• Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
  • Sunshine and Unicorns
sunshine & unicorns: a blog about love, learning, and life in the upper midwest

15 October 2009

spirit of a hustler and the swagger of a college kid

We watched a movie last weekend called American Gangster. It's a good movie (about a guy who smuggles Heroin from Vietnam, and a cop who is trying to catch him). Russell Crowe plays the cop, and his character is a 'rare breed' (at least in this movie): an honest cop. That is, he does not take bribes from criminals. Most of his fellow officers do.

Early in the film, Crowe and his partner find about a million dollars in unmarked cash in the trunk of a car in New Jersey. His partner wants to keep the money. No one else knows about it. Keeping the money would not be the right thing to do though, so Crowe turns it in. This action comes up several times throughout the film -- cops, gangsters and others keep bringing up how stupid Crowe['s character] was for turning in all that 'free' money.

After watching the movie, I turned to Pink Hubby and said "I would have kept the money." He told me he would not have. I revised my answer and said I would have at least kept some of it.

Why? Well, why does anyone want money? I like money! I have debts that need paying and things I wouldn't mind buying, too. Hell, if I kept even a quarter of the money and turned in the other 750,000, I'd be sitting pretty. I'd keep the money hidden somewhere and spend it slowly. I have a good job, but I sure wouldn't mind a little (or large) supplement!

Also, it's the situation that matters to me.

This trunk-of-the-car money? It is just sitting there, belonging to some bookie (I think that was the movie situation). If I found a bunch of money laying on the ground in my office at work, that'd be a different story. It probably belongs to one of my coworkers and in that case, I'd turn it in. Or if I found someone's jewelry or other valuables, I'd turn that in too. It's possibly sentimental to someone else. But random money in no way tied to me or anyone I know? I sure as hell would take and keep that money - at least some of it. I don't even think I'd feel guilty about it: I'd just think of it as my lucky day.

What about you? Are there situations where you would or wouldn't be an 'honest citizen?' What factors would you consider? Do you think I'm a bad person for [hypothetically] keeping the money?