I just love “Dumb Criminal” stories. I also love relating dumb criminal stories to personal finance.
But that’s the way God made me so don’t be hatin’.
The latest dumb criminal/personal finance fiasco is one that I heard on my morning commute a few weeks ago about a guy who tried to rob a gas station.
Gas Station Robbery Antics
He rushes into the station, shotgun blazing, and demands all the cash from the cashier. A bystander sees what’s going on, whips out a can of pepper spray, and sprays the criminal directly in the eyes, turning the robber’s eyeballs into flaming orbs of capsaicin goodness.
The robber drops the shotgun and runs out of the store, failing miserably at his robbery attempt. Score one for the good guys!
No that’s not the dumb part.
The next day, the robber returns to the store. It seems that the shotgun he used for the attempted robbery was very special to him and he offered the store manager a wad of cash so he could buy it back.
While the store manager was in the back “retrieving” the gun, he called the police who promptly arrived to cuff the robber and take him off to jail.
So how does this relate to personal finance?
Well, it’s obvious that this guy needed money. Unfortunately, he chose an unwise way to try to get what he needed and ended up getting burned in the process. When he returned to buy back that shotgun that was so precious to him, he was arrested and trouble ensued in his life that would literally take years to correct.
This is like the person who gets himself too far into debt.
The robber went to the gas station seeking other people’s money to use as his own, just as we go to the credit card company, payday loan or rent to own franchise, etc. to use other people’s money, but with their permission.
But alas, the robber soon realizes that trying to use other people’s money eventually hindered his vision in a big way.
The same thing happens when you borrow money to live your life. You are no longer able to see yourself prospering financially because you become bogged down with debt payments that keep you in perpetual bondage.
When you get into debt deep enough, then you start making desperate decisions (like when he tries to buy back the gun) that eventually result in an even larger mess that takes a huge amount of time and effort to clean up.
Don’t be like a dumb criminal, if you don’t use borrowed money, don’t start. If you do, then make the choice to get out of that bondage that is debt, and never go back.