Pictures and words here: https://imgur.com/a/IAGwx
All the job hating:
An outsider might get the impression that for such a liberal community as the ERE community there is one thing that you must do, and that is to hate your job and want to quit it. If you can pile on some derision for needing structure or finding fulfillment in employment then all the better.
I'd really like it if we could collectively try to be less asshats than the asshats we like to think of as narrow minded asshats and stop with the asshattery about working stiff. Such one-sided derision is just unfitting for a such an ensemble of well-mannered, sophisticated, well-read, and thoroughly responsible intellectual wankers.
7w5's approach to problem solving is really what I'm looking for... to some degree. I'd like more coherent sentences but the general idea structure in on par. Stop focusing on the limitations and see what alternatives you can come up with.
Job this, job that. Money this, money that... We're not much different from those stiff we like to think ourselves better than.
It's unbecoming, is what it is.
Where did the systems thinking go? Where did the web of goals approach go? Maybe I'm still young and naive at the age of 36 but I'd like to imagine that once an ERE adherent (and by this I mean a philosophical adherent, not a strictly financial adherent) has figured out how to live off of very little, there is actually very little incentive to keep showing up at a P.O.S job and keep grinding out sausages when you could find something that is a lot more fulfilling and apply a web-of-goals approach to the job. Isn't the point of ERE to apply appropriate measures of web of goals, system's thinking and Pareto efficiency to live well? You know your discount rate on your investments, that's how you do DCF or Gordon's Equation analysis but what is your discount rate on your life? Your life, that 'thing' you're supposedly trying to optimize via ERE.
Becoming financially independent seems to be a total side effect because we develop incredible margins compared to the rest of the world. Why focus so myopically on that margin? If you hate your life that much, you really should change it as soon as you can.
Again: young and naive.
Moving away from indexes in the name of agency and web of goals:
I cashed in on some really lucrative value-focused indexes and I'm starting to pick single stocks. And Boy oh BOY did I cash out at JUST the right moment! I'm just sitting on a bit above one year's expenses waiting for my most well-managed investments to bottom out so I can put some more money into them. Prices are going down, the US dollar is going down. It's a sale all over the place.
Nothing like dumb f****** luck.
I've sold some of my indexes for a lot of reasons actually. Making a market-beating pile of moolah is actually not really one of them. Oddly enough. I want to familiarize myself with business, the economy, what interest rates means for different business and societies in general and I can gauge some of that, through a filter of investor emotions, via my investments. I'm witnessing the volatility of single stocks now that it's no longer hidden inside major indexes and I'm feeling kind of okay about it currently. I like to know that the dividend machine is one I built, not someone else. I like to know that I'm not paying fees to some fund or fund managers while owning single stocks. The onus to make good decisions is upon me and I'm actually enjoying it rather a lot currently.
I get to test my assumptions about an industry, and particular businesses within the industry. Is my contrarian nature beneficial to me? Is the growth of indexing making it easier to find good 'value' investments? Should I learn more about technical investing (some signs say yes so far).
I get a real dopamine kick when finding great deals. I also get a real dopamine kick when I find something ugly about a company and decide to leave them alone for now. My inner optimizer loves building a machine that spits out cash and I get to familiarize myself with the machinations that will put cash in my pocket for the rest of my life.
I now know what I'll be saying no to, in case I decide to switch to indexing later on. I now know the rules of the game, rather than try to play a game without knowing what goes on. Indexing feels safe, in a safety-of-crowds kind of way. Buying individual stocks feels safe in a I-know-why-I've-decided-to-do-this kind of way. My portfolio might behave oddly compared to the market, but feel like I have a pretty good idea of why it does so.
So far it's behaving exactly as I thought it would, even if it's 'losing money' currently. 'feels good. It really does.
I'm being treated for stress now. Not depression, not ADHD. Stress!
It's a good thing and I've found out about the joys of playing computer games again. Specifically I've been playing Offworld Trading Company, which might be the best strategy game I've ever played! The look, execution, cinematography, storyline, complexity, community, variability, and feel is just bang on!
For the first time in 15 years, I'm truly having fun playing computer games. It's taken a month of meditation and sleep, and now 14 days of games has boosted my mental health to unprecedented levels since I started university. So thank you Mohawk Games!
I've been sleeping on the floor for about five and a half months. I'm having trouble sleeping in a regular bed now. I fall asleep quickly in a bed, but I don't sleep well in one... Skill-wise I really like the idea that I can just lie down on a carpet and cover myself with something warm and I can sleep all night that way. Next up: losing the pillow too.
I've dabbled in 'japanese' food. As Eureka has stated several times: the ingredients are not japanese so it's not really going to taste like japanese food anyway; do whatever you want
I've been making cucumber tsukemono [ske'mo'no'] miso soup, dashi, kimchi!!!!, soy/sake glazed pork, I've learned how to filet and cook fresh mackarel, invented sesame/orange furikake, and something I've nicknamed fusion salad.
The japanese do not eat breakfast, dinner, supper etc like 'we' do. Every meal is basically rice with something added. So I've tried adopting that idea because it actually makes it a lot easier to go shopping. You need rice, fish, vegetables, and eggs. Done!
Whenever you need to eat you just reheat something from an existing batch of cooked rice along with some miso, and dashi. Add shredded fish, a splash of kimchi, an egg, and sprinkle with furikake and you've got yourself a warm meal in five minutes.
'goes badly with coffee, goes amazingly well with green tea.
And on that note: I learned that you not only can -but should- make several servings of green tea from the same tea leaves, so once you get used to the taste of green tea, even high quality 'expensive' green tea is not very expensive because you can make four servings from a single serving's worth of tea leaves.
I really wanted to start 2018 with social dancing. In the name of systems thinking/web of goals social dancing is just amazing.
However I had to postpone due to my knee still acting up.
I've taken intro lessons with my GF before but this time she didn't want to join me, so I wanted to go alone. At first I have to admit that I felt kind of silly slow-dancing through all the non-flashy beginner's moves, especially when fast lindy looks so ridiculously cool, but I came to appreciate that Lindy hop is not about looking good, but about feeling good.
Check out this Jack 'n Jill dance competition: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26-1t15R_MU
I want you to understand that this is a random leader, paired with a random follower. These are not studied routines, this is on-the-fly dancing. A Jack 'n Jill competition is about dancing and communicating well with a 'stranger', which is the whole point about social dancing in general. Lindy hop as a social dance is also known as the Three Minute Love Affair and I will see if I can show you why that is.
Compare the images that these two tinyurl previews link to, although sort of contrived, I think the images relay the difference in how one feels when swing dancing compared to.... well everything else.
Now the one thing I discovered about social dancing is just how much you can tell about a person by dancing with them. You won't believe me either until you've tried dancing with a stranger yourself. Trust me, our personalities really shine through in the way we move, cooperate, and communicate.
It's goofy, it's fun, you're feeling good even when you look terrible, and you're relaxed while at the same time excited to see what you can do with this stranger you're dancing with. Lindy hop is amazing and I can't wait for my knee to heal up properly.
I will hopefully start siphoning into my new job in a month or so. I'm so incredibly stoked!
Once children turn 4, they turn from needy, whiny, little fuckers to absolute angels! I can hand my 4 year old a sharp knife and some vegetables and she'll make salad with minimal adult supervision. She almost knows how to make pancakes from scratch and she's pretty much helping us cook every single meal these days. My GF paid off the house in the summer or so, and she's looking to be FI in about 2 years or thereabouts.
Things are really looking up.
They really are...
 I though that was funny....
 I can't be bothered with diaresis. You know how to read this properly.
 No True Scotsman fallacy coming RIGHT up.
 Noooooope. Still no diaresis.
 Smells like fart, tastes like fermented cabbage with chili.