The day I’ve been yearning for has finally arrived: Today, I received my 2008 Economic Stimulus Payment in the mail.

Fear not, however: I vow not to let this newfound wealth get to my head. I believe in the old cliché: Be nice to the people you meet on the way up, because they’re going to be the same people you meet on the way down.

It’s tough to keep a level head, though. My brain is aflutter with the possibilities. Having this extra cash on hand just opens up a world of avenues.

Do I invest it? Do I put it in my savings account for safe-keeping? Do I treat myself to something nice? Or perhaps pick up something shiny and glittering for my girlfriend? Do I buck conventional wisdom and bet it on a Belmont Stakes exacta that doesn’t include Big Brown? Or let it ride on No. 22 on a roulette table in Atlantic City?

Chill: There’s no need to make a hasty decision. I’ll consult with relatives, friends and advisors and determine the best use for this sudden embarrassment of riches. And until then, I’ll just stare at the beautiful check and those wonderful digits that appear on it: $8.05.

I really hope I don’t spend it all in one place.

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