Hello, quick update, sorry about not posting blah blah blah


You know the drill. :) Profuse apologies for not posting (sincere) Promises of more consistent posting (Lies!) :D

Anyhoo. Very quick update, I am now down to TWO/ (2) /DOS /NI /DEU/ DVA credit cards with balance owing on them! And I have calculated that I can be rid of those in about 6 months. It would’ve been 5 months but I went nuts with one of the cards. Heh. *guilty look* This also means that I will be only be paying a maximum of $1200 in interest across both cards (assuming $100 interest is generated per month on the current balances). I had assumed an interest of $2000, so essentially I have $800 to spend for Christmas!

*RANDOM THOUGHT* Hmm. I’ve been using the iPad, more so than the laptop recently (which is why I haven’t been on much SO MANY APPS …O_O), and not having the use of emojis seems to stifle me.. >_< *END RANDOM THOUGHT*

So below is the current state of my Net Worth:

Soooo slooooowwwwww….

As you can see there was a large dip a couple of weeks ago. That was me blowing $2000 on crap. Don’t ask me what sort of crap. Just believe me, it was crap. But fun crap. Okay fine, its apps, vids and buying e-books! Now stop interrogating me biatches!

But! I’ve rejigged my budget and have allowed for the ongoing expense of aforementioned crap into my life (cause while I don’t need it, its soooooo much fun!). Starting with $100 this pay, and $30 every pay moving forwards. I’ve also found a deal which allows me to buy a $30 iTunes card for only $24 :D So the $100 this week should net me $120 worth of credit! That’s an extra $20 for nothing!

Woohoo!

Alright real life calls. Laters alligators!

Hello, I DID IT!


After months and months (well technically years, but I’ve really only been able to be serious about debt repayments since February 2012) of scrimping, scavenging, tight-assery and cheapskatedness, I’ve managed to pay off 50% of my total available debt.

WOOHOO!

So in summary.

WOOHOO!

Hello. This post may contain nuts.


Peanuts, suprisingly… contains peanuts…

I love the disclaimer most Personal Finance bloggers have on their websites.

It usually goes something like this:

The information contained within this blog from all writers is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to substitute for obtaining professional financial advice. Please thoroughly research everything you read here and seek professional representation before acting on any information you may have found in this blog.

With of course different wording and permutations, dependent on the blogger’s style. But you get the gist.

It’s our peoples version of the “May contain nuts” disclaimer. :P

So here’s my nut…

Well one of them. (ewwwwww! minds out of the gutter people!)

One of the ways I know has helped me in terms of budgeting, and not being caught with my pants down (really I’m not trying to insert all these crotch references into this post, it’s just happening), is putting aside $50 every pay check, for those quarterly bills. Since I’m renting I don’t have to pay for gas or water, only electricity. So $50 every two weeks is more than enough.

From a quick calculation, that gives me every quarter about $300 – $350 dollars. My electricity bill has never hit over the $300 mark. The most I’ve ever had to pay was $260. Now you can choose to roll over that money, or splurge it on something. I always tend to splurge on a nice bottle of wine.

Having that fund for those large quarterly bills have been a godsend. My budget really only leaves me with about $110 dollars for incidentals, after I take out rent, debt repayments, grocery and more regular bills (phone and internet). So if I had to squeeze an extra $150 from somewhere every 3 months (for the worst case scenario) I’d go absolutely guano.

Now you if you have other large quarterly (other utilities), half-yearly (I don’t know of anything that does half-yearly invoicing but you never know), or yearly (car registration) you could increase the amount of money you contribute to this fund every week, even $5 a week would give you $260 to use for your car registration. That might not cover it, but at least you won’t be looking for the the full amount, in an already tight budget.

Now some people could suggest that you put all this money within your emergency fund, combine the funds. More funds = More interest. If that works for you, I’m more than down with that (wow, listen to me get all “street”. Word). But I’ve put my emergency fund into an account that gives me an extra 5% interest rate on months I don’t do any withdrawals, so I am loathe to withdraw from it unless it really truly is an emergency.

And since I know those bills will eventually come, I really don’t consider it an emergency. Which is why I have a second account (which has a relatively high interest rate, but doesn’t penalise for withdrawals, but doesn’t give that extra 5% rate either) just for those bills.

How do you manage those large quarterly/yearly bills? Do you just take the hit on your finances when they come in? Or have you got some other fandangled method of making sure you’re not surprised?

Hello, budget. Revisit. Rework. Recalculate. Recognise. Real Eyes. Realise. Real Lies.


Nothing like a little bit of alliteration to start off a post. :)

Note the last 3 come from some pic I saw on the net, which you may think has nothing to do with a budget post, but in fact it kinda does.

I haven’t really done any meaningful work on my budget in quite a while. And this blog started as a Personal Finance blog. *shame*

So revisiting  my budget was a bit of an eye-opener. I realised that I had made a few optimistic assumptions ( or what you would call “lies”) on a few key budgetary figures, but to balance that out, I also made a few rather pessimistic calculations. So I recalculated and reworked a few items, adjusted for interest rates, and BAM!

I got this.

See that massive dip 2 paychecks ago? That was cause I didn’t factor in interest and a few charges I had sneakily placed on a couple of the cards. So rather than being well and above clearing my debt by 50% by now as I had predicted, I’m still a tad below, currently having paid off 51.14% of my available debt.

At my current rate of payments, factoring a rough estimate of $3500 worth of interest that will be applied to my current debts, I will be done at the end of March 2013.

Now for the good news.

I started doing calculations of what life what will be like afterdebt (dear god! FREEEEEEEDDDDDDDDOOOMMMMMM!!!!!).

Even with an increase of my grocery budget and increasing the money I set aside for bills, I am still using only 45% of my salary on what us Personal Finance bloggers call “needs”. Well, technically 41% since I included in my “after-debt” budget $80 for “incidentals” and we all know what that means… damn straight. Hookers. I mean coffee! Coffee! :P

Still, that leaves me with $1,100 to play with.

If I keep up the budget I’ve drawn up after debt, which honestly is not at all restrictive (I have almost $400 to do with as I please! [and yes that includes the $80 for hookers. Damnit I mean coffee! Why do I keep doing that?] compared to the measly $110 I have to contend with now), AND if I maintain my current salary, AND if I don’t stupidly fall in love with a girl and waste all my money again AND nothing else terrible happens to me, then the following is a pretty reasonable scenario.

So the time line goes like this :

28 March 2013 (hopefully) – Out of Debt

18 July 2013 – Trading Account hits $1,500. Start online trading. Reduce contributions to 3 x brokerage fee.

15 August 2013 – Have 3 months worth of expenses saved in an Emergency Fund. Reduce contributions to 5% of salary.

26 September 2013 – Savings (not part of Emergency Fund) hit the $5,000 mark. Time to do research on purchasing a car.

19 December 2013 – Savings hit the $10,000 mark – purchase car (or motorbike)

2014 – open up a FHSA (First Home Savers Account) and restart Savings Account after car purchase.

2017 – Emergency Fund now holds 6 months worth of expenses.

2029 – FHSA account hits legislated cap for contributions With interest, FHSA account now holds in excess of $160,000.

And this combined with savings, superannuation and a slow and steady build up of investments, should provide me with enough money to live on for the rest of my life.

That is unless the universe wants to kick me in the balls and make the Zombie Apocalypse happen.

Which it will.

Then I’ll just settling for eating your brains.

Braaaaaaiiiinnnnnnnnsssssss.

 

Hello. So, at last we meet for the first time for the last time.


Image

LOL. I bet she does.

I’m just going to slink back here, and pretend that I’ve been posting regularly, cause I got no excuse.

The past few weeks, I’ve really been off my game. Hell, the past few months. I’ve barely had the energy to shove food into my mouth for dinner, before crashing into bed.

Vera has been standing in the corner, on her stand, gathering dust, her strings twang mournfully every time I brush up against her.

The PS3 and the television could be completely kaput as far as I know. They haven’t been turned on for months.

As for the PC, forget about composing WordPress posts, even games that require any sort of hectic mouse clicking have fallen to the wayside. All the PC has been doing is been streaming my favourite tv series and movies, as I fall asleep within the first ten minutes of them.

But.

On Monday, I did my very first sketch, in god knows how long.

And it was

absolutely

terrible.

:)

But in a good way. I know that doesn’t make any sense. The only thing I can compare it to is when you’ve been sick and haven’t been able to go for a run for ages. And then in those early few days of getting better, you make the attempt of jogging and can only go a block before collapsing in a heap. It’s like that. You know it was a god-awful attempt, but you also know that with stupidly stubborn perseverance you’ll eventually get back what you had.

On Tuesday, I tackled my budget in a meaningful way, again for the first time in months (which will be the topic of my next post, actually). And despite only three hours sleep, I went to the gym after work, and once again this was the first time in months. After that I even had the energy to cook a very (okay I put way too much salt in there) healthy meal, and then do a second sketch. The second, while still nowhere near as good as I know I can do, is leaps and bounds better than the first. It actually looks human this time. :P

And today, I’ve dusted off the ol’ WordPress account and managed to write this entry (twice! WordPress ate the first attempt).

So, dependant on this surge of energy, you may expect to see regular posts creeping up once again.

I’m not promising anything though, I’m not looking for anything serious at the moment, ya know. Let’s keep it casual. Be cool man. Be cool.

*grin*

Hello. And we’re back to our unregularly unscheduled program – “Blogging One Year On – Part 3 of 7″ or “where our hero’s heart get’s broken”


Well you can’t have a story without some romantic angle, cause apparently according to 83% of statistics about statistics, 64% of women like that stuff.

Kill me if you will, but the truth shall make you fret!

So romance… *chirrups of crickets echo in the background*

Right… give me a second….

Aha!

This being a postmodern tale, the happiness and well being of the character is not to be expected nor wanted by the audience. And a happy, untroubled love life? Fuggedaboutit. Which really only goes to say that post-modern audiences like to be dicks to their literary characters. But one must go with the times.

So in the middle of the training montage as Eye of the Tiger blares in the background. There she walks in, already bad news you can tell, as a slew of ninja lemmings throw themselves off a handy cliff in their efforts to gain her attention. But being ninja’s they merely, bounced off the pointy rocks below the cliff face and clambered up it, to once again gaze longingly at her as she sashayed past them. So to those who would sic the animal rights people on me, back! Back! Back, I say!

Glimmering blue eyes, something about having a pretty face, insert your own description of a killer bod, throw in some wit and a sense of humour, mix generously with some sexy, sexy brains, and thus you have the recipe for a vixen which I have little to no defense against. What straight male human being could withstand such weapons of mass attraction?

And thus I was bombed clear out of my skull, the blast throwing me into the morbidly obese arms of Cupid.

But alas, the beautiful lass was a spy for the samurai mole rats, and was only seducing me, with her mixture of intelligence, charm, wit, beauty and some sort of pheromone based perfume, to lead me and my comrade in arms in to a trap, wherein flaming meatballs would shower us with death.

The hussy.

Now let us exit the world of truth, stylised violence and in appropriately short attire for women (yes that is a very, very obscure reference to Suckerpunch), and enter the world of insanity, self-discovery and reality.

Things I learnt from blogging – Part 4.

I’m odd. Weird. Strange. Quirky. Eccentric. Actually, scratch eccentric, I’m no where rich enough to be eccentric. Now I know some of you, in your misguided way, are thinking that weird can be kinda cool. But as me and Girl 1 discovered after some debate on the matter, there are various kinds of weirdness. What you’re thinking about is the first type, the alpha, or “cool-weird”. The person who probably best defines this, is this man:

cool-weird /ko͞ol-wee-rd/
Adjective: strange, but hypnotically and alluringly so.

That’s cool-weird.

Then there’s my type. The betas. Or “awkward-weird”. Now there are of course as with everything various levels of being awkward-weird. At one end of the spectrum you have the mouth-breathers at one end, the end farthest from humanity. You know the type, loud heavy breathing and an unblinking stare , and uncomfortable (for you) movements of the hand in his trouser pocket, as he stares at a point directly 2 inches above or below your navel, depending on his mood.

Ahhh Milton. How much do I adore thee?

And at the other end, those who have accepted their strangeness, but just don’t have the panache (or desire) to be lovingly accepted for their oddity, but they are cool in their own non-socially acceptable way. The Steve Buscemi’s of the world in fact.

awk·ward-weird/ˈôkwərd-wee-rd/
Adjective: see picture above.

I fall somewhere in the middle. Quirky enough that if I act exactly how I wanted all the time, I’d probably be in a nut house, but not fully embracing my weirdness so I don’t act exactly how I want to all the time. I walk the tight rope of normal appearances and my true oddball behaviour. Releasing soft puffs of strangeness when I feel safe enough that the people around me won’t burn me at the stake for those comments and/or actions. Kinda like when you let our those silent farts in meetings that you aren’t able to just get out of (you’ve done them I know you have! haven’t you? aahh crap… am I the only one??).

********

Final Note: Is it a coincidence that all these weird people are wearing glasses? Wait…. Steve Buscemi isn’t wearing glasses… he just looks like he is. Ignore this comment.

Hello “The Dark Knight Rises” a review – “Blogging One Year On – Intermission Part 2 – the pee break or “The Joker always wins”


I will attempt to keep the hyperbole and spoilers to a minimum.

It was pretty awesome though.

**A minor spoiler alert coming**

The money shot of Anne Hathaway’s leather clad tush bent over as she rides that motorbike is the new Catherine Zeta-Jones Entrapment moment for this generation. If you don’t know what I’m talking about regarding Entrapment then forget about it you young whipper snapper and/or cultural philistine. Just enjoy your generations version of it.

I will say that The Dark Knight is still my favourite. I don’t think anyone could compare to Heath Ledgers The Joker as the a comic-book villain turned comic-book-movie villain. Maybe it’s just me, maybe there’s something about the demented, chaotic nature that was portrayed on the screen by Mr Ledger that rings with me. Or hell I could just have a huge man-crush on Heath. Who knows?

But The Dark Knight Rises doesn’t lag like The Dark Knight did. I’m a comic book nerd from way back, and Batman has always been one of my favourite characters. But even I remember when watching The Dark Knight thinking at certain points “when is this movie going to end?”. I never got that with The Dark Knight Rises, again maybe it was the company. Sandwiched between two extremely attractive women in the dark has a way of making time go relatively faster. Or it could just have been a more tightly knitted movie. Or maybe it was Anne Hathaway in a tight leather body suit.

Hmmmmmm… Anne Hathaway in a tight leather body suit.

*droooooooooooool*

The thing about the rebooted world of Batman that Christopher Nolan (the director) has created is that it’s populated by normal people. There are no X-Men, Supermen, Spidermen  or Norse Gods. Batman, The Joker, Rhas Al-Ghul (baddie from the first movie) Bane, they were all normal people, pushed to do extraordinary things. In the case of the villains, extraordinarily bad things, but that doesn’t change the fact that it was extraordinary.

The problem with Rhas Al-Ghul was that he was too remote, too cold, too cerebral. Batman without the burning anger and sense of justice.

The problem with Bane is that he’s exactly like Batman, physical, angry, powerful, with sense of justice (warped as it is).

That’s why the Joker trumps both of them. He’s the opposite side of the same coin as Batman. As different from him as he was exactly the same. The yin to his yang. The chaos to his order. The extrovert to his introvert. The nut-job crazy to his guano crazy. It was fascinating to watch.

So cheers to you Mr Ledger, you’ve set a bar for the comic-book-movie-villain that may not be matched for a very long time.

Clap. Clap. Clap. (that’s the sound he made in the movie, not sarcasm)