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Re: Why do we tip restaurant servers?

We do this because it is how this type of job is traditionally compensated. Does it make sense? Not particularly. Until it changes it seems really churlish to take your frustration with this custom out on a very poorly paid employee. Your waitress has no control over this custom. I would feel guilty...
by Ged
Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do we tip restaurant servers?
Replies: 44
Views: 1796

Re: Tipping tradespeople

Generally I reward good work by tradespeople by becoming a repeat customer.

Given the rates it's pretty obvious that they are making well over min wage so it isn't a situation like restaurant service where the wait service is being paid sum min wage rates.
by Ged
Fri Aug 22, 2014 11:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping tradespeople
Replies: 10
Views: 1011

Re: Opinions on Webroot Security Anywhere

I use Webroot. If find it very fast and low overhead. PC Mag rated it pretty highly. It's licensed yearly (or for two years, forget which) and it seems to me that they operate on a scheme where the first year is free or inexpensive and subsequent years are not as financially attractive through their...
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opinions on Webroot Security Anywhere
Replies: 6
Views: 413

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

I didn't even get what the "M" stands for. Not surprising. The definition of M is somewhat open at this time. Ed Witten has suggested the meaning of the title should be decided when a more fundamental formulation of the theory is known. I wouldn't worry about it. My personal philosophy is...
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 8:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: which engine and transmission options to choose for Taco

Irrelevant. The most important need is proper snow/ice tires. Any engine will get you moving. 4wd does not help you move or stop. It certainly does help you get moving. +1 on snow tires though. I had 4 studded snow tires on my Subaru and the only time I got stuck was when the snow depth was greater...
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 5:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engine and transmission options to choose for Tacoma?
Replies: 25
Views: 884

Re: Air conditioning

I suppose A/C could be considered a luxury however, as a resident of NC I think the memory of no A/C exists solely in the minds of folks who never had to wake up, go to work and conduct business as usual regardless of climate. However, even for the older folks your memory may be clouded. I know bac...
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Air conditioning
Replies: 32
Views: 2088

Re: which engine and transmission options to choose for Taco

Yes, definitely 4x4 if you get a lot of snow. An empty 2WD pickup is one of the worst vehicles you could have in snow.

Back when I lived in snow country I'd pass them stuck on hills all day long in my Subaru.
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engine and transmission options to choose for Tacoma?
Replies: 25
Views: 884

Re: Kimchi

I went to Korea on a business trip once. I learned there that I don't like Kimchi. One of the interesting aspects about Korean cooking is the massive amounts of garlic they use. Often they will serve raw garlic slices as a condiment or side dish with meals. Many Korean homes have massive garlic stri...
by Ged
Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kimchi
Replies: 40
Views: 1800

Re: Just took control of my Portfolio

As time goes by you will gradually incur capital losses. There is a good chance you will be able to sell without incurring much in the way of out of pocket taxes if you are careful.

One thing is to be sure you are not reinvesting dividends.
by Ged
Wed Aug 20, 2014 8:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just took control of my Portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 1238

Re: Will you have to pay your parent's long term care costs?

From what I understand these cases are not very relevant to the typical situation where Medicaid pays the nursing home after the parent's resources are exhausted. Nursing homes are using filial support laws when the parent manages to disqualify themselves from Medicaid to collect from the children. ...
by Ged
Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you have to pay your parent's long term care costs?
Replies: 57
Views: 3513

Re: Do interest rates really matter when buying a home?

It is more the strength of the economy rather than interest rates that drives home prices.

http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2013/ ... rates.html
by Ged
Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:00 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do interest rates really matter when buying a home?
Replies: 8
Views: 785

Re: Buying a home with aluminum wiring?

The copalum pigtails may be a sound technical solution however there are always going to be eyebrows raised when aluminum wiring is mentioned.

It seems to me that half measures are going to prove to be a waste of money long-term.
by Ged
Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a home with aluminum wiring?
Replies: 67
Views: 3582

Re: How the rich stay/get richer??

arcticpineapplecorp. wrote:Why can't growth of investments continue exponentially?


The classic response is THIS:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5iFESMAU58
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 10:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [live off dividends?] How the rich stay/get richer??
Replies: 62
Views: 4802

Re: Theater seating for basement projection TV

Check around locally for home theater installers. Many of them offer good deals on the various components in addition to selling completed theaters. The good and bad with these people is that they don't always have showrooms. The good is that without a showroom they have a lot less overhead. I happe...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Theater seating for basement projection TV
Replies: 5
Views: 757

Re: Tract Home - Things to Watch During Construction

I think the wired/wireless question depends on who is going to be living in the home. If there is an engineer who is going to be working from home some conduits that can have whatever the latest media pulled through them are likely to be worthwhile. Wireless doesn't really cut it when you are transf...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 5:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tract Home - Things to Watch During Construction
Replies: 56
Views: 2993

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

2001 and Day the Earth Stood Still are nominally based on short stories too, however the connection is very tenuous and could arguably called insignificant. The Thing's connection to Who Goes There is much stronger. And the second The Thing (the John Carpenter remake) the more so? Closer to the ori...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 5:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: B&H Photo - NY City Experience

I have been a happy B&H customer since the mid 1980's. They may well be the leading camera / photo store in the world. They are somewhat idiosyncratic, for example they run their website according to Jewish religious law on when it is permissible to do business. The physical store also follows t...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: B&H Photo - NY City Experience
Replies: 35
Views: 2261

Re: Roth Conversion - Old Age

Their marginal rate on a conversion would not be 15%. Wait, why not? Not even on just a partial conversion to keep their income in that bracket? Because the percentage of SS benefits subject to taxation increases with income. On the other hand there still may be advantages in taking cap gains up to...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 4:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth Conversion - Old Age
Replies: 31
Views: 1161

Re: Rebalance + stay the course ... or dial it down on stock

I consider Vanguard target funds to be pretty aggressive. For somebody at age 42 they are 85% equities. For a person 52 they are 71%. Another alternative aggressive allocation is age-20 in bonds. Dialing it down so that you are 15-20% bonds now and by the time you and your wife are 52 you are 70/30 ...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 3:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalance + stay the course ... or dial it down on stocks
Replies: 10
Views: 1886

Re: How to install an SSD HD into laptop without a Win7 disc

If you want to do a clean install, use the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool to put the setup on a USB flash drive: http://wudt.codeplex.com/ You should be able to find a Windows 7 product key on the bottom of your laptop. Make sure to select the edition (i.e. Home, Professional, etc.) listed on the ...
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to install an SSD HD into laptop without a Win7 disc?
Replies: 17
Views: 1196

Re: Parents sold second home. Need advice on how to invest

The first suggestion is to avoid financial managers!

If their income needs are truly met I'd suggest a 3 fund portfolio at Vanguard with about 50% in equities.
by Ged
Tue Aug 19, 2014 11:01 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Parents sold second home. Need advice on how to invest $$$
Replies: 5
Views: 633

Re: How to install an SSD HD into laptop without a Win7 disc

Use a disk clone package like Macrium Reflect.
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to install an SSD HD into laptop without a Win7 disc?
Replies: 17
Views: 1196

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Generally Hollywood's score with fantasy and sci fi written works is worse not better. If you strip out the Verhoeven ones ( Total Recall, Starship Troopers, Robocop ) which are all, in fact, satires, most especially. The standalone ( 2001, Terminator, Alien, Forbidden Planet, Day the Earth Stood S...
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 9:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: Deck - Best Method of Treatment

I used to work for a company that supplied raw materials for these products. We used to hold up Thompson's Water Shield as an example of what not to do to our customers.

Sorry I can't recommend a current product - only not to use Thompson's.
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 7:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Deck - Best Method of Treatment
Replies: 15
Views: 959

Re: Your biggest "Missed Money" event that still kills you?

Not buying Intel stock in 1973. I was a hobbyist at the time messing with the first home computers.
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 3:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your biggest "Missed Money" event that still kills you?
Replies: 100
Views: 7342

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Lord of Light I am unsure there is a movie in it (if Japanese Manga couldn't do Lensman , how could it do LOL?). What there is, though, is such a splendid retelling of Indian mythos as if implemented by western science and technology. I despaired of ever getting an acceptable movie from Lord of the...
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

My mother said, once, how it had been to read Lord of the Rings , waiting a whole year for each volume to come out. I was that way with 9 Princes in Amber , so I don't really know how to rate 1 novel against another-- they blend together in my mind. I ran into LOTR as a teenager in a used bookshop ...
by Ged
Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:33 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: Options on Watching NFL Games

check out stream2u.tv on the web :happy What's the catch? I watched a pre-season game, it is also on Fox. Looks like it is streaming about 1 minute behind TV. Are all games on this site? Allan The catch with these sites is they are loaded with malware. As far as I know using them is not illegal, ho...
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Options on Watching NFL Games
Replies: 22
Views: 1576

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

I really like Lord of Light , I think it is his best. There was an attempt to make a movie from Lord of Light, however it didn't make it into production. The remnants did service as the basis for the sham movie in Argo. Nine Princes in Amber served as the basis for a popular game system - to me tha...
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3204
Views: 1087383

Re: Convincing fears on investing for now?

This should make everyone side on the err of caution. I'll stick to my conservative nature and lean on my gut feelings. This kind of logic has led many people to stay in cash since 2008. To their great detriment. Over the last 2700 years ago we've developed rationalism and mathematics for one purpo...
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 8:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Convincing fears on investing for now?
Replies: 34
Views: 3227

Re: Shiller on Lofty Market Elevations

"In other words, the ratio is saying the stock market has been relatively expensive for years. And that raises a question: Are there legitimate factors behind high stock prices that might keep them elevated for decades more?" http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/17/upshot/the-mystery-of-lofty-e...
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller on Lofty Market Elevations
Replies: 55
Views: 4804

Re: Safety of Finance Apps

I wouldn't touch that with a 400 foot insulated poll. Mobile operating systems have pretty weak security. If I was out to steal passwords the first thing I might try is publishing an app like that.
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Safety of Finance Apps
Replies: 13
Views: 753

Re: Home audio system -- bluetooth speakers vs Sonos

Do you have a laptop?

If you do you can use it with a pair of powered speakers. Some of the better ones, say like Focal Solo series are quite good.
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home audio system -- bluetooth speakers vs Sonos
Replies: 15
Views: 1292

Re: Cost of an above ground pool, land prep and maintenance

Don't forget liability insurance. Probable cost $200-$300 per year.
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 2:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost of an above ground pool, land prep and maintenance
Replies: 20
Views: 1116

Re: Poll: Cash Reserve for Investments

I retired almost a year ago (wow time flies). Cash only for short term spending needs (one year or so out, about 3%). Short term bonds to cover the next 5 years of estimated cash needs. Intermediate term bonds for the rest of the fixed portfolio.

If the market crashes rebalance from bonds.
by Ged
Sun Aug 17, 2014 9:50 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Poll: Cash Reserve for Investments
Replies: 11
Views: 760

Re: Mac Airbook

You should not have a problem with web sites unless you run into something really pathological. There will be software limitations so you need to think carefully about what you want to run. I have some particular objections to Macs that rule them out IMHO. First is that I like to tinker with and ada...
by Ged
Sat Aug 16, 2014 1:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Airbook
Replies: 38
Views: 3129

Re: Teaching teen to drive

I found when I started travelling internationally that being able to drive a manual was a very useful skill. In many places in the world automatic transmissions are quite uncommon. I came to prefer cars with manual transmissions. Unfortunately my wife seems to be phobic about manuals so I don't own ...
by Ged
Sat Aug 16, 2014 12:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Teaching teen to drive
Replies: 31
Views: 1359

Re: Windows 7 PC?

Windowss 98 was great, Windows 2000 was terrible. Windows XP was fantastic, Windows Vista was not. Windows 7 is the best one yet, Windows 8 is a disappointment. I guess the rule of thumb here is to skip every other OS when it comes to Microsoft. That's my rule. I agree with skipping OS versions as ...
by Ged
Sat Aug 16, 2014 11:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Windows 7 PC?
Replies: 49
Views: 2361

Re: Do Super wealthy have access to different investing vehi

The main thing that I think extremely wealthy individuals benefit from is getting most of their income through capital gains and other advantaged mechanisms rather than salary.
by Ged
Fri Aug 15, 2014 10:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do Super wealthy have access to different investing vehicles
Replies: 76
Views: 6191

Re: How to value house with unwanted tennis court

Hopefully the seller's agent will have already raised the idea that the tennis court is detrimental to the resale value of the property.
by Ged
Fri Aug 15, 2014 9:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to value house with unwanted tennis court
Replies: 24
Views: 2108

Re: Retirement luxury vehicle

Really my old age desire runs to some kind of two seater. Maybe a vette. With a manual. I've been banned from buying a car with a stick because my wife never mastered driving one, but if we get a 3rd vehicle I think I'd be allowed... If I was going to buy a Cadillac in my dotage it would be a 1959 E...
by Ged
Fri Aug 15, 2014 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement luxury vehicle
Replies: 62
Views: 4433

Re: Retirement luxury vehicle

Mercedes bought Chrysler who bought American Motors.

That sort of stuff sticks. Get a Lexus.
by Ged
Thu Aug 14, 2014 8:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement luxury vehicle
Replies: 62
Views: 4433

Re: How you, I, and everyone got the top 1% all wrong - Atla

Income measurement at that level has to be very difficult. Small sample size, and income varies tremendously year to year because it's a matter of when an investment matures. The volatility of participants is a huge clue that year to year sampling is not the correct methodology. I'm seriously having...
by Ged
Tue Aug 12, 2014 9:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How you, I, and everyone got the top 1% all wrong - Atlantic
Replies: 4
Views: 1661

Re: Mulch, Rubber Mulch, or Rocks in Landscaping?

I have both in my yard. Rocks for stuff around the foundation that I know is going nowhere. Mulch in other places. The town provides free mulch from tree grinding operations - just pay delivery which is about 5/yd. Rocks though have much better permanence. The rocks I installed 20 years ago are stil...
by Ged
Mon Aug 11, 2014 5:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mulch, Rubber Mulch, or Rocks in Landscaping?
Replies: 36
Views: 1634

Re: Wills, Spouses, Prenups, etc.

I'm sorry, that's just how I view marriage. You don't have to agree with it or like it. It's just my opinion, that's all. I won't marry someone if I can't be 100% committed to them. I would remain single. If my kids are grown they should be taking care of themselves. I do not intend to leave behind...
by Ged
Mon Aug 11, 2014 1:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wills, Spouses, Prenups, etc.
Replies: 67
Views: 3167

Re: Most Hated Brokerage Firm? [or one that you love]

I am a Fidelity customer and have been since my first retirement account back in 1978. I tried ML once; that was a bad experience that ended pretty quickly. I've also tried Vanguard. While nothing went wrong I found their web site was really surprisingly feature poor so I eventually discontinued usi...
by Ged
Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Most Hated Brokerage Firm? [or one that you love]
Replies: 74
Views: 7164

Re: Market timing....Mark Hulbert

I don't know... over my investing life I'm more likely to be in stocks than in cash. So the sequence stocks->cash->stocks seems more likely to apply.
by Ged
Sun Aug 10, 2014 10:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market timing....Mark Hulbert
Replies: 7
Views: 1231

Re: Where do you buy clothes?

Kohls and Amazon.

Mostly since I retired it's Amazon.
by Ged
Sun Aug 10, 2014 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where do you buy clothes?
Replies: 105
Views: 8886

Re: Going 60+% international? (US resident)

There are reasons EU equities are not as fully valued as US equities. That includes lingering problems with EU bank capitalization. This is exactly what almost everyone said about US banks in February-March 2009. You have probably heard some distillation of a rumor about a problem, like anyone else...
by Ged
Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Going 60+% international? (US resident)
Replies: 83
Views: 5898

Re: Sales/offers while taking to customer service reps

I am seriously getting tired of solicitation for managed investment services every time I go into a bank or brokerage. My local B&M is now also interleaving ads into the process on the ATM terminal I use. Since I have arthritis in my shoulder extra reach and pushes are actually painful to me.
by Ged
Sat Aug 09, 2014 7:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sales/offers while taking to customer service reps
Replies: 4
Views: 406
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