I read an interesting article in the press today about David and Victoria Beckham which I will quote in full. ” David and Victoria Beckham are worth a combined £339 million, yet David suggests that the couple are on an economy drive these days. The footballer tells the Evening Standard magazine “we used to be very extravagant in what we would buy for each other but we are obviously saving the pennies now because we have too many children to be extravagant“.
It’s an unconvincing argument, however, because the Beckhams clearly still enjoy drinking lavish bottles of wine on nights out. The couple have been flashing the maples bottles of Screaming Eagle at £2750 and chateaux Margaux Grand Vin, 1995 for £716 on their Instagram accounts. David says he is relieved that his wife’s tastes have improved. He adds: “she went through a stage of drinking a nice Blue Nun and a little bit of Lambrusco, but now it’s changed”.
To say that I was slightly taken aback would be an understatement. I remember George Clooney planning to live in London and noticing how the price of Day Travelcards had increased. The day he condescends to travel on the tube will be when I eat my proverbial hat.
I do wonder if people like the Beckhams or indeed any rich couple are slightly paranoid. Of course you can trust people, relatively speaking, that are in your trade namely footballing or fashion and you have known for a long time. But how do you deal with or what attitude do you have to a person who you do not know who approaches you, apparently pleasant enough, with a business proposition. Is it you they want to get to know or your money?
If famous people go anywhere in public, they will be spotted and asked for the inevitable selfie. Since David is known worldwide not to mention his wife, privacy is impossible except if you go on a desert island all to yourself. David Beckham is known for being polite and for this I do admire him. He could tell people to get lost but his neighbours say that he is polite and considerate of them and would not want to upset them in any way.
Having said all this, are they still concerned that their money pot will be insufficient? You can’t take it when you go. It would be easy to dismiss this as reliance on materialism and yet I would have thought that David is well beyond this. In a way you are at the mercy of the press who will say anything they like about your relationships all your lifestyle and if you defend yourself it looks like there’s something to the rumour or accusation. It must not be particularly easy for the children to be asked all sorts of questions about their famous dad.
Does David feel embarrassed about being in the top 1% of the world’s population financial wise? Does he ever feel guilty about what he has accumulated? Are such people able to find therapists skilled in the art of advising the super rich? I wonder if there is a bond between the super rich themselves or whether there is a competitive element which precludes this.
To answer the original question of this article, no money is enough if you are paranoid, lonely, afraid of being kidnapped, afraid of being burgled, and afraid of not being able to make contact with people through things in common. For example, the everyday person in the street would probably have financial concerns of one sort or another and there’s no way such people would share their woes with a person perceived to be rich since it might be considered a form of begging.
I think the concern about money is nothing to do with money as such but the fragility and vulnerability of the lifestyle . If you are depressed, how many people will be sympathetic to you? if I had a lot of money I would go around in disguise so to speak and engage people with them on their level where they are, and find people whose interests you have in common. I do know that in USA, people are very much more relaxed about how much money you’ve got and in a way they don’t care. People who are stars in this country and would get mobbed here like to escape to America because no one recognises them or if they do, are not particularly interested.
So, really, everyone needs therapy of some sort. If you’re poor and need to go to the citizens advice bureau, if you’re rich need wealth therapy. I can only wonder how people who have suddenly become wealthy through for example winning the lotto manage their lives. I know that a lot of them crash and burn due to immaturity. I know many of them lose their relationships. However, there are glorious exceptions. I read about a couple in Scotland who won £150 million and they did it properly by forming a trust which was philanthropic in nature. If I was fortunate enough to to win money I would give myself a salary, so much a year, stick to my faithful old Volvo, and give to good causes to somehow stem the tide of increasing materialism and decreasing community spirit.
I say that easily but things might turn out entirely differently. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve heard people say “this won’t change my life” but come on, it must do. I like family minded winners who say they’re going to divide their lotto winnings equally between their family and make sure everybody is all right.
We can remember the earliest winner of note Viv Nicholson, a Yorkshire housewife, who in 1961 won £152,319 in the football pools. Her motto was “spend spend spend”. A rags to riches to rags again story takes us through five husbands, expensive sport cars, fur coats, and jewellery plus a battle with alcohol and then bankruptcy.
….Fun while it lasted then.
May be, the answer to any insecurity would be to squirrel away your assets in safe places and not be greedy for that extra few percent but also to become a philanthropist and have a planned system of giving, bringing happiness to others. You could leave the world a better place when you left it there when you arrived. Finally, if you realise that we’re not a physical body and our spirit would live on eternally that would be a luxurious belief indeed.
Now that would be a result.