Having George Soros As A Dad Isn't All It's Cracked Up To Be (Well, It Sort Of Is, But Still, It Can Be Tough Sometimes, But Not Usually)

Are there many advantages to being born the son or daughter of a billionaire many times over? Sure. Financial security. Unparalleled opportunities. World is your oyster type stuff. But there's also a dark side that few people ever see or talk about, which can make being astonishingly wealthy by virtue of birth all the more isolating and hard. Today, however, in an effort to show kids born into immense privilege that YOU ARE NOT ALONE, the Times has run a profile of Alexander Soros, son of George, which examines the struggles he faced in coming to terms with being rich. They included: Never getting to live in a McMansion. Alex Soros spent his youth padding around a Charles A. Platt-designed 14-room house on a sprawling country estate in Katonah, N.Y. His mother, Susan Weber Soros, now divorced from his father, founded the Bard Graduate Center for the decorative arts and adorned the house with Sargents and Cassatts. Their place in the city was a duplex at 1060 Fifth Avenue. While his parents worked, he spent much of his time with his younger brother, Gregory, now 23 and pursuing a career as an artist; his nanny, Ping, from China; and the staff...Mr. Soros was acutely aware that he lived in a privileged bubble, and sometimes dreamed of living in a subdivision, where he could play football in the street with other boys. “As a kid, all you want to be is normal,” he said. “When all you’re being fed is vichyssoise, you want to eat Big Macs like everyone else.” Gaining weight. After King Low Heywood Thomas, a prep school in Stamford, Conn., he attended New York University, where he tried to come to grips with expectations that came with his last name. For a period, he brooded, and gained weight. Not being seen as an intellectual. “Alex sought anonymity,” said Adam Braun, a former roommate. “He wanted to be known as the intellectual, not the son of the financier.” Alex hated small talk, Mr. Braun added, and he would ditch parties early to go home and curl up with his Baudrillard. Being seen as a "party-boy" who posted pictures on Facebook with captions like “chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes," after posting pictures on Facebook with captions like “chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes.” ...after graduation, he came out of his shell and started to socialize. He made new friends, some of whom were nightclub habitués looking to trade on his name, he said. It was around that time that Facebook pictures [“chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes"] of him popped up. He was shocked to be portrayed as another helium-weight Hamptons party boy swilling away his trust fund. “I became this caricature,” he said. Ultimately, after "wrestling with his moneyed upbringing," Soros came to grips with who he is and what he's worth, monetarily-speaking. He was born rich and he's OK with that. Mr. Soros, now 26, is taking the stage on his own terms, though in a direction his father clearly approves: philanthropy. Last fall, while pursing his Ph.D. in history at Berkeley, the younger Mr. Soros started the Alexander Soros Foundation. Its stated mission is to promote social justice and human rights...These days, he divides the bulk of his time between Berkeley and New York. Alex admits that his lifestyle is wildly at odds with that of most graduate students. He has a house in North Berkeley, a two-bedroom apartment near Astor Place in Manhattan and a place in South Kensington, London. He collects art by Otto Dix and George Grosz, and has “a couple of Magrittes,” he said. He has also given up on the idea that he can escape public scrutiny. His trip to Florianópolis, a Brazilian island getaway, with buddies a couple of years ago somehow landed on Page Six, which had him partying alongside the actor Stephen Dorff (“I’ve never even met Stephen Dorff,” he said). “I live well,” he told the Times. “I try to stay reasonable, but it’s very hard to say what is reasonable. There’s not a how-to book. In a way, if you try to live quote-unquote normal, you’re being disingenuous.” Making Good On The Family Name [NYT]
Author:
Publish date:

Are there many advantages to being born the son or daughter of a billionaire many times over? Sure. Financial security. Unparalleled opportunities. World is your oyster type stuff. But there’s also a dark side that few people ever see or talk about, which can make being astonishingly wealthy by virtue of birth all the more isolating and hard. And it probably seems like no one cares about your or your plight or the anguish that comes with being able to exclusively pursue your passions instead of working because your net worth is at a level that there is "no point in going out to make more money." Except for one: the New York Times. Today, in an effort to show kids born into immense privilege that YOU ARE NOT ALONE, the Gray Lady has run a profile of Alexander Soros, son of George, which examines the struggles he faced in coming to terms with being rich. They included:

Never getting to live in a McMansion.

Alex Soros spent his youth padding around a Charles A. Platt-designed 14-room house on a sprawling country estate in Katonah, N.Y. His mother, Susan Weber Soros, now divorced from his father, founded the Bard Graduate Center for the decorative arts and adorned the house with Sargents and Cassatts. Their place in the city was a duplex at 1060 Fifth Avenue. While his parents worked, he spent much of his time with his younger brother, Gregory, now 23 and pursuing a career as an artist; his nanny, Ping, from China; and the staff...Mr. Soros was acutely aware that he lived in a privileged bubble, and sometimes dreamed of living in a subdivision, where he could play football in the street with other boys. “As a kid, all you want to be is normal,” he said. “When all you’re being fed is vichyssoise, you want to eat Big Macs like everyone else.”

Not being seen as an intellectual.

After King Low Heywood Thomas, a prep school in Stamford, Conn., he attended New York University, where he tried to come to grips with expectations that came with his last name. For a period, he brooded, and gained weight. “Alex sought anonymity,” said Adam Braun, a former roommate. “He wanted to be known as the intellectual, not the son of the financier.” Alex hated small talk, Mr. Braun added, and he would ditch parties early to go home and curl up with his Baudrillard.

Being seen as a "party-boy" who posted pictures on Facebook with captions like “chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes," after posting pictures on Facebook with captions like “chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes.”

...after graduation, he came out of his shell and started to socialize. He made new friends, some of whom were nightclub habitués looking to trade on his name, he said. It was around that time that Facebook pictures [“chilling at dad’s house in Southampton, drinking 40s while cruising on the family boat, and making out with the babes"] of him popped up. He was shocked to be portrayed as another helium-weight Hamptons party boy swilling away his trust fund. “I became this caricature,” he said.

Despite all the obstacles, though, this story has a happy ending. After "wrestling with his moneyed upbringing," Soros came to grips with who he is and what he's worth, monetarily-speaking. He was born rich and he's OK with that.

Mr. Soros, now 26, is taking the stage on his own terms, though in a direction his father clearly approves: philanthropy. Last fall, while pursing his Ph.D. in history at Berkeley, the younger Mr. Soros started the Alexander Soros Foundation. Its stated mission is to promote social justice and human rights...These days, he divides the bulk of his time between Berkeley and New York. Alex admits that his lifestyle is wildly at odds with that of most graduate students. He has a house in North Berkeley, a two-bedroom apartment near Astor Place in Manhattan and a place in South Kensington, London. He collects art by Otto Dix and George Grosz, and has “a couple of Magrittes,” he said.

He has also given up on the idea that he can escape public scrutiny. His trip to Florianópolis, a Brazilian island getaway, with buddies a couple of years ago somehow landed on Page Six, which had him partying alongside the actor Stephen Dorff (“I’ve never even met Stephen Dorff,” he said).

“I live well,” he told the Times for its investigative report, which includes a series of It Gets Better videos. “I try to stay reasonable, but it’s very hard to say what is reasonable. There’s not a how-to book. In a way, if you try to live quote-unquote normal, you’re being disingenuous.”

Making Good On The Family Name [NYT]

Related

Lawyer: George Soros Reserves His Strength To Plow Through Large Numbers Of Women, Not To Throw Lamps At Them (Like They Do To Him)

If you were to have told me in August 2011 that a story about George Soros's love life involving women 60 years his junior, "on again, off again non-exclusive relationships," dream apartments, broken promises, and broken lamps would still be unfolding 19 months later and getting better at each turn I would have told you to check yourself. And yet it has! With an amazing update that involves George Soros allegedly being assaulted with the light fixture he allegedly assaulted his non-exclusive girlfriend with and an official reminder that George Soros has had sex with more women by 9AM than most people have in their entire lives.

May 3: Soros Wakes Up To Find Horse's Head In His Bed?

2005-2010: George Soros has a relationship of debatable seriousness depending on who you ask with a woman named Adriana Ferreyr. (According to Ferreyr, it was a "serious and meaningful relationship," while according to Soros, things were “on-again, off-again and non-exclusive.") Ferrreyr is promised her "dream apartment" on East 85th Street. Summer 2010: Several days after the contract on the apartment is signed, Soros "heartlessly dumps" Ferreyr, which means no dream apartment for her. Approximately a week later: The duo "briefly reconcile for a romantic night together." A few hours later: Soros "whispers in Ferreyr's ear" that another woman, Tamikoa Bolton, is living in her apartment. Ferreyr expresses strong displeasure at this fact. Soros supposedly slaps Ferreyr across the face and attempts "to strike her with a glass lamp, narrowly missing." August 2011: Ferreyr demands $50 million for broken promises re: dream apartments, makes allegations re: lamps. Later in August 2011: Soros strongly denies accusations, refuses to pony up squat. February 2012: Ferryr refuses to settle for $250,000, court date is set for early May April 30, 2012: OH NO, HE DI'INT: Billionaire George Soros made a rare public appearance with his younger girlfriend, Tamiko Bolton, hours before a court date with his ex, Adriana Ferreyr. Soros, 81, and Bolton, 39, were photographed together at a Paley Center screening of “The Intouchables” Monday night, marking the first time they’ve stepped out in public as a couple. Bolton resides in the $1.9 million apartment which Ferreyr says Soros promised her, and which she’s suing over. Soros and Bolton’s sudden public appearance, meantime, seemed like a statement (or a show of unity) the night before a hearing in Manhattan Supreme Court. May 1, 2012: [Guessing] Bolton shows up to the courthouse with Soros sipping coffee out of china from the apartment and wiping her hands on the monogrammed towels ("AF & GS") that mistakenly delivered the week after she moved in. May 3, 2012: ??? Soros And Gal Pal Step Out [NYP]