Too Much Time, Too Much Money

I don’t think a day goes by when I don’t use that expression.  I either read about or see someone who just has too much time on his hands, or has too much money, and gets into some sort of trouble.  I see it in people in all walks of life but Hollywood seems to be the breeding ground for these types of useless twits.

This month’s ungrateful waste of humanity is Charlie Sheen.  Not a day has gone by in the last couple of weeks when his meltdown hasn’t been all over the internet.  I’m going to say that if his name wasn’t “Sheen,” he probably wouldn’t be on the very popular dopey sit-com which earns him a reported $1.8 million per episode.  If not for his father, he would’ve been just another ok-looking, ok-acting, wannabe trying to make it in Hollywood.  For every Charlie Sheen, there’s probably a 1,000 members of SAG who can’t even get a job as a corpse.

So what does he do with his good fortune?  For over 20 years, he’s had a history of criminal charges and involvement with booze, drugs, gambling and hookers which makes him the perfect poster boy for my headline.  If he truly has an addiction or other psychological problems, he certainly has the money to employ the services of a first-class psychologist and not some hack who’ll take his money and tell him what he wants to hear.

If Sheen is spending long hours shooting a sitcom and still has the time to get into so much trouble, he should find something useful to do.  Why don’t we ever hear anything negative about actor, Gary Sinise, who also stars in a hit tv show, CSI NY?  Why, because when he’s not earning a living, he’s out doing concerts and charitable work on behalf of our military, that’s why.  In my equation, Gary Sinise doesn’t have “too much time.”  He’s using the blessings he’s been given – his name, his money and his time – to make life better for others.

All this reminds me of an article I read in the Denver Post, “The rat race behind India’s prosperity.”  It told the story of Sabid Ali Sheikh, 23 years old, who is one of Mumbai’s 44 “night rat killers.”  He was described as a “clean man, dressed in elaborately embroidered jeans and a crisp shirt, who thinks himself lucky to have even this dirty work.”  His father has been a rat killer for 30 years, and his brothers, who sell vegetables, wish they could be rat catchers too.

More than 4,000 people applied for these coveted jobs.  Competition is fierce and only 18-30 year-old men can apply.  They must be able to lift a 110-pound sack, run a few miles and demonstrate their ability to catch and kill a rat in the dark within 10 minutes.  Each rat catcher must kill 30 rats a night, six nights a week.  Sabid earns $271 a month if he makes his quota; if he doesn’t make his quota, he’s not paid.

Contrast the two.  Sabid has practically nothing, but is grateful for what he does have.  From his actions, I doubt Sheen recognizes how blessed he is and appreciates nothing.

You might say, “Hey, Leona, it’s his money, it’s his time.  He’s not hurting anyone but himself.”  Well, that might be right if he was living in a cocoon.  I just read his meltdown is costing CBS and Warner Bros. millions of dollars and affecting the livelihood of numerous people.

So for right now, Charlie Sheen is my perfect scapegoat for all that’s wrong with people with too much time and too much money.  Next month, we’ll be reading about some other Hollywood loser who can’t find something productive to occupy his or her time.

If someone is so bored with their life that they lose all empathy for people around them and involve themselves in destructive behavior that not only affects them but others as well, they should get help, find a hobby, read a book, do some charity work, do anything other than wasting their precious life.  Sabid, the rat catcher, speaks about his simple life.  “Everyone wants to be famous and known.  But this is my destiny.  Everything you wish will not come true.”

I get Sabid.  I don’t get Charlie Sheen and people like him, but if you do, God bless you.

Author Bio:

For over twenty years, Leona has tried to heed her husband’s advice, “you don’t have to say everything you think.” She’s failed miserably. Licensed to practice law in California and Washington, she works exclusively in the area of child abuse and neglect. She considers herself a news junkie and writes about people and events on her website, “I Don’t Get It,” which she describes as the “musings of an almost 60-year old conservative woman on political, social and cultural life in America.” It’s not her intention to offend anyone who “gets it.” She just doesn’t. Originally from Brooklyn, and later Los Angeles, she now lives with her husband, Michael, on a beautiful island in the Pacific Northwest, which she describes as a bastion of liberalism.
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  • Roger Ward

    You’re right: too much time, too much money …. and not enough brains, consideration or self control. Still, we live in a capitalist society where individuals vote with their pocketbooks. The networks can’t be blamed for providing what its viewers want. I’ve never seen Sheen’s show …. but there are obviously enough people who have that the network can justify paying such an exorbitant amount to him. It’s called the free market.

  • begbie

    “Two and a Half Men” is actually a pretty funny show that’s well written. It’s a shame that Sheen is being a dope. That show just wouldn’t work without Sheen, even though Jon Cryer is hilarious in his own right.

    But you know, if I made that huge stinker of a movie like “Hot Shots: Part Deux”, I think I might self destruct from the shame I feel; that it’s still available on Netflix for all to continue to see!

  • Carolyn

    Just heard yesterday on yet another report on Charlie and his behavior that he does not have a morals/behvavior clause in his contract so he can basically do what he wants. Jon Cryer (his costar) actually said on Letterman that he watches TMZ to see if he is going to work in the morning.

  • Ron

    CBS/Warner Brothers would only have paid him $1.8 million an episode if they thought the ratings and profits from the show justified it. I have no idea if his contract has a morals or behavior clause. If it does, apparently CBS/Warner Brothers has not invoked it because they would still rather have him on the show. It seems that it is up to the viewers if they still want to watch him. If the ratings for the show decline rapidly, I am sure the owners of the show would then make some changes. Obviously he is self-centered and selfish and is inconsiderate of the crew members who rely on the show but would there be a show if he wasn’t in it?

  • CCNV

    As for CBS, forget Charlie Sheen. Here’s something more stupid: Pairing the great actor Forest Whittaker with no-talent hack Janeane Garafalo.

    Oh, and if you need a poster boy for incompetence and wasting money – look no further than the White House.

    Kudos to Gary Sinise – awesome work!

    • Leona Salazar

      I love Criminal Minds but I will not be watching the spin-off, Suspect Behavior, because of the casting of Janeane Garofalo in a leading role.

  • David

    I don’t get CBS/Warner Bros hanging on to this guy either…move on without him…