Anthony Bourdain, on his approach to personal finance after having not filed taxes for 10 years and running up credit card debt that he ignored until he was 44:
That was really the first time I started thinking about saving
money. About not finding myself in that terrifying space, that
uncertainty that goes back to childhood. Will the car get fixed?
Will we be able to pay for tuition? In very short order, I
contacted the IRS and I paid what I owed. I paid American Express.
Since that time, I am fanatical about not owing anybody any money.
I hate it. I don’t want to carry a balance, ever. I have a
mortgage, but I despise the idea. That was my biggest objection to
buying property, though I wasn’t in the position to pay cash.
The reports of my net worth are about ten times overstated. I
think the people who calculate these things assume that I live a
lot more sensibly than I do. I mean, I don’t live recklessly — I
have one car. But I don’t deprive myself simple pleasures. I’m not
a haggler. There’s not enough time in the world. I tend to go for
the quickest, easiest, what’s comfortable. I want it now. Time’s