Inside Even

When all your money ever says is goodbye

To illustrate the stress our members feel about money, they made some drawings for us.

To illustrate the stress he feels about money, an Even member named Jeffrey* drew this:

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Jeffrey’s being robbed at gunpoint by his own bills, which, according to the 24/7 opening hours of the Bills/Needs headquarters, are ready round the clock to steal from him. Meanwhile, Jeffrey’s own Wants/Kinda Needs are locked away behind both a pit of lava and two armed guards — making it close to impossible for any of his money to make it to them.

Reacting to the same prompt, an Even member named Owen* made this:

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In Owen’s world, “Money talks…But all mine ever says is GOODBYE.” He sits anxious and disheveled, surrounded by bills, as his hard-earned money (“overtime and working hard, it’s great”) flaps its wings and flies away (“the reward always goes away somehow”), tossing a flippant “Bye!” at him as it goes.

In a parallel scene, Owen sits atop a piggy bank as it slowly sinks underwater, contemplating the money that’s slipping away: “Savings are a good thing, but a sad thing when you’re forced to see it go.”

Both these men work hard. But because their budgets are so tight and therefore vulnerable to fluctuations in income and expenses, any extra they manage to hang onto for themselves inevitably gets taken away. As a result, neither feels like he ever receives the “reward,” as Owen put it, for his own work.

If Even can manage people’s money such that, instead of watching it melt away, people see it slowly build up, we will deliver something really valuable — not just in financial terms, but in psychological ones — because both these drawings were made to illustrate “stress.”

*Jeffrey and Owen gave me their permission to share their stories.