It’s time to sit back, relax and enjoy a little joe…
Welcome to another rousing edition of Black Coffee, your off-beat weekly round-up of what’s been going on in the world of money and personal finance. Here’s what caught my attention over the past week…
Happy Halloween everyone!
This week I found out that the December edition of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance was kind (or crazy?) enough to honor this little ol’ blog as one of eight personal finance blogs that “stand out for the valuable personal finance advice they offer.” Hooray! The issue hits newsstands on November 9th.
I know what you’re thinking: “Clearly, Len, you are the unwitting victim of an elaborate hoax.”
Normally I’d agree with you, but this time I’m pretty sure everything is legit, folks.
Len Penzo dot Com was selected by Kiplinger contributing editor Cameron Huddleston as the “best off-beat blog.” Thank you so much for the kind honor, Cameron!
Okay, on to more important stuff. This week I’m short on time so we’ll have to settle for the lightning round commentary. Give me sixty seconds on the clock, and here we go…
Blogs I’ve Been Following This Week
Kiplinger – 13 Financial Frights. In honor of Halloween, here are a baker’s dozen of some of the more-haunting personal finance scenarios you may run into – like a lost wallet – and how you can make those demons go away.
Millionaire Nurse Blog – Are YOU Part of the Problem, or Part of the Solution? You can’t expect your personal finances to remain in great health if you are afraid to invest in – to use a doctor’s term – a little “wellness prevention.” Speaking of wellness prevention, let me just say that if I was female, Dr. Dean would definitely be my gynecologist. Heck, I have half a notion to just schedule an appointment anyway. (That’s scary, isn’t it?)
Punch Debt In the Face – Would You Get Naked for $500,000? Are you kidding? Of course I would. (That’s scary too, but it’s true.)
Control Your Cash – What do Numbers and Humans Have in Common? The Irrational Ones Predominate. This was one very entertaining read with a terrific message at the end, as satisfying as the soft Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop.
Smart on Money – Retiring Wealthy on an Average Salary: The Story of the Sensible Social Worker. Not only is this a great story, but I give Mr. Money 50 bonus points here for not spelling “sensible” as “centsible.”
Barbara Friedberg Personal Finance – How to Cope With Failure and Personal Finance Persistence. I seem to cope with some kind of failure on this blog every day. All kidding aside, I found this post to be inspiring and extremely helpful to me.
…And Here’s Some Other Posts You Might Enjoy:
Hope to Prosper – The Economic Crisis Is the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Us.
Financial Samurai – The Comfortable Lifestyle Business or the Big Payout?
The Simple Dollar – The Two Types of Procrastination
Wealth Pilgrim – Home Remodeling Construction Tips.
Live Richly – Stranger in a Strange Land.
Ultimate Money Blog – What’s the Strangest Online Purchase You’ve Ever Made?
Everyday Tips and Thoughts – Tax Avoidance, Double Irish and Dutch Sandwiches.
Deliver Away Debt – Focus on What’s Important.
The Way-Back Machine: Past Posts Of Mine You May Have Missed
From September 2009:
Killer Asteroid? Personal Finance Strategies for the End Times. – If you knew the exact day the world was going to end – for example, perhaps a killer asteroid was discovered that would strike Earth with near certainty ten years fro now – how would that change your personal finance strategy? In this post I tell you what I’d do.
Credits and Debits
Debit: ABC News is reporting that in the closing days of the election, Republicans are campaigning hard on the issues while the Democrats are focused like a laser beam on, er, um, well, personal attacks. That is being reported as news, not opinion.
Debit: Meanwhile, Senator John Kerry (D – Massachusetts) lambasted the American public this week – well, at least those of us who are upset with the current state of the Union. “It’s absurd. We’ve lost our minds. We’re in a period of know-nothingism in the country, where truth and science and facts don’t weigh in. It’s all short-order, lowest common denominator, cheap-seat politics.”
Credit: Election day is Tuesday, November 2. I just hope all you know-nothing complainers remember to vote.
Credit: I’m a proud know-nothing who is only voting for candidates who are strong Constitutionalists, and support limited government, more individual liberty, and business-friendly policies.
Debit: Meanwhile, the smart guy, Senator Kerry, will be voting for more government, redistribution of wealth, and economy-constricting environmental policies.
Debit: Did you see this? A judge in Brazil ordered McDonald’s to pay an obese employee $17,500 because he gained 65 pounds while working there over a 12-year period. The guy claims he felt he was forced to “sample” the food on a daily basis for quality control purposes. I know.
Debit: First, McDonald’s gets sued by a lady who didn’t realize that hot coffee shouldn’t be spilled on her lap – and they lose the case. Then they get sued by a guy for an exploding chicken McNugget – and settle out of court. Now this. How does McDonald’s manage to find all these litigious morons?
Credit: One thing is for certain: McDonald’s needs to fire their current crop of McLawyers. I mean, come on. Where did the Golden Arches law office get their two-bit defense-attorney references from? Mayor McCheese?
Credit: By the way, it’s official; scientists have discovered there is a gene that is responsible for predisposing liberals toward their “redistribute the wealth” mentality. Now that we know liberalism is actually an affliction, I wonder if it is covered under Obamacare? Hey, now, I’m just sayin’.
By the Numbers
31 The percentage of Americans that believe in ghosts.
$66.28 The amount of money the average American will spend on Halloween this year.
$20.29 The average expenditure on candy.
22 The share of costumes purchased on-line.
40 The percentage of Americans who plan on dressing up this year.
2005 The last year the Honeybee and I dressed up for Halloween. She was the devil. I was a priest.
12 The percentage of Americans who will dress up their pets.
0 The odds of me or my dog putting on a costume this year.
Other Useless News
I believe Delaware is the second smallest state in terms of land area in the Union. But when it comes to Len Penzo dot Com, its readers were the most engaged here over the last 30 days, reading almost five articles and spending an average of just under 13 minutes per visit here. I would like to give a special shout out to the folks in Bear, Delaware, who have averaged a whopping 11 page views per visit. What’s truly amazing about that stat is I have no relatives living in Bear, folks. Here are the top 10 states that spent the most time per visit here on average for October:
1. Delaware (12 minutes 58 seconds)
2. Wyoming (4:36)
3. Montana (4:35)
4. Tennessee (4:22)
5. Missouri (4:16)
6. Alaska (4:06)
7. Michigan (4:02)
8. New Hampshire (3:59)
9. New Mexico (3:54)
10. Alabama (3:44)
Here’s a friendly reminder for ya: if you happen to enjoy what you’re reading – or not – please make sure you follow me on Twitter. And, if you’ll be so kind, don’t forget to subscribe to my RSS feed too! ðŸ™‚
Letters, I Get Letters
Crystal from Budgeting in the Fun Stuff, staying true to her promise to write in every week, observed:
“Have you seen the new Scott’s tubeless toilet paper? You load the rolls the same, but there is no tube. Good to the last tp square…”
I have seen it! We’ve come a long way from the days of corn cobs and old Sears catalogs. By the way, how many men does it take to change a roll of toilet paper? Nobody knows; it’s never happened.
If you have a question you’d like to ask, or a comment you’d like to make regarding some of my irritating opinions, please feel free to drop me an e-mail at: Len@LenPenzo.com
I’ll feature the most interesting question or comment I get each week here on Black Coffee — assuming I get one, that is.
If you’re lucky enough to be the only question in the mailbag I’ll highlight your letter, whether it’s interesting or not. ðŸ˜‰
This week I had articles featured at the following carnivals:
Carnival of Personal Finance @ CashMoneyLife (Editor’s Pick – Hooray!)
I’m Len Penzo and I approved this message.