What’s Goin On

March 29, 2009 at 5:22 pm (Uncategorized)

Normally when posting is this slow for me, it’s one of two things happening: either I have a whole shitload of stuff going on, so that I don’t have time to post, or I have so little going on that I have little to nothing that I feel is worth writing about.

Unfortunately right now it’s the latter. Life is pretty damned boring right now.
A lot of it is that I’m seriously itching for warmer weather to get here so I can do more outside – I enjoy outdoor activities quite a bit, whether it be festivals or biking or outdoor games or camping or walking or just hanging out around a firepit – and none of that stuff has really been an option since around oh, fucking early October. Basically, I’ve been stuck indoors for six months now, and it’s driving me up a damned wall, to the point where I’ve pretty much just started shutting down and going through the motions of going to work and trying to find something, anything to do with LabGirl on the weekends that we haven’t already done during the winter months. You can only take so many movies and museum trips before even the thought of it bores you. I even got bored with gaming, for heaven’s sake.
I did try to get LabGirl interested in learning some ballroom dance, but it didn’t take very well. May give it another try later.
And every week I look at the local event calendar to find: nothing. Jack. Squat.
Basically, the entire city is in a slumber from late October to late May.
This happens to me every year so I don’t know why I’m surprised – in fact this year I tried to convince myself that I’d try to enjoy the winter more – learn something like cross country skiing, go snow shoeing, put on some winter exercise gear and go down to the rec path, and so on, but it didn’t happen. Turns out… I seriously, seriously hate the cold, and all I want to do in the winter is stay inside and try to stay warm.

Despite all that LabGirl still seems pretty happy, which I’m very glad for as I know (and tried to warn her) that I tend to turn into a bit of a stump during the winter months. Everything seems to be working out well in this category – talk of shacking up has come up repeatedly (if it happens it will probably be in the fall), her family has started inviting me to activities and we all get along pretty well, and my parents seem to like LabGirl more than any other girl that I’ve dated in my entire life – to the point where it almost freaks me out a little. They usually take a pretty “whatever” attitude towards the girls I date, but whenever I bring this girl over they chat her up constantly.

Still pretty much getting fucked over at work, but I have CareerBuilder sending me an email every single day with the new job listings and there’s never anything in there worth looking at, so I’m continuing to deal with it.

Oh, and last week I lost 41% in the stock market, costing me over $300 in a matter of just a few days.
Learned several lessons from that one that I won’t bore everybody with, the biggest probably being that 3x ETFs suck ass, and that diversification may be important even when you’re dealing with relatively small amounts of cash.
Oh, and I blame it on Obama. If his administration hadn’t announced that shitty bank plan on Monday I wouldn’t have gotten hit like that.

Oh, and most people reading this probably already know, but my bud Graumagus finally has a blog again, this time with a bit more orgie over at FrizzenSparks.org. He take a break for a couple of years from his political and social commentary, and we end up with fucking Obama in the white house. See what happens??

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Goodbye, BSG

March 22, 2009 at 9:04 pm (Movies & TV)

Just finished watching the series finale of Battlestar Galactica.
They did a really good job with the finale I thought, which I’m glad of because frankly the series had seriously lost some steam there for a while. Lots of action, good endings for many of the characters, and more than one spot that actually made me a bit misty-eyed.
And, although a couple of the theories I’ve had were never addressed in a way where I could tell if I was right or not, I can proudly say that one of the major ones was absolutely right. Even though I don’t want to say which one because I don’t want to spoil it if somebody sees this and hasn’t watched it yet.

Although it started dragging a bit towards the end (after it sort of developed from a highly engaging sci-fi drama to basically “Days of Our LIves: In Space” ), BSG seriously was in my opinion one of the best series to ever air, and I shall definitely miss it.
And yes, I will definitely be wanting to buy the series box set when it comes out in late summer.

There must be some kind of way out of here
Said the joker to the thief
There’s too much confusion
I can’t get no relief
Business men they drink my wine
Plowmen dig my earth
No one will level on the line
Nobody of it is worth

No reason to get excited
The thief he kindly spoke
There are many here among us
Who feel that life is but a joke
But you and I we’ve been through that
And this is not our fate
So let us not talk falsely now
The hour’s getting late

All along the watchtower
Princes kept the view
While all the women came and went
Barefoot servants too
Outside in the cold distance
A wild cat did growl
Two riders were approaching
And the wind began to howl

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An HS reunion

March 21, 2009 at 10:11 am (Uncategorized)

Yeah, so through Classmates.com I got an invite to my high school’s 20 year reunion, which I guess is still a little ways out in October.

I’m really torn on whether I want to go or not. Those people that I actually liked when I was in high school I’m either still in touch with, or have moved out of state where I did lose touch with then but I highly suspect because they’re out of state wouldn’t show up anyway.

Actually I can only think of one person I wouldn’t mind catching up with, and that’s a guy I was good friends with back in the day but who fell into that trap of letting his woman talk him into moving (they met while participating in Civil War re-enactments and lived a fair distance from each other… I think they live in Iowa now).

Other than that I’m just kind of “meh” about the whole thing. I didn’t go to the 10 year because I lived 800 miles away at the time and didn’t care enough to make the road trip.
We’ll see though – October is still a long time away.

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Thanks, Chase – time to find a new credit card

March 19, 2009 at 10:20 pm (Money & Investing)

I’ve had a credit card from Washington Mutual for a number of years now that I’ve bought everything with, and I really mean damned near everything, about the only thing that doesn’t go on it is stuff like fast food restaurants and vending machines.
It had a decent interest rate (at least for someone with slightly tarnished credit) of about 9% and a cash back program that rocked, because I’ve always completely paid the card off every single month (thus no finance charges), and every few months they’d cut me a check for a couple of hundred bucks, free cash.

Well – “WaMu” got bought out by Chase last year during the first onslaught of bank closings – and they finally got around to changing the credit cards over.

And, without bothering to tell me or anything handy like that, I noticed on the web site my interest rate suddenly went up to 11%, and I no longer have a cash back program. It’s now under Chase’s shitty “reward points” program, which I couldn’t give a rat’s ass about. It does give you the option to cash them in towards credit on your account – but at about 1/4 of the value I was getting before. The $150+ I had sitting in my rewards account last month has vanished, and now I’m eligible for a whopping $25 credit on my account. Thanks Chase! Kiss my ass!

Time to start looking to see if I can get another cash-back rewards card instead.

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Another sign that FAS & the market is mocking me

March 18, 2009 at 6:20 am (Money & Investing)

So that ETF equity called FAS that I went on a rant about in my last post after my “trying to be safe” stop kicked me out waaaaay to early causing me to miss out –
Yeah, guess how much that stock went up after I got kicked out of it too early taking a loss. C’mon, guess.
Nope – that SOB went up 150% since last Wednesday. 150%.
I seriously could just about cry.
My $1000 investment should have turned into about $2500 in the course of a single week. Should have.
SIGH.
That is so damned frustrating – that I obviously knew when to get in… I just didn’t do it right.

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Fuck you, FAS, fuck you.

March 11, 2009 at 8:06 am (Money & Investing)

As a lot of my readers know I like to tinker in the stock market. I make a little bit here, lose a little bit there, and overall have been trending slowly downwards in hopes that it will teach me to be be better at it so I can make some good money.

Today I feel absolutely fucked over and violated though.
FAS was absolutely poised to make me some good cash today. All the signs pointed to it going up. It’s an ETF fund that revolves around banking, and banks, especially Citi, have started posting actual profits for this year.
So I bought it this morning at $4.11 per share, 214 shares. And told TradeKing to automatically set a stop at $3.80 in case something backfires and another bad news reports comes out or something – that way if it suddenly bombs, I won’t lose any more than that.

*however*, less than 10 minutes after the purchase, it dropped to exactly $3.80, and then jumped right back up again. It triggered my stop, causing me to lose 8% on a day when I should be making a fucking killing.
In retrospect I probably set the stop too tight – I knew this fund jumped all over the place, I just didn’t expect it to do it *that* badly.
Thankfully I’m playing with so little money right now that 8% was less than $80, but still, that’s a pretty big blow, and will make it all that much harder to catch back up again, and since this “rally” with FAS will probably be short lived, I’ll miss out on the whole thing since I can’t trade again until Monday.

Fuck you, FAS. Fuck you.

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Help launch Serenity (sorta)

March 10, 2009 at 8:06 pm (Uncategorized)

Similarly to other pods on the station, when NASA attaches the upcoming Node 3 to the ISS space station, they plan to name it, similar to Node 1’s “Unity” and Node 2’s “Harmony.”

Well, in an effort similar to that of the first Space Shuttle (Enterprise, named after Captain Kirk’s famous starship) us sci-fi nerds are trying to get a space-faring vehicle named after one of our favorite fictional space vehicles – Serenity.

There’s currently a vote going on at NASA’s web site – so go get your vote in, the poll’s only open until the 20th!

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Jon Stewart goes off on investing “experts” at CNBC`

March 9, 2009 at 7:00 am (Money & Investing)

More reason why more and more people are deciding that the best person to decide what to do with your money is: you.

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The new “nationalized” CitiBank ad

March 8, 2009 at 12:54 pm (Political Ponderings)

Hmmm… could banking turn into a royal p-i-t-a just like every other government-run organisation? (Boy, I can’t wait to see how great it works with health care! 😛 )

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A Shaving Update

March 7, 2009 at 2:42 pm (Uncategorized)

OK so a few days ago I got my first shaving soap in the mail, and an hour or so ago I tried it out.

Put in another Personna blade (my blade sample pack hadn’t arrived yet so I figured I’d give it another try), warmed up the mug & brush and tried out shave #2 with Nana June’s Bay Rum shaving soap:

And I have to say, it looks like a *lot* of the trouble I was having with the first shave may have been related to the Gillette shaving gel.
Things seemed to go much smoother this time.
I didn’t have the “tugging” problem with the Personna this time at all – now this was a new blade, so I suppose there’s a possibility the first one was just dull, but probably just more likely that it was the shave soap that made the difference.

I did have to apply lather and re-shave about 2-3 times depending on the area (still having some trouble with my neck – though that also went better this time, and as far as I can tell not a single nick!) and I may give that Every Man Jack post-shave a longer go as it wasn’t as bad now that I new it was probably going to sting for a minute.

All in all a pretty good shave – we’ll just have to see what the girlfriend thinks when she comes over in a few hours 😎

(Oh, and a side note – the mail carrier dropped off my new blade sample pack just a little bit ago too – so now I also have some Derby, Dorco, and Crystal blades to try out… along with 5 more Personnas, this time in cardboard/paper packing…)

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