Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

The minute I tell you, you're going to scream that I'm mad.

So I'm a little worried how this is going to go.

You see, I've just come upon a study that offers startling conclusions to simple questions

Performed by online lender Lending Tree, the study tries to identify which cities' residents live most within their means, and which ones house overspenders.

The results may melt minds.

The number one city for residents living within their means is San Jose.

Yes, the one in California. The one that's replete with Silicon Valley employees working so many hours to make the world even more of the mess that it's become.

How can this be, I hear you wail. 

I want to soothe you.

First, though, I want to disturb you a little more. The number two city for living within your means is San Francisco.

Yes, the one that's replete with Silicon Valley employees working so many hours to make the world even more of the mess that it's become, and paying exorbitant amounts of rent.

These people, you might think, are the height of showy irresponsibility, with their Teslas, their Task Rabbits, and their micro-organic diets.

To which I'd offer you the following possibility.

These people are so blindingly overpaid that they're far too dull to know what to do with the money.

However they spend, they still have a lot saved. They hope to be able to cash out, create another startup, save some more, be even more dull, and cash out again.

Lending Tree tries to put it more delicately: 

"Some of the most expensive U.S. cities have residents living within their budgets, suggesting that higher education and greater income may be the most salient factors for living within your means."

Yes, when you have so much money that you don't know what to do with it -- because you're ineffably boring -- you can indeed live within your means.

Where, though, do the residents throw caution to the hurricanes and spend, spend, spend?

Would you believe that San Antonio, Riverside, California and, oh look, Las Vegas roll high and save low?

Lending Tree explains it like this: 

"We know from previous studies that people spend a lot on vehicles in San Antonio, incomes are very low in Riverside, and unemployment runs high in Las Vegas."

Surely, though, there are cities where people don't earn ungodly amounts and are still fiscally responsible.

Well, Lending Tree points to Raleigh, North Carolina, Minneapolis and Boston as being repositories of good financial sense.

Phoenix, Orlando and Atlanta, however, seem to feature too many people who are almost as fiscally risky as those in Vegas.

Numbers, of course, only tell some of the tale.

I fear, though, that these numbers tell a tale of tragedy, one that will take many decades to reverse.

Published on: Nov 3, 2018