A woman I work with came to me a couple weeks ago and presented to me an exciting opportunity to present our volunteer opportunities to a junior high group. I agreed to do it.
And then, I found out (after she was out of town) that I was in fact taking her place at her daughter's school for HER daughter's Career Day. Sneaky devil.
I got to the school late this morning (turns out that there's an important difference between Salt Lake and Bountiful), and as I enter the gymnasium where I'm presenting, I witness the following:
There was a man in an expensive looking suit who had a microphone in his hand that was working juuust fine, but he had it nowhere near his mouth, and he was yelling out to the crowd of kids on the bleachers instead.
Man: ...finances. Mr. Taylor is an associate of mine, and he's poured cement landings bigger than this gymnasium. (Pointing to a student with his hand raised) Yes, you have a question?
Kid: How much money do you make?
Man: ...Well, that's not really what's important. I own my own company because I know how to tell people what to do, and I have money because I know how to not spend it on iPods and cell phones and stuff. I hope you just listened there, I just taught you an important principle. Think about it. (Point) You had a question?
Kid 2: Do you live in a mansion?
Man: (Nervous laugh)... Well, everything is relative. And every dime I've made I've spent wisely, which is why I was able to pay off my mortgage when I was 39. But that's not important, the important thing is what I just told you there. I hope you were paying attention...
Kid 3: (Yells out) What kind of car do you drive?
Man: ...Look. If I happen to have my house paid off and drive a two hundred thousand dollar car and have a whole lot of money to play with, it's only because I'm really good at what I do. If you're good at things, you can have the things I do in my life. I hope you listened there. Be proactive, and you can be like me. Anyone else?
As I stood there and listened I was relieved to see the teachers around me had amused smiles on their faces as well.
Of course, then it was my turn to present:
Me: (After making sure Mr. Business was no longer in the room) Well, let's get some things out of the way. I don't live in a mansion, I don't make very much money, and I am still making payments on my car. But, I've always wanted to lead a crowd of people in doing the wave. Will you guys help me out here?
Of course the kids were putty in my hands after that, and I had several teachers thank me as I was leaving for keeping things fun. And, I drove home in my Honda Civic feeling like a million bucks... or at least like two hundred thousand dollars.