We're all picking up our own versions of the eggshell ritual these days. Maybe you circle past the valet until you find a spot on the street, maybe you just don't go out to eat much anymore, or maybe you go to a matinee instead of Macy's on Sunday afternoons. Even if you're doing fine, you've probably started making your coffee at home, and you've finally found the courage to say, "tap" when the waiter asks, "sparkling or flat?"
True, we will always be the creators of the Hail Mary pass, and this is still the Republic of Risk and Reward. But when did we begin to cripple ourselves with the idea that "rich" is a stage of life as inevitable as adolescence or old age, and with the attitude that no amount of debt or deception can keep us from getting our due? When were we consumed by our own consumption? We've always heard that rich and happy aren't the same thing, but its been a while since we've been forced to prove it.