In reading money and work, I learned that Thoreau is a selfish and arrogant writer. In this chapter, most of my class felt that he was bragging about how he could live with the bare minimum. He was bragging about how he built his own house, and he probably dug his own grave he was so proud. I think that Thoreau has some right to be proud, but not brag to the little boy in Belgium centuries later (a young boy in a foreign country who doesn't understand the cliches of the American culture). I can be in the best interests of his readers to try to set all of Thoreau's exclamations of how great he thinks he is. If there is one good thing in this chapter, it's this quote, “to maintain one's self on this earth is not a hardship but a pastime, if we will live simply and wisely; as the pursuits of the simpler nations are still the sports of the more artificial.” It means that we should work ourselves into the ground just to get a material possessions that we think will make us better in the long run, but money doesn't buy happiness.