Wealthsimple is an investing service that uses technology to put your money to work like the world’s smartest investors. In “Money Diaries,” we feature interesting people (and Wookiees) telling their financial life stories in their own words.
Oh yeah, I’m a great person to come to for financial advice. Come on. My greatest assets are perfect hair and an unpaid 7’6” intern. I’ve been wearing the same jacket since the naval academy. Yeah, I’m still a 31-inch waist. Ask Luke what his trouser size is. Why do you think all he wears now is robes?
But I suppose I have done all right for a small-time smuggler who happens to be super handsome and reluctant to show emotion! Did you ever hear the story of how I won the Millennium Falcon from Lando Calrissian? All right, all right, I guess I have told it a few times. That double-crossing guild-moocher always was shit at sabacc. And he hated that I was better with women — I said a million times that he should shave that mustache, but Chewie kept telling him it looked good.
And you know, thinking about it, maybe I was being a jerk. We were blacked out on flameout at the time. Can you imagine if you drunkenly bet your car on a hand of poker with a friend and lost and he actually took your vehicle?
Honestly, sometimes I amaze myself with what I’ve gotten away with. Did I mention that I'm a smuggler? A rascal with a heart of gold? If you've been around the galaxy you know I’ve moved millions of credits worth of spice, weapons and, for a brief time in the 90s, pirated Britney Spears MP3s. Hey, you want a financial lesson? Find someone looking to avoid a tariff —on blasters, Death Stars, or Chinese solar panels. I mean, get into a trade war if you want, it's just gonna benefit guys like me.
The smartest investment I've ever made? Duh, Millennium Falcon. It was a second-hand ship!
When it comes to making all the right money moves, I've got two secrets: one is that I’m not afraid to get creative in a jam. Like: get into debt, and just ask for a little more time. You can usually talk your way into leniency. Sweetening the deal never hurts, either. Have you guys ever heard about the trouble I had with this dude Jabba the Hutt? OK, so there was a little misunderstanding (on his part!) about some supplies that got misplaced. So to make things right, I offered to throw in an extra 15 percent to Jabba for the, uh, delay in payment. That brings up my second lesson: feel free to get frozen into a slab of black plasticky stuff and shipped around space. Saves on airline tickets!
By the way, the money Jabba spent on carbonite and that gold bikini probably cost more than the entire lost shipment, but did that two-ton slug care? Tell me if you don't know a rich guy who's always blowing cash on stuff like casino debt and payoffs to women in too little clothing.
I'm talking about Jabba’s Twi’lek dancers. What did you think I was talking about?
Also: if you're British, always put as much money into your ISA as possible. And if you can't max it out, at least set up monthly contributions, otherwise you're a total moof milker IMO.
Which reminds me: always check references when hiring moof-milkers.
Wait — you weren’t sent by the Guavians, were you? Because I’m good for it. If you just wait right here for one minute, I can run out to the Falcon and grab those credits I owe them, plus an extra 10,000 for the trouble. The money’s just in my other jacket.
But the thing that really gets people into financial trouble: relationships. You ever date a rich girl? It’s a good life, but man, the things PRINCESS Leia said when we fought. “You stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf herder"? As if there's no pride in the hard work of herding nerfs! You can’t even imagine what she called me in bed. Relationships are never easy, and our therapist told us we were like a lot of people — couples mostly fight about sex and...money. Leia'd spend four hours doing her hair and head out to some political luncheon, and I’d call up Chewie. We’d take the Millennium Falcon out to move a shipment of spice, just to see if we still could. Then Leia would get the energy bill and see I’d recharged the hyperdrive and she just go nuts.
Let’s just say there were times I felt like going back to crime would be like spending a week at Canto Bright betting the farthiers on someone else’s credits.
So, yeah. I've made some miscalculations with money. But the smartest investment I've ever made? Duh, Millennium Falcon. It was a second-hand ship! Of course it wouldn't have been worth anything without me. You think anyone else could have gotten the Millennium Falcon through the Kessel Run in twelve parsecs using only at-home repairs?
Which brings me to the two most important elements of my success: don’t be afraid to buy used, and build a strong personal brand. Why did laser-brained criminals keep hiring me after after the shit I’ve pulled? Because I’m Han “I have a bad feeling about this” Solo. It’s hard to put a figure on a reputation, but I’d say it’s worth about 35 million credits an episode.
I'll tell you one thing, though. Being dead gives you some time to reflect. And I've taken some long walks. And yeah, maybe all that sarcasm was just a way to deflect from my pain. And maybe when anyone was actually nice to me — Leia, Luke, Chewie — I pushed them away, or treated them cruelly. I guess...I don’t know. Maybe I just never felt like I deserved love.
Chewie, you got any money tips?
HAN SOLO: Oh, that’s good. I’m gonna use that.
Illustration by Jenny Mörtsell.