Sunday, August 24, 2008

Total Money Makeover Live Event: Charleston

We've just pulled in from our trip down to Charleston, South Carolina. We attended the TMM Live Event, and Dave was just awesome in person. I would say that about 80 – 95% of what was said was right from the FPU course, but to be in an auditorium with 5,000 plus people was just fantastic. There is one slide in which he demonstrates compound interest using an example of Ben and Arthur. The point of the slide is that you need to start early. Ben, you invests $2,000 each year from age 19 – 26 and it grows to $2, 288, 996 by age 65. Ben, who starts at age 27, invests $2,000 from 27 until he is 65 and his investment never grows past $1,532,166. Dave asks those who are under 20 to raise their hands. He told them that if they understand and apply just this one principal, he just made them a millionaire, maybe twice over. He asked those who were 40 and over to raise their hands. He then addressed the 20 year olds and said, I think these people want to tell you something, something along the lines of "Do It!" And everyone just shouted "Do it" with one voice and it just shook the place.

Now, that come right from the FPU videos, but, to be in the arena and being able to shout it out was great.

I had forgotten how much I like Charleston: from the great seafood at Hymans till that perpetual urine smell near Market Street. But we had fun walking around till 11:00. Unfortunately, the trip is over, but, I am so fired up to start FPU again on September 11th.

Friday, August 22, 2008

In Charleston

This one is for Rick. I am staying at the Garden Inn Hotel in Charleston. I spy the business office, and all I can think about is firing off a quick post.

We are here for the Dave Ramsey Live event. We drove down with our buds, Ron and Sheila. You would be surprised how quickly eight hours flies by when you don't have the kiddos in tow. Ok, so, a little parental freedom for the weekend. You understand, right?

We ate at Hyman's Seafood. Cindy and I split a flounder. Typically, you get a little fillet, but this was the whole thing (minus the head and the gooey parts). It was awesome, but, we could not finish the monster. I also had a grit cake: similar to a crab cake, but you replace the crab with grits.

We walked around the market area a bit and the girls shopped a bit. I was supposed to come down to get some change for the soda machine, but I had to fire off a post.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Batching It Tonight

This is a big weekend. And, I think I deserve it. Cindy and I are going to Charleston SC this weekend with our good buds Ron and Sheila to the Dave Ramsey Live Event. The girls are spending the weekend with their cousins (something, I admit, we need to do more of) up in Olney Maryland (birthplace of Frank Miller). And, that leads me to my title, as I am batching it tonight.

I left work this evening and went to my local Supercuts to trim this hedge of hair that has consumed my scalp over the past month. It seems like yesterday that I was getting it cut up in Buffalo. With a few bucks left over (Supercuts is very affordable) I swung by the local Taco Bell (hey, haven't been here for some time) and order a beef grilled stuft burrito.

Yes, Stuffed is spelled stuft.

This thing is a monster. I probably will be up all night trying to digest this. I am a fortunate man to be married to a wonderful woman who is an excellent cook. I will make sure that she knows how much I appreciate the little things that I take for granite.

With nobody home, I went to my pile of Netflix DVDs to find "Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation." Honestly, I liked the first movie, and only rented this one because a third film was recently released. What interested me most about this film is that it was directed by the late Phil Tippet. Even if the name does not ring a bell, you have seen his work if you have seen any of the Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Robocop, Willow, Dragonslayer…oh shoot…just go look him up on IMDB and you will realize that this man made most of the movies you love come to life.

You got to know what you are getting into when you watch ST2:HOTF. It was shot in high def, and released straight to DVD. What does that mean? It looks like one of those films you can see on any given Saturday night on the Sci-Fi channel. And…well, it went down like that burrito.


I almost always watch the making of videos if they have one on the Special Features. Because, even if the movie wasn't that great, the story behind the film always intrigues me. And after watching the vignette, it made the film a bit better. Mainly because it was the story of making a film that would be direct to video, and directed by Phil Tippet. So, if you find yourself watching this little "gem", watch the special feature…it's a bit better.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

In Search of...Bigfoot

Alan has reported th death of Bigfoot...and made reference to In Search Of.

Now, I can't get the song out of my head.

Maddox would be proud...

I actually got to use the word deleterious in an email today.

Day at the Beach

One of the nice things about living in Chesapeake, Va is the proximity to beach. We went out to Strawbridge this Sunday and I taught the girls how to ride the waves on their boogie-boards.

9 Days and Counting

Like Martha, I am counting down the days to USC's kickoff. I just finished the season in NCAA and brought USC through undefeated, winners of the SEC and BCS Championship.
Now, that's dreaming!

Friday, August 15, 2008

This is a video that my friend Ron made to promote our fall FPU classes. This video highlights how a class about finances impacts your relationships.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Summer Day

Today was my penultimate summer day from work. This is an annual program in which the company gives you four hours off on alternating Mondays, or Fridays. I chose Mondays as most people take Fridays off, making it a naturally light day. In addition, if you work at least four additional hours, you can take the entire day off. What, only four hours? Anyways, last time, I had my surgery and spent the rest of the day and the next day in bed. Today, I had the stitches removed, and painted two more walls in the never ending paint project. On a roll, I pulled out the steam vacuum and went to town downstairs. Next time, I need to do something a little low key. Maybe go to Busch Gardens.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Bad Week Behind Me.

I can honestly say that I am glad last week is over. But, I don't want to bore you with those details, so I will highlight the other stuff.

  • I was really saddened to hear that Bernie Mac died today. He became the voice of parenting that I wish I could use. Bernie was a really funny guy and always made me laugh.
  • I am reading Harry Turtledove's Guns of the South. In this Science Fiction alternate reality, a group of South African Whites steal a time machine and travel back to the Civil War to arm the confederacy with AK-47s. The book is a real page turner, but, how will it end?
  • Today I finally cleaned my car. Really, I was starting to apologize to my fellow coffee runners every time they got in. It did not reach the legendary funkiness of George's mini-van (a classic post), but it had its own double dutch bus aroma all of its own.
  • This morning, I took Megan out for a breakfast date. We went to the Broken Egg Bistro. She had a pancake and a slice of bacon. I had two biscuits covered in sausage gravy, two eggs and hash browns. We had great conversation.
  • For lunch, I took Katie out on a luncheon date. We went to TGI Fridays. Katie had chicken fingers and fries. I had a bacon cheeseburger, fries and a coke. We talked all about the boating expedition that she went on yesterday with our local Marine Science Museum.
  • I learned that, while these touch points with my girls are important, I need to schedule them on separate days. I am still stuffed.
  • I've discovered that I really, really like country music.

Sunday, August 03, 2008


Last week did not go quite the way I had expected it to go. In fact, if a week could ever go completely the opposite of how it should have been, last week would be that week.

One of my Developer Managers lost his father this past week. He went back to England to be with his family. An event like this reminds me that we only have so much time on this earth left with our parents. In the hustle and bustle of a visit, do I really take time to sit down and just be with them? Or am I being self centered in creating my own agendas?

There has to be a sense of clarity about what is important in our lives during such times. Deadlines, meetings, Friday crunches, pressure, politics and long hours suddenly do not seem to matter.

There are things at work that would have been much easier to handle if my manager was in town this week. And, if anything, it will drive me to change some aspects of the team (including cross training in areas of core functionality). I predict that this week I will be dealing with unhappy clients, so I am trying to visualize next Saturday.