It’s never good when someone from the bank calls to verify your debit card charges and asks if you booked a flight through Thai Airways.

“Ugh,” I said from behind the two-foot mountain of paperwork in front of me at my desk. “No.”

“What about Sri Lankan Air Line?”

“I wiiiiish,” I moaned, imagining a beach and a Mai Thai and the type of refreshing ocean view that reminds me I am only one insignificant cog in an impossibly expansive universe. I honestly didn’t even know where Sri Lanka was, but just the name sounded so exotic that it made me lusty for the smell of a new bathing suit.

After the bank lady gave me instructions on how to get my money back, I sat in my little office, peering out my window that looks out onto somebody else’s window and considering all this information. And I came to this conclusion: Somebody planned a fucking awesome trip on my dime.

I imagined this criminal excitedly boarding a plane to Thailand and then Sri Lanka a few months from now. But then I realized that the type of person who steals credit card information probably isn’t the type to plan their vacations months in advance the way I do, and that this person was probably already at a pedicure spa in Bangkok, getting the bacteria sucked off his/her feet by a tank full of Garra Rufa fish at that very moment.


(Photo yanked from Fish Pedicure).

And that that could have been me. I literally funded that trip with the hours I have put into my counseling and my paperwork and I could have just as easily sent myself to Asia to place my own damn feet in the Garra Rufa tank.

Having my credit card information stolen always forces me to reexamine my life choices. And by always I mean the only other time this happened, when someone used my info to donate four dollars to a children’s hospital in Australia. And I had to ask myself, when’s the last time I donated four dollars to a children’s hospital in Australia? Or anywhere? Never. The answer was never. I was actually living a more selfish life than my credit card thief.

So really, when you think about it, shouldn’t we all be living our lives a little more like credit card thieves?

What is money, anyway, but an invisible point system used to rank ourselves against other human beings who are otherwise equal—not so different than points in a videogame?

Point taken, credit card thieves. I think we can all benefit from the wisdom you are trying to impart:

Life is short. The world is large. Travel. Donate. Be bold and spontaneous. Don’t hoard all your money away for a future that may never come. YOLO. Go now. The Garra Rufa are waiting.