Tuesday 14 June 2011


Petra Ecclestone just bought Aaron Spelling’s former mansion for somewhere in the neighborhood of 80 million dollars. Sorry, let me be more specific for those of you non Formula One followers. Petra’s father, Bernie Ecclestone, who is the head of Formula One Racing just bought his 22-year-old daughter her very own crash pad the size of Texas. Because apparently someone of her age needs a mansion with a bowling alley, ballroom, wrapping room, beauty salon and room for parking 100 cars. Hey, who am I to judge, maybe they want to have the next Grand Prix in the driveway.

Apparently she really wanted an estate down the road that came in at a cool 125 million dollars (someone please smack some reality into this girl quickly). If all this isn’t enough, back home in London, Petra has a 55 million pound pad that Daddy bought her as well. Okay, fine the man is worth 4 billion dollars, and it’s incredibly sweet that he’s buying his children property so that they have somewhere to lay their heads at night, but um, I’m thinking buying your children properties that could fund a small country is a tad excessive. Or is that just me? [And yes, I'm judging now].

From the looks of things, Petra did not just get on the property ladder, she said to hell with the ladder altogether and took a high-speed elevator to the penthouse floor. I mean, once you lay down over 150 million on property for one of your kids, you’ve set one heck of a bar as to what you’re willing to spend. After that gesture, Mr. Ecclestone is certainly not going to be able to get away with buying his daughter a paltry Volkswagen; in fact, she’ll probably demand the entire factory. "Damn it Daddy, I want one in every color to match my handbag collection!"Of course, all this begs the question, when is showering your kids with the spoils of your hard work too much? I’m thinking Bernie’s latest purchase is a pretty good example of an egregious overspend. 

I always liked the way Bill Gates approached the situation; he knows he’s filthy rich and always will be, but he plans to give the bulk of his wealth to charity and give a small sum to his children. Okay fine, a small sum will probably work out to be around 5 or 10 million, and that is more than most people will see in a lifetime; but his children will grow up knowing that their father had billions and he instead wanted them to have to work for their supper as opposed to be handed it on a three foot deep gold platter. 

I get it; as a parent, I already want to give the King everything (and let's be honest, I certainly grew up blessed beyond words and had my fair share of being spoilt); but I also know that if I do give him everything and make him work for nothing, he’ll probably be living on my doorstep until he’s 75 years old with no work ethic in sight and a sense of entitlement as tall as the Sears Tower. Okay fine, when he’s 75 I’ll be a petrified mummy - no scratch that, I'll be an urn of ashes (much more civilized), but you get the idea. 

So King, after you get a job, do the laundry, paint the house, and make your father and I dinner for the next fifteen years, we can discuss the possibility of getting you a Volkswagen.
 Happy driving peanut!

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