Before We Begin
I just watched Crazy Rich Asians, the movie based on the book by Kevin Kwan, and by golly was it amazing.
I am of Chinese descent from Thailand and went with friends who were American of Chinese descent and we all laughed and cried the entire movie.
It was so full of feels.
But not to get all emotional right now, let’s stick to the task at hand.
*There will be some spoilers ahead if you haven’t watched the movie yet.*
In The Beginning – FIRE, FatFIRE, FU Money
When I started on the FIRE path (Financial Independence Retire Early), it was understood that the minimum money goal to reach is $1 million because if the stock market averaged 6-10% growth a year, you can safely withdraw 4% of it every year and let the remainder compound year after year.
So your first year, your $1 million might grow $60,000 if the stock market goes up 6% and you only use $40,000 of it.
That’s cool because the remaining $20,000 of growth would be reinvested and compounded into the principle and next year you’d have even more money lol.
My girlfriend and I did something similar when we took 4 months off to travel Asia.
We spent roughly a total of $15,000 traveling.
That means if we were to travel indefinitely abroad, it would take an estimated $45,000 for a full 12 months.
$15,000 for 4 months = $45,000 for 12 months.
Initially, for when we reach FIRE, we understood that we’d be spending longer time in places, which would reduce our spending because a lot of it was on trying new foods in each area.
By living longer in a place, we would eventually have sampled all the new foods in the area so we would start cooking our own meals to save money instead of eating out all the time.
But at some point, I realized regular FIRE wasn’t really enough for the lifestyle my girlfriend and I wanted.
That’s when I found out via the blogger, Physician on FIRE, there was another sect of FIRE called FatFIRE, his article here is titled “What is fatFIRE?”
My short explanation of FatFIRE is where you strive for beyond $1 million.
By doing so, if you live off the 4% rule, you’d be able to live a more lavish lifestyle than just the initial $40,000 a year off of $1 million.
But I don’t want to reach FatFIRE status for the sake of living a more lavish lifestyle.
In short, FU money is being to say “Fuck You” to anyone and anything you want because you’re financially independent and you don’t need their stinkin’ money.
If you don’t like your boss: “Fuck You.”
If you don’t like your job: “Fuck You.”
If you don’t like your town: “Fuck You.”
You kind of get the idea?
But FU money can only allow you to say “Fuck You” up to a certain extent.
Super FU Money
This is where Super FU Money comes into play.
In the beginning of Crazy Rich Asians, the movie starts in 1995 with a heavy rainstorm in London at a fancy hotel.
A well dressed Asian family walks in and the lady of the house says they booked the most expensive private suite at the top of the hotel.
The white concierge snubs her and says he can’t find her reservation. Then the white manager comes out and says that all the rooms are booked for the night.
The Asian lady says that she spoke with them on the phone to book and confirm this reservation but they insist that she and her family leave.
She asks if she can use the hotel phone and they tell her to use the one outside in the pouring rain.
Next scene we see her in the phone booth outside in the pouring rain.
Then we see her walk back into the hotel, and the manager is telling her to get out before he calls the police.
Then we see an old white man in a robe, presumably the owner of the hotel, come out of the elevator and greet the Asian lady like they’re old friends.
He informs the manager and concierge that he has just sold the hotel to this Asian lady and her husband and to prep the fanciest suite for them.
The manager and concierge stand there dumbfounded as she saunters off with a smile on her face.
She tells them, “Do get a mop. The floor is wet.”
What Does This Have To Do With Super FU Money?
Well, if you only had FU money, and you experience this kind of racism, what could you have done?
Just walk out and go spend your money elsewhere at a hotel that maybe had less racist staff, perhaps? Feeling slightly smug about yourself but deep down harboring resentment at the staff?
But with Super FU Money, you can buy out the hotel completely, teach the staff who’s boss, and that all guests should be treated with respect and dignity because, first of all, without guests nor customers, they wouldn’t have a salary.
Money knows no skin color nor race.
Which was why this opening scene resonated with me so much.
Applying Super FU Money And FatFIRE
My parents told me about the level of prejudice and racism they had to deal with when they first came to America in 1998.
They told me stories about how real estate brokers and business brokers would laugh in their faces because their English wasn’t good enough and then basically shoo them out the door.
Or when my parents asked if these people could speak or explain things a little bit slower because their English comprehension still wasn’t that good.
Instead of slowing down so my immigrant parents could understand better, they spoke even faster.
It’s stories like these that infuriate me.
And I guess they infuriate me so much because it shows a lack of respect, understanding, and empathy for the suffering and struggles of our fellow human being.
It also infuriates me to hear about this because it speaks to a more vulnerable time of our initial years in America.
Back in Thailand, my parents made more money via businesses they owned than any of these real estate brokers could hope to make in their whole entire lives.
The only reason why my parents aren’t back in Thailand right now with their boatloads of Super FU Money like Crazy Rich Asians is because while they were good at making money and creating business opportunities, they weren’t good at keeping it nor hiring the right team to take care of it.
So they over-leveraged and lost it all.
Which is why regardless of which level of FIRE you strive for, whether you strive for FU money or Super FU Money, financial literacy is key because its pervades into just about every aspect of your life.
You want to eat healthier? Imagine being able to afford all the healthiest organic gobbledegook you want AND a Cook to make them all for you.
You want to get fit? Now you can hire the best personal trainer to give you a fitness regiment tailored to your specific body shape and physical needs.
The list goes on and on. You get the idea?
So stop reading this.
Get on your grind.
Hustle smart, hustle hard.
Save and invest them dollars wisely.
Good luck with all of your endeavors and one day, you too will get Super FU Money. 😊
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