President of Uruguay
Jose Mujica in his kitchen

Uruguayan president José Mujica claims to have invented “shabby chic.” No one disputes this claim.

José Mujica has been dubbed “the world’s poorest president.” I’m no accountant, but I suspect part of his problem is that he donates 90% of his salary to charity. (I don’t know about you, but I spend 90% of my salary on building up my designer scrunchie collection. Scrunchies are poised to make a comeback, and this time, I am going to be ready!)

In addition to his show-offy charity donations, Mujica also refuses to move into the opulent Uruguayan presidential palace, and instead he lives in a shack. Now, I know what you’re thinking, but it’s not a RadioShack. It’s just a regular shack (though possibly with a radio inside).

I don’t know about you, but I am getting sick and tired of José Mujica making me feel bad about my selfishness and unbridled consumerism by living a life of austerity and generosity. So I’ve decided to turn things around and start following Mujica’s example. To that end, I have composed this list:

WAYS I CAN TRY TO BE MORE LIKE JOSÉ MUJICA:

  • Change my name to José Mujica. 
  • Stop writing lists of ways to be more like José Mujica.  José Mujica never does this.
  • Become the leader of a left-wing guerilla army.  I’ve actually been meaning to do this anyway, but life keeps getting in the way.
  • Spend two years living at the bottom of a well.  Honestly, I am probably going to skip this one.
  • Donate all of my money to charity.  I am probably going to skip this one, too.
  • Move into a one-bedroom shack in rural Uruguay.  I’m thinking I’ll just steal José Mujica’s shack by breaking in and changing the locks while he’s out washing homeless people’s feet.
  • Become president of Uruguay.  After four years of enlightened and ethical governance under President José Mujica, I think the people of Uruguay will find me to be a breath of fresh air.