Category Archives: Motivation

Hello. Sooooo yadda yadda yadda, it’s 3 years later.


Whoa.

I didn’t even know they saved blogs for that long. And no I haven’t been cheating on you guys, writing on any other blog or dispensing me weirdity on any other sort of medium. I have just been slack 🙂 May the fates forgive me. Bear in mind, I have not written for about 2.5 years, so my use of hyperbole, simile and metaphor could be as bad as…

as..

as..

a really bad thing. *face palm* (get it together man!)

Don’t ask me why I decided to start up writing in this blog again, it just seemed a helluva lot easier than starting a new blog. I’m still going to rant and rave about nothing much at all, at least that much hasn’t changed.

But what has changed in the past few years is my financial position. From the last update I can see that I posted, I was sitting somewhere around the negative $11K mark in overall financial position. As of today, February 20 2015, I am here:

backtobloggin2015

Overall financially, I am now only about $300 in debt. Of course that’s not the figure of my actual debt, which is still sitting around the $7K mark. The graph shows my Total Net Worth, over the last few years I’ve built a small but growing Emergency Fund (roughly about 3 months worth of expenses), started a micro investment fund (less than $5K) and have a few bits and bobs squirreled away for some other upcoming expenses (more about those in another post). The next pay day (due on Thursday 26th of February) will at last see me coming in the positive.

But maybe a little clarification, see that long ass slide from June 2013 to June 2014, well I got hit by unemployment. Don’t ask me why I wasn’t blogging at this time, I think the fact I had a fairly good run of income going, and then yet again lost my job (due to budget cuts in the department) hit me kind of hard. Most of that year was kinda spent in a haze of doubt and self pity. I don’t recall much of it, but I did watch seasons 1-5 of Supernatural more than a few times… all in one sitting… *shame*

So what awaits over the next couple of posts? Well there is a (planned) move in the near future, new city, new job (god please let me get a new job!), new apartment and all the expenses that come with that.

Anyways, I forgot how invigorating and tiring putting down thoughts on paper… err screen, actually is, so I’ll end it here…

For now…

MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

 

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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! 😛

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. 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, this is the tragic part of my tale when my ninja lemming trainer is killed or “Blogging – One Year On. Part 4 of 7”


I see you pondering there.

You read that right. This is part 4. Which has come right after part 1. I’m doing this to show to you that time is a construct (I only have the vaguest notion of what this means because my tutor at University who used it constantly was incredibly attractive) and this blog is avant garde like that.

So, no I am not hiding posts from you. Okay, another lie, I am. But with a relative definition for the term “you”. This entire series has been hidden from one specific person, and instead for reading about ninja lemmings they are being treated to the etymological history of the word “booby” and “tit” as it evolved from bird names to synonyms for a much loved part of the female anatomy. And why it is that when Sir David Attenborough says such words it makes me chuckle.

But you don’t want to hear about that…

So for the story,

…. Shashimi my ninja lemming trainer, throws himself in the path of runaway meatball covered in flaming tobasco sauce in order to save me. I cried. I cried like a baby. An angry, angry baby. I then used the skills imparted by my late great trainer, and using the Spaghetti-Noodles-of-Mayhem-&-Chaos and the colour mauve as my weapons, I assaulted the meatball catapult and killed the samurai mole-rats mole-ratting it (since they weren’t “manning” it obviously) to the last one.

Deadlier than you could possibly fathom. Unless you can fathom stuff like “Does wobble of the spinning top at the end of Inception mean that that it’s going to fall and therefore everything in a movie filled with actors and special effects can be thought of as “real” rather than a “dream”?” If you can do that, death dealing meatballs should be no problem.

Stay tuned, for the next installment! Whichever part of the story I feel like telling you after this bit anyway!

Now for those who are dismissive of this story as the schizophrenic ramblings of a poor deranged soul, I offer you this self-indulgent and self-involved realisation.

One of the things I learnt from a year of blogging is that my moods are mercurial to say the least. Looking back on posts written in almost euphoric highs and then comparing those posts to the ones written which are downright Hamlet-ly melancholic. A doctor I was dating once supposed that I could possibly be hypomanic/cyclothymic (essentially a much more tame version of bi-polar disorder), but I got too weird and she left before she could finish her diagnosis.

She was probably onto something, but the highs are just so much fun that I kinda think I don’t want to be fixed. But of course the lows taste like the fetid remains of a 7 day old skunk, after being left out in the summer sun. So maybe I should look into it…

Hello and greetings from Nerdvana


20120628-161456.jpg

Ahoy muchachorino’s.

I have returned. Captain-er and Sweatpantsier than ever.

True story.

Let’s be honest the last few posts before I took that little break were a mite depressing. Gone were the shameful and ridiculous references to boobs, pole dancing rabbits, puppies and all other things awesome. Instead you were lambasted with self-pitying prose (badly written self-pitying prose I might add) and annoying complaints of my inability to string words into a sentence.

But to that I say “nooooooooooo!” smashes glass and model ships with his phaser I will not sacrifice this blog. We’ve made too many compromises already; too many retreats. Depression invades this space and we fall back. Depression takes over our entire world and we fall back. Not again. The line must be drawn here! This far, no further!”

*ahem*

Sorry about that I’ve been getting nerdier over the past couple of weeks and that quote basically reinforces that (special brownie points to the uber-nerd who can ntell me where that paraphrased quotes from, and we’re on the honour system here folks. No google cheating.)

As you probably have surmised my disappearance and my lack of meaningful post was due to a bout of depression. I really thought I had that whole issue licked, but I guess not. It took me a couple of weeks to realise that I had fallen into that trap again, but once I did, I drew on 10 years of managing depression to snap myself out it. And it worked, I’m not sure if it was merely acknowledging that I had depression again, or the weird and whacky ways I did to snap myself out of that funk, but snap I did.

This little Stella got his groove back (giggity) and ready to once again make your mind seem a little less crazy in comparison to mine.

Fer instance.

I mentioned that I’ve been nerding it up the past couple of weeks. That doesn’t even begin to cover it. I am now so far up the Nerd God’s butt I can see sunlight. My nerdhood has become so all mighty and powerful that frankly that might be the last nail in the coffin that holds the corpse of the hope that I will have intercourse with a female ever again. The aura of nerdity surrounds me like a miasma of girl repellant. I am now so nerdy that I actually believe that my virginity has been restored. That’s right folks, you heard right. I have been re-hymenated. 😉

Now what could I possibly have done to get so über-nerd? Simply, I bought an iPad. Pssshaw I hear you scoff, how is that nerdy? Well, because of the number of apps available, the cheapness of said apps and the ease of being able to search and download anything I want, I am now able to gloriously wallow in all the nerdiest of hobbies that I secretly love, behind a thin veneer of socially acceptable Apple geek hood.

Magic: The Gathering : deal me in

Dungeons & Dragons Character Sheet : roll the dice

Nerdcode: nerdgasm!

Star Trek PADD : make it so

IamaDalek : EXTERMINATE!

And god there are so much more, the only thing really stopping me is not the time to actually search for more, because I’m too busy playing around with the ones I already have.

Gah!

So if anyone has any more suggestions on how I can further nerdify and re-hymenate myself with iPad apps please feel free to do so!

Until next time muchachorino’s!

Excelsior!

Hello Vera, how about an update?


“Vera” of course being my trusty beginners guitar.

I was still  trying to practice my fingering and chord transitions at least an hour everyday before I met up with Girl B. But I will confess Vera got ignored pretty much that entire week, cause you know, there was something else I was finge… errr never mind 😛 (TMI? *grin*)

But learning guitar on your own is a tricky business there are a million stupid questions that you need answers to, that having someone tell you over the phone what to do or watching videos on YouTube, just really can’t answer.

This is a piano… wait wait… guitar… damn it! Fail already… 😛

For example, there are a few videos that suggest a more technical approach. You get each chord right first. Play each string to ensure that your fingers are only touching the strings they’re supposed to and that you’re applying enough force. Once you get that chord right, you move on to the next. And so on.

Another video suggested a more relaxed approach, where you don’t actually strum the guitar, but merely practice the changeover from one chord to another. This means that muscle memory will take over and you will be able to transition from one chord to another more smoothly and therefore be able to mangle  play songs faster.

What no one seemed to tell me, is that it boils down to how YOU the individual learns. It took me a couple of weeks to realise that I do a helluva lot better when I mix these two styles of learning together. I play a chord, make sure I got my fingers where they’re supposed to be, then change to another and play that (which by the way usually sounds like “do re me thunk thunk  do”) Then I try to get that right then transition back. Back and forth, back and forth. It works for me.

Another issue slash stupid question. There are some transitions that I just can’t do smoothly. E minor to F major to be exact.

This is E-minor

This is F-major

Now, separately I can play them. But every time I go from E minor to F, there’s an awkward space of seconds while I put my fingers down. No matter how much I practised, I just couldn’t get it down smoothly.

Then the music gods last night took pity on the blood offerings my fingers were making to honour them, and provided me with a revelation.

The problem was I was concentrating on getting each finger down on each string one at a time when playing F major. What I have to do is practice getting ALL fingers down at the same time! Simple right? Anyone who plays guitar would’ve been able to spot that mistake like 2 months ago, but of course my teacher is a little stupid (and here’s where I have to remind you I’m teaching my self so you get that joke…) but I am excited about working that out, even though it seems inanely obvious. I’ve been practising for a couple of hours and I can definitely hear less awkward pauses.

Hurrah for Vera!

Next step… actually learning a song…

Hello running time, you are my church.


Ahhh running.

Maybe it’s just the runner’s high from yesterday, but I’m waxing poetical about running. And while it’s getting a tad colder in Canberra, and also the sun has pretty much set by the time I get home, so I don’t have the opportunity to do my Bridge-To-Bridge run, I am substituting it for some good ol’ treadmill time.

Of course I am by no means a marathon runner. If any of you are picturing a svelte antelope-like creature, bounding tirelessly over the tarmac of the city jungle-scape, you’ve got the wrong blogger in mind.

I probably look more like this…

But there’s something zen-like about loosing yourself in your stride. Ear phones drowning out your measured, rhythmic, sometimes gasping breath. Drowning out the distant burr of traffic. Drowning out the wavering sounds of the conversations of others as you pass them by. A watery grave of melody and music surrounds everything around you.

And while at the beginning of a long run, I do tend to dwell on thoughts which I really shouldn’t be dwelling on, some when throughout my run I let all of that go and there’s nothing in my mind but the basic animal thought of making my body move. My heartbeat, the sweat building down my back and chest , the tread of my feet on the ground, these are all the sensations that matter.

This is my world.

For the next hour (and if I’m feeling very motivated, or the runners high kicks in maybe two hours) these are the only things that matter.

Debt. Work. Friends. Family. Relationships (or my complete and total lack of skill in them). Cars. Television. The Internet. Caturdays. This blog.  All these thoughts stop their constant and never-ending pinballing all over my brain.

And for a little while I’m at peace.

For a little while, I’m sane.

For a little while, at least, I’m free.