I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Where are you and where are you going?
Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

If I'm not on it I won't get it done! I practiced several rows of knit stitches yesterday while watching the Baumgartner Fine Art Restoration youtube channel. I'm secretly a little old grandma! haha

Going to jazz school and having surrounded myself with mostly musicians since high school I had a very biased view of our cohort's music preferences. Forget Zappa, I feel that the share of millennials into pre-80's (hell, pre-90's) music that isn't LZ or PF is very low regardless of artist.

Zappa really was one of a kind. The cheekiness and camp make me warm and fuzzy inside. He had this ability to accentuate the lyrical humor with the the musical humor while maintaining a "seriousness" to the entire package. I do wish his endless bitterness hadn't consumed him by the 80's. I think the music remained as good as ever but his negative attitude could become overbearing. That 70's shit though... I had to splurge and buy the Halloween '77 box when it came out. Couldn't resist that many chances to hear Terry tear up those drums. And I've been salivating over the Zappa In New York 40th Anniversary box but have managed not to pull that trigger.

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

Mid Month Purchase Summary

I decided to buy a new (to me) computer. The 2010 Macbook was accelerating toward implosion with no end in sight and I decided to be proactive. I got a refurbished late 2015 21.5" iMac from a local electronics reuse center. The lady there sold me on it. She said most of the iMacs they get are only lightly used, donated from the University, and the 2015 models are as new as they see. I didn't want the mouse or keyboard it came with so I negotiated a $35 drop in price on top of the 20% "we're open during covid" sale they were having. All told I got it for $425, which is a great price at least compared to online refurbished sellers. This unit will have to last 3.25 years to amortize the same as a 10 year lifetime on the $1300 brand new model I was contemplating. If it lasts five years it'll be a $45/y savings. I forgot what having a computer that functions properly was like. Lightning speed over here now.

Spending this month will not fall back into normal range as I expected because of this purchase, but that's ok. September is also looking to be high as I'm going to need to buy a couple hundred dollars of car parts to perform some maintenance.

Houses

I've talked to a realtor. She told me inventory is incredibly low and if I want to put in a winning offer it will need to be within days of the house going on the market, be above asking price, and that when it comes time to submit we can talk about "other things you can do to make the offer attractive to the buyer". Hahaha what sort of horseshit is that? Anyway, she's sending me targeted searches within my parameters with the understanding that I'm laying in wait more than actively shopping, she said it's no big deal.

The whole process seems more stressful than I want to put myself through to be honest. My work buddy with the FHA loan I mentioned has been putting offers above asking in for almost 3 months now and lost every single one.

Purpose Of This Journal

I don't lead as exciting a life as some to garner much interest up in here and I lack the insight to write anything of depth or worthy of much discussion.* Ain't nothing wrong with that, just the way it is. Since I do so much talking about myself in here I wanted to quickly sum up for those of you reading what it's accomplishing for me. I'm mostly finding the journal to be motivating and a good perspective check. Publicly stating my goals and tracking my progress helps to keep me grounded and writing about my life forces me to examine it a little more deeply than only my lived experience.

I don't much like talking about things like my fitness, reading, or financial goals with many IRL as I think it mostly comes across as smug or hubristic and at the same time I also don't think anybody really cares. In reality the same rules apply here but I tell myself it's different since there's no social contract forcing you to listen (read) this journal (please stop if you're bored!). Being able to track those things in this "public" space gives me motivation on the days I'm lacking it. The journal helps with consistency in this regard.

As for checking my perspective. I definitely have strong glass-half-empty tendencies. Documenting my life, being able to reflect on where I'm at, where I was, where I'm going... it all helps me realize how good a thing I've got going and helps to keep me from getting bogged down in the negativity I'm all to good at latching onto. That's probably funny considering all the complaining I do in here, but it's true.

*In fact the things I've written that I thought might get an intellectual discussion going have so far been ignored!

Running

DR: 77 +4
MR: 432.3 +22.1

Reading

37. Overshoot - Catton

Who'd a thunk? The whole finite resources thing has always seemed pretty self apparent, though I definitely leaned more techno-optimist/cargoist before finding ERE. It's very interesting to read something explicating macro principles on the subject. Thanks for the rec, J.

A Quote

This is just a nice Vonnegut quote I stumbled across the other day.
Dear Old Nanno —

You’re learning now that you do not inhabit a solid, reliable, social structure — that the older you get people around you are worried, moody, goofy human beings who themselves were little kids only a few days ago. So home can fall apart and schools can fall apart, usually for childish reasons, and what have you got? A space wanderer named Nan.

And that’s O.K. I’m a space wanderer named Kurt, and Jane’s a space wanderer named Jane, and so on. When things go well for days on end, it is an hilarious accident.

You’re dismayed at having lost a year, maybe, because the school fell apart. Well — I feel as though I’ve lost the years since Slaughterhouse-Five was published, but that’s malarky. Those years weren’t lost. They simply weren’t the way I’d planned them. Neither was the year in which Jim had to stay motionless in bed while he got over TB. Neither was the hear in which Mark went crazy, then put himself together again. Those years were adventures. Planned years are not.

I look back on my own life and I wouldn’t change anything. . . .

Hristo Botev
Posts: 963
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:42 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Hristo Botev »

Cheepnis wrote:
Sun Aug 16, 2020 6:42 pm
Purpose Of This Journal
Excellent description of what I also find so rewarding about the ERE Journaling process.

JollyScot
Posts: 166
Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2015 3:44 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by JollyScot »

I should have done that way of pricing for laptops for the second hand vs new choice. My wife still has an old macbook pro that I got second hand (2013 version) and its chugging along fine still. Whereas my new dell conked out and has since been replaced. Maybe over 10 year the macs do come out as "worth it" tough upfront sticker price though. I went back to a fixable desktop this time, time will tell if that was the right choice.

Is the housing demand increase like here where everyone was locked in for a few months and now arrived in a wave of buying the little that is available. I can't see that lasting long. I guess it depends on how much you want to own. I'm a bit less concerned by the price I actually pay if the utility of the purchase is high. Although some bad experiences has reduced the perceived utility for me. I suspect it was more bad luck on my part.

As for journal interaction I think a lot of people will read along to a lot of posts but think they have not much to add. So they lurk away in the background, I certainly do on a lot of peoples posts. Depends if you would like a back and forth or not I guess. Just because someone doesn't reply doesn't mean they didn't find it useful or interesting. You never really know, I guess if you were to specifically ask for peoples thoughts they might chime in. Hard to say.

Scott 2
Posts: 1632
Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Scott 2 »

Cheepnis wrote:
Sun Aug 16, 2020 6:42 pm
I don't much like talking about things like my fitness, reading, or financial goals with many IRL
Same, to the point where my wife reads my journal, since she often finds surprises. I find the act of writing for public consumption helps organize my thoughts.

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

JC, they are so much more expensive but everything about them screams quality. Not just build quality, ease of use and intuitiveness is far higher as well IMO. Windows might have turned it around since I last used it heavily but at this point I just didn't have the inclination to spend time/energy getting all setup in a new house. Ten years use of my laptop seems eminently reasonable to me anyway. Ironically I'm not on the iPhone train though. I'll take my $140 android thank you very much.

S2, every time I sit down to write something out I'm continually amazed how much sense it makes in my mind and how little sense it makes on the page! That's probably a combination of overestimating my own understanding of a given subject and my poor writing skills. Everything floating around up there makes perfect sense until there's ten subjects per sentence, a millions commas, several dozen apostrophes, a smattering of parentheses, and nary and period in sight!

Frita
Posts: 594
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:43 pm

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Frita »

JollyScot wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 7:42 am
As for journal interaction I think a lot of people will read along to a lot of posts but think they have not much to add. So they lurk away in the background, I certainly do on a lot of peoples posts. Depends if you would like a back and forth or not I guess. Just because someone doesn't reply doesn't mean they didn't find it useful or interesting. You never really know, I guess if you were to specifically ask for peoples thoughts they might chime in. Hard to say.
Here, here. Especially for the E’s, it is hard to know how to proceed. IRL I’d be reading folks’ body language, giving/receiving nonverbals, and participating in a communication exchange. I still don’t grok the culture.

@Cheepnis
Well, shit, I get the playing Marco Polo-aspect of keeping a journal here. Perhaps it makes sense at some point or it doesn’t. Congrats on the new-to-you laptop! What’s up with potentially leaving the community for your own place? (No judgement, just curious.)

ertyu
Posts: 1424
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by ertyu »

I am these people I read and follow multiple journals and don’t necessarily comment because when what I have to say isn’t “meaty” enough I just don’t want to clog people’s journals with insubstantial posts - given that it’s *their* journals and not a post for common discussion

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

I should have known journal lurkers are more common than I thought. After all I'm one of them. I don't think I take etiquette into consideration much when making posts in other's journals, but that's probably a function of the fact that I don't post enough in them to feel like I'm pushing the limit. Restraint isn't required as I also feel I don't have much to add most of the time, so therefore I don't. Nonetheless I do enjoy reading them and I do try to make a post every now and then to feel like I do more around here than show up 3-4x/m to talk about myself.
Frita wrote:
Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:21 pm
What’s up with potentially leaving the community for your own place? (No judgement, just curious.)
Not sure what you're referencing? I don't have plans to nuke my account, did I insinuate I do?

Frita
Posts: 594
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:43 pm

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Frita »

Cheepnis wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 5:57 pm
Not sure what you're referencing? I don't have plans to nuke my account, did I insinuate I do?
You’re looking to buy a place when I thought you were in an intentional community?

mooretrees
Posts: 388
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 1:21 pm

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by mooretrees »

I'm always excited when I see you've got a new post. We're pretty different and I really enjoy hearing your thinking and steady, sure progress. I feel very flighty compared to you, but it's nice to read how other people think. I also lurk a lot, and sometimes feel like my comments are more 'cheerleader' than meaty, but it is nice to get encouragement. I also don't have a lot of headspace for deep introspection, but I like reading other people's thoughts. I usually feel like one of the dumb kids in class on this forum, so that's why I stay mostly in the journals.

2Birds1Stone
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Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2015 11:20 am
Location: Earth

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

I love reading your journal since you first started it. I too don't like to clutter journals with posts that may not offer enough value (in my mind). That being said, it's very relatable to me, the value which you derive from writing.

Carry on =)

ertyu
Posts: 1424
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by ertyu »

I second @JSs opinion - it would be neat if you wrote something like, “those reading along, I would appreciate your perspective on X thing.” Otherwise it’s hard to tell what people are already decided on and they’re just chronicling their thinking vs. when something is like, “here is my thinking on this, I wonder what others think.”

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

Thanks for the encouragement everybody.

@Frita, we live in a crappy (condition, price and location are top notch) apartment above gf's parents garage.

I have given cursory consideration to the intentional community thing. It would have to be a good match. It has been my experience that those predisposed to alternative community living aren't really "my" people. Around here the couple communities I've heard of are just hippie-havens and, even though I like a couple Grateful Dead songs, when it comes right down to it I'm a square! hahaha. It is something I should learn more about sometime, perhaps even hunt down a few people with experience actually living in one.

AxelHeyst
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:55 pm
Location: The Mountains, USA

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by AxelHeyst »

Frita wrote:
Tue Aug 18, 2020 8:06 pm
You’re looking to buy a place when I thought you were in an intentional community?
It appears perhaps Frita made the same error I did and got @Cheepnis and @reepicheep mixed up. I'm glad to have this sorted out now, there were a few updates where I was *very* confused.

+1 lurker, will take your comment as an encouragement to post more in here. :D

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

August Update

The #'s

Income: $4,959.37
Saved: $3,949.64
Savings Rate: 79.64%

Spending

New Computer - 425
Rent - 212.5
Groceries - 131.16
4x Eating Out - 70.43
Gas - 35.14
Gifts - 30.44
Electricity - 23.79
Golf - 21
Phone - 18.09
Internet - 17.5
Thrift Store Power Tool Purchase - 15
Project Supplies - 9.68

Would have been my 2nd lowest spending month this year if not for the computer. This is also the first month this year my expenses have breached 4 digits, even if just barely. Met my 0 record goal. Also was completely booked up with stuff for 2/4 weekends so golf expenses were lower. Next couple months I'd like to keep my spending under the 10k/y monthly average of $833, but it will take a little vigilance as I've got $300 of car parts in my amazon cart waiting to be bought and October is when my next 6 month car insurance premium is due.

Running

DR: 79 +2
MR: 443.4 +11.1

I've been pretty lazy on the running the last couple weeks. Only 2 runs in the 14 days since the last update. I'm way ahead of schedule, but hitting >700 would be cool and I need to keep on it if I wanna reach that. I have done a couple days of some burpees, so I haven't been completely sedentary.

Reading

38. The Forever War - Haldeman

This was one of those books that I could tell within the first couple pages was going to be good. I just wish it were longer! Having just read Overshoot some of those ideas were floating around upstairs as I read this and they got me thinking about how my own cargoism/techno-optimism/mostly-hitherto-acceptance-of-our-cultural-dependance-on-limitlessness inform my science fiction preferences.

The book follows a draftee of the Elite Conscription Act to fight in a war against an alien enemy. The Elite Conscription act was enacted to draft the best and brightest individuals across all disciplines into intellectually well-rounded fighting units to increase chances of defeating an enemy of unknown intelligence. As the book explains this it is mentioned that several members of the squad were conscripted due to scoring highly on the Rhine ESP test. My knee-jerk reaction to that is an eye-roll. Yet when just pages later as our protagonist is going through boot camp on a dwarf planet in the asteroid belt, learning how to use super-futuristic mechanized power armor, I eat it up as if it's a forgone end-result of technological progress.

I also tend to prefer sci-fi with democratic/representative government. It's almost as if I'm a product of the culture I grew up in. :lol: I like, for example, Dune and Stranger In A Strange Land, but I did and do bristle at the feudalism of the former and the implied increased mental capabilities of the latter. Just give me some stories with technology that's 100% certainly going to be invented after I die damnit!

39. Starship Troopers - Heinlein

Not bad, still waiting for a Heinlein book I like as much as TMiaHM, which I love. In general I feel like he gets too preachy in his writing. This book had a passage (nearly 5% of the total length), which had nothing to do with the plot, and instead focused on an imagined future with roving bands of vicious and lawless teenage criminals terrorizing the country because corporal punishment is no longer used. It felt very "Old Man Yells At Clouds"-y.

40. The Elegant Universe - Greene

I do wish I had gone a little further with mathematics in school so I could learn about this stuff with even a little greater depth than pop-science analogies. From what I understand, as far as pop-science books about relativity, QM, or string theory goes, Greene's aren't so bad. This book is 20 years old though, so if anybody knows whether or not it's completely outdated by now and has any other good up-to-date laymen level reads I'd be open to suggestions.

wolf
Posts: 1099
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:09 pm
Location: Germany

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by wolf »

well done with the monthly #'s. What kind of computer and os have you bought?

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

wolf, it's a refurbished Late 2015 iMac.

Running

DR: 82 +3
MR: 459.9 +16.5

Reading

41. Class: A Guide Through The American Status System - Fussell

Somewhat outdated since its' publication in '83, but much of it transposes just fine. An overarching theme of the book is that class is often defined separate of money, with lower classes spending disproportionally on things they presume to be high-class signifiers, and actual high-class people spending on entirely different things the lower classes are blissfully unaware of. The book has really driven home just how much we conflate status and money. I think if we were to decouple those things we could solve some problems.

For example, I don't ideologically believe there is any reason for 100 millionaires to exist (much less multi-billionaries!), but the capitalist zeitgeist claims that incentive has to be there or else our savior, the "Job Creator", wouldn't start businesses. I think this follows from our inability to instinctively understand just how much money $100,000,000 is (much less billions!) and from conflating those .001%ers want for status with want for money. I don't think anybody who's made it as big as Bezos or Zuckerfuck or Musk have done it for the money since some past point when they amassed a tiny fraction of their current NW's. They do it to be in the history books.

If we would decide as a society that status can exist without such absurd amounts of money then perhaps it would be easier to enact sensible tax legislation or turn ostensibly appropriate norms on their heads (eg those that make the most get PTO and those that make the least don't, it's completely backwards!).

Mental Health and Politics

My standard strategy of burying my head in the sand and trying to forget about the current clusterfuck is losing effectiveness. The ever increasing likelihood of a Trump autocracy is simply too surreal to ignore for long. What with the admitted election meddling, bogus or insufficiently tested vaccine that will be announced, and the continued corruption of all branches of government to appease the president's every whim and insecurity I just... can't help but get a little gloomy. I don't think I'm under much of any illusion as to the very real and HUGE problems we've always had, but I was definitely used to living in an apparent fantasy world where problems were solvable...

The discussions of the topic on this forum such as in the "housing in new political order" thread are all very interesting and informative, but intellectualizing the subject does very little for me. Especially considering that if resources are still relatively plentiful and ecological pressure still relatively low then this is just the beginning... holy fuck. Wednesday was particularly bad. I was overly fixated on the fact that our government is already performing dry runs of disappearing people. Incredible. Sure seems like there's now a non-zero chance of torture/murder as retaliatory or censorious measures against untried citizens at the hands of my government in my lifetime. I don't see why it "won't happen here".

Anyway, sorry to be a total bummer.

ertyu
Posts: 1424
Joined: Sun Nov 13, 2016 2:31 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by ertyu »

..

Cheepnis
Posts: 294
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:52 am

Re: I Saved Some Money, Accumulated So Good

Post by Cheepnis »

Work and Covid

So the general contractor has had a "plan" for a couple months now. The plan is there is no plan. There are words, they call those words a plan, but there's no plan. If there's a case on the job site they've defined a "person 1"/"person 2", infected/contact with infected, as to what to do with that information your guess is as good as mine. The only actionable part of the plan was if there is a confirmed infection onsite they will sterilize the high-traffic areas.

At the time they first outlined this "plan" they were also not enforcing mask wearing. The university was getting complaints about all the construction workers walking around campus in groups sans masks. The GC was refusing to actually make any ultimatums on the subject, even as the U continued to pressure, instead opting to let us (i.e. each sub-contractor) self-enforce mask wearing and social distancing. There was no self-enforcement. After all this is just a democratic hoax. The field superintendent for the GC went so far as to say "these people (i.e. the libtards at the university) don't understand how immune systems work, they're like little kids who burned their hand on the stove, they think someone died so they're overreacting."

Well, predictably, the complaints kept coming, the GC kept sidestepping, the self-policing kept not happening, and an ultimatum was delivered. I don't know what it was but the GC is requiring and enforcing mask wearing full-time. I've never seen so many grown-ass men bitch so much. Later that week there was the first positive case on the job-site.

On Collecting

Even though I have what is for all intents and purposes a record collection I don't like thinking about it as a collection. The word collection implies completeness and there is no way to have a complete collection with such a wide breadth of available music. Even if I were to severely restrict the parameters of the collection there's still way too much. Instead I simply enjoy purchasing some things I do and will continue to listen to. The collection is an accidental result from behavior and that mindset allows it to have huge holes that I don't feel a pull to fill.

However, every now and then I fall into a collector's mindset. I've never acted on it (which would involve large sums of money spent on it at a rate far higher than I currently do in an effort to fill in the gaps) because not only do I understand it would never be complete, but that behavior would also preclude other priorities which are important to me. The problem with finding myself feeling like a collector is, since I know I won't ever treat the hobby like that, I get super nihilistic. What's the point of having any records if I can't have all the records? Hahaha, so stupid.

The other week a stumbled across a cool EP by some Ethiopian jazz musicians. Limited pressing of only 300*. This month already being tight due to the $300 car parts I was secretly holding out hope it would last until next month. It didn't last and I had a momentary pang of nihilistic collector mindset set in when I found out. Those are such dumb feelings to have, especially over something that doesn't matter in the least.

*I don't care at all about the prestige of a limited pressing. I only care insofar as it means that after it sells out one can't purchase it sometimes at all or without paying a premium.

And thus concludes chapter 4856028 in Cheepnis' adventures in anti-frugal hobbies.

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