Several years ago I wrote a very popular post highlighting the seven deadly sins of personal finance. Of course, one of those seven deadly sins was greed.
Greed often makes people do some really crazy things they wouldn’t otherwise consider.
For example, Baker from Man Vs. Debt asked the other day if you would be willing to kill a stranger for a billion bucks.
I can honestly say that I would never even consider such a proposal for a billion dollars, and I would be insulted at such an offer if it were to ever come my way. In fact, I feel the need to take a shower just writing about such an evil proposition.
On the other hand, if the offer was for two billion dollars I probably would have to mull it over for just a little bit.
Do you remember the 1993 movie Indecent Proposal starring Robert Redford and Demi Moore? In that movie Robert Redford ends up agreeing to let his wife sleep with another man for $1 million. Thanks to inflation that amounts to $1,472,031 in today’s dollars.
A telephone poll conducted by Entertainment Weekly determined that almost eight percent of respondents would, um, loan their spouse to somebody for the evening. Another 13% wanted to think about it – most likely over a few cocktails, I’m sure. I suspect the majority of those people were in the “yes” camp but were too embarrassed to admit it.
Would you be willing to do that? I certainly wouldn’t.
But, then again, everybody has their price.
It’s not as if $1,472,031 is chump change. When confronted with a proposition, everybody will do something for that tidy amount of money.
The trick is figuring out where you as an individual draw the line.
Maybe you wouldn’t offer your spouse up for $1 million, but maybe you would if the number was $10 million, or $100 million. If you’re being honest, there is a number out there that’s going to cause you to rationalize your decision for taking the money.
I recently found an internet poll that asked people what they would do for a million bucks. Some of the answers were quite disturbing to me. For example, at the time this post was written:
38% of those participating were actually willing to euthanize their pet.
8% would have one of their limbs surgically removed.
1% would have their tongue removed.
So how about you? What would you actually consider doing for $1,472,031? I’ve included 14 hypothetical propositions along with my thoughts on what I would do if given the chance:
1. Go on a bread and water diet for two years.
I’d take this proposition in a New York minute. I love bread and I can think of worse things to drink than water. Hopefully, I wouldn’t die of scurvy or something like that before the two years was up.
2. Never eat meat again – assuming you’re not a vegetarian, of course.
Sorry. That is sacrificing a little too much of what life has to offer.
3. Move to another country – permanently. (Catch: It must be a country whose primary language you can’t speak.)
Ooo. That’s tempting, but I can’t imagine leaving America and never being able to come back.
4. Given only a machete, flint and the clothes on your back, live alone on a deserted island for two years.
Although I am a big fan of Survivorman, I am no Les Stroud. Forget it.
5. Give up television for the rest of your life.
Give up television for a year – absolutely. Two years, probably. For the rest of my life? Never. A life without House Hunters is a life that’s just not worth living.
6. Have a sex change operation.
7. Live the rest of your life 250 pounds overweight.
Why would I want to live the life of an grossly overweight millionaire? Never.
8. Play one round of Russian Roulette.
Considering the payoff, those are some lousy odds.
9. Have all your teeth pulled out.
No. (And that’s the tooth.)
10. Put a tattoo on your forehead that said in large letters: I’M A SELL-OUT
Although that tattoo may read “…SELL-OUT,” it’s really screaming “MORON.” No.
11. Sleep in a box of deadly scorpions every night for two weeks (8-hours each day).
Hell no! I’d rather play Russian Roulette.
12. Give up your driving privileges for the rest of your life.
Driving isn’t all it’s cracked up to be anyway. Absolutely!
13. Sit at the bottom of an outhouse for 8 hours – naked.
Uh, no. Then again, if I was allowed to wear one of those HazMat outfits…
14. Give up the last 10 years of your natural life.
If I knew I was otherwise going to live to be 100 years old, I would go for it. But what if the good Lord’s plans for me aren’t so generous? I don’t think it’s worth the risk.
Okay, I’ve given you my opinions. Now let me hear from you. Which of these crazy propositions would you take on for $1,472,031?