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April 2013, vol 9, no 1

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Peter Newton

Average Joe

Some big lottery winner from a few years back is on the news this morning. They’re doing some kind of Where Are They Now? segment. He says, “you have to grow into the money.” I wouldn’t know, I say, immediately soured by someone else’s dumb luck. But think: yeah. He’s probably right. You have to grow into everything that happens to you.

I’m almost late for work but I drink my coffee watching the rest of what this nouveau riche guy has to say. He’s an old hand at this rags-to-riches interview. So cool, laid-back, the way he speaks to the talk show host like someone who has survived something. A flood maybe. The man who is not me seems genuinely at peace. His millions tucked safely off-shore. God, I can be such a cynic. But this stranger’s encouragement to forge ahead, discover some new place in my life where riches lie hidden. Free for the taking. Maybe this average Joe in a sweatshirt and jeans is onto something. So many things, he says, stay the same. The look on his face a mix of gratitude and astonishment.

a little help
starting over
morning glory