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Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 01:51 AM   #1
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Cheap Fun Stuff

This is a post that I first put to the Motley Fool board on November 29, 2000, as part of a thread entitled “The Wanderer Approach to ER.”

Our family's experience has been that there is very little in this world that is very fulfilling that can't be had for very minimal investments of cash.

Exactly. Here is a list of my favorite things to do:

1) Exercise. I try to have a one-hour run, a one-hour bike ride, or a two-hour walk each day. The expense is the price of new running shoes once a year.

2) Reading. Library books are free. The more obscure titles (those analyzing Bob Dylan lyrics and such) cost a few dollars. But the dollar per hour of enjoyment ratio is very low.

3) Meals with Family. Meal time is fun when you do not start the preparation after eight hours at the office. Taking time to linger over the meal (that means not worrying about what television program is about the begin) adds to the experience. Even clean-up can be fun, if done in the right spirit.

4) Writing. Others might prefer planting, or painting, or inventing. Paper costs little. Same with seeds, and brushes.

5) Web Sites. This is one of my relatively high-cost activities because I pay for a service provider. Still, the return on investment is high when you consider the research options available on the internet.

6) Sleeping. I'm not being funny. Sleeping is really nice. I like it that I can stay up late and sleep late when I feel like it. Or go to bed early and wake up early if I want. Pillows are surprisingly inexpensive at yard sales.

7) Playing with Son. He is an expert at having fun, and is willing to share all his insights. One of the best "games" is crawling through a cardboard box. Another is making imaginary omelettes with a whisk. The cardboard box was free, and it will be a long time before the whisk breaks or needs to be replaced with a new model.

8) Visiting Friends. So long as you don't do something stupid like go to a movie (I'm kidding, sorta), there need be no cost to this. Aside from the cost factor, the movies and the restaurants, etc., tend to distract you from the point of the visit--conversation with a friend. Consistent with your proposition, wanderer, adding an expense tends to detract from one's enjoyment.

9) Vacations. In one sense, this is an exception to the rule. Vacations really are fun, and can often be expensive. However, in many of my vacations, the best part of the trip was the planning. I've learned a lot about other places by reading up on them in preparation for a trip. The expense/enjoyment ratio can be limited by increasing the time spent on planning and choosing the least expensive of several vacation options.

One way to do this is to travel by car. I find that long drives give my wife and me lots of time to talk. I often find the travel leg of a trip one of the best parts. I also like being able to pack more without having to worry about the airlines losing it.

Another way to limit the expense/enjoyment ratio is to avoid stuffy restaurants. I don't mind the expense so much as the attitude and the constant waiting around for something to happen. OK, it's fun the first night. But the rich food experience becomes annoying for me at any price after "enjoying" it two or three days in a row.

Another option here is to take a week-long vacation exploring your own town. We went to all the usual tourist spots one week, and enjoyed it. The tour bus people didn't understand when they asked everyone where they were from, and we said "just down the street a few blocks."

10) Listening to music. So long as you don't buy anything new, there's little cost here. I have enough albums of good music to last decades. So long as the music you start with is solid, each listen adds to your enjoyment of it. It's better to hear 10 great records a hundred times each than 100 good records 10 times each.

Those 10 keep me busy and "rich." If I were to engage in any of the more costly activities, it would require taking time away from the Top Ten. Why would I want to do that?
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 06:39 AM   #2
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Drop dead. Keep this recycled crap confined to the SWR board, worthless troll.


DORY!!! Please, I beg you, ban this cretin!!!
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 07:22 AM   #3
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Drop dead. *Keep this recycled crap confined to the SWR board, worthless troll.

DORY!!! *Please, I beg you, ban this cretin!!!


It reflects poorly on all of us that we permit comments like this to pollute the board.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 07:59 AM   #4
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

That's pretty funny, coming from a psychopath like you. Go away, troll.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 08:18 AM   #5
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

brewer, shut up.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 08:42 AM   #6
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Quote:
brewer, shut up. *
Them's fightin' words...

OK, I'll stop feeding the troll.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 02:22 PM   #7
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Wha?

I could swear that sounds like...

Yes it is...

I cant believe it...

Old honking!!!!!!
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 02:26 PM   #8
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

You're capable of better, TH.

You too, Brewer12345.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 02:43 PM   #9
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Vintage honking intermixed with nouveau honking!

What a treasure!

But is it really proper to sample the vintage honking PRIOR to the nouveau?

Very unseemly.

And what about the foie gras?!?
:P
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 06:10 PM   #10
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Didn't you guys get your fill of bullying back in the fifth grade at St. Alphonse?

What is the complaint with this post on free fun?

Mikey
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 07:59 PM   #11
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

*****, thank you for the post! I'm sure I read this back in 2000 when I was dreaming of retiring early, but it is always good to revisit topics like this, especially now that I have time to do some of these things (work really does get in the way).
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 09:06 PM   #12
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Mikey -

Simple. He's a troll. A subtle one, to be sure, but a troll nonetheless.

He's simply using a technique that unfortunately, I think I taught him. Make some nice posts to build some good will until the next rampage.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-06-2004, 11:17 PM   #13
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Quote:
Mikey -

Simple. *He's a troll. *A subtle one, to be sure, but a troll nonetheless.

He's simply using a technique that unfortunately, I think I taught him. *Make some nice posts to build some good will until the next rampage.
Gotta admit this made me laugh. I don't drink milk, but if I did it would be through the nose

Mikey
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff mis
Old 10-07-2004, 02:57 AM   #14
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff mis

Simple. *He's a troll. *A subtle one, to be sure, but a troll nonetheless.

Anyone who looks at my posting record will come to the conclusion that I am the most "subtle" troll in the history of the internet. So subtle am I in my trolling skills that for a number of years the FAQ statement at the Motley Fool board included a recommendation to "read any post by *****. They are all at the top of the most recommended list." I am an extraordinarily subtle troll indeed.

What I really am is a poster with an intense desire to learn all that I can and to teach all that I can about the subject of how to win financial freedom early in life. There was a time when in my judgment the best way to achieve those goals was to post on "soft-side" topics. Since May 13, 2002, my focus has been on investing topics (in particular the SWR topic). The soft side is important. So is the hard side. SWRs matter.

SWRs matter enough so that as a community we should all want to be sure that the information presented on these boards re SWRs is accurate. It's because I believe that that TH and some others label me a troll. So be it. I'm posting what I honestly believe on the question of SWRs and on all other questions that I address on this board. I've done that since the first day and I will continue to do it, charges of trollery be damned.

What the shouts of "troll, troll!" tell me is that the DCMs (defenders of the conventional methodology) lack confidence that the historical stock-return data supports their case. If they had a case on the merits, we would have heard their response to William Bernstein's claim that the conventional methodology is a "highly misleading" way to determine SWRs at times of high valuation. It has been over two years since I put up the "What Bernstein Says" post and we have not heard a reasoned response from the DCMs on the Bernstein statements to this day. Community members whose primary concern is early retirement know what that means. It is for the benefit of community members whose primary concern is early retirement (as well as for my own benefit, of course) that I put forward my posts.

Make some nice posts to build some good will until the next rampage.

I have over 2,500 posts in my file and there has never been anything even remotely resembling a rampage yet. If I am true to myself, there never will be. But I will of course continue to post in an honest and informed way on the SWR question in appropriate places and times. TH doesn't like that reality one little bit. That's too bad.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 06:52 AM   #15
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Yee, Gods! Another 2500 blatherings just waiting to be recycled here? If Dory does get out the big 'ol ban stick and whack this moron with it soon, his server will collapse.

Mikey, this moron is perhgaps the most destructive troll I have ever seen. Probably the best we could hope for is that everyone ignores him and he gives up and goes away. Personally, I think that the optimal solution (and the most realistic, given past history) is a ban.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 08:06 AM   #16
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Probably the best we could hope for is that everyone ignores him...

My sense is that there is close to universal agreement that it would be a good idea if the DCMs would come to accept that we are no longer living in the summer of 1999. There was once a time when everyone who posted on the various boards thought that the REHP study accurately told us what the historical data says re SWRs. That day is past and it appears unlikely that it is ever coming back. It's not just me who has problems with the claim that a 4 percent take-out is "100 percent safe" for those with big stock allocations at today's valuation levels. There's JWR1945. And there's Bernstein. And there's Andrew Smithers, and Robert Shiller, and Rob Arnott, and all the other experts who have rejected the core assumption of the study. And there are the scores of community members who have found enough appeal in the data-based methodology to express a desire that reasoned discussion on SWRs be permitted.

If you don't like it that people are having these discussions, it is your right to refrain from participating in them, Brewer1234. In an ideal world, we would benefit from your input. But if that is not to be, it's not to be. Where you cross the line is in deciding not only that you are not going to participate, but in engaging in disruptions that make it unpleasant for others to participate (in this case in a discussion not even relating to the SWR matter).

You worry about you and let others worry about others, OK? This is a public discussion board, and the Retire Early community is a big and diverse community. It's not reasonable to expect that everyone is going to agree with you on every topic that comes up. Participate in the threads you like, and, yes, as you suggest above, ignore the ones you don't. Just remember that "ignore" and "disrupt" are different things and you and me will be the best of internet friends despite any differences we might continue to have re what the historical stock-return data says.

I think that is probably the best way to go with this, given the circumstances facing us. And I would like to be internet friends with you too, TH. So I hope that you too will make an effort to keep in mind the important distinction between "ignore" and "disrupt." It does none of us any good for any of us to get in the habit of passing too frequently from one side of that line to the other. Make sense, old buddy?
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 08:50 AM   #17
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Today I think I will pull out and examine my belly button lint in front of several senior colleagues and some clients.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 10:41 AM   #18
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Quote:
Today I think I will pull out and examine my belly button lint in front of several senior colleagues and some clients.
That would seem to qualify as cheap fun stuff--the original subject of the thread.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 11:01 AM   #19
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

Quote:
I think that is probably the best way to go with this, given the circumstances facing us. And I would like to be internet friends with you too, TH. So I hope that you too will make an effort to keep in mind the important distinction between "ignore" and "disrupt." It does none of us any good for any of us to get in the habit of passing too frequently from one side of that line to the other. Make sense, old buddy?
I'm going to respond to this primarily for the benefit of those who are uncertain about your motives and methods.

A while ago, I supported *****' right to his opinions and expressing them...to the point of saying I would leave if he were banned.

He called me a hero for this. I didnt feel heroic, because I had never lived through any of his trolling events and wasnt present at the many bannings on other boards. But he told me he had had a substance problem and been a little out of control, and now he wanted a second chance to be part of the community. I'm a sucker for tough luck stories.

I wanted to be open minded. I inquired about his ideas, his thought processes, his "new tool" for helping calculate SWR's.

There were some good ideas, but also some big huge flaming holes. And then came the thread hijackings. Not that i'm against that, I'm a serial hijacker. But I got kinda sick of every single thread on that board turning into a discussion on safe withdrawal rates and then turning into a discussion about *****.

When I tried to address the holes in logic and apparent gaps in the plans, my issues were shunted aside. When I persisted, I was subtley attacked...a little jab here, a little jab there...by him and several of his alter ego's. Yes, he posts under more than one name, here and elsewhere. When I ultimately became frustrated and called him out, then came the innocence. Without reading all the threads and putting together all the bits and pieces, it looked like he was a nice innocent guy facing someone out of control that was over-reacting. He's really very good at what he does, I imagine because he's had lots of experience.

So I told him I couldnt support him anymore, and why. He was completely nonplussed. A simple "okey dokey", and I was no longer called a "hero", I was now an asshole.

With that, it became clear to me. Someone who really had something to say, wanted to be heard and had very little support would have wanted to understand why I no longer wished to support him. Would have tried to heal that rift ASAP.

Of course, he didnt. Because he isnt interested in being a part of a community. He isnt interested in developing and sharing ideas. He's intererested in attention and disruption. No more, no less.

This is a pattern repeated on many, many boards. A pleasant start. Progressive upticking of the "swr" agenda. Some comments about why Intercst is wrong, lies and hides things that turn into full blown hatefests. The paranoia. Alienation and attacking any dissenters. Thread hijacking. Making claims that people support him or follow his "ideas" or use his "methodologies", followed by that person saying they do nothing of the kind. Rising frustration and annoyance in the community. A ban.

Whether he's looney, bipolar, has MPD, a substance abuse problem, or whatever it is, I'm about done trying to fix the situation, or trying to fix him. Following his "ideas" and "tools" will leave you washing out tin foil and eating cheap dog food well before you expire. Responding to him here or anywhere else is simply feeding the beast.

Thats it, I'm done talking to or about the goose that eats the golden eggs and leaves droppings everywhere he goes.

I implore you to do the same. Ignoring it does work. Make sure you ignore its alter ego's too. Look for people who only show up to have a conversation with it, or to start one, then disappear until the next bout. Usually low post counts.

So in response to the above...if you dont ignore, it will disrupt.
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff
Old 10-07-2004, 11:09 AM   #20
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Re: Cheap Fun Stuff

That would seem to qualify as cheap fun stuff--the original subject of the thread.

That was nicely done, Flipstress.

Thanks for sharing, TH.
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