A fascinating pre-recession tale. I'd love to read an update:
Once Potential increases, Desire ratchets up to retain its competitive advantage. You have to maintain canned-tuna tastes on a caviar budget in a credit-card abusing culture. Almost no one pulls that trick off, except for the janitors and secretaries you occasionally read about in the obituaries, who had quietly accumulated a million dollars' worth of the crumbs that had fallen their way during 30 years of minimum-wage work. They remained poor in their souls even as they became materially wealthy. For the rest of us, each of us is a tightly wound spring, poised and just waiting for the winning lottery ticket to pay the bill on a dream life already purchased on credit. For this reason, a substantial minority of American lottery winners end up not only poor but downright broke or bankrupt a few years later. One lottery winner I read about bought a roundtrip ticket to wealth and returned home to poverty and a trailer smaller than the one she had started in.