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What Would You Do With $30 Million Dollars? Revisiting Brewster’s Millions with Melissa

Posted By melissa On 06/18/2013 @ 12:15 pm In General | 9 Comments

Remember Brewster’s Millions? In that movie, Richard Pryor plays Brewster who must spend $30 million in 30 days to inherit $300 million. The rules are that at the end of 30 days, he can have no assets from the money, and he’s only allowed to give 5% to charity and spend 5% gambling. He can tell no one why he is spending the money.

Many of us may daydream about what we would do if we won the lottery, but the hard part of Brewster’s challenge is that he can have no assets. What is not completely clear is if you can buy assets for others, since he does shower his friends with clothing and jewelry. If I had to blow through $30 million in 30 days, there are several ways I would spend it. (Let’s just ignore the fact that $30 million in 1985′s dollars is now the equivalent of $64.5 million in 2012 dollars, according to the U.S. Inflation Calculator [3].)

1. Give to charity. Right off the bat, I would donate my 5% to charity, though I would not take the other 5% and gamble. Brewster had the unfortunate luck of having friends who invested for him, earned him money, and then he had to get rid of even more money.

2.  Travel. I would take a week or two to travel and fly via private jet and stay in the most opulent lodgings available. While there, I would pay people a handsome salary for any task I could think of so I could get rid of as much money as possible.

3.  Buy things for others. I’d buy things for others such as clothes and other things they needed. If I could give them assets, I would buy a nice house for my mom and some other relatives. I would buy them expensive cars. However, I’m not sure if this would be against the rules, but if it isn’t, that would be an easy way to drop a few million.

4.  Buy meals for everyone. Every time I was in a restaurant, I’d buy meals for everyone in the restaurant.  I’d give the servers, cooks, etc. huge tips. I’d make sure to try to do this for every meal to go through a good chunk of money.

5.  Set up a state of the art research lab.  My husband does DNA research, so I’d set up a state of the art research lab at his employer’s university. After all, I wouldn’t have the asset at the end of the 30 days; the university would.

Brewster had several creative ways to burn through his money including buying a stamp worth almost a million dollars to send a postcard and running for public office.  Running for office was what ultimately helped him get rid of so much money.  Unfortunately, I’m not as clever as Brewster, so I think I’d have to hire someone to help me think of creative ways to get rid of my money while not buying an assets.

Thinking how you would spend $30 million is fun and overwhelming at the same time when you realize how much money it is.  To spend it without accruing assets would be difficult and would certainly make one appreciate the value of money, as Brewster’s uncle wanted Brewster to learn.

How would you burn through $30 million in 30 days?


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