Friday, June 29, 2012

Anthony Davis

So you're Anthony Davis. You are 19 years old and next year you are guaranteed a minimum of 4.3million dollars in salary.

Anthony turned 19 in March. Two months after my 19th birthday I got a job working for the Fuller Brush Company. I worked with my buddy Kenny as a picker. A picker stands on a conveyor belt. When a box for a customer arrives at your station, you read the order form on the box, and then pick the products off the wall that a customer has ordered. So, if someone orders a certain kind of toothbrush, you pluck say # 2145 a whiz bang toothbrush off the shelves and place it in a box. When you are done picking you push the box to the next picker on the line.

Two months after Anthony Davis's 19th birthday he was shaking hands with Commissioner David Stern and is able to buy every toothbrush in every CVS in the world and still have money left for floss.

Kenny and I lasted two days as pickers. We were temporary replacements anyway, and I dont recall a particular offense being the reason for our brief stint. I do recall it being pretty good money. About three bucks an hour.

What do you do with 4.3 million dollars when you are 19. I know that I gathered the money I amassed working at Fuller Brush and other locales to buy a 1963 Chevy Impala that got maybe 12 miles to the gallon.

Anthony Davis will probably work for fifteen years playing basketball. Unless all the experts are wrong, he will be a superstar.

Here is the question: Is there a downside to earning over 60 million dollars before you turn 35. It is a question that I have not had the good fortune to answer from a first person perspective, but let me guess. I think it could be painless. Nevertheless I do think there can be a downside not to have spent time working at Fuller Brush, or McDonalds, or the post office, or the Thruway or as a potwasher or a bus boy--all stellar jobs I held before getting rich making 9 grand as a high school English teacher.

If self actualization is the key for us all, I think it is tougher to become self actualized without having spent some time being concerned as an adult with having to pay the rent.

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