journal of wood

Where are you and where are you going?
wood
Posts: 269
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:28 am

Jason wrote:
Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:47 pm
Wood, you are completely right and I apologize.

I'm admittedly jealous. I mean how can I not be? I'm just some poor schmuck living a pathetic, anonymous life in America, and here you are, the fucking Cary Grant of Uganda.

I have to think that you are used to this type of reaction by now and might even find it yourself to extend sympathy to the likes of me.
There is nothing much to be jealous about, nor grossed out by. I'm also just a poor schmuck trying to journal his schmuckness. Not trying to one-up or shock anyone. I aim to write about my own actions without fear of being judged. Its not easy for me to admit I'm aimlessly sleeping around and overspending, and at the same time judge my ex for her actions.

My goal is to locate personal patterns, learn, improve and stay accountable. If it sounds like I'm bragging I should improve the way I type. I'm just describing my life. I'm not used to sharing this much, but I feel like it helps me because I lost the one person I used to share everything with.

Reactions. I've had plenty.

My parents can't understand why we separated because I haven't told them in detail what's happened. They advice that I do my best in fixing the marriage. I had to withstand their resistance when I first told them I was getting married. My ex waited 18 months to get residency papers. We went through resistance from both family and society just to be able to live together. My parents like my ex very much, especially mum. If I tell them what happened, they will hate her. I care too much about my ex to have the balls to ruin their relations, and my relation to her. It feels unnecessary.

I did tell my coworkers what happened. It felt like too much of a failure to admit splitting up without having a somewhat valid reason, and I can't keep up a facade. They all have perfect families with kids (on the surface). They have a tendency to joke with the fact that I'm incapable of choosing a suitable life partner. They might be right. I try to just laugh back.

My few friends support me. I do tell them most everything. We live very different lives. One of my friends is an upper middle class politician living in a McMansion. He can't relate to my lifestyle although he finds it fascinating and we've known each other since age 7. Another is still single, still studying and still doesn't know what to do with his life at age 31 and will become an office rat soon (like me). In terms of "life accomplishments" I fall in between those two extremes. I have another friend my age who is a functional alcoholic with a full time job. Friend number 4 and 5 are current/ex work mates age 59 and 46, both previously betrayed and fucked over by women, and feeling like they haven't accomplished much in life (yet). What I like about my friends is that they are loyal and honest with me without trying to impose life wisdom shit from their moral high ground, like my parents and work mates occasionally do. But who knows, maybe I'd be better off with a different 5-set of friends?

I have received some name calling here and there from humans who know (parts of) my story. Cuckold. Weak. Naive. Jungle fever. Pig. I disregard them all. But you couldn't be more wrong in thinking I was used to reactions like admiration or jealousy :lol:

Jason
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Re: journal of wood

Post by Jason » Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:21 pm

As much as I am jealous of you Wood, what absolutely floors me is how you are the least self-absorbed individual I have ever met. Well, maybe with the exception 7wannabe5.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:54 pm

Jason wrote:
Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:21 pm
As much as I am jealous of you Wood, what absolutely floors me is how you are the least self-absorbed individual I have ever met. (...)
I could say the same thing about you after reading your journal.

We could make this thread about you if you want. You express being jealous, grossed out and floored (!) which makes me wonder how you would react to more extreme events, like having your laptop run out of battery and discover you are wearing underwear from yesterday.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Wed May 03, 2017 5:14 am

April finances - back on track

- April is my birthday month and I was very lucky to get cash from parents and relatives which gave a boost to savings rate putting me at 62%.
- Food expenses came in a bit high as I'm building up a freezer storage, I'm hoping to average it out to around 2 000/month.
- Other costs need to be cut. Snus, alcohol, mobile phone, social stuff. A lot of this is related to the Human Relations part of my life and change is happening there, likely for a financial betterment.
- The total of costs this month (12k) is right where I want it to be in order to be on track to ERE in just a few years.

Rent 4 500,00
Adjustment rent -968,00
Internet 200,00
Electricity 686,04
Food & household items 3 198,50
Mobile phone 922,18
Transport 200,00
Health (meds & doctors) 0,00
Clothes, hair & hygiene 0,00
Furniture, interior, insurance, maintenance 0,00
Needs total 8 738,72
Projects, hobbies, training, multimedia 409,64
Social & cultural events 1 413,68
Work cafeteria 77,00
Snus 1 656,94
Wants total 3 557,26
Total spend 12 295,98

Salary before tax 38 716,70
Tax 10 398,00
Union, pension, work insurance 1 362,25
Paid salary 26 956,45
Odd jobs, yard sale etc. 0,00
Investments and accrued interest 500,00
Gifts 5 000,00
Total income 32 456,45
Savings rate 62 %

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Wed May 03, 2017 5:31 am

The (new) apartment
My downstairs neighbour forgot to pay the electricity bill, doh! It ended up with electricity being shut off in the whole house. It's still not back on. I didn't have an immediate backup solution and some of my food is likely to spoil. Hoping this won't affect my finances too much. Good thing it's not winter anymore. I was not prepared for this event. Action steps for the immediate future:

- Locate some "reserve fridges and freezers". I know there are some at work I could use temporarily. I will also work on getting some neighbours as allies.
- Clean my fireplace and get some pieces of wood. Might come in handy if this happens during winter.
- Get reserve batteries for my head mounted flashlight.
- Smart solutions for backup electricity? Or maybe stick to solutions that don't require electricity at all?

Human relations
One dating relationship after the other have slowly faded in the last few weeks, mainly because I've developed what looks like a casual boyfriend/girlfriend relationship with a woman. The line was crossed when she gave me a birthday gift that I could see she put alot of thought behind. I'm fine with it. We see each other 2-3 times per week, and I'd like to keep it at that level. It's an open relationship until further notice. Yes, I feel inlove. It feels really good. At the same time I remain rational. I want to be/feel single for a while now and also avoid any drama. One good thing about reducing the quantity of women in my life is that expenses are likely to be cut (mobile phone, social&cultural events).

I've had my parents over for visits to see my new place and I've kept up with friends this month. An old friend of mine (the upper middle class politician) is coming this weekend.
Last edited by wood on Thu Jul 13, 2017 8:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Thu May 11, 2017 1:49 am

Summer holiday

I will be travelling to Kenya on Saturday for a 4 week stay. The tickets were purchased before the breakup so I'm flying together with the ex. Apart from the flights I won't be spending time with her. I'm really excited to see the land I've purchased and meet business people there in person. But what I'm most excited about is getting away from work and just laze on the beach all day. Be an extrovert when I want instead of being on a schedule.

I'm also planning to use this opportunity to quit snus. It will simply be out of reach for me and there's no way I'd replace that addiction with cigarettes or anything else. Day 1-3 will be tough. There's a good chance my flight will turn into a nightmare as my body gets desperate. I will struggle to sleep. I will over-eat, my blood sugar will be unstable and my temper will be partly out of control. But after that it will slowly subside. I'm trying to psyche myself up.

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Eureka
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Re: journal of wood

Post by Eureka » Thu May 11, 2017 4:44 am

Safe travels and good luck with the snus project.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Mon Jun 12, 2017 8:10 am

I read the journals of other people on here and realize I'm pretty much a fuckup if measured by standards often used in this forum. But what can one do but to keep trying. Atleast I'm fairly happy and feel lucky in general. It could be worse.

I'm back from my holiday in Kenya. I failed to quit snus after I met some fellow countrymen who gave me snus in a moment of desperation. I also made the mistake of bringing a few just for the trip so that I wouldn't go in full rage mode on the airplane. That led me to re-use of old ones. I just couldn't let it go completely. My next step is going for a hypnosis session on Wednesday in an attempt to fix the problem. Apparently it has a high success rate for quitting cigarettes and this is pretty much the same thing.

The 2nd issue I have is spending way to much money on this holiday. I had budgeted 15k but spent 30k. This was mainly due to me being generous with people around me, excessive alcohol consumption and otherwise not being careful enough with my spending. Also, it took me about 3 weeks until I learned how to optimize my spending there. It's a very different place than home. I thought I had remembered most tricks, but no.

Other than that I had a really good time. I've cuddled with baby elephants, lazed on the beach, danced, eaten different food and met beautiful women. I've used every opportunity to build network with people and inspected the land I bought which looks like a very promising area.

Despite failing with the snus and overspending financially, I'm keeping a positive outlook. I have to.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Mon Jun 12, 2017 8:14 am

May finances - 2nd disaster this year

I've compressed money spent on holiday in June into the May month, making it easier for future references of holiday spending. Even if I didn't, the financial summary would still look horrible.

Rent 4 500,00
Adjustment rent 707,11
Internet 200,00
Electricity 686,00
Food & household items 1 216,15
Mobile phone 297,56
Transport 200,00
Health (meds & doctors) 520,00
Clothes, hair & hygiene 0,00
Furniture, interior, insurance, maintenance 0,00
Needs total 8 326,82
Projects, hobbies, training, multimedia 292,75
Social & cultural events 2 642,00
Work cafeteria 89,00
Snus 1 337,30
Holidays, airplanes & boats 30 962,98
Other 0,00
Gifts 100,00
Wants total 35 424,03
Total spend 43 750,85


Salary before tax 38 841,70
Tax 10 438,00
Union, pension, work insurance 1 366,13
Paid salary 27 037,57
Odd jobs, yard sale etc. 0,00
Debt repayment 0,00
Investments and accrued interest 500,00
Gifts 0,00
Total income 27 537,57
Savings rate -59 %

I know.

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bryan
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Re: journal of wood

Post by bryan » Mon Jun 12, 2017 7:59 pm

> snus

Never heard of it. Thanks for my daily internet diversion.

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El Duderino
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Re: journal of wood

Post by El Duderino » Tue Jun 13, 2017 12:57 pm

I've known people in the deep south to use snuff, but was surprised to read about how specific snus is to Sweden, and how different it is from other forms of tobacco. Probably the most surprising part is that wood went through ~$200 worth of the stuff in a month!

Don't get too down on yourself, Wood, and thanks for posting updates as it's very interesting to read about your journey. If you keep working on improvement, you'll get the results you want.

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fiby41
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Re: journal of wood

Post by fiby41 » Tue Jun 13, 2017 1:24 pm

Its called tambaku here but its not nearly as expensive. Keeping in the upper lip part makes me sure snus are both the same thing.

I've always looked at it as unhygenic habit* other people had. But haven't looked at it from the perspective of addiction until this thread.
*the red stains lining the footpath in the video Campitor linked in the other thread are from spitting paan in which snus/tambaku/tobacco is a component.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:05 am

@bryan: Very few have heard of it because as far as I know they only sell it in Norway and Sweden.

@fiby41: You could say its unhygienic because of the way it looks, the tobacco smell and the (relatively minor) health effects. But it kills bacteria in the mouth and prevents holes in the teeth. Snus ranges between 5-20 times stronger in terms of nicotine compared to cigarettes. Its also easier to subject yourself to over-use because you can freely use it indoor without harming people around you. Which makes it all the more difficult to quit this habit/addiction.

@El Duderino: Thanks, and likewise as far as updating your journal goes. $200/month is obscene. I think I had 8 or 10 white russians during my holiday. I'm assuming its your favorite as well.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:16 am

June finances

Rent 4 500,00
Adjustment rent 1 844,13
Internet 200,00
Electricity 686,00
Food & household items 2 586,77
Mobile phone 379,36
Transport 0,00
Health (meds & doctors) 0,00
Clothes, hair & hygiene 323,00
Furniture, interior, insurance, maintenance 0,00
Needs total 10 519,26
Projects, hobbies, training, multimedia 4 536,00
Social & cultural events 1 037,00
Work cafeteria 62,00
Snus 3 825,90
Holidays, airplanes & boats 0,00
Other 0,00
Gifts 249,00
Wife financial support 0,00
Wants total 9 709,90
Total spend 20 229,16


Salary before tax 46 995,22
Tax 0,00
Union, pension, work insurance 1 366,13
Paid salary 45 629,09
Odd jobs, yard sale etc. 450,00
Debt repayment 500,00
Investments and accrued interest 500,00
Total income 47 079,09
Savings rate 57 %

I did it, I quit snus 100%!
The high amount spent this month includes hypno therapy sessions for quitting. It actually helped having to shell out a significant amount of $$ on the therapy. It now feels like an investment that I want to make profitable. I don't think hypno therapy is for everyone, and I don't even know if it works for me. But I've decided to make it work.
I rewarded myself by spending an embarrassing amount on new mountain hiking shoes (3000 NOK, about $350), but I got tired of looking for good deals. On the bright side I haven't spent much on mountain gear at all if I average everything out.

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Viktor K
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Re: journal of wood

Post by Viktor K » Fri Jun 30, 2017 6:04 am

Hell ya dude I'm so happy for you reading this

slowtraveler
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Re: journal of wood

Post by slowtraveler » Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:11 pm

Congratulations on quitting, I know it's hard as hell to stop habits.

I'm curious, how'd expenses get so high on the vacation. Do you track every dollar real time? After a couple of expensive days, I feel like it'd be possible to realize the leak.

" I'm pretty much a fuckup if measured by standards often used in this forum"
I live at home with parents still and my spending is still around $5k->$10k so I'm not perfect either but we all share the same passion.

Either way, it's obvious to me you have the potential to pull it off and don't have to be so hard on yourself. It seems like you're getting the hang of it. And good on you for coming out of the marriage strong to explore what feels right.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:29 am

Thanks guys!
Felipe wrote:
Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:11 pm
I'm curious, how'd expenses get so high on the vacation. Do you track every dollar real time? After a couple of expensive days, I feel like it'd be possible to realize the leak.
I don't track it real time, and even if I realized there was a leak, I didn't have the discipline to do anything about it. The reason it got so expensive was that I'm in holiday mode, which means I'm relaxed, carefree and lazy. One day gets expensive for some reason, I just shrug my shoulders and move on to the next. Before I know it I've spent a shitload but I don't have to worry about that now - I'm on holiday!
I need to re-program my brain around this.

slowtraveler
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Re: journal of wood

Post by slowtraveler » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:18 pm

Relaxed, carefree, and lazy would lead me to think-bonfires on the beach with friends or your lover(s), cooking some marshmallows with some dead branches you found on a tree, drinking some margaritas or beers. But if you're bar hopping (are those bad words here?), eating at Michelin restaurants (can be damn good), sleeping in 5 star hotels with city views-I can see it racking up. And if that's your lifestyle and you plan to apply ERE to enjoy it indefinitely, at least you know what you want and can make it real, good for you.

How's phone 922? I recently switched to FI ($25/month after taxes/fees for unlimited domestic calling and texting+$10/gb). I had to buy their phone but it was "get a phone who's navigation isn't broken" time ($400+taxes). Had it over a month, no problems and I'm still under 1mb so it still hasn't cost me a full penny of data.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:07 am

Felipe wrote:
Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:18 pm
Relaxed, carefree, and lazy would lead me to think-bonfires on the beach with friends or your lover(s), cooking some marshmallows with some dead branches you found on a tree, drinking some margaritas or beers. But if you're bar hopping (are those bad words here?), eating at Michelin restaurants (can be damn good), sleeping in 5 star hotels with city views-I can see it racking up. And if that's your lifestyle and you plan to apply ERE to enjoy it indefinitely, at least you know what you want and can make it real, good for you.
The former examples look more like my holiday. I stay for free at friend's places (for days, not weeks) and seek out the cheaper hotels ($20/night). I don't have the balls to sleep in a strangers place in Africa.

The expensive part is eating and drinking. If I don't have access to a kitchen (which for the most part I didn't), I will eat at restaurants. Even if I avoid the expensive ones, and even if meals are reasonably cheap ($6-10/meal) compared to a restaurant meal in Norway: $20-30/meal, the total bill quickly accumulates with 3 meals per day, snacks in between and the fact that I enjoy 2-8 beers per day at $3/beer. Oh, and I'm single which means I'm sometimes paying for 2 when dating.

This is a 4 week holiday and a break from the daily grind. If I was retired, I'd opt for a 6 months stay renting a cheap apartment with kitchen access. I'd avoid alcohol on a daily basis, found something productive to do and not go on dates every other day. In other words, create my own version of "daily grind" :)

My holiday budgeting is probably just too optimistic. But I know I can cut costs in half without enjoying less.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:06 am

I update my finances at the end of every month, so I got the idea that I will try to update on other aspects mid-month.

Investing in Kenya
Got some encouraging news as I spoke with my agent down there. The land I've purchased for about $15k has more than doubled in value and could potentially sell for almost $40k if I put it on the market now. I've even gotten an "under the table" offer of $30k to sell it. If political elections go well (no violence/war/riots breakout) in September the value will increase more and speaking to people who know the market leads me to believe it could be worth $90k going into 2018. It will be tempting to sell.

Human relations
Haven't seen family since Easter, but I'm planning a couple of weekend trips in August. I'm regularly seing friends which is important for my happiness level. Its bad for my health though, because friends drink alcohol and I'm trying to cut that out. Workdays are filled with laughter and fun. Women, well I'm currently in a non-exclusive relationship that might end before the year is over. She has decided she wants kids and that's way too early for me. I will miss her because it is such a convenient arrangement. Meet a couple times at my place every week and keeping it simple with tasty food, good sex and fun conversations.

Wife
I'm still technically married and we talk once a week. It feels like I'm moving on but she isn't. She is still in love and wants me back. It's good to see that she is getting into therapy, doing well in her job and finding some focus in life. She is currently a neutral/positive influence in my life as opposed to negative a while back.

Generally
Gotten back to my usual workout routines and looking for ways to up my game a bit. I want to get bigger/stronger but also improve my long distance running. Will sign up for a half marathon in September. I think the snus-quitting has made me more active.
Fishing has become my obsession this summer. It's fun, healthy and gives me free dinners. Going camping and fishing this weekend. To my surprise, I live right next to an island world famous for fishers. That's where I'm going!
Mentally I still have down-days. It feels like I'm suppressing a small depression constantly, like I'm reacting slowly to everything that's happened irt marriage breakup. I don't know what to do about it apart from taking my time, talk to friends occasionally and just try stay positive. It works most of the time.
I'm reading 4 books at once now which is very unusual for me. I need to finish all my half-assed projects lying around, like that mini-book I'm halfway done writing and get back to analyzing stocks more regularly. Those are my short-term goals along with cutting down on the alcohol.

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FBeyer
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Re: journal of wood

Post by FBeyer » Thu Jul 13, 2017 12:16 pm

Good job on quitting snus. That's a really big one!

As for all your projects: Are you ruthless about what actually NEEDS to be done? the Eisenhower matrix is always useful when you feel like you have too much stuff to do at any given time, or you seem to be motivated to do more things than you know you should

If you're feeling overburdened then only do things that are urgent AND important. Anything you CAN delegate to someone else, should be delegated.

If you're already feeling down from time to time, it's very easy to resort to sublimation if all you really want to do is fuck and fight most of the time. And so overworking yourself tends to worsen your feelings, which then leads you to start even more projects.

If the book isn't important, then put it on hold until it's not in the way of something else.

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:32 am

Thanks for the tip FBeyer. Can't say I'm being ruthless, overworked or overburdened. The things that tend to end up halfway done are the least important stuff. I've usually get my important A-stuff done on time. But then there's my stupid tendency to start on project C when project B is not finished. Two weeks ago I filled an old shoe with soil. I'm yet to plant the seeds. Such a simple and trivial thing will easily get procastinated in my world.

slowtraveler
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Re: journal of wood

Post by slowtraveler » Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:39 pm

It's fun to see how many different paths we all share. I gardened for over a decade of my life and am over it now. I can barely gather the motivation to water my plants. There would be times when I'd go 6 months without digging into my compost. I'm excited for my plants to finish and leave it at that. I'm now forever grateful for grocery stores and gardening friends. Tomatoes, cucumbers, lemons, and peaches have done the best at my house. Every other plant feels like too much work (more work beyond let drip system water and pick fruit).

Is gardening as important as your top priorities to you?

wood
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Re: journal of wood

Post by wood » Tue Aug 01, 2017 4:22 am

Felipe wrote:
Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:39 pm
Is gardening as important as your top priorities to you?
I don't spend time on gardening because I don't have a garden, but I might want one in the future. My fear is losing motivation after a shorter time span than it took you to lose motivation. So I plan to scale this up very slowly. I have some indoor growing set up (garlic & chives) but I want to scale it up to include tomatoes, sweet peppers and chili up next. What made you lose the motivation for gardening? I imagine once retired it will be easier to find energy and motivation for this.

Finances July 2017

Rent 4 500,00
Adjustment rent -272,05
Internet 200,00
Electricity 2 369,00
Food & household items 3 395,62
Mobile phone 358,39
Transport 200,00
Health (meds & doctors) 0,00
Clothes, hair & hygiene 225,00
Furniture, interior, insurance, maintenance 0,00
Needs total 10 975,96
Projects, hobbies, training, multimedia 248,90
Social & cultural events 3 772,09
Work cafeteria 142,00
Snus 0,00
Holidays, airplanes & boats 0,00
Gifts 298,00
Wants total 4 460,99
Total spend 15 436,95


Salary before tax 38 841,70
Tax 10 438,00
Union, pension, work insurance 1 366,13
Paid salary 27 037,57
Odd jobs, yard sale etc. 399,00
Debt repayment 500,00
Investments and accrued interest 500,00
Gifts 1 400,00
Total income 29 836,57
Savings rate 48 %

I'm aiming for a 60% savings rate and if it wasn't for my overspend on social & cultural events I would have come close. Food and electricity also came in higher but will be averaged lower with time. Had to restock my spices. Biggest positive this month: 0 spent on snus! For the first month in more than a decade. And it shall continue like that.

As a sidenote to the overspending on social & cultural events: half of the expenditure came from one evening of seing friends and a date, and I found myself in 2 situations where I felt compelled to pay the bill. I need to sort that one out for the future. I believe it's a combination of having problems saying no, not wanting to appear cheap and the temporary euphoria I got from quitting snus which made me justify spending more this month.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: journal of wood

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:32 am

I have given some thought to the "who pays the bill?" dynamic in human behavior patterns. Exceptions abound, but I would say that rule of thumb would be that wealthy, male, ugly, grouchy and older is going to pay more often than poor, female, pretty, charming and younger. And this is more true in relative than absolute terms. So, if you want to pay less often, you will need to downplay your wealth and your masculinity, upplay your charm, personal appearance and youthfulness , and/or seek the social companionship of others who are wealthy, masculine, ugly, grouchy and old relative to you.

For instance, if I meet my DD26 and her BF for brunch, there will be a bit of a tussle, because my DD is feminist/careerist, her BF was raised to be Southern gentleman, and I am older, but not yet infirm. OTOH, extremely rare that I will pay for anything in any situation where I am dating an affluent man who is at least 7 years older than me and more affluent, although I will generally attempt gesture.

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