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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:45 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Posts: 5154
Location: Chicago, IL

I figured maybe I should start my own journal here instead of posting on the blog. I hope this means I can keep a lower profile. As noted on the last blog post, blogging has reached the critical douchebag factor(*), an inevitable consequence of

getting exposure on sites where such internet-personalities frequent, I suppose. I hope they don't start reading the forum as well [under the theory that the forum is more hardcore].


(*) It's my theory that 1) there's a certain fraction of douchebags on the internet, say 0.5%. 2) each person has a certain tolerance for douchebaggery, say 1/week. Thus once exposure reaches a sufficient level, e.g. 1/0.005 = 200/week, douchebagging reaches a critical level and being a public figure becomes a drag.


On that note, if I can ask you all a favor: Please don't go posting somewhere public that "hey Jacob is blogging on the forum" or something.


Okay, that aside ... here's the update.


Overall, I think I made the right decision with this job. The only downside is having to get up at 730 in the morning---that really sucks(!) Everything else is upside. The project is engaging and very interesting. The work environment is great. It mimics my experiences in grad school a lot. Pick the right people and put them in front of a computer and see what kinds of interesting things come out. It's management of the "third kind" which usually works well with self-directed and competent people.


The work itself is looking at codes, debugging, research, and coming up with equations. Quite similar to astrophysics, in a way.


Hmmm... did I mention the free coffee and enough personal computing power (that's just for me, no need to share in queue) to rival a small university department. Yeah, this is heaven!


Of course engaging work has a downside. When I finally decide to go home, my brain is fried (in a good way). Then I go home and

exercise(*)---currently using a 45lbs clubbell. Then the body is fried (in a good way). Then what to do?! This is an unresolved problem: Finding things to do that are fun but don't require any kind of mental or physical effort. Once I bought a playstation2 but that didn't work out well (I'm not very good with a game pad). I guess this can be considered a luxury problem, but it still needs a solution.


(*) Unfortunately the nearest shinkendo dojo turns out to be 20 miles away. On the other hand we're two miles away from the marina. They have an offshore fleet (yippie skippie!) and a Rhodes 19 fleet. I'm once again thinking of buying a boat. Rhodes 19's are <$10,000 and they're cheap to race, relatively speaking. I haven't settled enough to start crewing yet.


Most evenings are spent constructing furniture. I've made an end-table. Next I'm going to make a bed. We got a free kitchen table+chairs on the first day. Otherwise we haven't done much in that department. Used furniture is surprisingly expensive (compared to CA), at least on Craigslist. There's still lots to learn in terms of woodworking. Tons of little stupid mistakes that disappear with experience. Maybe furniture making can be my third career(*). Having talked to a few older INTJs, the 5-10 year attention span (which extends until we have sufficiently

mastered a challenge) is common and almost inescapable.


(*) Maybe it's a lack of imagination, but almost everything I find interesting will pay money once it's done at a/the level of competence I strive for. I'm not really into "traveling"... what else is there? To add to that, being FI is tremendously helpful to be able to find hardcore challenges that are perfect in form. There's actually a great ERE irony here---many who achieve it has too much drive to take advantage of the full time loafing...they're bound to make money of some kind given the intensity with which they operate. I guess in principle, finding sufficiently interesting things [in the form of jobs] to do could be done with credit card debt instead of FI, but that's just not my style. I wouldn't even chance it with 2 or 3 years of expenses saved, something which I think would be quite enough for most people's temperament.


In terms of expenses, some things have gone up and some things have gone done (mostly by virtue of moving out of California). Rent has increased for 495 to 875 (divided by 2). However, that's not to say that we couldn't have found something cheaper with more time. However, we were sitting in a long-term stay hotel paying 55/day so you figure spending 6 days more finding something spread over a year easily makes a 27.5/month difference in rent. Furthermore, apartments in Chicago seem to be a crap shot. We were shown slumlord style apartments for 900---price seems to have little correlation with quality here---and just 3 hours after applying for this one, we found a great place closer to work (but outside commute) for 700/month. There's very little/nothing under $600.


Note that non-fixer upper houses start in the $120k range (that's in Chicago, not burbs) and fixer uppers start around 50k.


As it is, I have a 15 minute walk to the L train which drives right to the door [of work]. I'm sufficiently far out and in on the commute that I always get a seat. Furthermore we live in a dog friendly and quiet neighborhood. It's been described as the place for the 30something yuppies, so that's probably pretty accurate as far as describing DW and I.


DW is currently staying at home studying. We have effectively switched roles although she makes a far better house spouse than I do (she actually enjoys it). I don't really mind this as a permanent solution---at least not so far. Point being, we can easily afford one income (we're actually quite close to being able to afford no income at all for either of us).


Our current setup also means we have zero reason to keep the car. This depends on whether DW gets a job in the city or not---which depends on whether she wants one. Even with just me working our combined savings rate is around 75%. What to do with all those digits on the bank account?


If the car goes, so does our car expenses which incidentally have gone down already (insurance and gas)---this would make our total expenses similar to what they were in the RV. Electricity has also gone down. Heat and water are now free. Food is sticker-shock cheaper.


That said, total expenses have gone up slightly. I'd estimate that they went from almost 50 years of savings and down to the lower forties.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:51 am 

Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:40 pm
Posts: 51

Good to hear things are going well.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:13 am 

Joined: Thu Jun 30, 2011 8:02 pm
Posts: 169

Thanks for the update! I'm sure we've all been very curious to know what Chi-town is like. I agree that the 5 year attention span is a great difficulty for INTJ's. Glad to hear you are happy with the new job.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:41 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:07 am
Posts: 589

Very interesting, it's great to hear what Jacob is up to. Lake Michigan is beautiful in the spring/summer!




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:48 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 08, 2011 8:17 pm
Posts: 453

I get the douchebag factor and why you don't want to be a controversial public figure. I am glad that you have hopefully found an inlet for interaction in a spot you created! Happy for you guys that the new adventure is working out. Sailing on the lake sounds like fun!




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:52 am 

Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 9:58 pm
Posts: 431

So glad to see you posting an update. A lot of us are really interested in how you're doing. I'm excited to see you're happy and doing well!


Best wishes for continued success in Chicago!


BTW, what's your opinion on the weather? Outside of taxes, the weather is a huge factor as to why I don't personally live in Chicago...because I think it's a fantastic city.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 3:53 am 

Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 9:58 pm
Posts: 431

I meant to add that I also understand the douchebag factor. That, and the income/time ratio has been draining on me and it's starting to get to the point where I'm also considering not blogging anymore.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:51 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 7:41 pm
Posts: 4

I have heard that there are three major areas of achievement in life: mental, physical and social. Looks like you have the 1st two down, maybe look into social methods of diversion. Games, some simple volunteering?




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 8:04 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 3:31 am
Posts: 933
Location: NYC

@EristheUnorganized: Jacob is a cult leader recognized by hundreds of people online so I think he has the social achievements, too.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:01 am 

Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 7:48 pm
Posts: 48

Thanks for posting! I was curious how you were getting along in the new gig.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:40 am 

Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2012 7:41 pm
Posts: 4

@M741 - I guess achievement is the wrong word. Sadly, I can't find the blog post, but the main thrust was: If you're physically tired, try something mentally challenging. Mentally tired? Try something social. Call someone, or play a board game, chat face to face, etc. Basically, switch up these tasks to not feel overwhelmed.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:07 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:49 pm
Posts: 787

Good to hear you're doing rather well, Jacob. All the best (and kick some ass over there :-) ) .




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:37 pm 

Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 6:40 pm
Posts: 459

Thanks for updating us! It was great to hear how you're doing.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:38 pm 
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Posts: 1856

Nice to hear from you. What sort of exercises do you do with the clubbells? Maybe there is a link around here somewhere?


I usually swing a kettlebell every day but have been interested in trying something new that is efficient and that I can do at home. The only thing that worries me about clubbells is hitting ceilings and other things.




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 6:08 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Posts: 5154
Location: Chicago, IL

With the 45 I do a two-handed swing and clean to order. I generally just pick one compound exercise and then build it up like described in the ERE book.


There's some stuff on youtube, but I couldn't find that particular exercise.


See here: http://physicalliving.com/clubbell-review/




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PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 9:10 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2011 1:33 pm
Posts: 13

Kudos to you, moving on. I have to admit, I was surprised how long you stuck with it, being the public figure head of ERE, that is. A discussion on Get Rich Slowly springs to mind, the kind of arguments and irrelevant subjects and counter arguments coming up would eventually lead to a loss of faith in human kind. So, thank you for sticking around as long as you did, I much appreciate the reasonings and links to further reading that I have found here. Also, thank you for dipping into the forum, trusting that no one will say - look he’s posting again… It takes just one attention seeker. But with this many introverts, I suppose you’re safe.


The job sounds great. May I ask, you mention ‘third kind’ management… how are the briefs/problems set, do you generate those too? Just curious.




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 12:10 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 21, 2010 11:21 pm
Posts: 772

@Jacob


Good to hear from you. I am amazed you found an apartment in Chicago for under $1000. I do not envy your location but I am sure that even in deadly Chicago there are plenty of things to enjoy. I remember my first visit to Chicago. I arrived in Gary, Indiana on a Saturday evening. I was on military business with another fellow, and we were on our way to Camp Grayling, MI. We stopped for gas and asked some questions. The advice from the gas station man was to be off the streets by dark!! We found a Denny's and had dinner, and lucked into a policeman also eating there. The cop agreed to lead us to a place to stay for the night in South Chicago. The place looked like a fortress with the high chain link fence. All night the sirens and gunshots woke us up. With more directions, the next morning, we went into downtown Chicago to visit the Sears Tower, which was our whole objective for altering our route to MI. In short the tower visit was worth the hassle of seeing it.


I am pleased your enjoying the new job. Also nice to hear your still into woodworking. Keep us posted, and best regards.

Herb Spencer




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:08 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:45 am
Posts: 775

Glad to hear you're doing well.


I'm curious to hear about your thoughts on how well Chicago supports ERE vs. the Bay Area. And whether that changes your mind about any of the ERE City parameters.




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:53 am 

Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:20 am
Posts: 265

Good to see you back here. Being famous must suck.




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 6:57 am 

Joined: Wed Jul 28, 2010 3:28 am
Posts: 2705
Location: Orygun

Thanks for the update!


>The only downside is having to get up at 730 in the morning


LOL... all this time I imagined you to be a morning person.




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 9:19 am 

Joined: Fri Oct 29, 2010 7:17 pm
Posts: 1315

Look, he's posting again! If you get found out, maybe you should switch to a pseudonym. I recommend JacobTheOtherOne




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 1:50 pm 

Joined: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:32 am
Posts: 24

What a fun job :) I'm glad you decided to post an update here.


This may not be possible, or even desirable, on these forums but I wanted to share an idea. I was once on a forum that also had some people writing journals and anything posted in the journal forum could only be seen by people who were logged into their accounts and had a certain number of posts. I think they had some other private categories as well. Just in case you want to try harder to avoid the swarm of douchebags :) Other people might like it as well as the information posted wouldn't be available to anyone who wanders by.


Margaret




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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 5:24 pm 

Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:36 pm
Posts: 61

All the best Jacob. You're in an enviable position, but for me this is motivation to keep working and saving like my life depends on it (it does in a way).




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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:13 am 

Joined: Fri Jan 07, 2011 2:19 am
Posts: 95

"This is an unresolved problem: Finding things to do that are fun but don't require any kind of mental or physical effort."


You could get cable. I hear it's only $79.99/mo, with internet and phone included (introductory rate)!


Many games don't require a game pad, for example, with the Kinect or even just keyboard and mouse. You could find games that aren't speed critical. I've never played it, but what about Minecraft? I'm not a game person myself, maybe others can recommend.


I dunno. Playing an instrument, knitting, whittling, doodling, reading, listening to music, hanging out, tea, meditation, paper folding, card games? Anything that doesn't require mental effort can get boring pretty fast, so rotating activities seems necessary.


"What to do with all those digits on the bank account?"


Space tourism?


I'm glad your new phase of life is working out well.




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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 2:48 am 

Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 9:41 am
Posts: 295

Hi Jacob


Thanks for the update


Mindless, non physical activities.


Wasgij, humorous puzzles from the thrift shop. Use a picture painting covered with glass so you can move it around, put it away.


Pixel puzzles, every picture tells a story. You can find them on the internet, but I prefer the magazine


http://www.lovatts.com.au/news/puzzles-comps/


http://www.conceptispuzzles.com/index.aspx?uri=puzzle/pic-a-pix




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