Homeless living in a van: that’s what I used to tell people when they would ask about our boys Justin and Adam. In case you aren’t aware, they are traveling the entire U.S. this year, with a goal of visiting every single state and for the most part they’re living in a van.
To their credit, they saved their money, bought and paid for the van in cash, and had enough money saved to fund their trip for the entire year. Then they went out and got a couple of corporate sponsors who are sending them money every month that covers their basic expenses. Last time I heard, they have hardly dipped into any of their personal savings.
Back to the story, I got a kick out of describing our boys as being homeless living in a van more to get a reaction out of people, but I guess my wife, Annette, got a little embarrassed by this without people knowing the whole story. So now, when asked, I’ve started telling folks they are on the adventure of a lifetime, experiencing in a year what most people will never experience in their entire lifetime.
Both of my descriptions of the boy’s trip have a level of accuracy to them, but your impression of the boys and their trip is probably different depending on which explanation I would have given you. Two young men homeless, living in a van compared to two young men on the adventure of a lifetime experiencing in a year what most folks will never experience in a lifetime.
Remember this story when it comes to financial uncertainty in the economy and financial markets. Recently, the stock market, measured by the DOW, dropped 600 points in a day and needless to say, the financial media was all over this whipping everybody into a frenzy. Because, well, 600 sounds like a big number. But when you look at 600 points compared to the market close, it represents about three per cent. Now imagine the headlines if the news media reported ‘Stock market drops three per cent’. I’m guessing it’s more of a yawn than anything else; certainly not a reason for widespread panic and hysteria.
Oh, and just as a reference point, we have seen worse, much, much worse. I remember Black Monday of 1987, that day the stock market dropped 250 points. Not quite 600 but back then a 250-point drop in the DOW represented a one-day drop of 25 per cent. So it all depends on how you position and frame the topic at hand, which could have significant influence on your emotions, positive or negative.
If you’re tired of the financial media whipping you into a frenzy and looking for an alternative source of entertainment, pardon the brief commercial while I suggest you go visit Justin and Adam’s website, it’s www.brod-trip.com, b-r-o-d hyphen trip.com, brod as in brothers, road trip, b-r-o-d hyphen trip.com. I’m pretty sure you will get more useful information and enjoyable entertainment watching their videos instead of the financial pornography the media creates!