the animal's journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Seppia
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Location: Italy

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Seppia »

Still the #1 most kickass journal on the internet.
Thanks for the update

Mister Imperceptible
Posts: 1353
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:18 pm

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Mister Imperceptible »

Your journal is like Jack London updated for the 21st century.

Someone told that you’ve got to import a woman from the Lower 48 if you’re up there.

Colibri
Posts: 69
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:26 am
Location: Northern Canada

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Colibri »

@the animal
I am in your geographic region, more precisely in the Yukon Territory. If you want to write, there is an arts and entertainment newspaper here that is constantly looking for new writers, they only have freelancers. I wrote a few articles for them, they are easy to deal with and very open minded on subject. We get articles about Alaska pretty often, mainly about Skagway and Haines or Fairbanks. Anyway, check this out if it sounds interesting to you

https://whatsupyukon.com

Jason

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Jason »

With that pic of you standing on top of the world looking all Jeremiah Johnson and shit, I would think you would have a march of the penguins line of indigenous girls following you back to camp.

In any event, I can only suggest the typical outlets: mail order brides and penitentiary girls.

7Wannabe5
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Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am
Location: Clinton River Watershed

Re: the animal's journal

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

I can check and see if my sister would be willing to pay to ship my beautiful-but-living-in-the-basement niece up to you. She's definitely a city girl, but very fit due to years of dance training, so could make for an interesting youtube series.

RealPerson
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:33 pm

Re: the animal's journal

Post by RealPerson »

Those are really badass pictures, especially the buffalo. I spent 10 days backpacking in the Montana wilderness this summer. Beautiful country. I always thought of hunting as a hobby more than part of FIRE, but I know Alaska is very different. Is it cost effective between equipment and licenses to hunt in the lower 48?

prognastat
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by prognastat »

@RealPerson

Definitely a topic I'd be interested to hear about too. From what little I've heard it can get very expensive very quickly if you need to go on private land to do so.

theanimal
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

I can't say I've looked into it that heavily. It'll be much easier west of the Mississippi due to the prevalence of public land. I think that the determining factor in terms of the cost effectiveness of hunting in the L48 is transportation costs. However, I think you can still travel reasonably far and still beat the store by a healthy margin. Licenses and tags vary by state but a quick perusal shows low prices almost everywhere. California is $48 for a license and big game tag. Montana is $70 (including bird and elk in addition to deer). New York is $22. Wisconsin is $60 . Those are just a few examples. In most of these cases, outside of the highly desired animals like elk, sheep or bison, you can still get a nonresident license for relatively cheap. For example, New York offers a non-resident license for $100 which appears to cover deer hunting. It makes most sense economically to kill the biggest animal you can find. A whitetail deer yields maybe 50-60 lbs(?) of meat whereas an elk yields 100-120 and a bison 600+. The closer the hunt and the bigger the animal the better.

Rifle is BIFL and amortizes just to a few dollars per hunt if used long term. You can get a rifle that'll kill everything up to a moose for a few hundred dollars. Bullets only end up as a ridiculous expense if you want to shoot a ton with high caliber rounds. You can buy a .22 LR for $200 new and 1000+ bullets for something like $40. There's your target practice.

I think you may have to be creative depending on where you live but it's certainly something worth looking into. I think former forum member @zev was looking into it in NY biking or using some means of public transportation. Impressive, but I think an easier solution would be to go with friends and reduce transportation costs.

Related is this thread:viewtopic.php?t=9531#p157787

theanimal
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

Thanks all for reading and the kind comments.

@colibri- Thanks! I'll look into that.

@Jason- I don't know. Things didn't work out to well for Jeremiah Johnson in the women department. Mail order brides might be the best bet. I can almost see Russia from my house as it is.

@7- Haha, I imagine that would be a fun dynamic. You have me thinking up potential episode ideas.

Kriegsspiel
Posts: 921
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Kriegsspiel »

IIRC, an ERE forumer is a call-girl up in Alaska. Anyone remember her?

theanimal
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Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

@Kspiel- That was @riparian


I accepted a job as a geology technician at a large mine. I had a friend who's done the same job and liked it. I don't have to go underground or do any heavy machinery but it still pays well. 2 weeks on 1 off, likely thru mid December. Housing and meals provided. I should make out with a little over $11k over the duration with potential for more work later on. Not bad.

arebelspy
Posts: 61
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2011 5:50 am

Re: the animal's journal

Post by arebelspy »

I haven't visited the ERE forums in a few years, so I just got to catch up from fall 2016 to today.

Really enjoyed it.

Sounds like you decided against pursuing grad school. What about the pilot thing?

My favorite part of all your posts was the introspection ones, where you talk about what you've learned about yourself, and try to move yourself forward to a better place, for you.

Looking forward to your next update.

theanimal
Posts: 1588
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

@arebelspy- Thank you. More details below.

-----------------------

November through January in the Arctic and across the north is a time of cold and deep darkness. At solstice, the sun is only inching above the horizon at my latitude and up for 3.5 hours a day. The past 2 winters, it was a time where I really struggled. I was flailing around unsure if what I was doing was what I should be doing and not having a community around me that I desired or could use for support. It was a time full of dread and depressive moods. This year has served as a radical antithesis to the winters of old. Some of the change is external in that I have made more friends and have somewhat of an outside structure, but there is likely some internal growth that has occurred as well. There has been no substantial depressive moods the past few months and a friend recently described my mood as very giddy. For so long I was pursuing a vision of life that I thought was in the future, but now I think I've realized that I'm living the life I want. There's a question someone mentioned here once that I like to ask others. "If money wasn't an object, what would you do with your life?" I struggle to answer this question because the reality is that I wouldn't change much from what I'm doing now. I feel great and am going to ride this wave as long as I can.

I took a job working at one of the large gold mines in the state a few hours outside of town starting at the beginning of October. I worked in the core processing facility as a geology technician. It's a work away deal meaning when I was working I was living out there for 2 weeks straight (1 week off), working 12 hours every day. The work was manual labor without much thought. Measuring core, photographing core, sampling core, moving core..and so on, but we were allowed to listen to whatever so I was able to make the most of it plowing through a hefty dose of audiobooks and podcasts. The job was well paying but was ultimately a means to an end for me and not ideal for many reasons. My last day was a week ago.

One of the reasons I took the job is to pursue the pilot license. I started lessons this past week and barring environmental factors, I will likely have my private license by mid March at the latest. There is tons of opportunity in the aviation industry, especially in Alaska going forward so if I progress through my hours and other certifications, it is not out of the question to obtain a job for some air taxi or regional airline up here by the end of the year.

I turned 26 a couple weeks ago and I wanted to do something hard. So I decided to run 26 miles on the morning of my birthday on some local trails. Mission Success. My first marathon in the books and without all the commercial bullshit and vanity associated with many of the organized races. I am doing an organized one with a friend in March, but plan to do another one on my own sometime over the next month. I like the fitness aspect of it but it is more about making my mind harder. There is too much encouragement of fluff and ease in our current culture IMO, when things like tolerance for adversity can deliver incredible returns. It takes a lot too faze me right now. For example, it's been -40 F for the past two days. Two days ago, my heat went out at home, my windshield cracked and I had a flat tire. Both days were really good. I'm going to continue to pursue stress and create friction in my life. It seems stupid not to.

In miscellaneous news, there is a girl I am seeking to court. Its kind of pathetic that it's news that there is one single female that I am attracted to and am interested in pursuing but such is the state of affairs up here. It seems promising but its extremely early. We'll see. I'm looking forward to an EMT class that I'm starting in a couple weeks. And I'm planning on starting BJJ. I started last winter but stopped due to poor transportation situation. The schedule conflicts with the EMT class but I think I've found a way to work it out. I'm currently doing remote work as an insurance underwriter. The pay isn't lucrative but I can work as little or as much as I want from my couch. It combines well with the rest of my schedule.

Finally, here's an analysis of 2018 income vs expenses via the ratio created by Fish (I think he's the one who did it..)

Writing- .125
Tour Guide- .25
PFD - .1
Forestry- 1.0
Mining 1.0

Total- 2.475

I'm OK with that. 2019 should be similar but I think I'll be able to get it over 3.0 which is much more ideal.


Not many good pictures from the last few months but here's one from the mine and one from a recent trip to the AK Range with some friends.

Image

Image20190105_095852

Seppia
Posts: 1472
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:34 am
Location: Italy

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Seppia »

Sorry if my replies to your journal all sound the same, but your journal is the awesomest of all the (very awesome) journals on this board.

Kriegsspiel
Posts: 921
Joined: Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:05 pm

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Kriegsspiel »

Can you elaborate on the remote insurance underwriting work?

theanimal
Posts: 1588
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
Location: AK
Contact:

Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

Thanks, Seppia. Always appreciate the compliments.


Re the insurance work: The company I work for contracts agencies to source customers (all auto). The agents sign customers up for policies and enter all the information in an online database. My job is to review the policy to ensure that any additional documents required are uploaded and to verify policy holder information to make sure it falls within the company's parameters. The work is extremely simple and I'm on the lowest rung. But it pays $15/hr, there is tons of flexibility, no stress/pressure and I have a great relationship with the boss.

arebelspy
Posts: 61
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2011 5:50 am

Re: the animal's journal

Post by arebelspy »

theanimal wrote:
Tue Jan 08, 2019 2:41 pm
Finally, here's an analysis of 2018 income vs expenses via the ratio created by Fish (I think he's the one who did it..)

Writing- .125
Tour Guide- .25
PFD - .1
Forestry- 1.0
Mining 1.0

Total- 2.475

I'm OK with that. 2019 should be similar but I think I'll be able to get it over 3.0 which is much more ideal.
Interesting way to break things down. Anyone have a source thread?

jacob
Site Admin
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by jacob »

I don't, but IIRC, it's min(incomesource/totalspending,1). It's meant to measure diversification. If a given income source fully covers one's spending, it maxes out at 1. The higher the score, the more resilient one is towards income source loss.

Fish
Posts: 555
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:09 am

Re: the animal's journal

Post by Fish »

@arebelspy - Jacob came up with the idea in the “ERE indicator” thread: viewtopic.php?p=128954#p128954

theanimal
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Re: the animal's journal

Post by theanimal »

I started flying soon after my last update and have been flying on average about 4-5 times a week since that point. I've made some great progress during that time period. Currently, I'm sitting at ~37 hrs of logged time and deemed ready for a check ride by my instructors. They want me to pad some more time instead of taking the test at the minimum of 40 hr. Apparently, proctors are skeptical of those at the minimums and give those people a harder time. Kind of annoying but the time is the same, albeit slightly more expensive than if I was flying elsewhere.

It's been a really fun process, I really enjoy going out and flying. The first 20 hours or so were work on maneuvers and pattern work before I did my first solo. Then 20 through the low 30s were cross country flights to other airports. Night flights followed that, including one night around the pattern and another on a cross country flight (intense!!!). Now it's just checkride prep and padding the stats a bit. The learning process has been like that of any other, where I'm flailing at the beginning somewhat overwhelmed by skills and knowledge required and my lack thereof. Around hour 20, I started to feel smug and became somewhat complacent as I became more comfortable in the aircraft (top of Mt. Stupid!). Thankfully, the night flights, more solo work and watching a ton of case studies on accidents have humbled me and taken me down from the not so glorious heights of Mt. Stupid.

Image
Flying a cross country flight

I've come to the realization over the past few months that I excel in learning and applying things quickly with the appropriate structure in place. In just the past year, this has happened in 2 different fields in which I was employed and the people at the flight school call me their star student. I need to figure out the best way to take advantage of this and use it to its full potential.

In related news, a close friend of mine told me that sometime I can come off as arrogant or cocky. I've been making attempts at becoming more humble, but I don't think those attempts have been too successful...

One issue that has plagued me in recent years is an inability to deviate from a self projected image of myself. I build up some idealized version of myself and feel if I fail to conform to that, I fail life. The biggest example of that is a reluctance to move from the remote cabin to town. It happens in smaller instances too though. I just withdrew from the winter ski race I've done the past couple years and a part of me feels like a failure or that others will think I am. I know the reality is nobody cares. It's not the worst thing in the world, as I've shown I can make the decisions eventually. But eventually can lead to prolonged time in a situation that is unpleasant or that which is not best for me at a given time period.

I haven't gotten into Jiu jitsu and did not end up taking the EMT class. I likely could/could have added the jiu jitsu into my schedule but it seems full enough at the moment with work, flying and socializing. I'm thinking that is something to add to the docket for next winter.

No luck with any women...I asked the girl out I mentioned above but apparently she wasn't completely single at the time and still getting over a recent long term relationship break up. She's single now though and we've been hanging out regularly. There seems to be some interest, but she's a hard one to read. Anyways, ball is in her court now. Otherwise still no prospects. I've been a lot more vocal about looking for someone recently and a few friends of mine have taken on the task of scouring their circles for any available women. Maybe eventually an attractive single girl will find her way into the heart of Alaska...

Anyways, all is well with me and hopefully the same holds true for all of you reading!

Image
Reindeer at my friend's farm

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