News

Pride, jealousy and generosity regarding exotics

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by riverflyer, Oct 19, 2005.

  1. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    The thread about having to explain/justify Ferrari ownership leads me to ask another slightly different question. There were some very thoughful responses offered in that thread and some defiant "I own a Ferrari because I work hard and deserve it" type statements as well. Both, in my opinion, viable answers. We do work hard and have every "right" to our toys.

    My question is really about the nature of that "right". When you reach a point that you can spend $100/200/300k on a car(s), strictly for your own driving pleasure, is there a sense about "appropriatness" that does or should come into play?
    I ask this question in all earnestness and hope the responses will come with care and respect also. For instance, I know people that will gather and hoard everything they can, you know, all for them, f*ck the rest. Then I also have friends who are generous to extreme, are always giving gifts and donations at every opportunity and while they might drive a nice car, it is certainly not expensive, and to them it would be more appropriate and, apparently, more satisfying than owning a $200k Ferrari.
    While I love cars and feel proud of my ownership, I also certainly feel the disparity of owning an expensive car when I drive by a homeless person (I have gotten some nice comments and thumbs up from homeless people working the meridians though!) or when I consider what that money could do for struggling low income families. Personally, I try hard to keep a balance by donating a percentage of my income, creating charity through my business and balancing personal pleasures with social needs and responsibilities.
    Just wondering what other owners feel about this and if it is an issue at all in your thinking and buying habits.
     
  2. To remove this ad click here.

  3. ferrarigtofan

    ferrarigtofan Formula Junior
    BANNED

    Sep 26, 2005
    510
    USA
    I have no problem with people giving their money away, its when they wish to tax me and give my money away I have an issue. You have to wonder what percentage of the U2 fortune Bono has given away with all his debt relief talk. Do you think Bono lives on $300,000/year and gives the rest away? I highly doubt it.
     
  4. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jul 14, 2003
    58,837
    In front of you
    Full Name:
    BCHC
    There are a lot of closet idealists out there driving Ferraris.
     
  5. SrfCity

    SrfCity F1 Veteran

    Nov 1, 2003
    9,842
    Orange County, CA
    Just be a good person and the rest will take care of itself.
     
  6. Tomf-1

    Tomf-1 F1 Rookie
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 17, 2004
    4,475
    Leawood KS/ South FL
    Full Name:
    Thomas
    couldn't have said it better myself.
     
  7. To remove this ad click here.

  8. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    I also doubt it. With the big money comes big tax opportunities where giving away is not really giving, just reclassifying. I wish that was my problem! I admire his efforts though, however it works. Better than many rock stars.
     
  9. spang308

    spang308 Formula Junior

    Jul 17, 2004
    887
    York, PA
    Perfect answer. I live my life by those rules. Help if/when you can and treat others with respect.
    Help doesn't always need to come in the form of $$$$ by the way.
    Give a person a meal and he eats for a day. Teach him how to earn his own meal and he eats for the rest of his life.

    John
     
  10. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    Not sure of your intent with this response. Obviously there is nothing closet about asking a question on a huge internet website, eh?
    And when you say, "thats the way it is" what does "that" mean?
     
  11. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    22,062
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    Not me. I have given a few homeless guys a ride IN the Ferrari. YES I really did. I did it just for fun. One of the guys couldn't figure out what the deal was. I saw him digging for food in a dumpster. He saw me and said "nice car". I told him "thanks", then asked if he was hungry. Of cource he replied "yes", so I said to jump in. The look on his face was just brilliant, hahahahaha. So I gave him a ride to a fast food joint and gave him $20 bucks. Then to top it off the looks of the people at the place, when this homeless dude gets out of a Ferrari. Hahahahahaaaaa. Man I tell you, it was worth it to put up with his smell just for the reactions.
     
  12. To remove this ad click here.

  13. sjb509

    sjb509 Guest

    Kudos to you sir for a great post/thread. The paragraph above really hits home.

    From time to time I find myself looking at the glass as half empty rather than hall full. Then I look around at my life and surroundings and realize what a lucky person I am to be safe & healthy, surrounded by friends and family, and have nice material things. Of course in the normal progression of thought, those less fortunate comes to mind as well.

    I congratulate you not on what you have given, but rather your effort to keep the balance between the wants of yourself and needs of others. Just realizing that the need for balance exists is commendable. Far too many, whose wealth is greater than you or I, haven't yet discovered this need even exists.
     
  14. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    Erine, that is a very cool story, and very generous of you. I have pickedup a couple of hitchikers and they both appreciated the ride AND the car. Most of the homeless people around here have dogs with them unfortunately, but I really like your idea and genrerosity.
     
  15. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    Thank you for the kind remark and even more for so aptly summarizing some of the ramblings I offered.
     
  16. bjm

    bjm Formula Junior

    Nov 1, 2003
    922
    Fairfield County, CT
    Full Name:
    Brian
    Its an interesting question. I think as long as one keeps a good sense of humility and perspective about perceived success and/or material possesions it should not be an issue. I would guess many folks do indeed have a complex about there wealth and like to fly under the radar and drive ordinary cars, live in ordinary houses etc! as not to bring attention to themselves. There's no right and wrong, to each his own.
     
  17. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jul 14, 2003
    58,837
    In front of you
    Full Name:
    BCHC
    Not directed at you. I am simply under the impression that most folks will act on their own needs, whims and desires (first) without thinking about the lesser fortunate at that moment.

    How many guys on this board (after getting the call) would drive to their local dealer to put in their build order, see a homeless guy outside the dealership window, fold over their checkbook and say, "You know what? I shouldn't be doing this. Just look at that poor guy."

    Charity is a personal thing that can't be judged in terms of $$ amounts.

    Unfortunately, most people don't do anything but think "Wouldn't it would be great IF......"
     
  18. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    22,062
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    Thanks.

    Can you imagine later when he was trying to convince his other homeless buddies that he got a ride in a Ferrari. LOL. Oh that would have been really funny.
     
  19. quartermaster

    quartermaster Formula 3

    Sep 11, 2005
    1,813
    I've read your post a couple of times and I think I understand what you are asking. Is it: Where and when should philanthropy begin?; and/or: Should exotic owners be less 'thin-skinned' to thoughtless/insensitive comments made during casual encounters with others?; And/or: is it proper to be proud of the fact of exotic ownership?
    I don't want to change the direction of your thread, so correct me if I am mistaken! This could prove an interesting discussion...
    Keith
     
  20. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    22,062
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    Yet some do.

    "Wouldn't it be great IF......", I were homeless and someone gave me a ride in a Ferrari and $20.

    Do unto other has you would have them do unto you.
     
  21. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Dec 6, 2002
    74,136
    Houston, Texas
    Full Name:
    Bubba
    The concept of "balance" is a perfect description.....

    Bear in mind I have pretty economical Ferraris so I'm the low end of the scale.

    While the perception among my peers is that it's extravagant, the fcat is no one in my life goes neglected because of the hobby. If I miss a meal or economize in other areas to make it happen, no one is the worse for it.

    In addition the cars at one time were a lightning rod for interest that I channeled into Child Advocates, a very worthwhile effort dealing with abused children here in Houston, Texas.

    It has also been wonderful to be The World's Fastest Art Car. To quote Amanda as we went through last year's Parade throwing kisses..."I LOVE all you people....", and while it's all big party fun to her, I derive HUGE heart filling satisfaction to tour the schools the week prior to the parade talking cars and helment safety to wide eyed grade schoolers. They don't know I'm not Schumi himself, and more to the point they could care less! I sign posters and autographs as if I were! LOL!

    And I've posted before but this thread is a great opportunity to repeat it. The last two years I've been with the group that ends at the Lighthouse for the Blind, where they feel the curves of the car, the supple leather driving gloves, the hardness of the helment...........the heat rising from the engine vents........

    Let me tell you all, leaving there, police cycle escorts flashing, sirens blaring...heading downtown for a complimentary luncheon.....the sky turns a REAL BRIGHT shade of blue, you know?

    Transportation Day is great as well, letting about 300 lil' feet trample across the front seats as I chat with the guys in the Fire Truck and Police helicopter....in a town of 3 million, when they go over my house on patrol, I wave....they bank a turn, and wave back..

    Give the love away man, it comes back around, tenfold.......and never look over the fence and try to count other folk's money....it cannot buy happiness!

    Good thread...thanks!
     
  22. darth550

    darth550 Five Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Jul 14, 2003
    58,837
    In front of you
    Full Name:
    BCHC
    OK, here's one:

    What do you say about a guy who only gives enough (to charity) to meet the annual minimum charity requirement to stay in good standing at his country club?

    Keep in mind, its a set percentatge of his income and he makes about 10MM per year....audited.
     
  23. quartermaster

    quartermaster Formula 3

    Sep 11, 2005
    1,813
    Lo! I see many responses since I started writing the above!
    Keith
     
  24. tritone

    tritone F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 8, 2003
    5,335
    On the Rock
    Full Name:
    James
    Not unlike yourself, we live in a rural area, where many, if not most, of the other residents are living at a (very old-school term) "lower middle-class" economic level. (one of the early demographic-based marketing research firms labeled it as "pickups & shotguns"). The sight of my cars on the island is totally out of their understanding of the normal order of things.
    Even if we do get past the "how much does that thing cost?" point in the ferry-line discussion, for the most part they can't think of how anyone would be able to have such a car. "don't I have kids?" "oh, you must be a Microsoftie", etc. Most work relatively low-paying construction jobs, many have only seasonal work, others have to commute off-island daily, still others work in "tourism" which is code for "low-paying/menial/service". It's a costant sense of living in a different 'universe' from many people, and it's not realistic to simply fob it off on "I work hard so............'em".
    It's actually good for me, because if I were to ever forget how fortunate/smart I've been in work and life, these conversations and sideglances will remind me about "the real world" of many other people, and I can readjust my own actions if needed.
    In the end, it doesn't make me feel at all bad about owning Ferraris; but it does help keep my perspective in balance.....

    James
    (great to see this kind of discussion here!)
     
  25. tuttebenne

    tuttebenne F1 Rookie

    Mar 26, 2003
    3,005
    Bay Shore, NY
    Full Name:
    Andy
    Its great to see there are people on this board who at a minimum stop to think about the plight of others.

    Someone once said "Integrity is defined as what you do when no one is watching."

    I get the feeling there are a few here who would pass that test with flying colors.
     
  26. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    22,062
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    I say smart guy. Plus it's a tax write off. :D
     
  27. Erich

    Erich Formula 3

    Sep 9, 2003
    1,138
    Poway CA
    Full Name:
    Erich Coiner
    I guess it depends on the percentage.

    1/2 a percent I might take him aside.
    10% I wouldn't say a thing.

    Erich
     
  28. riverflyer

    riverflyer F1 Rookie

    Nov 26, 2003
    3,560
    Mendocino, Ca
    Full Name:
    John
    You know, to be quite honest, I wrote the post and left it minimized for awhile wondering if it was appropriate or would seem "preachy" or judgemental. I am loving the response and am happy to be having this conversation. This is such a great board. I try and tell non car friends and it just does not compute for most, I guess its one of those"well you have to be there" things.
    Keith, not about should, more about could. Not trying to guilt trip people about 'shoulds" but asking about how resources are used and shared.
    Tex's post is a super example. We love our cars for various reasons and I am certainly going to keep driving one, but here is a great example of how to share the car, the sound, and feel with both children and the blind. Great and thoughtful use of the car and inspiring ideas and ways that ownership contributes rather that separates. Good one Tex!
     

Share This Page