The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Where are you and where are you going?
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distracted_at_work
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Jun 30, 2017 12:11 pm

Today is a day for ERE confessions

Extremely hungover this morning but thankfully it's a slow work day as most of the downtown core appears to be off in anticipation of Canada Day 150. That means I get to hammer out a journal entry, to you, the lovely forum reader. So many things have been going on I actually wrote an outline for this post so I wouldn't forget what I wanted to say.

Way back when I talked about putting in a garden to practice growing some food. I didn't mention it on here but I did follow up and try growing beets, lettuce and some mystery squash. The experiment seems to be going well. I water when they appear dry and otherwise leave them alone.

It's a shame that I will have to abandon my lovely garden. I lasted two months in the ERE party-house guest room bunk-bed. Fuckers kept eating my food, drinking my beer, wouldn't clean a dam thing, bringing loud 19 year old girls home, bringing random couch-surfers home (last night wtf).... my grievances could go on. Luckily I had no down deposit and signed nothing so I told them I'm bailing and they were cool about it. The landlord raised the rent by $150/mo when I moved in and as a courtesy I'm paying that out for two months until the end of the lease. We are all still friends, of course. It's just not the living situation for me.

Typically I analyze my roommates more before moving in with them so I partly blame myself and partly blame the timing. Going to Nicaragua and then having 4 days to move is not something I recommend. Have your life in order before you go traveling, especially if you intend on returning.

Now for the ERE confessions. I'll now have moved 5 times in the last 2.5 years. I'm done tethering my life to roommates which means I'm moving into an apartment all alone! Unfortunately, I could not justify renting a shitbox in the name of retiring early. I'm going from a rental cost of $700/mo in the bunk-bed to $1300/mo for a modern top floor downtown view low-rise. I had to go for an 18 month lease to even get that price and it's only partly furnished. I can't really justify it in terms of ERE mostly because I have been enjoying my new job immensely. I also did some mental gymnastics to directly apply my additional $100/mo transit allowance I'm paid into renting a nicer place as I will be walking again. What are the implications? Well I'll realistically spend roughly $2K/mo for the next 18 months if I change none of my habits. Without expecting any bonuses this year that locks my savings rate in around 65%. If I get bonuses, then I'm still killing it. For the joy of not having to move anymore and of having my own personal space, I think it is worth it.

I'm also planning on renting out the covered parking space for $100/mo so that can offset some of the rental burden. I can park on the street for free and people will pay stupid amounts of money to not brush snow off their car in the winter.

I'm really bad at ERE. I tried cooking dried beans instead of canned and nearly poisoned myself. I had to buy a brand new mattress and did little-to-no research but realized I hate mattress shopping. I searched the forum for old mattress posts and concluded used, cots, floor, tatami, etc was not the solution for me. Got some $800 job online, cha-ching. Is this what lifestyle inflation feels like?

Some ERE good news is that the new job involves a ton of client lunches/dinners and as a result my personal food costs have substantially dropped. I also collect that sweet sweet cash back on the credit card which has turned into a little $20-$50/mo bonus.

Other life things

Over one of the longer dry streaks regarding females in my life in recent memory. Like all things, when it rains it pours. This is an early retirement forum and not a relationship advice forum so unless asked to elaborate I won't. However, I will share a quick story. I went hiking two weeks ago to clear my head space and ran into a cute girl also hiking alone. We started chatting and she convinced me to summit this mountain that I was not at all prepared for. Well by the time we made it to the top we were ... making out ... Seriously couldn't make this shit up if I tried.

What's coming down the pipe? The Calgary Stampede! The craziest time of year. This is a paid week of partying for the downtown oil industry. I need to focus on not getting alcohol poisoning during a normal year. Now that my job is partly sales, I have 5straight days of partying planned, almost all expense-able, starting around 8 AM each day. If I disappear off this forum abruptly, check the obituaries and know that I died a happy man. Jacob can have what's left of my dried beans.

My portfolio is down down down but so is the market. Dividends are still being paid and I haven't done anything stupid like selling. Bought SHOP.

With all this going on, in addition to the usual summer activities, I haven't had time to work on my business plan. I'm rather ashamed of this. The updates on that front are that I couldn't swing a job in the brewery due to them not working evenings or weekends. Instead, I've befriended the brew-master of my nearest competitor. He lets me bring home-brew in to his production area to share while I pepper him with questions about the whole plan. I also brought on a partner. My partner hasn't actually done anything this month other than help me make beer as we've had similar busyness levels. I'm going to set specific times of the week for us to get to work once we are through the mayhem that is July. One close friend brought up that talking/typing about the brewery idea releases similar dopamine levels in my brain (or something) compared to actually doing it. He said that could be another thing that has hindered my progress. I really need to refocus.
Last edited by distracted_at_work on Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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TheRedHare
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by TheRedHare » Fri Jun 30, 2017 4:42 pm

That room situation sounded like it would be miserable...I would have done the same as you and bail.

$1300 a month for an apartment is definitely crazy in terms of ERE standards, but if you're really fed up with roommates I would totally understand. What about just getting one roommate that you already know, like a co-worker?

I laughed when you mentioned the dried beans, as I am getting used to eating rice and beans 7 days a week...spices make all the difference haha. Are you sure you cooked the beans right? I've heard of people not cooking them properly and getting stomach cramps. Your body might also need to adjust to them. As for the mattress situation, have you tired sleeping on the floor or a thin mat? I've been sleeping on a thin (3in.) futon for the past month and don't have many complaints from it....again, something your body needs to adapt to. The paid lunches are always sweet! Take advantage of that haha.

Please elaborate on the relationship thing, I'd be interested. I too face some relationship difficulties...mostly finding a girl I actually like. Although you sound much more outgoing than me....I mean...I don't think I could see myself making out with another random hiker after only meeting her a few hours ago haha. You must have a way with words lol.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:41 am

@Red. I'm more interested in not tying the fate of my living situation to that of another person for a while. Co-workers are out as, once again, I'm the youngest in my company by a solid margin.

The time I mentioned, I definitely had not. I improperly assumed that beans after soaking could be cooked the same way as rice could be. I've got 100-days with the new mattress "risk free" so I'll try it for that period. If I can't stand the idea of sleeping on something so expensive I'll rethink the purchase.

To somewhat elaborate... a few girls that I had been trying generate some interest with all started giving me the time of day at the same time + a random hiker who I've now been on a few dates with. I got a haircut recently so I don't look like a hippy, maybe that did it? :lol: Now I'm trying to figure out whom to spend my time/energy on.

I'm no casanova but best advice I can could give without knowing you personally would be to focus on having fun. Developing yourself so you are interesting. Practice empathy, listen well. Take care of your body. Don't pressure yourself to find someone. Do all that and things tend to work out.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by TheRedHare » Mon Jul 03, 2017 6:56 pm

@distracted_at_work
wow man, that's a pretty nice problem to have haha. A haircut might help, but usually it has to do with your energy. As far as who to spend time with, I'd just say whomever you think you are most compatible with...I'm not trying to sound sarcastic, but I honestly don't know either haha.

It's not so much that I have a hard time with women, or that I don't understand them, it's mostly that I have some insecurities in that I don't like letting people in and messing around with my emotions. My last relationship was pretty bad, and because of it I made some bad decisions with my own life. I try not to be cynical about it as that is just ridiculous, but I just have a hard time letting people into my deeper emotions...hence why I guess some people see me as if I have something to hide or don't care to get too involved with.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by CS » Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:54 pm

distracted_at_work wrote:
Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:39 am
... Never tried an African beer before, do you remember the brand?
I don't remember sorry - the bottle was black and yellow. It was sort of fruity, in a good (not blueberry or other horror) sort of way.

Sounds like you've been having some adventures lately. Congrats on getting the new place - still keeping a decent savings rate.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:44 am

Late Summer Update

Here's some music to listen to. My summer student this year was an idiot (boss' kid) but said one smart thing. "August in the Sunday of summer". It sure is. For the first time since my last post, I took a weekend off from doing activities and stayed in around home. The overwhelming fear of missing out was strong. Fairly standard feeling of depression hits around the end of summer every year but it doesn't get any easier to deal with. Had a breakup last week too so ya-know that's never fun. Pretty well over it this week... :D

Joined an Ultimate Frisbee Team and we came in 3rd for the league. That's a great ERE sport. $60 for 8 weeks of competition. Can ride my bike to every game. Don't need any fancy equipment and get really good exercise, sprinting on/off for two hours. Below is a pic I snapped of the skyline, sunset and mountains on my way home one night. I love nothing more than bike riding. The feeling of freedom, stopping to watch a sunset. Would never do that in a car. Can't beat it.

Hit a couple music festivals this year. If you are cursed/blessed with a baby face then it's time to break out the old student ID for those sweet sweet savings. The new one in my music festival lineup was Wapiti out in Fernie, B.C. Tiny little festival with a ton of amazing indy/bluegrass/funk bands. Cheap tickets, ride bikes all over town and great company. Me and some amigos set up a little hobo village on some crown land just outside of town. We would ride bikes into the festival with a stash of booze just outside that we could run out to. Music festival done ERE style. Ate peanuts and vegetables all weekend other than splurging on one restaurant meal.

With ALL THESE POSITIVES... I still spent 50% of my income/month last two months. Not terrible but far off my 65% estimations. Doing things is expensive. Furnishing an apartment is expensive. Driving around the country side to go hiking or whatever is expensive. I won't even talk about my investments. We are down down down folks. The last two days are the first signs of life on my portfolio all summer (other than making a quick buck on Shopify). What's the saying? Sell in May and go away? Maybe next year.

Living alone for the past two months has absolutely been fantastic. I leave things and they are in the same place when I get home. Dishes are always done. It's quiet at night. Friends will come over and stay on the floor and I don't have to clear it with anyone. I'm living the dream. Still ashamed of what I spend monthly on rent ($1300) but so far it has been worth it. Occasionally my bike commute gets delayed by train.

It's been extremely hard to work on my own business idea. Breweries have been springing up all over town like you wouldn't believe. I haven't had the willpower to say no to friends in order to work in my free time. Not to mention now that I enjoy my job it's tough to find motivation. I'm leaning towards it now being a post financial independence project when the risk is lower and it becomes more of a hobby with the goal of breaking even. At that time I figure I can pick up some equipment at a serious discount. Not all the breweries in town can succeed. Even if they do? I'll buy the old equipment off them as they move into a larger space.

To muddy the waters further, this company I joined in late May was recently bought out by a larger one. The old owners are already talking about starting another one after they work through the full payout period over the next three years and want me to be involved in that. Oil and gas companies tend to be much more lucrative than breweries. Overall, things are good.

Edit: Forgot that I started swinging kettle bells around! After I learned how not to bang my wrists up it's an awesome exercise. Really wish I would have started these earlier. Got a 35 lb to start and quickly needed to go up weight so either between technique or muscle, something is working.
Last edited by distracted_at_work on Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:12 pm, edited 4 times in total.

Jason
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by Jason » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:23 pm

Chicks, you can't retire with them, you can't retire without them.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by TheRedHare » Fri Sep 01, 2017 12:24 am

Cool stuff man, I feel ya on the savings. I don't think I put anything away for August. Spent a little much, mostly on my new mattress and loaned my dad some cash so he could repair his old guitar, hopefully I can put most everything away for September.

The new company idea sounds pretty good, might be a good idea to get in on starting something new.

Haven't been looking at any stock or investing, at least until I pay off my student loans so I can't relate. Although I'm really interested in bitcoin and blockchain...might be something to look into?

Sorry about the girl thing man...shit always sucks. But hey, there are plenty of fish in the sea.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:31 am

@Red. Thanks dude. @Jason. Indeed. I'm not super torn, it wasn't going to work out based on our personalities but still never a fun feeling.

@Red. You'd be more knowledgeable on bitcoin/blockchain than I. I've read up on it only a little so don't know about it as an investment. It's meteoric rise has sure been spectacular to watch. You'll kill those loans soon enough and be rich off the next bitcoin I'm sure.

Regarding work. It's been super hard to find motivation. I still think I'd have to do my own thing to be satisfied. We have an awesome team right now though so if we stick together to start a company it would be fun. We shall see.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by TheRedHare » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:54 am

I feel ya on the motivation part. You've gotta have some skin in the game...that's what really pushes you. Ever since I started working with my cousin I've noticed how much more involved I am with work because I have a larger impact on what can happen. I'm in charge of things like payroll, and managing other aspects of our little company and with that it's made me become more involved with the business. Instead of chasing after a simple paycheck, I want the company to succeed. You can make good money as an employee, but the real money is made when you own something.

So I think if/when you get the chance to strike out on your own, do it...especially while you're young and can take risks. If these other guys have more experience and are older than you, and they are thinking about doing there own thing, I'd consider going with them. It'll give you great exposure to how the deals are made and how the top dogs play. Keep up the good work man!

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by suomalainen » Fri Sep 01, 2017 11:57 am

Best advice I have ever heard in my entire life: "There is always another bus." Applies equally to beautiful women and investments, so no need to chase any particular ones. Also, as to the former, you could also go with "There's a lid for every pot." Be yourself and find a woman you like who also likes you. If one particular specimen doesn't like you, no big deal...there's always another bus!

Also, randomly, I recently read a speed-dating study that indicated a difference in the genders in terms of how each gender graded the connection they felt with the opposite gender: for men, they "felt a connection" more with women they found physically attractive; for women, they "felt a connection" more with men who listened to them.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:28 pm

Long stretch since my last journal post on the forums due to a couple reasons. One of which being I post at work and we have been busy. The other due to not a lot of changes taking place in the last month or so. Had a dumb moment last week which prompted me to come here and reflect.

Not doing fun things and trying to stay the course

This would be the toughest early retirement demon after all the big ones are out of the way, no? One of my favorite bands (Arcade Fire) was in town last week and I didn't go because tickets were $100. It was a straight money saving decision. I sat at home, worked out and ate tofu curry instead. After hearing glowing reviews of the concert from friends I knew I made a mistake. It's not an isolated thing. I say no to other things and it is starting to bug me. Such as:

-Avalanche Training ($150+) / Touring Skis & Boots ($1000+)
-Mountain Biking ($2000+)
-Non-Discounted Day Ski Trips ($130/day min)
-Hockey Teams ($800)
-Trips to Asia or Europe ($1200 plane ride)

Then I come here to try to remember the goal. The ultimate goal being freedom. Total and complete freedom. I don't want to join the middle class. But it is seriously hard. I feel like I'm wasting my best years sitting in an office with 3 weeks vacation while I have other friends gallivanting the world or living the carefree ski bum life. This is the only time that I would be physically capable of completing many of these things I want to do. The part that makes no sense is I even love my job! It's fun! I flew in a private plane drinking Grey Goose in the sky less than a month ago for work! On a macro level, things are about as perfect as they ever have been. Yet I have something gnawing on my soul that I can't even explain. Is it the fuckery that is social media influencing my brain? Is it a lack of challenge? Lack of adventure? Probably a mix of things. Argh. Should have just gone to the concert.

Regular ERE update

Have more beer than I know what to do with as my homebrewing keeps getting away from me. The beer keeps getting better and better but I'm trying to stay healthy so I can't possibly keep up with drinking it all. In the meantime I'm soon to surpass $100K in the brokerage account which is nice. I passed $100K net worth awhile ago but it didn't seem notable as I'm not going to sell my car etc. My stock picks are doing o.k. I'm wayyyyyyyy too heavily invested into PEY.TO due to averaging down. I'm convinced Western Canada has to stop giving away natural gas for free and this stock will be the first to turn. Seriously, in October, natural gas has been at a negative price more days than positive... Companies need to pay people to take it away... I'm back to taking books out of the library after a break to play through a shiny new video game bought courtesy of a bad hangover one rainy Saturday morning. I'm at 100+ hours into Divinity: Original Sin 2 for the gamers out there. I went and camped at the base of Canada's highest mountain in September and climbed along some glaciers. Did 90 km hiking in four days. I've thought about making a separate post showing how far these glaciers have receded since the spot was first marked in 1911. Very cool. Literally cool too as it was rainy and snowy for 4 days in Rocky Mountain back country. Can't imagine what hiking up there would have been like without modern mountaineering gear. Back to saving 65% of income regularly (last 2 months being any indication) and looking into taking another vacation to Nicaragua in the spring. Cheapest airfare available for the best vacation payoff I can find. Only thing holding me back is doing a repeat trip when there is so much more out there I haven't done.

Hope that wall of text doesn't hurt the brain too bad. I really need a journal template.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by bryan » Tue Oct 17, 2017 2:01 pm

distracted_at_work wrote:
Tue Oct 17, 2017 12:28 pm
Not doing fun things and trying to stay the course

This would be the toughest early retirement demon after all the big ones are out of the way, no? One of my favorite bands (Arcade Fire) was in town last week and I didn't go because tickets were $100. It was a straight money saving decision. I sat at home, worked out and ate tofu curry instead. After hearing glowing reviews of the concert from friends I knew I made a mistake. It's not an isolated thing. I say no to other things and it is starting to bug me. Such as:

-Avalanche Training ($150+) / Touring Skis & Boots ($1000+)
-Mountain Biking ($2000+)
-Non-Discounted Day Ski Trips ($130/day min)
-Hockey Teams ($800)
-Trips to Asia or Europe ($1200 plane ride)

...
Yet I have something gnawing on my soul that I can't even explain. Is it the fuckery that is social media influencing my brain? Is it a lack of challenge? Lack of adventure? Probably a mix of things. Argh. Should have just gone to the concert.
I avoid super expensive concerts mostly because I refuse to pay to go to large venues. Anything bigger than 500 is questionable.. sometimes it's okay to double that (e.g. Fillmore) if the venue is GA standing room and not anticipated to sell out (or I feel like planting myself in a good spot, despite the crowd.). That means, unless I go to an affordable festival, I won't get to see the most popular of the music I like. I tend to try to discover new music since seeing a live show with a small crowd (songkick is good for tracking touring bands) is a more reliable experience, unless the musicians are truly masterful.

I rationalize it like I'd rather pay ~$10 to see a young band than $50+ to see a popular band that may end up not being great live or have a bad venue experience. Plus if you catch an up-and-coming star it's a nice memory/story (saw Gary Clark Jr. in a bar just as he was beginning to get really popular.. during the show I thought to myself that this must be what it was like to see The Rolling Stones or Jimmy Hendrix in a bar).

That being said, I've heard Arcade Fire is one of the best bands you'll ever see live..

What makes mountain biking so expensive?

Why not go ahead and budget for entertainment? Just have a think about doing it frugally. Maybe design your life with them in mind if you are passionate about them. i.e. don't need to spend money on them or have someone else pay for you (e.g. work for a European company for free flights to Europe occasionally). Personally, I never sweated bar/restaurant bills, concert tickets, etc. since I wasn't paying rent while in the van. Though that was never an excuse to have a mediocre meal/experience.. (I'd rather eat yogurt, granola, and a banana from the corner store... or have a nice cold pint.. or wait a few hours.. than waste money).

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:44 pm

@Bryan.

Solid advice, thanks. I'll check out songkick. Seeing good bands at small venues is one of my favorite budget things to do. With the mountain biking I figure I'm buying a bike for $1500 minimum, more realistically $2K, and then adding in the cost of accessories, road trips, car attachments, gasoline and whatever else. I went out for beers with a buddy last weekend who rode a mountain bike worth more than my car :o

I do have a rough budget that includes my current entertainment expenses. Adding in the sports that require a few grand up front or tickets to expensive concerts throw it into serious wack. If I did have two hobbies/sports that I'd go deep into it would have to be biking and skiing. Hmmm.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by bryan » Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:09 pm

OK, I figured it would be the bike cost. I'm always very surprised by the cost for bikes (before I knew better, I bought a road bike new). I guess my tip to people buying bikes would be to try to get used (easier for road bikes).

Yeah, mountain biking (summer) and skiing (winter) sounds like good sports for Canadians or Coloradans :P

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by slowtraveler » Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:26 am

Congrats on feeling happier now. I know of a few people who have kick-ass roommates and this makes the home a nice community but I have loved living on my own.

I have also been massively spendy and not ere style spending lately but I love this forum and its focus.

Dude, those entertainment costs are way bloated. You can score plane tickets for half that. Same with mountain biking. All this takes some knowledge though.

A $100 concert isn't that expensive. It's not roast marshmallows over volcano cheap but it's reasonable.

Can you set a budget? If you earn $50/hr post tax, it is 2 hours of work for the concert. 2 of those a month wouldn't break the bank. Good bikes can be found on Craigslist. I'm asking, which are the most important to you? They all sound cool but I have a feeling 1 or 2 of those activities are meaningful while the others are cool but not calling you quite as much.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Wed Oct 18, 2017 12:25 pm

Thanks @Felipe. The forum can't be beat for helping refocus after a few spendy weeks. You are right, those are the lazy-premium costs.

I scored my $1000 road bike for $280 so I'm sure I can repeat with a mountain bike and skis with some research. Thinking about it...I often tell my friends that I'm happiest on a bike or on skis. I really should pony up for those two. Big up front investment with relatively cheap ongoing as neither biking nor ski touring are gated behind tickets.

(Ski touring being x-country up a mountain and downhill ski down. Need specific convertible boots/bindings along with other gear)

I can share my budget if you want. It roughly plans for 2K a month which after essentials (rent,food,internet, insurance) leaves me with $300 in discretionary spending. I don't detail everything other than checking my credit card every few days with mint and I'm usually over in discretionary.

I just did my hourly post-tax since starting the new job (surprised it took 5 months to calculate) but I'm at $37/hr including no benefits or bonuses. I'm through probation so I'll have a sense of my bonus next quarter.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by slowtraveler » Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:40 pm

I honestly think you're doing fine. Share what feels comfortable but feel free not to share what you don't want to as well. Your journal after all.

Saving over 50% is the minimum and even the spendy ones here rarely fall below that. Few here who stick around here won't be ere in a decade or so.

In the middle class, we are outliers. Saving 50-70% off retail like in your example.

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by SustainableHappiness » Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:52 am

@Distracted
Hello! For a second time reading through a journal entry of yours I see feelings I had a few years ago, particularly in your concert example. In my experience, I had always measured experiences/things in terms of the value they delivered to me in term of an emotional win. However after reading and bringing MMM and ERE to the forefront of my mind, and particularly the concept of FI and FIs contrast (working at a emotionally mediocre job forever...this is a false dichotomy, but bear with me), I found my perception of value changed and I started viewing them in terms of a quasi-categorical imperative (if everyone did this every time they had to make this decision what would the world look like?)

Quantitatively this came out as $100 monthly = $1200 in passive income to support = 1200*25 = $30K to support. $30k = 1/3 or 4 months of saving. Although it didn't entirely remove my concert desires, it made me go to bar shows (bryan mentioned above) for $20 to see a bunch of up and comers which was still very satisfying for me and still socializing + gave hipster validation (i'd be lying to say this wasn't a side feeling whether it is a good thing or not) to know that we were supporting an up and coming band (The Arkells for example were from a city near me and my friends and I have seen at least 10 times for <$30 or free in the past 5 years).

Now I go even less often, maybe once every 3 months and these shows are even more special and big concerts $ cost to value have lost their appeal almost entirely. It's like what started out as sacrifice has turned into habit/life a la ERE.

Anyways, for what it's worth, sounds like you are kicking ass. Hopefully this helps in some way!

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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:35 pm

Hey Sustainable! Thanks for the feedback, always love hearing from you. Congratulations on the baby by the way! Glad to read that it went well.

Hipster validation is very real and nothing to be ashamed of :lol: It becomes bad when you seek something out for being hipster instead of it being fun on its own. In the terms of cost of fun things, I very much do consider my expenses in terms of the investment required to sustain them. The thing with the big concerts is that it's a type of expense that starts as a one-off but becomes something that could be justified every month.. if that makes sense. At least for me! With that all said I still should have made an exception for Arcade Fire ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Love The Arkells by the way! Probably seen them 4 times. Beer gardens at university or what not. The Alberta equivalent to them would be The Dudes. Check them out if they ever go east. I've seen them at least 6+ times for cheap or free. Blew my ears out at a $10 show of theirs in Fernie in August... that was when we were staying in the hobo village hammocks a couple journal posts ago.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:17 pm

Having a slow morning so I thought I'd come and talk into the void a bit.

One of my best friends just bought a $70K Audi with financing to celebrate getting out of debt... He put off telling me because he knew I'd flame him over it and he was right, ha. We have friendly debates often regarding work, savings, investments, etc. He wants to maximize income (which he is doing amazing at to be fair) to increase consumption. I'm not really interested in working 6 to 6 and then going home to study my job so I can ultimately finance toys but props to him.

It's snowed like mad with 15 cm down that's going to stick around I think. I read we had a 43 degree Celsius swing over the course of five days. Winter is both exciting, due to sports, and depressing, due to lack of sunlight. I am the ultimate weekend warrior in the Winter. Leave the office early Friday and home late Sunday night. My plan to not pay for hockey leagues is working as people get injured and I get on teams for free. Lots of ski trips coming up this Winter; free with my second job as a tour guide! Need to get through the doldrums of November before the real fun begins.

Learning about Zen Buddhism and liking it. Empathy was always my weakest trait and it is helping. Started reading a completely random book picked up wandering around a library. Will be looking for further recommendations.

Had a friend from University, who I haven't kept in touch with, quit his stable engineering job to be a tour guide in Peru. Ever time I walk to work, in -20 or lower, I get pangs of envy. Dam you social media! Also Skyped this week with my good friend who quit her accounting job at 33 (with fairly little savings) to go be a dive instructor in rural Bali. She's looking a hundred times healthier and happier since she made that change a year ago. More inspiration for me.

Generally getting sick of the political correct climate we live in. I'm about ready to delete all social media to be rid of it. On some days, including this forum. If the tech developers of the world could figure out an app to get all my friends onto that would have the Facebook Events functionality, that would be super. That's all I need.

Edited to remove personal. Reformatted too.
Last edited by distracted_at_work on Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

SustainableHappiness
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by SustainableHappiness » Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:37 am

A thought on Facebook. Here`s how I turned it from a net negative to a net positive influence:

- Changed settings so I only got emails from Groups/Events I am a part of, or Messenger groups I am a part of
- Only entered Facebook via those emails, NEVER just to check (this is the most important point probably)
- NEVER went to the main feed page (this was the time and stimulation sucker) as it is a net negative/useless

Did this like 5 years ago, since then I still use Facebook functionality a lot since I have groups/events/messenger with friends and famjam that I like talking to and organizing things with. But I experience none of the Social Media mental drain. I never go on Facebook. I am using Facebook for X reason.

Result = Net Positive

Still trying to decide if I should make a similar policy for this forum, as I check it about once a day, just for fun at the moment.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:07 pm

Lots to come and talk about today.

Financials

Looking like I'm going to photo finish on a 65% savings rate this year. It would seem the increase in income offset the cost of doubling my rent.

I'll do full calculations in the New Year but I'm expecting my portfolio to be up EXCEPT for one loser that I had been buying on the slide. That's my first >50% loss on a stock. Does not feel great but what to do but hold. I severely underestimated how hard it would be to get the excess of natural gas out of Alberta.

Regarding the rest of the portfolio... WTF do I do with ETFs up +15% on the year? My U.S and Developed International are big winners this year and it feels wrong letting those gains ride this far into a bull market but that is the whole point of passive investing no?

Signed up for a cryptocurrency website. My extensive research showed that QuadrigaCX is the best option right now for Canadians. The fees are still totally outrageous but it might be fun to throw a little bit of money at it. I'm debating whether to have a % gain I'd bail at or a 5-year hold commitment. I would go in with $2K and "spend" it like I was walking into a casino. Reading about wallets and blockchain and the future of FX etc has been really interesting for me the last couple weeks.

Getting that 4% RRSP matching from the company is so so nice. It adds up surprisingly quickly.

100K in brokerage accounts well before I turn 25. Fuck ya. I can't tell anyone in "real" life so here is my fist pumping brag. Sorry.

Consumption

Got my yearly insane shopping done on Cyber Monday. The most ridiculous purchases being a $480 sleeping bag that weights 1 lb., a couple of Chance The Rapper hats costing $140 after importing/conversion. The sleeping bag I plan on having forever though. No more 100 KM treks with the Canadian Tire 10lb. special. The 1 hat was a gift and I also wanted one... can't justify a $70 hat. Telling everyone this is my penance.

Slowly looking for a pair of used touring skis. Signing up for avalanche safety training for January. RIP $1K.

Re-Reading ERE

I'm re-reading the ERE book which may become a yearly tradition for me around consumption time (Christmas/Black Friday). I would rate the flexibility of my life pretty high right now so I think I'm doing well since my last read through. When I say flexibility I mean the different sources of income or options I have available to me should I lose my main income source (job). Specifically I could go all-in on the ski/mountain guiding, work at a brewery from connections I made last spring, continue to work as a Petroleum Engineer, start day trading ( :lol: ).. etc.

I'm failing in a few things like gardening, carpentry, welding and advanced bicycle maintenance. Lots of physical skills I'd like learn. I have no space to do these projects. I'm lazily blaming my apartment. There will be time for these things down the road.

I have noticed I've backed off the really intense desire to not spend money and I think I'm happier for it? For example, I'm was not nearly as worried about buying my friends a round of drinks last weekend. I'm also much more likely to go do a fun one night trip out to the mountains on the weekends than I was last year or join my amigos for a day of skiing where I don't have a 50% discount.

Spiritual

Been listening to Jordan Peterson's podcasts on the bible and have been absolutely intrigued. The professor goes into the biblical stories and tries to explain why they have been passed down for so long. What's the significance? What do we have to learn? Why was this book preserved for thousands of years? It's all from a rational perspective. I.e obviously Adam & Eve were not the first humans so what is the point of a story like that? The podcast series has really helped my view on Christianity in general. This professor is also a Canadian defender of free-speech. If you want to start somewhere I would listen to the first Joe Rogan interview with Dr. Peterson. Really well done.

Still waiting to get more Zen Buddhism books out of the library. They would appear to be much desired and the waiting lists are long.

The more I read/listen to academic or spiritual or learned subjects... I keep reinforcing a new belief that humans need to have purpose to be happy. I'm not entirely sure what my overarching purpose would be (is anyone?) but I can certainly define things I want to do in my life.

Fitness

Have struggled keeping up with 15-40 minute yoga or kettle-bell sessions. Fortunately these are supplemented now by ski trips or pick-up hockey games on weekends. It's tough to do things when you walk to and fro work in the dark. I just want to relax when I get home.
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In general... I'm much much much happier than I was around this time last year. Things are good.
Last edited by distracted_at_work on Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:43 am, edited 2 times in total.

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distracted_at_work
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Re: The life and times of ... distracted_at_work

Post by distracted_at_work » Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:11 pm

Quick photo dump.

I forgot to mention that I tested Pabst for gluten and it was under 20 PPM. Had to confirm this blog's results: http://www.lowgluten.org/
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Free ski trips are the best ski trips!
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