Jacob's other journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Scott 2
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Post by Scott 2 »

Delete the tangents. People will stop.
Concern over crime in Chicago is very well founded. 505 murders in the city in 2012:
https://data.cityofchicago.org/Public-S ... /ws3w-ba2s
This is way down from the early 90's and probably not going to improve further. Most of the violent crime is black on black and localized. Outside of safety, I imagine Jacob wouldn't mesh well with the culture in the high crime areas.
Living near those areas can suck too. I worked with a guy who lived just south of Ravenswood, in a million dollar house. His wife actually had to confront a homeless man that had decided to start living under their porch. Screw that. I'll take my suburban bubble every time.


secretwealth
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Post by secretwealth »

To be sure; there are problems with living in the ghetto that I certainly would prefer to live without. Fortunately NYC doesn't have the crime problems Chicago does.
In all seriousness: doesn't Chicago have a happy medium between the ghetto and the yuppie enclaves? Last time I was there, I really fell in love with the inner loop area, but I imagine that wouldn't fit Jacob's desire to have a garden.


jacob
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Post by jacob »

1) Perfect illustration of our house buying _issues_. Looking at what, say $150k, buys, Chicago/burbs is not a winner compared to our old RE hunting grounds in the Pacific Northwest. Nothing around here really screams "I'd be happy to stay there for at least 10 years", rather it's more a "I'd rather live there than keep renting an apartment, but...".
2) The invitation for a free trip to Switzerland was just reiterated. That reminded me how much I hate traveling. If I was really rich, I'd be happy to pay people to come to me just so I wouldn't have to go to them.
3) I just cut my first set of perfect dovetails. Fit the first time with no gaps. That was a frigging awesome feeling. Dovetails are so hard to get right that people write entire books on just how to cut that joint. That said, the set I cut after the perfect set had gaps, so there's some ways to go.
This was for a 11"x6" pine box which went surprisingly fast. I feel like I'm ready to take on bigger dovetailing projects now.
I also made a merry-go-round toy. Building things that move are just inherently more fun that building static things. On the wish-list is a medieval pole lathe... and a more modern tread wheel powered scroll saw. Why buy, when you can make, right? My only concern is running out of space.
4) DW switched to paleo. I'm tagging along in the sense that I'll add some grains to her concoctions. In that regard, we boosted the food budget from $250 per month for the two of us to $350. I'd expect this $$-measure to be a temporary compensation for not knowing where to buy the meat efficiently.


Dragline
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Post by Dragline »

I'd be interested to see some pictures of your creations.


secretwealth
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Post by secretwealth »

Out of curiosity, why do you hate travelling? I loved it in my younger years, but now at 32 I'm starting to dislike it too.


Seneca
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Post by Seneca »

For about 6mos in 2011-2012 I did paleo. I liked the effects but found it amazingly difficult. I started adding back in more carbs when I ramped up training for an adventure race.


m741
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Post by m741 »

@Seneca - I'd like to hear about the adventure race. Mind posting some details in another thread? They look like a lot of fun.


Chris
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Post by Chris »

SW: Travel is not worth it


secretwealth
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Post by secretwealth »

Thanks, Chris--that's before I came to the site and I definitely agree with Jacob, especially on being in an airplane. It's really a disgusting way to travel, if you think about it.


jacob
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Post by jacob »

I've noticed that I'm getting bored when I'm not at work. This is not good! Of course this can be rephrased as having made "work" part of me, which I think is the best condition for me to be in. Always feeling like I'm on a mission whether that mission involved a job fixing a problem, writing a book, or whatever. It is good to work for one's interest rather than for money---for me anyway. There's also something to be said for keeping the two separate and professional. I'm a bit too intense/idealistic just to work for money.
Some thread recently considered the question "and then what", as in, "I'm gonna retire... And then what? ... Then I'm gonna ... And then what?"
I think I've solved the "And then what" of the first order for now. I don't think I'll ever develop one of these 50 year plans that some people seem to have.
As you know we've been looking at buying a house and yet we've been frustrated that nothing really seemed to click. We're not really city people in the sense that living in an apartment surrounded by other apartments where the only escape is going to some restaurant seems attractive. We like green. The burbs seems to only provide a glimpse of that. Living on 2000 sqft surrounded by similar houses for 20 miles in all directions ... I couldn't see myself being happy with that in the long run.
Then we looked at WA. Puget Sound sounded great: Trees, water, mountains. Still, my search criteria picked up cabins in the middle of nowhere. This has everything except civilization. Being 10 miles from the nearest supermarket makes for a "slow" life mostly reading books and waving to the neighbor, at least it would for us.
However, I think I found the solution. Anacortes, WA, sounds like the ideal fit for our "temperaments". Houses are affordable when held together with RE taxes which are low. In other words, we could have really low annual expenses (probably around $3k/person/year) in that area which has lots of outdoorsy activities and yet still enough civilization for part time work/creating a small business. In other words, lots of opportunity with little cap on what's possible.
As far as I can tell from here. Never actually been there ;-P
Anyhoo ... our combined networth has held both of us FI (3% level) for a few months now---consequentially all earned income is funneled directly into the house fund which is growing rather fast. I'm also converting stocks into cash for the "house buying fund". This is good since I'm overweight in stocks anyway. I also find that with FT work that I don't have nearly the same focus on the market as before and that I therefore should move away from individual stocks. I'll probably transition to the PP eventually.


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Ego
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Post by Ego »

I would have guesses Port Townsend for the Wooden Boat Foundation or Port Hadlock for the Wood Boat Building School.


susswein
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Post by susswein »

A couple of suggestions on the homebuying front:
1) Visit Anacortes at the rainiest time of year before making your decision. I was planning to move to the seattle area after spending several great summers there. Two weeks visiting in November changed my mind.
2) Have you considered buying a multi-family building instead of a single family home? It was the best ER decision I ever made. First off, it was hard to find a home as small as I wanted in an area I wanted, but with the 4-plex I've got the 900sqft back (quiet) unit, plus as much of the backyard as I want for shop and projects. Second, the income from the other 3 units covers all the building expenses (including mortgage, utilities, etc). If you calculate the "rent" I'm saving compared to the downpayment amount I'm getting about a 12% return. Third, the depreciation from owning a rental means that I haven't had taxable income in more than 6 years.

Fourth, since you're doing all your own maintenance you can write off all your tools and materials as business expenses.
If you choose your area and house rules well you can really minimize tenant issues. My 3 tenants right now are a single professional woman, a grad student, and a post-doc.


JoeNCA
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Post by JoeNCA »

It snows a lot in Eastern WA. Rains a lot in West.
Many from Calif. moved up to WA near OR border and enjoy the benefits of WA's no income tax and OR's no sales tax.


jacob
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Post by jacob »

@Ego - Ha! You make a convincing argument. (Pt. Townsend also has a woodworking school featuring some big names as well as an active yachting community) I have to weigh it against DW wanting to do some accounting work (less choice with a pop. 7000 town, still some: there are a tax prep firms as well as a hospital and some businesses), the $100k land premium for similar houses, and it being somewhat further away from civilization (it's the biggest city within dozens of miles). A car makes for a bad commute/meetup. A ferry is even worse.
@susswein - I grew up in Denmark where clear skies are the exception. I think WA has a similar climate or better (less wind).


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Ego
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Post by Ego »

Well then... Here's a dream home in Port Townsend
http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/1934/Mo ... ted-States
Asking $82,000. Or find a cheap project. Right now it's a buyers market. Of course you'd have to pay the $290/month fee mooring fee plus another $65 liveaboad fee.
If you're gonna do it you might as well DO IT, right?


Dragline
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Post by Dragline »

Whatever you do, keep the DW happy!
Make that the priority, and you won't be bored anymore. A good mission for you.


jacob
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Post by jacob »

Bought a fishing license ($15). Caught a black crappie yesterday.

(We're fishing at Montrose harbor, outer seawall, in case locals are interested in joining up)

Signed up for the company table tennis tournament (free beer).

Aggregating the blog into a kindle book is proceeding so-so.

No current woodworking projects.

Reading books about robotics.


J_
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Post by J_ »

Interesting thing I thought; Jacob fishing and catching dark nonsense. Seemed a completedly new attitude for him.

Until I found out: Pomoxis nigromaculatus (Lesueur, 1829) I hope Jacob that it tasted as good as its fame is.


jacob
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Post by jacob »

Nope. Being clueless are we are, we threw it back into the lake. We overheard the family fishing next to us talking about it being a "bad fish". Besides, it was only 7" long. Hardly a mouthful.
In other news, today's elimination game loss means that I'm now out of the tournament. This means I get to drink more beer so all is not lost.


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Ego
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Post by Ego »

Why robotics?


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