Monday, November 20, 2017

This Little Life of Mine

Just a short post this week, as tonight I will be driving Mrs. Done by Forty and our two golden retrievers up to the mountains outside of San Bernadino, to visit our family, catch up with loved ones, watch all the football, take nerdy board games too seriously, and eat and drink beyond any sensible point.

There really is no better holiday than Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is for all of us: a time to gather with everyone you love and who loves you back, even though they voted for the wrong person last year, and are going to ruin dinner by telling you about Pizzagate, again, when all truly you want from Uncle John is the mashed potatoes.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Car Lust

Car Lust
I'm horny, dear readers. 

Some days, when Mrs. Done by Forty leaves for work, I take my laptop into the bedroom, put the dogs out in the hallway, and I pull up my favorite site: Craigslist.

But, no, I don't click on the personals or the dreaded casual encounters link. No, friends. I get off on something weird. What gets my engine running is a sleek, gently used, and maybe a little dirty....Subaru Outback.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Budget Porn: October 2017


October has come and gone, and so have all three groups of trick-or-treaters who visited our house this Halloween. 

In our old neighborhood, so many kids came that we often had to head out for an extra bag of candy. Now, we apparently live in a hood populated exclusively by childless couples, the elderly, and dentists.

On the plus side, we are Kit Kat rich.

Today we'll take a break from our regularly scheduled liberal propaganda to check in on our spending from October, and to see how we're trending towards financial independence.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Benefits Now!

Benefits Now!
We humans kind of suck at evaluating things that impact us far off in the future: retirement, our long term health, impacts to the environment, stuff like that.

If starting a small habit today will have big benefits to us decades from now, but is still minorly inconvenient, say, putting one additional percent of our salary into a 401k this month as Paula Pant suggests, we often will choose to indefinitely delay the inconvenience.

After all, we could die tomorrow. Who wants to be the sucker who denied himself a series of small benefits today for a tomorrow that never comes? Yolo, mofo.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Housing, Mobility, and Opportunity

Housing, Mobility, and Opportunity
My family has always been mobile. My mother moved here from the Philippines in the seventies with an associates degree from the lesser known MIT: Mapua Institute of Technology. My father took his mechanical engineering degree from Massachusetts to chase the jobs where they led him: South Africa, San Francisco (where he met my mother), Arizona (where I was born), Nevada, Montana, before finally settling our family in Pittsburgh, where the pay was pretty good and you could buy a big house in the suburbs with good schools on a single income.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Inside the Index

Inside the Index
If you write about personal finance long enough, you find yourself walking some well-worn ground. After a while, it seems we all take a crack at the same tired problems that so many other writers have over the years.

We've all written about paying off consumer debt. And who hasn't had a hot take on a way to be just a little more frugal?

So with my apologies, today I'm writing about a subject that you've all heard about too much these days: genocide, and why it's not good.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Budget Porn: September 2017

Budget Porn: September 2017
They say that you never bury the lede, so here it is: September destroyed our budget.

We spent way above our long term monthly average, most of our spending was completely discretionary, and this month threw off our future financial independence projections pretty significantly.

We might have screwed up.

Let's dig into the details to see how.

Monday, September 25, 2017

A Visit to Copenhagen

A Visit to Copenhagen
Happy Monday, friends. We are going to try something that hasn't been accomplished on this blog in years: writing weekly. And to keep the streak going, today we're going to tell you about our trip to Copenhagen.

We went, as we tend to do, with our good couple friends who have similarly leaned into travel rewards, thanks to Brad at Richmond Savers. We ended up doing a stopover (a long, multi-day layover) in Copenhagen, that allowed us to also visit Berlin, come back, and then continue on the same ticket on our way to Stockholm. Basically, on our (nearly) free ticket to Stockholm, we took a extra week in between to visit another couple cities.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Median Income, Middle Class

Median Income, Middle Class
The Census Bureau came out with a new report last week, which gives me a chance to write about my favorite topics: the middle class, and middle class income.

It's such a charged term: middle class. Everyone has an idea of what it means, even if we don't agree on a single definition. But a median household is a decent place to start, as no matter what your definition of "middle class", I bet the median household fits within it.

So let's take a look at what that median household earns.