A few nights ago, I was watching “Cops” on Court TV. I love Cops. It is probably the most entertaining show on television. I get to see complete idiots, drunk, staggering around, and swearing to the police officers that he did not beat his wife up. Ah, America at its best!
So I am watching Cops, and the police have responded to a call of shots fired. Turns out there is a dead man, in his sixties, lying by a hotel. Also turns out that the police actually know who he is. The man worked in a local grocery store, as a bagger, and in his spare time visited and worked with homeless kids, as well as probationary teens, who needed help. The guy was not paid to do it, was very well respected, and liked by everyone. All he ever tried to do was good, the police officer told the camera crew. Sadly shaking his head.
Steve Fossett, on the other hand, is a 58-year old investment millionaire who, in his spare time, likes to fly a balloon around the world. Or at least tries to. He is making his sixth attempt to do so, after failing two times so far.
Even Bud Light is in on this act, sponsoring the event. Or as I like to say, sponsoring the idiot.
Look! Up in the sky! It’s… It’s… a Rich Idiot!
How much money do you figure it costs for Mr. Fossett to attempt this? At least a few million, minimum. You can learn more about him from his web site, linked about, but I found this about him as well: “Steve Fossett is the world’s most accomplished speed sailor. He holds the 7 fastest official World Records and 13 of the 22 Outright World Records in sailing as certified by the World Sailing Speed Record Council. Fossett made sailing history in October 2001 with his transatlantic record of 4 days 17 hours – shattering the previous record by 43 hours 35 minutes, at more than 7 knots increase in average speed.”
So here we have a poor grocery store bagger, dead in a parking lot at a motel, there to help others. To try and help the younger generation. To give back to his community. And here we have Mr. Adventurer Rich Idiot, who cannot find anything more worthwhile to spend his time and money on than meaningless records and self-promoted fame.
If the above grocery store bagger and Mr. Fossett died on the same day, in the same town, which do you think would be the bigger news? Now which of these two men do you think has made a bigger, positive impact on the world?
Good luck in your oh-so important trip around the world in your balloon, Steve. I am sure the world will be a much better place to live once your task is complete.