Monday, February 11, 2013

Meeting Gail Vaz-Oxlade

I finally met Gail! 
I cannot believe all the good things that have been happening lately! I am officially only $1,200 (yes 12 HUNDRED, not thousand) away from paying off the last of my debt! That means that I am 8 months ahead of schedule and saving tons of money in interest charges.  I'm not going to lie to you and say that this process has been easy, in fact it has been a lot of work. This took a lot of fundamental changes in my life to get me to the point where I am today, but holy $hit, it feels incredible. As of this Wednesday, I will make my very last payment on my debt. That means in two days, I'm not going to know what to do with myself. What am I going to write about? Will people still read my blog? Looking at my latest statistics, I have now had over 21,000 views of my musings, and I'm averaging over 1000 reads per month. The best part is that I am hardly even writing anything and people are still tuning in and finding me and (hopefully) their own inspiration!

Speaking of inspiration, those of you who follow this blog will know that I follow the teachings of the lovely Gail Vaz-Oxlade, Canada's #1 financial guru, author of several best-selling books, star of a handful of TV shows, and host of her very own radio show on NewsTalk1010 (which she interviewed me on). Getting to talk to Gail was an absolute dream come true, so you can imagine how thrilled I was to finally MEET my favourite person in real life! Gail was in town two weeks ago to give a lecture at my alma mater, OttawaU and while she was killing time, she stopped to sign her new book "Money Rules". Obviously I took the entire day off to make sure that I would not miss an opportunity to pick up her new book, get it signed, AND meet her in person.

Gail is just like how she is in the media: personable, friendly, hilarious, and gorgeous; much like myself. When Gail arrived at the bookstore, I got goose bumps. There I was, mere footsteps away from my hero and I mere moments from peeing myself with excitement. Gail sat down and greeted the crowd and started signing the books. When it was my turn in line, I turned into a pile of nerves, standing with my boyfriend's gigantic camera and looking like some kind of obsessed paparazzo.  Gail said hello to me and then my mouth suddenly started pouring out all sorts of verbal diarrhea as I blathered on about my blog AND how she interviewed me on her radio show AND how she changed my life, blah blah blah, then amidst the crazy talk I somehow managed to half-throw my glove at my book as she was signing it. Yes, I made myself look like a huge creepo weirdo with Gail. I felt like I was not at my best that day and you can tell from the slightly awkward smile on Gail's face that she didn't quite know what to make of me.

In the end, Gail was fabulous. When I thanked her for all the valuable lessons she taught me, she said to me that I need to make sure to thank myself because I did all of the work and she merely gave me the tools to make it happen, and as usual, she was right. I had one of the staff members take our photo with my boyfriend's giant SLR camera and out of concern that I didn't get a good shot Gail even offered to retake the photo. She really was a class act, and I felt like the longer I was there, the more awkward and weird I would come across, so I didn't want to oblige her to take another photo and said my good-bye. Gail and I shared a final glance as she said "Take care".

Just like that, it was over. I had a whirlwind encounter with a person that I owe so much too. As I walked away, I could hear Gail's laughter fade with each step toward that neon EXIT sign. I stepped out the door into the rain and began my walk home. I felt like I had hit the highest point I ever was going to get to in this whole process and it really felt like a dream. I talked to Gail, I touched Gail, and I had my whole world flipped upside down by this Jamaican wonder woman. As I trekked through the icy streets, I stopped and grabbed some takeout because I know, I fackin' earned it!  

Thank you Gail! I will continue to spread the word! 


  1. Congratulations on recovering from a financial struggle, John! I’m sure that the book you read helped a lot of people having a hard time managing their finances. The reality is that not a lot has any knowledge on how they can help themselves out of the financial hole they dug. It’s true that the path to redemption isn’t a walk in the park. You have to be prepared to sacrifice and let go of the lifestyle you’ve gotten used to in an exchange for living free from financial constraints. Again, congratulations and have a good day! :)

    Era Kehoe

  2. Meeting someone who helped you a lot in being successful in your financial status is a great experience. I know working on your finances is hard and just taking the ideas advised in a book can add to the pressure. Well, I can see that you’ve been successful in saving your money since you’ve already paid your debt. I hope that the ideas shared by Gail will always be your pattern to your financial standing, and hope that you’ll really share ideas related to handling financial matters so that you can also help other people. :)

    + Ermentrude Glass +