The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa


March 6, 2013

BICKER: What makes us rich?

TUCSON, Ariz. — While I was getting ready for work Tuesday morning, I listened to an interesting topic of discussion on radio station WGN.

I love talk radio and anything that can stimulate my brain that early in the morning is fantastic.

As I was combing my hair, WGN personality Nick Digilio posed a question to me and other listeners, “What is the definition of being rich?”

This really caught my attention and I was eager to hear what the callers had to say. Believe it or not, some were very profound in their views at 4:30 a.m.

What makes someone rich? Well, money is the obvious thing that comes to mind but I think it's much more than that. There is more to life than just greenbacks.

Oh sure, money is nice and it's great to pay bills with, but I don't think money can really buy happiness. I'm sure it could for awhile, but not in the long term.

The secret to being rich, I think, is finding real happiness within yourself and your surroundings. It's the little things in life that make me happy and I believe I'm richer for that than any shopper frequenting stores on Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills.

Life can be rich in so many ways; it's all in how you look at it. I have never been monetarily rich. I, like most of you, just get by. I could wallow in my sorrows that I don't have the money to buy all the things I want, but I choose not to live that way.

I find joy in what I already have; I find joy in things money can't buy. The loyalty and love my dog has given me over the past 14 years has made me feel like a billionaire — just like Warren Buffet. My life has been a lot richer because of her; I wouldn't trade Cordy for all of the money in the world.

Remember the 1980s movie with Patrick Dempsey, “Can't Buy Me Love?” There was a lot of truth to that movie; money is not the key to happiness. Patrick Dempsey, who portrays Ronald Miller, pays a popular girl $1,000 to be his girlfriend for a month. But in the end, the price of popularity just isn't worth it.

Since I am an old movie buff, I'm reminded of the movie, “Citizen Kane.”

The main character, Charles Foster Kane who was a millionaire newspaper tycoon, had all the riches he could ever want — a big mansion, power and prestige. However, he felt very lonely and unhappy. When he was lying on his death bed he used his last breaths to whisper the words, “Rose Bud.” That was the one true thing that made his life rich and happy.

For those of you who have never seen the film, Rose Bud was the name of his sled he had when he was a boy. He cried out for a little insignificant thing that had no real value, but made him happy.

There are many things that can make a life rich — faith in God, a soulmate to share the rest of your life with, a smile, a beautiful sunset or a warm embrace. I don't think I could ever put a dollar amount on any of those; their value is insurmountable.

Just like beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I think the same goes for being rich. Warren Buffet may look at my bank account and surmise that I'm very poor compared to his standards, but I would disagree. In my mind and heart, I am rich — maybe a lot richer than he'll ever be.

Angie Bicker has been employed with the Clinton Herald since 2001. She can be reached at

Text Only
  • Off and on the record Let us now praise anonymous sources.The new White House press secretary got into a familiar old spat with the White House press corps the other day over the use of anonymous sources.Josh Earnest — has there ever been a more perfectly named White Hous

    July 25, 2014

  • Be more informed

    Blame the city.That is a favorite pastime of many, including me at times. Driving over that pesky pothole or paying that annual property tax bill can lead to some choice words referencing the city. Nobody takes the brunt of being the scapegoat more t

    July 25, 2014

  • CCC thanks community, collaborators for successful movie night Clinton Community College would like to thank those who participated in the free outdoor movie showing of “Captain America – Winter Soldier” on the evening of Friday, July 18.We are grateful to have such wonderful community collaborators in the Erick

    July 25, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Better police needed for college teams enticed to cheat

    The NCAA once cracked down on colleges that went too far luring top prospects, then it targeted teams that lathered players with special treatment. That was until the NCAA's get-tough approach backfired, rendering it ineffective and creating an opportunity for those who want to play dirty.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Expectations too high for a rehabbing Woods

    Tiger Woods finished near bottom last weekend at Royal Liverpool, drawing out his drought of major tournament wins. Despite the disappointing showing, Woods' return to form remains a matter of when, not if.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Todd Akin's back again to talk of rape So, Todd Akin is back and he’s talking rape again.You remember what happened last time. The would-be Missouri senator torpedoed his campaign two years ago after suggesting in a TV interview that if a woman is a victim of “legitimate rape,” she is unl

    July 22, 2014

  • Sadness remains as two-year mark passes in cousins' case As most citizens of the Cedar Valley are well aware, July 13 marked two years since the disappearance of cousins Elizabeth Collins and Lyric Cook-Morrissey of Evansdale.The passage of time provides some semblance of healing, but the sadness, particul

    July 22, 2014

  • UI needs to keep its admission standards high There’s been a lot of talk lately — most of it coming from the leadership of the Iowa state Board of Regents — about the University of Iowa not being passionate enough about its recruitment of in-state undergraduates. Regent president Bruce Rastetter

    July 21, 2014

  • Vote fraud myths meet voting rights reality Before she was allowed to register and vote for the first time in Franklin County, North Carolina, Rosanell Eaton had to read the entire preamble to the U.S. Constitution out loud in front of three men in the county courthouse.Eaton is black. The thr

    July 21, 2014 1 Story

  • 7-21-14 David Helscher mug Prepare for possible effects of Fed's decisions It has been more than 5 years since the Federal Reserve has taken unprecedented steps to support the economy through purchases of Treasury and mortgage-backed debt securities. This has generally been called quantitative easing and has not been withou

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo


With the Clinton County Justice Coordinating Commission and the Clinton County Board of Supervisors discussing proposals to construct a new jail, do you think the time has come for Clinton County to construct such a facility?

     View Results