“I am doing something meaningful with the money that I’ve earned”

ShadabShadab Alam is Marketing Manager at Internshala. When he’s not letting the world know about the epicness that is Internshala, he is laughing so hard he annoys the neighbours and almost makes his friends homeless. Shadab carries this joviality everywhere except when it comes to his salary — he makes the decision about how to spend his first salary with utmost seriousness. Read on!

Many people ponder a lot about their first love, first job, first salary and God knows whatnot; I could never fathom this: why? Maybe they think they’d cherish these moments later in life, or maybe they’d share them with their grandkids. If you’re planning to do the latter, heed my advice and drop the thought; I’d hate to see a septuagenarian being disappointed by his/her grandkids (C’mon, how much time do you spend with your grandparents?).

I cannot recall it, but I am sure that I would have talked and planned a lot about the red letter day – of course, I mean the day I’d receive my first salary.

Today I received my first salary. No special feelings. Honestly, it’s just like any other day. No, I do receive a decent salary; it is just a random thought crossed my mind and I got pensive. Actually, I tried to compare the salary of a niyojit shikshak – newly recruited teachers in Bihar and the State’s chief minister’s paycheck (Rs 6,000/- vs. it’ll take Amartya Sen to calculate) – and was wondering what  they, a teacher and the CM, would write if somehow I could get them to participate in Internshala’s My 1st Stipend contest. Would a teacher whine about the pittance and the CM add his favorite ingredient – feigning magnanimity and patriotism – in their respective write-ups? Well, I think it’s a valid assumption to make.

The other day I was watching Invictus, a Hollywood movie on Nelson Mandela, and a particular scene just stuck in my mind. President Mandela donates one third of his salary to charity because he thinks his salary is too high. I think it’s a great idea, but some may find it platonic.

Then again, I have needs and there is no way to get away from them. I am no Nelson Mandela, but at least I can do something thoughtful with my first salary. I’ve promised my cousin brother that I’ll buy him a computer as I know it’ll be a great help to him, and it won’t affect me much. I’ve made my decision and I’ve even told this to my ammi – she’s happy with my decision.

I feel good for not wasting my first salary in throwing a lavish party for my friends, who, by the way, are already stuffed; I am happy for not donating my money to religious stuff. Why? I’ll have to write a thick book on ‘why’, so I am postponing the explanation for now, sorry.

I am happy that I am doing something meaningful with the money that I’ve earned.

I have heard people saying this: thought is contagious. I hope Mandela’s goes viral.

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