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Re: Alcatraz Tour - Early AM Same Day Tickets - Anyone Done

I am a docent at Alcatraz. Alcatraz Cruises has a monopoly on ferries landing on the island. Either you go with them or you just go around the island. I will send you a PM to see what you needs are and if I can get you tickets onto the island beyond what is allowed by the boat company. Wow, fantast...
by Raybo
Thu Dec 18, 2014 6:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alcatraz Tour - Early AM Same Day Tickets - Anyone Done It?
Replies: 9
Views: 280

Re: Alcatraz Tour - Early AM Same Day Tickets - Anyone Done

I am a docent at Alcatraz.

Alcatraz Cruises has a monopoly on ferries landing on the island. Either you go with them or you just go around the island.

I will send you a PM to see what you needs are and if I can get you tickets onto the island beyond what is allowed by the boat company.
by Raybo
Thu Dec 18, 2014 6:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alcatraz Tour - Early AM Same Day Tickets - Anyone Done It?
Replies: 9
Views: 280

Re: What's your withdrawal rate for 2014?

This could be very misleading if I am still working and answer 0% It depends on how you look at it. Divide how much you spend by how much you had at the beginning of the year and there is your answer, assuming you spent some money this year. While making more than you're spending looks like a 0% wi...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 17, 2014 4:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's your withdrawal rate for 2014?
Replies: 24
Views: 1954

Re: Which audio books do you listen to?

I started Raybo's list, rolled my eyes at how high-brow non-fiction it is Define "high-brow non-fiction." Surely you aren't talking about my receding hairline: the term “highbrow” was popularized in 1902 by Will Irvin, a reporter for the New York newspaper The Sun, who “adhered to the phr...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 17, 2014 2:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which audio books do you listen to?
Replies: 16
Views: 678

Re: Which audio books do you listen to?

Here is a list of audio books I have enjoyed: http://www.biketouringtips.com/showTipComments.php?tipID=1447 I listen to them when I go on long bike rides (only using one ear bud). It's interesting that your list includes a book about Thomas Paine. Someone whose opinions I respect has recently menti...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 17, 2014 11:28 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which audio books do you listen to?
Replies: 16
Views: 678

Re: Which audio books do you listen to?

Here is a list of audio books I have enjoyed: http://www.biketouringtips.com/showTipC ... tipID=1447

I listen to them when I go on long bike rides (only using one ear bud).
by Raybo
Wed Dec 17, 2014 9:43 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which audio books do you listen to?
Replies: 16
Views: 678

Re: No Foreign Fee Credit Card - Exchange Rate

I use Schwab's visa card. I put money in an account and I got one that is a debit card for that account. It not only gives you the settlement rate for the currency you are changing into but will reimburse the ATM fees, if there are any. Since it is a debit card, I only use it for getting currency ou...
by Raybo
Tue Dec 16, 2014 8:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: No Foreign Fee Credit Card - Exchange Rate
Replies: 15
Views: 1055

What's your withdrawal rate for 2014?

It is late enough in the year for me to tally up my expenses for 2014. Based on the balance of my pile at 1/1/2014, I spent 3.2% this year.

Yours?
by Raybo
Tue Dec 16, 2014 3:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's your withdrawal rate for 2014?
Replies: 24
Views: 1954

Re: How to balance hassle with money/tax issues

I have locked my credit, which makes it very difficult (and a per time charge) to open new accounts or credit cards. So, I don't ever do that regardless of the incentive. I do check CDs at my on-line bank and those I pass as I walk around, if they are posted on a board for the public to see. But, my...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 6:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to balance hassle with money/tax issues
Replies: 7
Views: 566

Re: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival =

I am 62 and my life expectancy is about 20 years. For me, I am trying to find a balance between doing what I want today and making sure I don't blow through my money. But, I am lucky to have cheap tastes and good health, making it easy for me to spend 3.5-4% a year and not feel like I am holding my...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 3:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival = 0.1%
Replies: 166
Views: 8742

Re: Any interest in an on-line financial manager and simulat

Something similar exists here. I find it useful. http://www.flexibleretirementplanner.com/wp/ From what I can tell, this is a simulation tool, only. I rarely use the simulation feature of my program anymore. The real use comes in being able to see my current AA at a glance, my current holdings in e...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 3:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any interest in an on-line financial manager and simulator?
Replies: 5
Views: 357

Any interest in an on-line financial manager and simulator?

I have been writing computer programs and simulations since the 1980s. I used this experience to create my own financial management software that runs on my own personal computer. I use it to manage all things financial, including my AA, rebalancing decisions, effect expenses have on my portfolio's ...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 2:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any interest in an on-line financial manager and simulator?
Replies: 5
Views: 357

Re: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival =

You need to define failure. That was the exact point of my post. We all need to define "failure" in a way that is actionable from our own unique financial and personal perspectives. I am 62 and have already been retired 15 years, so I have a very good idea of how much my needs, wants and ...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 2:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival = 0.1%
Replies: 166
Views: 8742

Re: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival =

I agree with the idea that it is far more important to have enough to enjoy the non-working years then it is to insure having money 30 years from now, as I may not live that long. The question in my mind is what percentage of failure am I willing to accept? I am 62 and my life expectancy is about 20...
by Raybo
Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Odds of portfolio survival = 90%; odds of my survival = 0.1%
Replies: 166
Views: 8742

Re: Geek to Geek, screen scraping dividends

Thanks for the come back Raybo, What site do you use to do your screen scraping. I’d definitely take a look at some other site than Yahoo. PS: Raybo, what are you using to “screen scrape” your data? Do you do it by hand, or did you write a program? Long ago now, I wrote a Java program using its Swi...
by Raybo
Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Geek to Geek, screen scraping dividends
Replies: 10
Views: 1277

Re: Don't Peek

I have automated my financial accounts and have my computer update them every business day. I do this because a) I can and b) I want to keep my accounts current (without having to enter fund NAVs myself). After each day's update, a table is displayed showing the plus/minus for the day. I enjoy seein...
by Raybo
Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Don't Peek [at Your Portfolio Balance]
Replies: 33
Views: 3868

Re: Different Experience With TSA Pre-Check

I just flew home from Newark and, in terminal A at least, there is no separate line for TSA-Pre, though they do have a sign for it pushed to the side. Like the others, I was given a card to hand to the next agent and was waved through the metal detector. For some reason, I was sent to the priority l...
by Raybo
Thu Dec 11, 2014 8:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Different Experience With TSA Pre-Check
Replies: 35
Views: 2801

Re: Geek to Geek, screen scraping dividends

I screen scrape the daily closing values for my investments on business days at 4pm PST. Like you, on dividend/capital gains days, my account totals are off by the amount thrown off by the funds. I haven't tried to include dividends in my scrapings. Instead, I simply go to Vanguard a day or two late...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Geek to Geek, screen scraping dividends
Replies: 10
Views: 1277

Re: Unfrugal Enjoyments

When I tour on my bicycle, I stay in motels instead of camping.
by Raybo
Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you splurge on?
Replies: 231
Views: 19276

Re: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ

Raybo - always enjoy reading your bike tours. I have ridden the Del. bike path from Easton to Lambertville many times before i moved to Chester COunty. The Covered Bridge Ride in Bucks County is also a very pleasant ride. A few years ago much of the bike path along the Delaware river north of New H...
by Raybo
Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

Re: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ

You would have enjoyed seeing the Cornell campus in Ithaca - one of the most beautiful campuses in the US. Gill I had heard this and was hoping to check it out. But, as is so often the case when bike touring, the effort to do some out of the way (and up a hill) sightseeing on a day I've planned to ...
by Raybo
Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

Re: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ

As always your bicycle tours make for enjoyable reading. From the looks of your photos you had pretty good roads to ride on. That is not many cars to deal with. Do you take all of your photos with an iPhone? I ride on thicker road tires (28c -32c) and have no trouble with packed dirt. But, I try to...
by Raybo
Fri Dec 05, 2014 3:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

Any one use Vangurad for SEPP?

My wife will be taking SEPP (Separate but Equal Periodic Payments) deductions from her IRA starting in 2015. While I can do the figuring, I'd rather leave all the calculating to someone else who has done it before, will keep records, and won't mess it up for the 5 years she will be doing this. Has a...
by Raybo
Thu Dec 04, 2014 9:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any one use Vangurad for SEPP?
Replies: 2
Views: 446

Re: To consolidate into new parent company or not?

niceguy7376 wrote:So if you move amount from A to B, it will cost $30 more per year(3 basis points for 10k) and you will have one less account to manage.


3 basis points is .03% or .0003. For $10K, it is $3.
by Raybo
Thu Dec 04, 2014 9:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: To consolidate into new parent company or not?
Replies: 5
Views: 872

Re: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ

It is hard to convey how disappointing it is to choose a place for breakfast from all the cafes in an unknown town only to be completely dissatisfied by the meal served.

Yet another bike touring variable!
by Raybo
Thu Dec 04, 2014 8:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ

From August 17 to August 25, 2014, I rode my bicycle from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ. I rode along the Erie Canal, past the Finger Lakes, and down the Susquehanna and Delaware Rivers. This is a thickly wooded, well-watered area and each day I rode through forests, passed dozens of small creek...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 03, 2014 12:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My bicycle tour from Rochester, NY to Lambertville, NJ
Replies: 13
Views: 1503

Re: European underperformance - here to stay?

The question is: Are European firms going to under-perform? If the European market is down, it will affect stocks worldwide, especially the big multi-nationals in both the US and Europe. Japan's downturn has hurt Japanese firms, but also anyone who does business in that market. But, if you don't lik...
by Raybo
Wed Dec 03, 2014 10:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: European underperformance - here to stay?
Replies: 32
Views: 2351

Re: Conservative portfolio results?

Your fees are too high. Let's say the 4.8% was after fees and you actually earned 6.3%, that makes the 1.5% in fees equal to a bit more than 20% of your entire Year's return. That is more appropriate for a tip at restaurant than fees paid to someone to watch someone else (a mutual fund) invest your ...
by Raybo
Tue Dec 02, 2014 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Conservative portfolio results?
Replies: 41
Views: 3580

Re: Looking for affordable winter activities.

You don't say your location. In San Francisco, cycling over the GG Bridge, hiking, walking around the city.
by Raybo
Mon Dec 01, 2014 6:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for affordable winter activities.
Replies: 19
Views: 1636

Re: Paying my parents a salary not to touch their nest egg

Shouldn't your parents be shifting money into a Roth to avoid RMDs? Convert the 401k to an tIRA and then move the money into a Roth. It might make sense for you to pay the taxes on the conversion, if your parents aren't able to come up with the tax payments on it. Otherwise, pile your money into tru...
by Raybo
Tue Nov 25, 2014 9:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying my parents a salary not to touch their nest egg
Replies: 50
Views: 4433

Re: Favorite nonfiction books

[personal comment deleted by admin alex]
by Raybo
Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite nonfiction books
Replies: 117
Views: 9613

Re: Favorite nonfiction books

When I first retired, I took on reading Will and Ariel Durant's The Story of Civilization. 10 volumes from the dawn of civilization to the end of Napoleon (and the authors!) An amazing education! Ernest Becker's Escape From Evil I maintain a list of books I've listened to while riding my bike virtua...
by Raybo
Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite nonfiction books
Replies: 117
Views: 9613

Re: Vegan Raw Food Diet

So, you can't tell us what issues you are having with your diet but you want us to suggest ideas for your diet. Do I have that right? Can you answer this question: What non-vegan foods do you currently eat? Instead of butter on toast, I use ripe avocado. Instead of yogurt, I use a silken tofu mixtur...
by Raybo
Mon Nov 24, 2014 10:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vegan Raw Food Diet
Replies: 33
Views: 3879

Re: Vegan Raw Food Diet

Can you be more specific about what "blocks" you are having? At my local library there are several books on eating a raw food diet.

One suggestion would be to get a food dehydrator.
by Raybo
Mon Nov 24, 2014 7:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vegan Raw Food Diet
Replies: 33
Views: 3879

Re: Social Security 62 vs 66

It is easy to try and game Social Security by asking "what if" questions of 62 vs 66 vs 70. But, to me, the issue isn't trying to maximize how much I get from Social Security. It is making sure I have enough money if I live a long time. Clearly, the best way to do that is to maximize my So...
by Raybo
Fri Nov 21, 2014 12:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Social Security 62 vs 66
Replies: 58
Views: 5466

Re: getting umbrella insurance

You will have to have a minimum amount of coverage before the companies will write umbrella insurance. We had to up our maximums on both our car and house policies before we could buy the umbrella insurance. The cost of the umbrella insurance was dwarfed by the increases we had to pay in the house a...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 20, 2014 9:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: getting umbrella insurance
Replies: 25
Views: 1525

Re: Keep or sell Zero Coupon Bond?

Thanks for the feedback. I have been watching this bond slowly approach its final value for a couple years and always wondered if it was worth keeping. Since I didn't need the money, I have let it ride. While the rate I am getting for the final year isn't much, as you all suggest, I may as well keep...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 20, 2014 11:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Keep or sell Zero Coupon Bond?
Replies: 7
Views: 881

Keep or sell Zero Coupon Bond?

Long ago, I purchased a Zero Coupon Bond (earning 8% when I bought it). It matures in 11/15, about a year from now. It's current value is $9,973 (it is a $10K bond). The one year return will be $27. That is a return of like .3% for 1 year. This is in my IRA and not at Vanguard. I will likely have to...
by Raybo
Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Keep or sell Zero Coupon Bond?
Replies: 7
Views: 881

New Version of Bike Touring Game released

Here is a link to Armchair Bike Touring, Version 3: http://www.biketouringtips.com/ArmchairBikeTouring/gameV3.html Please excuse me for starting a new thread about this, but I didn't want to confuse getting beta testers with the actual release of the game. In truth, only 1 person volunteered to test...
by Raybo
Fri Nov 14, 2014 6:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Version of Bike Touring Game released
Replies: 0
Views: 377

Re: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?

Raybo wrote:There have been other threads on this very topic and it usually devolves into there is no evidence that organic is any better than cheap, "safe" food. I expect this one will too.


I believe this has now been achieved.
by Raybo
Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?
Replies: 124
Views: 7298

Re: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?

As for studies or other evidence about the health benefits of organic, I doubt any exist. There have been other threads on this very topic and it usually devolves into there is no evidence that organic is any better than cheap, "safe" food. I expect this one will too. Why is it devolved t...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 13, 2014 4:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?
Replies: 124
Views: 7298

Re: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?

I buy anything on the dirty dozen ( http://www.organic.org/articles/showarticle/article-214 ) organic or I don't eat it. This includes when I go out to eat. Most other produce I get organic, as well, but I am not as strict as I am with the "dirty dozen." As for studies or other evidence ab...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 13, 2014 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is buying organic worth it financially in the long term?
Replies: 124
Views: 7298

Re: Question re Bogle interview with Benz

So, the "free float" argument that makes sense for stocks is simply transferred to bonds? With stock indexes, it makes sense that stock held by the company, shares issued but not public, should be pulled out of a stock index trying to represent the performance of the stock market. Many com...
by Raybo
Fri Nov 07, 2014 4:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Question re Bogle interview with Benz
Replies: 8
Views: 919

Re: Need Beta Testers for Bike Touring Game

No one has responded, which is unusual for this group, so I have decided to put the beta testing information here with a link to the new version. Here are the questions I'd like you to consider while running the new version: You can find it at http://www.biketouringtips.com/ArmchairBikeTouring/gameV...
by Raybo
Fri Nov 07, 2014 11:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Beta Testers for Bike Touring Game
Replies: 1
Views: 341

Re: Question re Bogle interview with Benz

I, too, was confused by this. So, I took a look at the return of Intermediate Investment Grade to TBM during the last downturn and saw that TBM did much better (lost less) than Intermediate Intermediate Investment Grade. Bogle suggests that by splitting one's TBM into 50/50 TBM Intermediate Investme...
by Raybo
Fri Nov 07, 2014 10:33 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Question re Bogle interview with Benz
Replies: 8
Views: 919

Need Beta Testers for Bike Touring Game

I have finished writing the third version of my on-line bike touring game and need people to test it out for me. Playing the entire game (3 simulated bike tours) shouldn't take longer than 15 minutes, if that. I also have a few questions I'd like you to answer, as well. To control the number of peop...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 06, 2014 8:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Beta Testers for Bike Touring Game
Replies: 1
Views: 341

Re: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York

I am a vegetarian and finding protein rich food on the way can be challenge and so I may have to ship food to post offices on the way. I have two children under 3 and so this has to wait for a few years. It does not hurt to dream. :) I, too, am a vegetarian. I wrote an article titled "Vegetari...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 06, 2014 10:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York
Replies: 13
Views: 1198

Re: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York

I bought a bike that comes apart and fits into a suitcase. So, I fly with my bike as checked luggage. This used to be free (still is with Southwest) but now generates a baggage charge, though much less than if one checks a "normal sized" bike. My bike uses S&S couplers: http://www.san...
by Raybo
Thu Nov 06, 2014 10:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York
Replies: 13
Views: 1198

Re: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York

Cheap too! Why haven't more BH's discovered this?........ I agree that it is a lovely way to see part of the country. My experience has not been that it is particularly cheap. I'd be glad to hear some ideas on how to lower costs or places that are less costly. Last October we did two weeks on the C...
by Raybo
Wed Nov 05, 2014 11:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York
Replies: 13
Views: 1198

Re: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York

I appreciate if you also provide any details related to preparation, gear, transportation of bike would be awesome. I plan to ride the great divide bike trail in a few years and it would be a good reference. I created a detailed website all about bike touring ( http://www.biketouringtips.com ). You...
by Raybo
Wed Nov 05, 2014 10:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selected photos of recent bicycle ride across New York
Replies: 13
Views: 1198
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