You’re never too young to start thinking critically about investing, philanthropy and technology.
The latest episode of “Girl Meets World,” dubbed “Girl Meets Money,” touched on these topics with the help of billionaire investor Mark Cuban.
The “Shark Tank” star made a cameo on the episode, which aired Friday.
He is introduced as a friend of wealthy businessman Minkus. (“I called a buddy of mine who’s pretty good at spotting the potential in an idea.”)
Yes, it’s that Minkus for those who were fans of the ’90s series “Boy Meets World.” Surprise: The nerdy kid grew up to be an incredibly wealthy businessman.
Minkus’ son, who’s in middle school, is learning about wealth inequality in class. It leads him to question why his father doesn’t do more good with his riches.
Minkus decides to set up a foundation — and brings in Cuban to assess the students’ school assignment: What good would you do if you had the money? Minkus will put his money behind the best idea.
Riley, the show’s main character (and the daughter of Cory and Topanga), is up to bat first. Each year, people spend more money on Halloween candy than on ending Malaria, she says. She proposes replacing Halloween and spending the money on fighting Malaria instead of candy.
True to form, Cuban doesn’t hold back. He points to two of kids — who are his children in real life — and says: “You are not taking Halloween away from them! … You’ve got to give me an idea that works! I’m out.” (Cuban — who owns the Dallas Mavericks — also throws in a dig at the Knicks: Riley is a Knicks’ fan.)
Another student says he would use money to create world peace, which Cuban quickly dismisses.
“Great idea, Miss America,” said Cuban. “I’m all for it, [but] you can’t do it.”
Minkus’ son, Farkle, then pitches. He wants to invest in his friend, Maya, who doesn’t come from a lot of money.
“One day she will be a force to reckon with,” said Farkle.
And that’s something Cuban can get behind: “I don’t invest in just ideas, I invest in the people behind the ideas.”
Related: Mark Cuban on the SEC: “They screwed up so bad”
Farkle is the kid that seemingly “gets” money the most. As he learns just how privileged he is, he becomes increasingly embarrassed by how little his dad, Minkus, gives back.
Earlier in the episode, Farkle invites his friends to his home. They’ve never come over before because he’s shy about how big it is — but his family might soon have to downsize. Minkus tells his son he’s made a bad investment decision: “The technology I bet on was so sophisticated that we couldn’t even see if it was successful.”
Investing in new technologies can indeed be risky. And this isn’t the only part of the episode that serves as a warning sign about technological advancements.
Maya tries out virtual reality goggles to transport her to Paris while at Farkle’s house. She rips off the goggles: “As fun as this is, it’s not real.”
Maya shells out several tips to Farkle about what it’s like being poor: “Lesson # 3: It’s way too easy to get caught up in what’s not real.”