And land on my feet I did. Eventually, after some serious challenges, I was once again rolling like a big baller…until I wasn’t…until I was, etc, etc.
I just spent 1,188 words to make this point: money is not as important to me as my peace of mind, and the peace of mind of my family and friends.
Now the surprise ending! I’ve recently have been in talks with a company to develop a project. This thing has been dragging out for months, which is fine with me because I won’t have the time to begin work on it until next year.
I’d like to address the person who called me from the company on Thanksgiving, who proceeded to talk to me like I was his bitch about the deal and the money and what he (and thus the company) would expect me to do for that sum of money.
I don’t know if you were drunk or just stupid. I think drunk. I don’t know or care what pressure you may be under to close this on your side, but if you think you were showing your nigger a shiny new watermelon and I would dance a jig and be happy for that treat, you can see by this article I don’t give a fuck how much something pays — I’m not working in an environment where I have to suffer fools like you.
Who the fuck do you think you were talking to? I said nothing to you at the time because I was busy putting your drunken ass on speakerphone at the Thanksgiving dinner I was at. In other words…witnesses.
Let me know how your meeting about that call goes and the public way the company finds out about it. If I were you, I’d just admit you were drunk, say the black comments were a bad joke, and then fall on your sword. It’s most likely what happened. Not that it makes any difference to me, but it may to your bosses.
On a personal note, if you ever in your life talk to me in such a racist manner, you do so at great risk to your dental work.
This, my dear readers, is the longest “fuck you” I’ve ever written.
No, I’m not concerned about the public way I address it, or if how I wrote it will change any opinions of me at the company. Perhaps I should be concerned, but the CEO of the company is an avid MDW reader, so he knows exactly who he is dealing with.
Now, just how many of you thought the asshole in my title was me?
Yeah, I get that a lot.