Cryptocurrency – My First Investment

KATWIJK, NETHERLANDS – JANUARY 4: In this photo illustration, visual representations of the digital cryptocurrency, Bitcoin are arranged on January 4, 2021 in Katwijk, Netherlands. (Photo by Yuriko Nakao/Getty Images)

I made my first Cryptocurrency earlier this week, 5 days ago in fact on January 5, 2021. I created an account on one of the platforms back in May 2020 but didn’t pull the trigger. Had I made my current $150 contribution here is where I would have fared.
I have an itemized breakout below.
BTC: 226.91
ETH: 258.74
LTC: 185.28
Total: $670.93

This would be the equivalent of a 347% return on my initial paltry investment. This is play money. If I lose it all it isn’t the end of the world. Still SMH over that one.

Current Value of $50 Ethereum (ETH) from May 5, 2020
Current Value of $50 Litecoin (LTC) from May 5, 2020

For some added backstory, one of my friends in 2009 told my about Bitcoin. I didn’t think it was going to become anything big and honestly didn’t understand it. I think he bought about $100 at the time. Not sure if he sold it. I had difficulty finding prices back that far. However indexing against 2010 prices BTC was at $0.39 per coin. $100 USD would have had the purchasing power of 256 coins. Tying that into prices today… One bitcoin is valued at $38,404.40. That would be worth $9,831,526.40 assuming your investment didn’t get stolen.
Found this cute little chart on – The Reported Number of Stolen BTC Drops by 92% as ‘Bitcoin Security Appears to Be Improving’

% of Bitcoin reported stolen by year
BTC Historical Prices All-Time

It’s also important to note that there are no real underlying assets behind these cryptocurrencies. No government backing it, not tied to any company earnings, not tied to a tangible commodity. It also dropped to $3,690.91 in January 2019 from previous $19,167 in December 2017. This sucker’s super volatile. There will be a selloff at some point again I predict. Will it be tomorrow, 6 or 12 months ago who really knows?

I’m still investing anyway. Open to donations if anyone wants to send me money. I haven’t earned $0.01 from this blog since launching in April 2012. Same with YouTube. 😛
ETH: 0x7cC6c462B7225228f63379fC010c60A1B77D5f98
LTC: MU7is12jrh2ES2hA1EZRqSJmtPq3UVMEpF

Cheers to a new year, new investments, and us hitting more of our life goals!

End of Year Update – $124k for 2020!

I made a video on this…

How it Started:

Dec 8, 2019 Balances:
401K: $65,831
Roth IRA: $4,425
HSA: $633
Total: $70,889

Car Loan: $5,375
Car Warranty: $517
Credit Card: $1,557
Total Debt: $7,449

How It Ended:
Dec 31, 2020 Balances:
401K: $110,076
Roth IRA: $7,389
M1 Acct: $1,304
HSA: $507
Buffer Fund: $5,000
Total: $124,276
$0 Debt

My net worth is basically up $60k from last year. 2020 was a rocky year for me, for a while I wasn’t sure I was going to still have a job. I didn’t go into the year at full steam but didn’t backpedal when my investments took a huge dip in the Spring. I managed to put $19.500 in my 401k and on the path to hitting $6k for 2020 in my Roth IRA before the April 15th deadline. That’s exactly where I put every last dollar of my $600 stimulus check. Some might call it a dumb move but I like compounding and seeing my money grow.

I see others making poor financial decisions and the only thing I can do is step back and let them learn the lessons on their own. I could offer advice but it would fall on deaf ears. You can’t take it with you, but you can enjoy life while also planning for a future filled with abundance and joy.

What Are Financial My Goals for 2021?

  1. Max out my personal 401k contribution for 2021: $19,500
  2. Max out Roth IRA for 2021: $6,000
  3. Max out Roth IRA for 2020: $3,900 left
  4. Add to taxable investments: $5,000
  5. Double emergency fund / downpayment account: $5,000
  6. Max HSA Contribution: $3,600
    Total: $43,000

I’ll admit these are some pretty aggressive goals for the year. If I can’t meet all of these goals I’m not going to beat myself up over them. Life happens, but paying attention to my investments and being super aggressive is more than what most people do.

I also want to find a new place to live after over 6 years in this apartment. Houses are way too expensive in this current market. Not to mention the competitive nature of the market. People with conventional loans getting preferential treatment over FHA, or making cash offers above asking price. Then you have taxes, maintenance, HOAs, utility costs 4x my apartment, pest control, PMI, closing costs, home security, etc. Not sure I want to sign up for that right now. I would be building equity up however. Lots to think about.

I have a couple non-money related goals but keeping them to myself for now. Talk is cheap until you’re actually out and doing the things you claim.

What are your goals for 2021?

December 2020 – Retirement Portfolio Update

December 2020 Net Worth Update – It’s been a long year, I hope you are all happy and safe. Sharing a quick net worth update. I feel very fortunate for having a job, being able to contribute to my investments and for the capital gains / dividends I keep earning over time. I haven’t gone on any trips this year, live alone, and have seen friends minimally for the last 9 months. In 2012 I had $0 in investments and a net worth of -$46,000. A bit fat negative balance. Just one year ago I had literally half the net worth as today. If you keep at it, you can make a lot of progress in a short period of time.

Hoping this video gets more than 5 views. That’s all the last one generated… 😀 I also noticed the exposure on the last one was messed up. Lesson learned..

Early December 2020 Update

Wow, October and Halloween feels like such a long time ago now. Biden is now president-elect, we are going through another surge of Covid-19 in America and many other parts of the world. Many of us are still filled with hope over our major pharmaceutical companies releasing a vaccine. There are still looming questions with regard to effectiveness, side effects, distribution, and more.

Black Friday / Cyber Monday

Today I bought a new computer chair. The one I had was held together with zip ties and bungee cord. It was the highest dollar amount I’ve ever spend on my chair. It’s not the Herman Miller Mirra 2 or Aeron I strongly considered but were ultimately way outside of my price point for a new chair. We’re talking $633 on the low end. Surely I could have bought a refurbished one but those kind of creep me out a bit. I bought…

  1. WorkPro® Quantum 9000 Series Ergonomic Mesh Mid-Back Desk Chair, Black – Office Depot was asking $449.99 for it. I found it on Lenovo instead for 319.99 plus 10% cashback through Rakuten and 1.5% cashback on my credit card. So net is around $310. I’ve used it for a few days now, much of my back pain has subsided
  2. MacBook Pro M1 – 16GB / 1TB – This is a purchase I honestly debated for few weeks. I had a fully functioning notebook, a 2019 16” MacBook Pro. However it’s heavy, the cpu often hits 200° F, super uncomfortable in my lap. In Geekbench 5 single core tests this machine is 51% than the computer I bought a year ago for ~$2800. Multicore is only a few percentage points higher but it does that without the fan running. To make it even more enticing, Apple increased the trade in value offer from $1400 -> $1530 and another site that I ended up using offered me $1784 for a one year old computer and that trade in value offsets the cost of the new machine. With my corporate discount my out of pocket cost is under $300.
  3. Logitech MX Master 3 Mouse for Mac -This is quite possible one of the best mice I have ever used on a computer. It works very well over Bluetooth and is a perfect addition to my wireless keyboard. Cost $82 after a $10 and $5 Gift Card.
  4. SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD V2 : I will be the first to admit I have too many hard drives. The one I have been using for my backups is 20x slower than my internal SSD. The 500GB Samsung T5 SSD in 2017 is too small to store all my data. 2TB is a lot but I’m also planning for the future. I got $200 off on this for Black Friday, and 10% cashback through Rakuten. Then my credit card offers 1.5% cashback on top of that. $287.81.
  5. Henckles Knives Set & Shower Liner – I have had the same knife set since moving into this apartment in 2014. They were cheap when I bought them and now starting to rust. I feel like 6 years off a $20 set is time. $86.28
  6. Shag Donut Luxury Plush Cuddler – My dog flips up her bed all the time. I think it’s because it’s too small. It’s also over a year old. She deserves a comfortable place to sleep and relax so it’s time. $64.90

Aside from that I haven’t made any major purchases lately. My car and renters insurance are both coming due within 10 days. Car insurance is $669.64 and Renters is $115.61. I’m really thankful to be at a point where these expenses don’t devastate me like they used to.

In terms of personal life someone I really enjoyed the company of ghosted me after 3 dates and talking for several weeks. It’s crazy how someone could open up to you, talk about how they might want to adopt one day, sleep next to you… then all of a sudden be stressed out, not wanting to talk on the phone for even 5 minutes and not respond to text messages anymore. I bought two small birthday presents for him, returned one and gave away the other. It hurt but I watched some videos on how to get over ghosting and now it hurts less.

Looking back at the last couple years…Relying on other people really hasn’t worked out so well in adulthood. I have countless stories between friends and family. I know it’s a two-way street, but now I just focus on things that bring me joy. If other people want to join me I’m open to it but not just sitting around hoping just to be left alone.

Enough about that though… It’s time for an investments update:
401K: $105,686.95
Roth IRA: $6,506.07
M1 Acct: $1,131.47
Total Investments: $113,324.49
Considering last month was $99k I’m doing pretty damn well. November 2019 my investments were $68,561 with over $10k in debt. My net worth is effectively double in a year!

Credit Card: $2,053.61
I’m getting $1,784 of this back through my old computer trade-in. Coming up I also have my renters insurance and car insurance coming out. Both payments will be around 
I can pay this off fully out of savings if I wanted to, but keeping an emergency / moving / home fund is something I prefer not to touch. I will pay it all off in full when I get paid again in 2 weeks.

Last but not least I’m extremely thankful for all my blessings right now.

Stay healthy, be safe out there. Remember to do things that make you happy.

October 2020 Financial Update – $99k

The climate in this country continues to escalate as the election looms closer. Politics share parallels with keeping tabs on your favorite celebrities or friends whereabouts. In short, it can be extremely exhausting and too much exposure leads to an overall negative state of mind. Especially for things that are outside of one’s control. I early voted, I encourage my friends to vote.

I know multiple people who either have had or been exposed to someone with Covid-19. Currently two of my friends, a married couple have been exposed to it. They are both young in their 30s and seem to be doing okay. I’m not super close to them but still wish them a speedy and uncomplicated recovery.

Some more stats are available at USA Today. As of today there have been 8.774MM confirmed cases in the US and 226k confirmed deaths. In my county alone we have the highest number of new cases since Late September. I feel like currently we all either know someone who has had it, or know someone who knows a person who had it.

From a travel standpoint I simply haven’t had the cojones to go anywhere. Instead I’ve focused on small gatherings and outdoor recreational activities. Social distancing at a beach, or in another country just isn’t the same as having an honest to good vacation. My home state of New York is still requiring visitors fill out the 2 week mandatory quarantine for those flying and driving there. This is 7 months in. I miss my hometown. Almost 2 years since I’ve seen my family. It hurts but I try not to dwell on that too much.

Ok let’s talk about Personal Finance. I’ve made a slew of updates to my Apple gear. I can 2020 the year of the refresh.

  1. Apple Watch Series 6 – Despite being built like a tank, I am a very physically active individual. I had the series 4 for 669 days. Over 900 miles by bike and 100s on foot. I track my sleep, I track my daily calorie burn. I post some of my workouts to Strava. The battery was starting to go in the 4 and my warranty was long expired. For my trade-in I received a $140 credit on my card, offsetting the $420 for a new watch. An additional $240 is a fair bit of money but I wanted some of the new features. I already cashflowed and paid this off.
  2. IPhone 12 Pro – I’m on the upgrade program with Apple on this one. My 11 Pro I owed around $650 on, basically less than it was worth. Technically the new phone costs a whopping $1405. I paid $107.09 up front, plus my first monthly payment of $54.08 for an initial cash outlay of $161.17 plus a case and massage charger around $85 combined.
  3. iPad Pro – This is also a question of timing. I’ve had the 2019 iPad Air for the past year. It’s been quite the capable little device. I watch movies on it, read ebooks on it, it’s actually my device of choice for typing these blog entries on. I use a Logitech K380 Bluetooth keyboard and a little mouse with it. For prolonged use, multitasking, or any type of note taking / drawing the screen is just a bit too small for my tastes. So I’m upgrading to the 12.9” iPad Pro and trading in my current model. Kind of interesting, I ordered this several weeks ago and got a $250 quote from Apple. Today that drops down to $210. I also sold the AirPods they came with on eBay and got $103.50 for them. So $899 – $103.50 – $210. So $545.50 give or take not including the Apple Pencil 2nd gen or whatever I get back on my current Pencil. I get it tomorrow and then will be billed for it.

I’m not sure what to say aside from being an Apple diehard. Tech is a fun outlet for me to learn, de-stress, and connect with new people. I still feel a little guilty about spending money on anything. The credit card will still be paid off in full by the next billing cycle though.

Shiny New iPhone 12 Pro

Current Retirement:
401k: $92,300.80
Roth IRA: $5,786.86
Taxable Investments: $891.25
HSA: $551.09
Total: $99,530

The Gym – My Home Away From Home

I was briefly above $100k. It’s nice to see a 6 figure number.
September 2020 : $96,078.36, so up 3.6% now Month-Over-Month.
October 2019: $64,513.33 was my retirement balance and I had almost $10k of debt at the time. So up $35k or 54% Year-Over-Year. Or $45k / +82%.

I literally was about to hit Publish, then saw an r/wallstreetbets post about how a guy hit $100k in their portfolio. It’s kind of a joke. He made it and lost it very quickly, having dropped down to $4,291.90. It took me basically 7.5 years, no margin, or shorts. God willing in another 7 years I will be up to over $300k.

Shit it’s almost 1AM. I’m taking my dog to the vet for a teeth cleaning later this morning. Posted some more videos on YouTube.
1. What I save Money on As A Millennial
2. Food Prices Are Going Up
3. October 2020 (Early Month) Investment Update

A little over 11 years ago I quite my bank teller job and started thinking about a new path in life. One that would be much more lucrative. The journey has been long but I’ve essentially tripled my net worth over that time period. To go from -$50k to +$100k is great. I’m still 37. Not dead yet. Not retiring anytime soon, I have a lot more goals to hit and living to do. Thanks for reading. Make money, be safe, do hard things in life. Night… zzzzzZZZZzz

September 2020 Update – $96k

It’s officially Fall 2020. Things are starting to cool off a bit in Dallas. There has been so much talk about the election, Tesla battery day, TikTok, Covid, flu season, the supreme court, you name it.

My gains in September came in a bit short of what I expected from August. It’s important to know that the stock market is both cyclical and unpredictable. Some health issues I though were gone in August resurfaced. I’m making smarter decisions daily to hopefully leave them past me permanently.

As of 9/30/2020:

$401k: $89,217.07
Roth IRA: $5,511.23
HSA: $567.02
M1: $783.04
September 2020 Total Investments: $96,078.36
August 2020 Total Investments: $96,846.23
(Down $767.87 or .79% from last month, up $36,200 or +60.4% to last year)
A flat month is discouraging but it also was down almost 3% a few days ago. No car payments makes this a helluva lot easier. I remind myself of this when I see a sexy new car roll out off the showroom floor like the new Acura TLX.

I’m inspired by BeatTheBush on YouTube. Dude is in the SF Bay area, a retired engineer and popular Youtuber. He just turned 40 reached a net worth of $1.6MM. At my current investment rate of $1800/mo and an 8% rate of return, I’ll hit $193k at age 40 and $1.1MM at age 50. I do need to accelerate this though. Especially since I want to live in a nicer place either a townhouse, condo, or more upscale apartment. There is always the risk that the stock market doesn’t have the same historical gains of the last few decades.

As soon as my most recent order posts, I will have qualified for the $600 cashback offer on my Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card. That will basically cover my current balance so that’s exciting. I’m eager to go travel somewhere where I’m not staying at a friend’s place or with family for weeks. Not sure if that is in my future, the only way to get to NY is really for me to fly to Boston first and stay somewhere for a while. Like my friends, but I’m more of a see people for a couple days and go kind of guy. Staying for weeks at a time would make me a bit anxious. With a potential surge in covid cases, who really knows what the rest of 2020 will have in store.

After 580 days and $2500 later, I finally have my braces off. Still trying to get my retainer. The first impressions I did on Monday didn’t come out properly so I had to drive 40miles round trip to get them redone and go back again to pick them up. Fun times.

Last but not least I posted this video last night without me talking. Has 2 views and like so far (no it’s not me…) haha. One of my friends who runs a podcast said not everything needs to be perfect and I really need to take that to heart. Not to mention workflows. I have a state-of-the-art MacBook Pro 16″, 27″ 4k HDR LG display, five devices capable of recording video for my channel and a living room area I can play around with for filming purposes. The big-ass flourescent light I purchased was a bust, it makes me look blue and also takes up too much space in my dining room. Might try to sell it on Facebook or somewhere for $20 and buy a ring light instead.

October 2020 Financial Update

I’m trying to grow as a person, don’t think that will ever stop. Finding more people who share common interests has been a boost to my self confidence, and a super effective way of helping to keep my mental facilities in check. People especially ones who live alone need to interact in person with other humans. I’m all for responsible social distancing. I also know how taxing it is to feel completely cut off from the world, sort of in your own self-imposed solitary confinement.

Stay safe out there. Hope your jobs are safe. Never stop learning. Remember to work on at least one hard thing each day. Even if it’s for a short period of time. Ok it’s 12:40AM here… for that reason I’m out.

August 2020 Update – $95k & counting

It’s hard to believe September 2020 is almost here. It reached a high of 106 here in Dallas, 113 with the heat index. I’ve still only gone out to restaurants / to see friends a halful of times since March. Gradually working up my comfort level, but still an adjustment, and I am still a bit concened about putting my health at unnecessary levels of risk..

August has been a really challenging month. The worst is behind me though, and my immediate friends and family are all safe. That’s all I really have the bandwidth to focus on. Everything I’ll take it for what it’s worth.

401k: $90,043.43
Roth IRA: $5,572.82
HSA: $552.55
M1: $677.43
August 2020 Total Investments: $96,846.23
July 2020 Total Investments: $87,553.45
(up $9,292.78 or 10.6% from last month, up $36,968 or 61% from August last year)

The level at which this market is going up is kind of crazy. I’ve been investing as much as I possibly can at my income each month. I also have been putting aside $500/mo toward an emergency fund. Will I break $100k next month? Hopefully but who knows based on how this market has been performing.

The brakes on my Nissan have had a pulsating feeling for months and months. I expected to have a $1k bill for 4 new rotors and pads. The reality of the situation is that the rotors I got from a local brake shop in 2018 were still in decent overall shape. Usually the fronts are the ones that get warped and the rears stay in good They were warped however, so the dealership cut them, installed a new set of OEM Nissan brake pads (DA06M-JE00PNW). The Vredestein Quatrac 5 tires I bought from in April 2018 apparently were from 2017 and started to get very noisy, even with regular tire rotation and tire PSI within normal levels. My receipt says I paid $627.40 for them not including an extra $80 at this sketchy place to mount them . The new Goodyear Eagle RS-A tires pictured below were $708 including buy 3 get 1 for a $1 promo, tire disposal fees, wheel weights, mounting and balancing. Altogether I paid $866.09 and I had no shame in bringing a coupon in with my trip.

Fundamentally I don’t view myself as a broken person, but I do remind my self of the importance of doing things that are more healing in nature. Whether it’s picking healthier foods, experiencing the outdoors, talking to quality people, listening to good music. It’s easy to let the news, social media, politics, whatever take over our emotions, to the point we can’t find joy in anything or have strong dislike for people with different positions. There’s nothing wrong with drawing a line in the sand and saying “Heck no, I’m not going to waste another hour, or minute of my time getting riled up talking politics on this platform. My life, my family, my joy, my IQ, and desire to grow as a human being are more important than helping drive ad revenue and engagement for a mega corporation“.

I am already at the 50% mark to get the 60,000 bonus points or $600 cashback incentive for my Chase Sapphire Preferred card. Have to spend $4k in total in 3 months. Here is a referral link if you’re curious. I wouldn’t sign up if you can’t pay it off in full before the balance is due. I don’t like debt but free money is enticing especially if you would’ve spent the money on these items anyway.

Chase Sapphire Preferred Referral Offer

Back to my last post, I still feel like a weird person. Living below my means with no debt. I did splurge the other day on $41 worth of PF Changs delivered to my apartment. Went to a fancy restaurant last week for some drinks / appetizers and a friend foot the bill. I tried to Venmo him but he refused. I just thought they had a nice patio, didn’t think a $120 bottle of champange was necessary but I’ll take it. Next time we will have to actually find a place that does Happy Hour and is open.

For those of you struggling or trying to get to the next level I think it’s important to remember the concept that the results of the things you are working on right now may in fact take months or years to actually pan out. Even in my late 30s I’m still impatient and expect things to happen immediately. Thanks for reading my latest post, hope you day is off to a great start.

Ever Feel Like a Weirdo?

Feeling Like a Weirdo?

I typed this up at 12:30 AM on a Monday night in a dark room as to cut back the blue light so have mercy 😛
Anyone else on this journey feel like a bit of a weirdo? Hear me out…
1 – We live in largely a consumption based society, only recently have many Americans started to really question what is a luxury vs what is essential.
2 – There are lots of people there in the current economy who are literally struggling, unable to pay their rent, mortgage, student loans, car payments, etc.
3 – People are looking toward their state and federal governments to give them a helping hand.

I honestly don’t think my situation is that much better than that of my peers. I’m still an employee, working for a large corporation. If people don’t buy the products we sell, I don’t have a job. On paper I’m a minority, from a middle class suburb, with 3 non-STEM college degrees. I was born in and still live in the United States. In 1999 I started with $5.15/hour, rode my mountain bike or walked to work on days my parents couldn’t give me a ride, and I didn’t break the $50k/yr barrier until a full 14 years after getting my first job. I don’t yet earn a six figure salary, nor am I an engineer.

Am I still priviledged? Perhaps. Being an American I can very easily buy equitities in some of the largest companies in the world, in a very well regulated way, with near zero brokerage fees. My currency of choice is still the world’s reserve currency, and I can invest money in a bank account without fears of the government taking it away from me overnight. I have not had to live through civil wars or periods of gross inflation or deflation. I am living through what I skeptically hope will be a huge step forward through the BLM movement.

I still have no debt. Debt to me is repulsive in a way unless it’s to acquire an asset that produces a steady steam of income or is highly likely to appreciate over time. Some of my ancestors were brought to this country centuries ago as slaves. Their labor was used to cultivate the land, produce resources, build roads, buildings, and make an entire class of people wealthy. They longed for freedom from their opressors and a system that was not designed for them but against them at every level – education, housing and employment discrimination. Then as a gay man… Up until only a few years ago it was completely legal to fire or not hire me to begin with in many parts of this country on the basis of my sexual orientation….I was lucky enough to be born at a time and living in places where I was not impacted. My company is literally one of most LGBT friendly I’ve had the pleasure of working for.

So yes I’m priviledged. I’m lucky but it’s also been a struggle. I’m on the road to a $100,000 investment portfolio before 2021. In 2012 I was at -$45,099.65 and sold my retirement account to cover my expenses from having no job. It scares me that I will have to return back to the “dark ages”. My position at my previous company was eliminated last week in another round of layoffs. An acquaintance of mine who also worked there got a severence package when his position was terminated. I’m thankful to have built up my career while there but also left before my shelf life expired.

It feels weird to be working from home. Since Covid-19 closures started in March happened I no longer have a $545/mo car payment, $80/mo in tolls, $140/mo in gasoline bills, or $85 in parking garage fees. That’s $850/mo of free cash flow per month. I also didn’t move to a $400/mo more expensive apartment closer to the fancier uptown/downtown area. A stimulus check would be nice, but I’m not starving without it.
These are unprecedented times for me. I have so many options. I’m still a long ways from even lean FIRE. My LeanFIRE number is about $1MM. Only 10% there but with my current monthly contribution levels and a 6.5% return rate I’ll be there in 18 years. Who knows though, maybe a $1MM won’t be what it used to be. I’ve been weird all my life, even writing my cash amounts from allowances in an envelope and tracking things in a spreadsheet. Yes more spreadsheets. I’m gonna whip up a few for my next posts. Remember for every success story there is someone who started out with nothing. Also stay the fuck away from fake gurus. Your money is better off in an index fund. 😛

Ok it’s time for bed now. Getting senile. Thanks for reading. Stay strong, be safe. We are all in this together.

July 2020 Update – $87k & counting

July – July will be over soon and with it comes the reminder that we are already a month through summer. What a hot summer it has been. The brutal Texas sun shining down on me, giving me sunburn after only 2 hours of exposure. As intense as it is, I also love things this time of year. I go biking, walking, pool, take beautiful pictures of nature. Yesterday I grabbed a beer with a friend, only my 2nd time at a sit down place since March.

I did have the unfortunate mishap of riding over a strip of metal near White Rock Lake. I started hearing a loud hissing noise coming from my front tire. Within a minute or so it was completely flat. Luckily the nearest bike shop was only a 2 mile walk from where I was at. Wasn’t expecting an $87 repair bill, but they fixed it on the spot and gave me a more durable tire than what I had. I’m tempted to order an extra one online and just keep as a backup in case this happens again.

So let’s talk finances for a bit…

401k: $81,450.93
Roth IRA: $4954.67
HSA: $661.87
M1: $485.98
July 2020 Total Retirement: $87,553.45
(up $5,889 or 7.2% from last month, up $29,247.65 or 50%! from July 2019, up $75,760 or 736% from just 5 years ago.)

iPhone 11 Pro : $786.40
Credit Card: $420.00
Total Debt: $1,206.40
(my debt a year ago was $11,896.36!)

I will likely be upgrading to the iPhone 12 Pro when it comes out as part of the Apple upgrade program. Credit card will be paid off Friday when I get paid, don’t want to pull from my emergency fund to cover. Mostly food, had cable / cell phone bills hit and other miscellaneous items. So still basically debt free. 😀

I did make a small shift in my 401k investments. Sold my us treasury bonds and am now 100% in equities. Prior to that I was an a 95/5 split The ROI on Investing isn’t sexy, sometimes it feels like you’re going nowhere. Then you look back a year later and think damn I’m not doing so bad after all.

Stay happy, healthy, and safe out there! Remember comparison is the thief of joy, just be the best version of you possible.

Are We Limiting Ourselves?

In mere weeks I will be turning the ripe young ish age of 37. Some realization I’ve come to terms with:

  • The quarter century crisis is far, far in the rear few mirror. Anyone over 30 knows the nagging voice in your head that says these are things I must do by 30 or I will end up an absolute failure of a person.
  • Most of my biggest fears in life have come and gone. In a word, ‘perspective’. A lot of my fears stemmed around people who later I realized either didn’t care about me nearly as much as I thought they would. Or a unhealthy mismatch between living a lie and being an openly gay man. I came out 16 years ago,
  • Nothing compares to my general skepticism of politics both left and right is a filter for which I view any single word uttered by a politician. The older you get, the more the bullshit meter goes up.
  • I’m no longer the new and upcoming generation. Millennials aren’t a lost cause yet, but some have dug theirselves so deeply into a hole, hoping the government bails them out or provides UBI, etc. is their best shot.
  • My body is not necessarily able to catch up with my mind. I think of being able to accomplish superhuman or computational type feats similar to an android. I can’t just load a program into my brain and pick things up like that. It all takes time and energy. My brain after 8 hours of work, a few hour of downtime, and 1-2 hours of exercise just isn’t able to easily pick up complex tasks.
  • It’s okay to be “normal”-ish. Not everyone is capable or would excel at becoming a multi-millionaire. That doesn’t mean I’m not going to try out different revenue streams, and stay on top of all my investments.
  • It’s not over until it’s over – See guys like David Goggins and Graham Stephan others who stayed driven and beat the odds. It’s a reminder that great things are possible if steady actions are taken. Everything else is a waste of time beyond some basic research and planning if you ask me. It’s easy to fall into a self help trap, thinking you’re achieving huge accomplishments when really the opposite is true.

I am thankful to earn a middle class salary, which is more than a lot of other people in America can say right now. My health is mostly good, I can walk on two feet, have a paid off car, no consumer debt, and can aggressively invest. I don’t have insomnia thinking about how to pay off insurmountable levels of debt. Also it looks like the pay cut I took a few months back will be reversed soon, so that’s always a good thing. I do want to branch out and live life at a higher level once all this COVID mess is over.

Last but not least I’m a fighter. It’s in my DNA. Lots of people in my family have been faced with obstacles far greater than mine. Almost bedtime again, apologies if there are a bunch of grammatical errors. I’ll end it with this….

What have you learned as you got older that has had a profound impact on how you see the world, relate to people, or handle things from day-to-day?