Weekend Roundup of Random Links

Random Doodle #21

What a fantastic week!  Despite all the stupidity in Washington that has dominated the news, on a personal note it's been super. At work, we managed to hire a new team member, no small feat in the hot local job market. If anyone is living in a high-unemployment state, consider that Tulsa's unemployment rate hovers around the 5 percent mark. Come on down to Oklahoma, it's nice and hot!  This week also saw the the great news that the Yakezie Gamma Class of Challengers were inducted as members into the Yakezie Network. I had a guest post on Robert @ The College Investor. A couple of tips on the garden, career, and good food:    Random Thoughts from USA Financial Service. Please go read it and support the College Investor. Investing I’ve got … [Read more...]

Career Tip Number 10: Get Free Premium Knowledge

Read All About It!!  (Boys selling newspapers on the Brooklin Bridge) (Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia)

This is the tenth post in a very irregular series on career tips for young people entering the workforce, from the perspective of someone who has more than a little grey in his hair. This post topic came to me the other day as I was visiting our HR Department, killing time in the little foyer while waiting for my HR designated hitter (no, I wasn’t in trouble, we’re hiring). On the little coffee table, there were three or four glossy editions of Human Resource Executive. The headlines and articles were fascinating: “The Temp/Contract Conundrum”, about contingent workforces. “The HR/Ethics Alliance”, on ethics and compliance in today’s business world. “Steve and Me”, an interview with a former Apple Vice … [Read more...]

It’s Getting Better All The Time

photo courtesy of Wikipedia - Wheat Yields in Developing Countries 1951-2004

I was re-arranging my messy book library the other day, and came across a happy little book titled “It’s Getting Better All the Time – Greatest Trends of the Last 100 Years”, written by Stephen More and Julian L. Simon back in 2000. The book is a quick read, with charts and tables as proof that humans are living longer, with better health, abundant natural resources, on and on. Readers may remember one of the authors, economist Julian Simon (“The Ultimate Resource”, 1981) for his $1,000 wager with biologist/ecologist Paul Ehrlich (“The Population Bomb”, 1968) back in the 80’s. Simon could be termed a cornucopian, a believer that ever-better technology and progress invented by humans would make scarcity of … [Read more...]

Yakezie Summer Team Roundup, First Edition

Random Doodle #20

All credit due to The Single Saver for coming up for this idea on the Yakezie forum.  Build support and connections among various teams of PF blogges.  Here’s a sampling of the latest Team 2 content, in no particular order: Squirrelers dispenses some wise advice on  Gift Cards: Hurry Up and Use Them! Nothing worse than thinking you've got some found money laying around, only to find out it's "expired". Mom’s Plans:  I Closed My E-Bay Store Good for Mom's Plans. More time to do other things, and no more bubble wrap and boxes. Wealth Informatics:  How To Save Money on Magazine Subscriptions As usual, Suba posts a tour-de-force article replete with information and resources. Money Beagle: A Four Year Debt Retrospective - … [Read more...]

One Dividend Stock I’m Buying, and One I’m Still Thinking About

Very cool picture of a Brewery in Abbaye Notre Dame de Saint-Remy Rochefort - photo credit: 2007 Luca Galuzzi

Companhia de Bebidas das Americas, or AmBev (NYSE: ABV) is part of the InBev Anheuser Busch conglomerate, the largest beer brewer in the world. According to some authors, beer is the number one or number two reason (*) that mankind developed agriculture and settled down to grow grain and make kids. One could think that buying a few shares of AmBev would be investing in the basics of life:  shelter, food and beer. Without going into the whole convoluted corporate spelunking in the recent evolution and amalgamation of Interbrew, Anheuser-Busch and AmBev, suffice to say that AmBev is the South American branch of the resulting giant global brewing group InBev, and the fifth largest brewery in the world.  With brands like Antartica, … [Read more...]

A Couple Tips on Personal Security While Traveling

Back When Luggage Didn't Have Wheels --- Image from Flikr Commons

Having been a road warrior in the past, and even now traveling outside the country a few times a year, I tend to pay some attention to personal security.  Here's a couple of idea to keep you and your property safer while on the move. Tag, You're It Generally a bad idea to keep your identity in plain view when traveling.  A few years ago, I was standing in line waiting to board the plane, behind a professional-looking businessman.  He was dragging behind him one of those gigantic rolling briefcases.  Even though I’d never met him before, I casually said “Hey, how you doing, Keith?”  He half-turned and looked at me with a surprised, do-I-know you look.  Before he could go any further into an awkward moment, I pointed to the very … [Read more...]

Revolution, Baby! A Bastille Day Roundup of Links

Liberty July 14th was Bastille Day, the anniversary of the French Revolution.  Masses of the people had had just about enough. Food prices were going through the roof, and their grievances were being inadequately addressed (sound familiar?). I like this snippet from Wikipedia: The storming of the Bastille was more important as a rallying point and symbolic act of rebellion than a practical act of defiance.  Shortly after the storming of the Bastille, on 4 August feudalism was abolished and on 26 August, the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen proclaimed. Symbolism goes a long way towards freedom. For me, just the simple act of growing a couple of cucumbers means I don’t have to drive to the grocery store and buy a … [Read more...]

Are the United States Going All Greek ?

There’s plenty of prognosticators who are predicting the debt default of the United States and the demise of the US dollar, and pointing to Greece with the finger of doom. They hyperventilate that our national debt will lead to hyperinflation, plagues of locusts and showers of frogs.  This clarion call of doom is picked up by various talking heads in the print and television media. At CNN Money, pundits speculate,   Is the US Like Greece? Not really, the writer concludes, but we’ve got a boatload of debt, and that’s a bad thing. Over at the New York Times, Paul Krugman fusses that a Lost Decade is Looming, and concludes we’re not so much like Greece, but more like Japan. In the political arena, Republicans (noted … [Read more...]

Dividend Income Update

Centavos Dividend Stocks

It's been a while since I posted on my dividend-paying stocks. I stopped agonizing over the choices for my next dividend stock I outlined in this post, and went ahead and plunked down for a hundred shares of Senior Housing Properties (SNH).  My entry point was at $22.54, so I'm up a little bit with the stock recently at $23.70.    A couple of these stocks like Liquor Stores and Perpetual Energy I came into as a result of tips from other fellow bloggers, and quite happy about it. All of these equities are held in my 401K plan.  I almost wasn't going to add Silver Wheaton, but since they've started paying a (very small, puny) dividend of almost 1 percent, I thought I'd throw them in the mix. The new CEO of SLW, as well as the previous … [Read more...]

A Roundup of Links for Gardening PF Bloggers

FGA - Globe Thistle

I've done a lot of nattering  and chattering on this blog about gardening.  Do enough surfing and commenting in in the PF community though, and it's not hard to notice that quite a few other fellow bloggers keep a veggie patch or flower patch. Here's a few: Starting with Niki @ Debt Free by 30. Cucumbers, zucchini and green beans  share space in a solidly built 4' x 8' raised bed. From the picture, looks like watering is done by a soaker hose, which is an excellent way to get water right to the root base of the plants, avoiding getting the foliage wet. More pictures t0 see at DFB30's post "My Garden Grows and Grows".  Go check out the post, and while you're there, look at what Niki does for weekly menus. Gardening and home cooking, … [Read more...]