Search found 1755 matches

by guitarguy
Tue Oct 11, 2011 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco gift cards for restaurants? FREE Lunch?
Replies: 28
Views: 3998

It's legit. No catch. I used Starbucks gift cards when I went daily. I have since stopped that habit. The catch is they bank on people losing the cards or simply not using it. I have a $10 red lobster gift card that has been sitting in my cabinet for over 4 years. For gosh sakes go get some unlimit...
by guitarguy
Tue Oct 11, 2011 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for buying a new Laptop
Replies: 91
Views: 10983

Splurge and get the 15" macbook pro +1 for this. Having recently been in a situation where I needed a new laptop, I went with a MacBook Pro and let me stress, I couldn't be happier. Sleek and stylish, lightweight, uni-body makes it extremely durable, boots up in less than 30 seconds, as fast as I'l...
by guitarguy
Fri Oct 07, 2011 6:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For the 20 somethings...
Replies: 25
Views: 3215

Re: better attitude

My thought/justification/whatever is: if I don't try this deal and stick with it for the long haul, I'm screwed anyway because I won't have enough to retire on at ye' old 65 (hopefully a couple years early but who knows). SS will be needs-based by then at best...so I'm not counting on seeing a dime...
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For the 20 somethings...
Replies: 25
Views: 3215

Re: For the 20 somethings...

savermike wrote:
Oh, and keep playing music.
I think I want my Stratocaster in my casket with me. I'd say the Les Paul instead but it's more prone to acting up in humidity. I think I could bury my Strat for 8 years, dig it up, throw it against the wall, then pick it up and it'd still be in tune. 8-)
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For the 20 somethings...
Replies: 25
Views: 3215

Then I realize the annualized yearly inflation rate in the over the past 100 years was 3.2%. Keeping that same inflation rate for the next 40 years (when I turn 65) means that 1-2 million dollar nest egg I was shooting for really becomes about 4-8 million. Basically looking at all this stuff can be...
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 1:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For the 20 somethings...
Replies: 25
Views: 3215

For the 20 somethings...

Well fellow accumulators, as many out there like myself are, I'm in this whole 'investment-a-palooza' thing for the long haul. I contribute to my 401k to max employer match, and max a Roth IRA. I rarely (almost never) check my balances. Dips and such in the market like we've seen in recent weeks hon...
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 12:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travertine vs. Marble vs. Granite countertops/flooring
Replies: 15
Views: 10146

Re: Travertine vs. Marble vs. Granite countertops/flooring

I'm putting in new countertops and flooring in our bathrooms and kitchen. I prefer to use a natural stone. What's better, travertine, marble or granite? Have you considered porcelain for your flooring? For durability vs. cost effectiveness vs. looks...it can rarely be beat. I know you said you pref...
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lose the escrow!?
Replies: 36
Views: 4221

Re: Lose the escrow!?

To get back on topic, when I refinanced my mortgage out of a "megabank" loan into a "little independent bank" loan, getting to ditch the tax and insurance escrow was a huge relief. What a screwed up, pain in the you-know-what it had been, they never got things right. Do I just walk into our communi...
by guitarguy
Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lose the escrow!?
Replies: 36
Views: 4221

Re: Lose the escrow!?

It seems like once a year or even more than that, they randomly increase my automatic payment and take an extra $30 or whatever amount and start putting it into escrow. They say it's a 'buffer' percentage to guard against tax bills being slightly more than expected. It's BS! I've asked them multipl...
by guitarguy
Tue Oct 04, 2011 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lose the escrow!?
Replies: 36
Views: 4221

Well, it's all moot anyways. Looks like with an FHA loan I can't opt out of escrow. I guess I'll have to keep making these annoying phone calls to opt out of this reserve garbage. Ah well.
by guitarguy
Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lose the escrow!?
Replies: 36
Views: 4221

Re: Lose the escrow!?

It seems like once a year or even more than that, they randomly increase my automatic payment and take an extra $30 or whatever amount and start putting it into escrow. They say it's a 'buffer' percentage to guard against tax bills being slightly more than expected. It's BS! I've asked them multipl...
by guitarguy
Tue Oct 04, 2011 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lose the escrow!?
Replies: 36
Views: 4221

Lose the escrow!?

I'm so fed up with BOA, I'm investigating dumping their escrow and handling it all myself. It seems like once a year or even more than that, they randomly increase my automatic payment and take an extra $30 or whatever amount and start putting it into escrow. They say it's a 'buffer' percentage to g...
by guitarguy
Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

I am not saying to the OP not to do it, but just have realistic expectations about the benefits. I am now working at a job with a bunch of people who have at best two-year degree. I have been laid off multiple times in the past 10 years. Having the MSEE hasn't helped me as far as I can tell. If I w...
by guitarguy
Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

I would agree, then, that in your situation the degree could be helpful. I was mistakenly thinking that there were already more experienced engineers in your group, with more skill that you would naturally learn by working with them. I did exactly what you are suggesting, but I must admit I learned...
by guitarguy
Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

If you primarily study what you are currently doing on the job, assuming that you are already qualified, then you might not expect much opportunity for growth in your current position. I think that taking these courses that apply to what I'm already "doing" at work would benefit me a lot. There are...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 23, 2011 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I need help from audio-recording gurus
Replies: 10
Views: 1293

I used to do this same thing with a guitar and vocal channel for myself. Get a 2-ch firewire interface recorder, and get yourself some audio editing/recording software. I use Sonar. Your mic goes in 1 channel and the keys in the other. From there you record your keys on 1 track in the software and y...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

The longest day consisted of going to work, going to the hospital to help the new mother and baby (she had an emergency C-section), go home to feed the cats, go to school to take a mid-term, and then back to the hospital to do homework, help with the baby, and pass out in a chair in the corner. Wow...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

I did a masters in CS while working full-time. My primary advice is take it slow. Start with 1 class/term. If that seems easy enough, do 2. I could easily handle 1 (4 hour course, for this program). 2 courses (8 hours) were ok some semesters, and a bit much in other semesters. Unless there is a rus...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 23, 2011 7:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

My city library is right at the end of my street too...so I'll have an accessible place to study. I was a library rat in college because I can't really work with lots of background stuff going on. Don't count on it. You'll need to be studying at home while the baby naps. There is no way your wife i...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 22, 2011 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

My city library is right at the end of my street too...so I'll have an accessible place to study. I was a library rat in college because I can't really work with lots of background stuff going on. Don't count on it. You'll need to be studying at home while the baby naps. There is no way your wife i...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 22, 2011 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

Some comments: ME grad classes have similar levels of workload to undergrad ME classes, but you will be taking less of them at any given time. Additionally, most of your work will be built on the undergrad material so there should be very little material that will be completely brand new, which mak...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 22, 2011 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

Thanks for the replies so far. After doing an undergrad thesis...the thought of doing another one is :? I'd like to go the all coursework myself, but it will be on my list of questions for a meeting with an advisor. I definitely don't think it would be useless in this field though, as the classes al...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering grad school
Replies: 44
Views: 4924

Considering grad school

Hi all. I'm considering getting a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering. I'm just beginning to research and seriously consider doing more of that colledge edumakation stuff... :lol: I'm trying to get a grasp of the pros/cons of pursuing an advanced degree and would really like opinions of those who have do...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

Another general question for you personal trainers: This workout we did yesterday has my glutes and quads killing me (damn lunges)...in a good way of course. We're taking an off day with just a 1 hr power walk today, but should we go ahead and do the workout again tomorrow if we're still sore? It's ...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

Will you be able to keep up the 3-4 times a week workouts and the walks? For this 9 week challenge? Yup. 8-) If you are trying to just lose the weight then that will work, but if you desire to make a lifestyle change then that's a lot of working out. You can only weight train one muscle group for o...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

If you stepped on a scale four times in a row and got four different answers, would you have confidence in the scale? If I drank a pint of water between each step...yeah! If you stepped on a scale four times in a row and got the same answer every time, would you have confidence in the scale? If I d...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

livesoft wrote:I think it has a memory feature, so if you get on, get off, immediately get back on it will read the same even if you drank a pint of water.
In case you forget the number and hop off before writing it down? :lol:

Seriously though, what is the benefit of this feature?
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

The first thing you should work on is your diet, write everything down, especially what you drink. Next, the power walking is great just add a few interval sprints in them. Walk fast for two minutes then run as fast as you feel comfortable with for one minute (or 30 seconds first - then work up to ...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

After Insanity I had lost a lot of weight, but it wasn't until I reintroduced resistance training that I really noticed my body start to shape up for the better. My waist is getting smaller while I'm getting stronger and leaner and speeding up my metabolism with additional muscle. That's a beautifu...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

No weight training? Well...the DVDs aren't outright weight training but they have a lot of bodyweight exercises (pushups, squats, lunges, etc) that will definitely help tone muscle. They're put together into circuits and stuff to make a cardio routine so it's more of a total body workout. I really ...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

Remember also that your weight will vary plus or minus two pounds based on how much water you have stored, so the only really important thing is the trend of your weight measurement over time. Based on that consideration, you don't really need more than normal scale accuracy. Definitely. I know all...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 7:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts
Replies: 23
Views: 2018

Biggest Loser Challenge / Workouts

My wife's work is sponsoring a Biggest Loser Challenge with a prize of $2k. Pretty cool. It's a 9 week program with a $5 fee to join. She's going for it and I'm planning on going along for the ride for myself and to support/challenge her. We're both in our mid 20s and healthy according to yearly phy...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

Steelersfan wrote:How accurate do you need?
We don't need anything more than a good reliable bodyweight measurement. Not like we're looking for rounding to the nearest 1000th of a lb or something.

Thanks for the recommendations everyone I will do some research today.
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

sandstorm wrote:My only problem with this scale is that the number displayed keeps going up.
:lol:
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 15, 2011 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Bodyweight Scale
Replies: 27
Views: 2690

Home Bodyweight Scale

My wife and I want to get rid of our old jumpy needle bathroom scale and get a nice digital one. Any recommendations? I know they make them where they measure body fat % and a bunch of other stuff. All that would be cool but isn't a necessity. I just want something solid and accurate and reliable (a...
by guitarguy
Tue Sep 13, 2011 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 25% interest rate at clothing chain
Replies: 13
Views: 2223

Re: 25% interest rate at clothing chain

Our favorite clothing store just informed us the interest rate on their credit card is not "24.9." We rarely, if ever, carry a balance but this seems ridiculous. The pros of keeping it are discounts at sales etc. But the downer is the interest rate. We are considering some action but not sure what ...
by guitarguy
Tue Sep 13, 2011 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yet another TV question - LCD vs LED HDTV ...
Replies: 17
Views: 3017

I wouldn't do either. I like Plasma. No lag, good blacks, and they have fallen out of favor, so cheaper. The 'burn in' problem is over done. I agree the burn in problem is overblown, but I can't stand the glass. If you have windows anywhere near the TV, the LCD is the way to go...much less glare th...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 09, 2011 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using Mortgage trick to pay off Student Loans faster!?
Replies: 19
Views: 4107

The difference here would be a big mac at McDonalds...not worth your time. Make your payment when it's most convenient for you, and pay extra (more than your minimum payment) when you can if you want to pay it off faster. Just don't let any interest capitalize . That's what will hurt you (obviously).
by guitarguy
Wed Sep 07, 2011 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: funny story...need ideas
Replies: 15
Views: 1705

Don't pay it. It's a cute little inside joke that you'll ruin by paying. And if I did something like that and got $1.36 in the mail, I'd be like "Umm.. you know I was joking, right? I'm not that cheap to worry about a dollar." I might add a little note saying you know you owe him money, but he'll h...
by guitarguy
Wed Sep 07, 2011 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: funny story...need ideas
Replies: 15
Views: 1705

funny story...need ideas

Hey all, I have a client who books our band at his club. The funny part is that when I sent him our press package to introduce the band, he ended up having to pay $1.36 to cover postage because I guess I didn't put enough stamps on it. I haven't ran into this before...but whatever. He and I have bee...
by guitarguy
Wed Sep 07, 2011 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Must have FREE iPhone apps
Replies: 11
Views: 1763

wordswithfriends free version is pretty cool for a game app. You can play scrabble with friends and such. I don't know the actual names of all of them but I have a tip calculator, guitar tuner, units converter, Chase bank app (great for remote deposit of checks), yellow pages, a level, card games, I...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 02, 2011 7:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Kitchen remodeling cold feet
Replies: 33
Views: 5277

I once had a contractor tell me to never spend more than 10% of the value of your house on a kitchen remodeling job. I agree with this. About 10-15% IMO. I just remodeled my kitchen last year. My mortgage is only 2 years old and I still owe $99k. Market value is probably only $80k. I spent almost e...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you take a fish oil/omega 3 supplement?
Replies: 191
Views: 20632

Same size jeans I wore 30 years ago. Tall, cool, tan and got a little money. Chicks dig me. :lol: Now, if only you were a lead guitar player in a band jamming in a club packed to the gills (hey...this is a fish thread) with hot chicks! 8-) Of course...30 years ago I was -4. :lol: Just bustin' your ...
by guitarguy
Fri Sep 02, 2011 6:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you take a fish oil/omega 3 supplement?
Replies: 191
Views: 20632

gkaplan wrote:
nonnie wrote:Sorry-- I just need to know-- is the container full or empty when you put it in and then what? Are you saying you eat 2 lbs of yogurt per day?
The container is full; I eat two pounds of yogurt per day.
That is some serious yogurt! :shock:
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 01, 2011 7:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mpg: 65 vs 75 mph
Replies: 39
Views: 5363

Keeping a constant speed is a pretty good strategy from a behavioral standpoint, but letting your speed vary a little bit can do better. Correct. A car driven by cruise control will hit the gas after noticing it's going up a hill. A driver can incrementally speed up beforehand (or simply let the ca...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mpg: 65 vs 75 mph
Replies: 39
Views: 5363

Did you use cruise control @ 75-80? Turning On cruise control (like you did @ 65) would probably add 10% efficiency as well. Depending on your driving style, your mileage may go down with cruise control on. Mike Highly unlikely. A computerized and properly tuned controller can usually keep speed wi...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 01, 2011 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Renting a car for the first time!
Replies: 45
Views: 5816

There is a bit of a new "scam" with the rental agencies. They provide one of those "free" smart toll thingies. The tolls do not appear on your statement. Instead they are charged directly to your credit card. PLUS THEY CHARGE A SERVICE FEE. So pay your tolls with cash. Also, bring your own gps if y...
by guitarguy
Thu Sep 01, 2011 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mpg: 65 vs 75 mph
Replies: 39
Views: 5363

Mpg is absolutely not irrelevant to the cost, in fact mpg and the price of gas are the only things relevant and needed to calculate how much it costs to drive X miles. Gal/mile is not a practical unit in the real world. Just divide and be done with it. Posting a vehicle's fuel efficiency in "gallon...
by guitarguy
Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mpg: 65 vs 75 mph
Replies: 39
Views: 5363

Who cares about the mileage? It should really be about gallons per mile anyway. What are you driving, a top fuel dragster? :lol: When he says "mileage" the OP is referring to miles per gallon (mpg). Exactly, but the cost to drive 250 miles is ($ per gallon) x (gallons per mile) x (miles driven) Lik...
by guitarguy
Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mpg: 65 vs 75 mph
Replies: 39
Views: 5363

abuss368 wrote:As someone famous once said "Drive 55 and stay alive".
Seeing as how I play in a band...

"I can't drive...55"

:twisted: