Search found 110 matches

by scienceguy
Wed Mar 18, 2020 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much cash to have during coronavirus panic?
Replies: 144
Views: 10781

Smart to keep actual cash on hand?

[merged into existing thread - moderator prudent] I am thinking about keeping some cash on hand for groceries, etc in case everything goes completely wrong and our economy and society starts to break down. Does this make sense, or is it a mistake for some reason (ie. expected major inflation during...
by scienceguy
Sun Mar 01, 2020 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get free $20K credit for about one year?
Replies: 22
Views: 2130

Re: How to get free $20K credit for about one year?

Assume we are smart well practiced Bogelheads who understand all the fundamentals and have never, for example, maintained any debt other than our mortgage. But, in this case we want to maintain and pay down $20K consumer debt over the course of a year as long as it is very cheap (or free) debt. We w...
by scienceguy
Sun Mar 01, 2020 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get free $20K credit for about one year?
Replies: 22
Views: 2130

How to get free $20K credit for about one year?

We just overspent by about $20K on a big party. Super fun. Well worth it. We can easily pay for it from investment money, but would prefer not to, especially since the market is down and don't want to sell anything. We would rather have about $20K of very cheap/free debt for a year or so so we can w...
by scienceguy
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pine Tree Incident
Replies: 31
Views: 3860

Re: Pine Tree Incident

We literally had the exact same thing happen to us at our home in the DC area 10 years ago (except for the no other quotes demand). The insurance company (Chubb) arranged for a disaster company to immediately come in, remove the tree, get rid of water, etc. They did it fast and well. We were so reli...
by scienceguy
Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MD-Phd (Harvard) vs MSTP (School X)
Replies: 44
Views: 5276

Re: MD-Phd (Harvard) vs MSTP (School X)

Wow an amazing group of really good replies. I am an MD/PhD (Hopkins) and actually the MD/PhD program director at a major academic medical center (not any of the ones you mention). I had the exact same decision to make almost 30 years ago - full MSTP funding at numerous great places (Hopkins etc) or...
by scienceguy
Tue Sep 12, 2017 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it really Worth it to brown bag your lunch at work?
Replies: 325
Views: 27601

Re: Is it really Worth it to brown bag your lunch at work?

Its not really about the money for me. I much prefer to bring my lunch because it allows me to work much more efficiently and in a more relaxed and natural fashion. If I have no food, I start to get hungry at 11 and spend the next 45 minutes deciding where to go to lunch, and the next hour doing it....
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:28 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?
Replies: 255
Views: 26488

Re: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?

OP again - that said, I continue to feel that the level of discourse has gone down and the amount of trolling has gone up.
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:26 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?
Replies: 255
Views: 26488

Re: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?

OP here. Thanks for the responses. A few clarifications/thoughts: 1) The original title was "Is Bogelheads getting less interesting," but several commented on misspelling of Bogleheads and questioned whether it should be "Is" or "Are." So, someone changed the title to its current "Are the Bogleheads...
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:32 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?
Replies: 255
Views: 26488

Re: Is Bogelheads getting less interesting?

Actually let me modify that slightly - there still are some intellectual giants who are very helpful (just read a post from bsteiner and livesoft, as examples). But somehow it just doesn't feel the same. The useful comments are now more along the lines of practical advice and product/travel recommen...
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: [Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?
Replies: 255
Views: 26488

[Are the Bogleheads] getting less interesting?

I joined this forum about three years ago when my wife got a significant inheritance and we were trying to figure out what to do with it. I found it to be an invaluable resource, and I probably check the site a few times a week to check the posts, occasionally comment and/or start a new thread. I ha...
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we let MIL pay off our mortgage?
Replies: 69
Views: 10858

Re: Should we let MIL pay off our mortgage?

9. REIT not a good option. My MIL doesn't work, and majority of assets in in taxable account. Also, REIT returns would pale in comparison to 10% annual appreciation in home values in my area for last 25 years. This doesn't make any sense on various levels - maybe doesn't understand what an REIT is....
by scienceguy
Thu Aug 03, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MIL wants to move in with us
Replies: 45
Views: 4837

Re: MIL wants to move in with us

This strikes me as a marriage problem/challenge more than a MIL problem/challenge. The fact that your wife encouraged this hugely significant plan with your MIL without your pre-approval is not acceptable and has obviously put you in an unreasonably difficult position. Very very importantly, it is y...
by scienceguy
Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice
Replies: 50
Views: 21998

Re: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice

Actually my dad gets carsick in my sisters Acura SUV. Some of these cars just sway more than others. I don't blame the victim in this case, just the unfortunate scenario. Let me suggest, though, that the process of buying a new car is emotional and stressful in nature, and it is often the case that ...
by scienceguy
Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Philosophy major and future law student
Replies: 93
Views: 8018

Re: Philosophy major and future law student

I would strongly encourage people to focus on deciding what to do with their own personal actual life rather than the lives of other people, including their children.
by scienceguy
Fri Jun 09, 2017 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to deal with a personal finance cynic
Replies: 109
Views: 10779

Re: How to deal with a personal finance cynic

Go to a ball game with your friend. Don't worry about his relationship to money unless he specifically asks you for advice or help.
by scienceguy
Wed May 31, 2017 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nephews play football - don't want to encourage this
Replies: 45
Views: 5080

Re: Nephews play football - don't want to encourage this

I don't see how buying raffle tickets in any way encourages them to play football. I think what you might mean to say is that by buying a raffle ticket, you are tacitly suggesting that you support/approve of them playing football. Since you do not approve of them playing football, I suggest that ins...
by scienceguy
Sat May 20, 2017 7:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Learning how to spend
Replies: 27
Views: 3622

Re: Learning how to spend

Interesting question that I think helps one mature and know oneself. I view it as a lifelong project - figuring out what use of financial resources ACTUALLY makes me and spouse/kids happy. Most spending doesn't really for us - cars, fancy things to buy, etc, though I do like looking reasonably OK so...
by scienceguy
Sat May 20, 2017 6:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 529 Planning as related to medical school
Replies: 12
Views: 3580

Re: 529 Planning as related to medical school

I guess what I am saying is that when it comes to passion for discovery, it is a bit of a mistake to think of it in a careerist way. Real discovery is so hard that it is all about passion. Cost-benefit analysis always important, but more so here than in most decisions (or at least the same) - it is ...
by scienceguy
Sat May 20, 2017 6:12 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 529 Planning as related to medical school
Replies: 12
Views: 3580

Re: 529 Planning as related to medical school

The main reason to do an MD/PhD (like for most things) is that you WANT to. If you want to spend maybe four years intensively doing research while still young, hopefully no mortgage, etc. If there is a potential advisor who totally jazzes you. If you want to hang out with a famous scientist for four...
by scienceguy
Sat May 20, 2017 5:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suggested Reading or Advice for Father-to-be
Replies: 28
Views: 3234

Re: Suggested Reading or Advice for Father-to-be

I have three roughly middle school aged kids. I look back on that time with teeny little kids as a total blur, even though I know intellectually that I held tiny babies and toddlers all the time, changed innumerable diapers, fed many many little kids dinner, etc I don't really remember it. I think t...
by scienceguy
Fri May 12, 2017 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price for brakes and rotors?
Replies: 73
Views: 13691

Re: Price for brakes and rotors?

OP here. So the dealer called me back after looking at the brakes (never replaced before - car has 65K miles!!!) and said needed four new brake pads and could resurface the rotors (not replace). $800. I yelled over to my wife - should we just do it or should I grab the car and shop around to try to ...
by scienceguy
Fri May 12, 2017 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price for brakes and rotors?
Replies: 73
Views: 13691

Price for brakes and rotors?

Just took my Honda CRV to dealer because need new brakes. They seem to be quoting me like $950 for front brakes and rotors (if rotors needed - not sure yet) and something like $350 for rear brakes. This seems very expensive to me, but haven't gotten brakes done in a long time so don't remember. I li...
by scienceguy
Sun Apr 16, 2017 12:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone else decided not to finish med school?
Replies: 76
Views: 27453

Re: Anyone else decided not to finish med school?

I went to an MD/PhD program and quickly realized that I loved the PhD part, but not the MD part. I finished both (the MD just barely), did not do a residency, and went immediately into full time science, which is great. Unique opportunity, since MD/PhD programs are generally tuition free. But, medic...
by scienceguy
Sat Apr 01, 2017 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spring Break Trip to Disney World
Replies: 68
Views: 6970

Re: Spring Break Trip to Disney World

BTW not leaving on the trip until this upcoming Friday, so please keep the advice coming!
by scienceguy
Sat Apr 01, 2017 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spring Break Trip to Disney World
Replies: 68
Views: 6970

Re: Spring Break Trip to Disney World

OMG thank you everyone for the advice. This is invaluable and I am sure will make the trip much more successful! I'll be sure to add to this thread after we return to let you guys know how it went and what worked and what didn't.
by scienceguy
Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spring Break Trip to Disney World
Replies: 68
Views: 6970

Re: Spring Break Trip to Disney World

Thanks so much for all the great info. I am feeling more confident already! What about the Universal Express Pass. We are definitely going to Universal for probably 2 days, and could conceivably afford the express pass (it is currently available on the days we plan to go, but adds like $90/day per t...
by scienceguy
Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spring Break Trip to Disney World
Replies: 68
Views: 6970

Re: Spring Break Trip to Disney World

Any other ideas? Need a strategy.
by scienceguy
Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spring Break Trip to Disney World
Replies: 68
Views: 6970

Spring Break Trip to Disney World

Family road trip to Disney next Friday for about a week. Me, wife, three kids elem/middle school aged. Been there once 8 years ago with very little kids - different experience. Staying in nearby but not Disney hotel. Expect to spend about four days in the parks, other days visiting friends. Anything...
by scienceguy
Sun Mar 05, 2017 5:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?
Replies: 96
Views: 7949

Re: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?

Just saw the update re: parents chipping in the keep their kids close.

YES YES YES (as long as it is what you WANT to do). Great blessing to live near parents with whom you are close.

Live your LIFE. Have a great one!
by scienceguy
Sun Mar 05, 2017 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?
Replies: 96
Views: 7949

Re: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?

Stash the cash for a year for a cooling down period, then do whatever you want. Totally reasonably to spend it on a house so you can live where/how you want. But make sure by waiting a bit. We had an investment windfall about a decade ago and did exactly the same thing, except included $350K mortgag...
by scienceguy
Thu Feb 16, 2017 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CRISPR Cas9 [Molecular biology - Targeted genome editing]
Replies: 14
Views: 2160

Re: CRISPR Cas9

I am a super expert on this general field and can say that there are certain aspects of it that are really interesting and promising, especially when it comes to designing experimental systems for identifying new anticancer drugs, etc. However, there are certain aspects of it that are very dramatica...
by scienceguy
Mon Jan 30, 2017 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Single Malt Scotch-time for another thread?
Replies: 69
Views: 9223

Re: Single Malt Scotch-time for another thread?

My absolute favorites are Glenfiddich 14 and 15. Sweet, smooth, delicious.
by scienceguy
Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is joining a country club a character flaw?
Replies: 101
Views: 12927

Re: Is joining a country club a character flaw?

knpstr wrote:lonely?
Nope. Hugely busy with big boisterous young family and job.
In fact, probably too busy to use a country club very much....
I just like it when someone brings me a good vodka martini in comfortable leather chairs.
by scienceguy
Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is joining a country club a character flaw?
Replies: 101
Views: 12927

Is joining a country club a character flaw?

I am intrigued by the idea of joining our fancy local country club even though I don't play golf or tennis. I like the idea of having someplace really close that I can go and get dinner, go to the pool, hang out in sort of luxury, and bump into friends and socialize without having to pre-plan. I thi...
by scienceguy
Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mom wants an air fryer?
Replies: 29
Views: 4788

Re: Mom wants an air fryer?

Returned one after two uses. I believe it was a Phillips model. It was basically an electric coil (like from a stove) that had air passed over it to form a convection oven. On homemade fries, it burned the points. As others have said, they weren't moist, just dried out. Unless you want to want to m...
by scienceguy
Mon Jan 30, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement
Replies: 39
Views: 3935

Re: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement

I am 47 years old, and started using a trainer 3 years ago. Before that never worked out. Now I do about 2.5 hr of cardio and 60-90 min of trainer every week. It has made an absolutely HUGE (TREMENDOUS?) difference in my life. There is absolutely no way I could have done this without a trainer. I ne...
by scienceguy
Tue Nov 22, 2016 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TLH CA Bond Funds?
Replies: 38
Views: 8140

Re: TLH CA Bond Funds?

Yeah I can't get anyone to answer my question last night about whether it is smart to TLH my Vanguard Int Term Tax exempt fund to harvest $2K of losses. I think maybe because its just not that interesting a question. But, I'll tell you what my thoughts are re: my situation and maybe applicable to yo...
by scienceguy
Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I harvest a loss in a bond fund?
Replies: 4
Views: 909

Re: Should I harvest a loss in a bond fund?

One more piece of info - the loss will be taken against other gains, not against income (have a bunch of gains this year). I think that makes the putative TLH slightly less tax efficient...?
by scienceguy
Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I harvest a loss in a bond fund?
Replies: 4
Views: 909

Should I harvest a loss in a bond fund?

A few months ago put $50K in Vanguard Intermediate Term Tax Exempt. Currently down to $48K. I am in for the long, long term. Don't need this money. Income ~$270K, whatever tax bracket that is. Should I try to harvest the loss? Seems like free money, but not sure what to do with the cash for the 30 d...
by scienceguy
Wed Sep 28, 2016 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Private high school in the good school district worth investing?
Replies: 78
Views: 10271

Re: Is Private high school in the good school district worth investing?

We live in amazing public school district and have three kids in public schools. Also many famous/fantastic $40K private schools here as well. I believe that for a smart/engaged kid, the actual education is probably comparable. But, there is a clear advantage to the private schools for college admis...
by scienceguy
Tue Sep 20, 2016 6:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Bogleheads' "100 Things Worth Every Penny" List
Replies: 275
Views: 51813

Re: The Bogleheads' "100 Things Worth Every Penny" List

Personal training (I pay $1/minute)
Twice a month housecleaner (I have three kids)
by scienceguy
Sun Sep 18, 2016 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Calling DC area Bogleheads for help with relocation
Replies: 34
Views: 3431

Re: Calling DC area Bogleheads for help with relocation

There are only a few easy ways to get to the Georgetown campus: 1) Drive (parking not simple though, and expensive). 2) Take the Georgetown shuttle (GUTS) bus, which has been mentioned previously. This runs from many locations, including every 10 min from the Dupont Circle Metro. Very reliable and f...
by scienceguy
Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Christmas gift expectations
Replies: 61
Views: 7036

Re: Christmas gift expectations

A lot of the comments so far - ask for money, gift cards, etc - are definitely funny and I laughed when I read them. But, I would caution that this is an opportunity to be a grown up and not get passive aggressive. It is not easy, and some people are better at this then others, but definitely have a...
by scienceguy
Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Christmas gift expectations
Replies: 61
Views: 7036

Re: Christmas gift expectations

Yeah, your sister is in the wrong here (but probably with a big heart!), and you would be doing everyone else a big favor if you gently corrected the situation. Sometimes these kinds of things just happen among people of goodwill. But needs to be fixed. It may be that she thinks that instead of buyi...
by scienceguy
Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Convincing spouse to sell losing investment
Replies: 58
Views: 6516

Re: Convincing spouse to sell losing investment

Or just buy a house (also good!). That way you can bypass all the potentially dangerous marriage-related issues and have a great place to live while interest rates are historically low. Maybe if your partner was writing into this forum he/she would be complaining about how his/her partner was so unw...
by scienceguy
Tue Sep 06, 2016 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Convincing spouse to sell losing investment
Replies: 58
Views: 6516

Re: Convincing spouse to sell losing investment

Pretty interesting issue here, and one that I have faced but with much goodwill and laughter. Here are some random thoughts: 1) I totally understand the absurdity and unfairness of this situation to the wage earner, who works his butt off and scrimps and saves little dollars, while the macroeconomic...
by scienceguy
Tue Sep 06, 2016 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Heart rate monitor options
Replies: 15
Views: 1989

Re: Heart rate monitor options

I have polar chest strap heart rate monitor that came with a polar watch/HR monitor I bought a few years ago. I quickly realized that the watch thing was not useful for me, but the strap monitor was great since it communicates with the elliptical and bike I use at the gym to display my heart rate an...
by scienceguy
Tue Jul 19, 2016 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Traveling to DC
Replies: 32
Views: 2646

Re: Traveling to DC

Some ideas: Restraurants: Mon Ami Gabi in Bethesda - sort of moderately nice Bethesda pseudo-french popular with families. Make a great martini, and generally good service. Ignore recent bad review from Tom Sietsma. Le Diplomate - hot DC restaurant Medium Rare restaurant in Cleveland Park - if you l...