Many years ago I was part of the IPO team for an emerging tech business.
After a long but successful raise, I was invited to the closing celebration which was held on the west coast.
I spent the entire 6 hour flight, devouring lobster and ice cream sundaes, and in deep conversation with the newly public – and well capitalized – company’s chairman.
I was just barely 30 years old with so much to learn – not only about business but about life.
At the time, I was still single and finding it increasingly more difficult to find someone I really clicked with.
Maybe it was because I was still not sure what I was even looking for.
I guess I figured I would know it when I found it.
Or when it found me.
In any event, the chairman gave me advice that I will never forget. He said that if you want to find true love, “look beneath all the stuff.”
He had all the stuff that money could buy, and had just been through a very nasty divorce.
He said that he knew his marriage was over when he began mentally removing every item they owned – one by one – and asking himself would he still be happy?
When he mentally removed their last possession, he realized that it was the stuff, not the person making him happy.
He said he just wanted someone whom he can live in a hut with – without stuff.
Every date I went on since that conversation (and my G*d were there many), I would try to envision myself living in a hut with that person – penniless and gray.
Most guys I couldn’t even fathom surviving living in a palace with.
And then I found Greg – the guy who could one day make stuffless hut dwelling fun.
And just think, without a dishwasher and washer / dryer, there’d be nothing to even fight about.
Happy Valentines Day to the guy who keeps me laughing.