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Archive for April, 2008

Why I Think High Gas Prices Are Good

April 24th, 2008 1 comment

With everyone complaining about high gas prices (up to $3.49/gallon or about 25% from a year ago), I think it’s important to step back and think about the positive aspects of this.

We live in a country that has a free market. This means once the price of gas gets too high, companies and people are going to step in and offer us alternatives that save us money. Whether this is more efficient cars, mass transit, or alternative energy, the best alternative will prevail.

I’m not saying the time period where this change happens will be hunky dory, but I am saying in the long run everything will be fine. The world will not come to an end, but people will have to change. This is the worst part for people. They hate change. Let’s face it, humans are a creature of habit. If I’m used to filling up my big ‘ole pickup truck at $2 a gallon and it goes up to $4, I’m not going to be happy. I’ll have to change the way I do things, whether I carpool, ride a bike, or buy a hybrid.

This whole thing kind of reminds me of old people who lived through the great depression. They know how to be frugal! We’ve had the opportunity to learn how to conserve the precious resources this planet gave us, and some of us did, but most of the world will simply use the cheapest alternative, even if it is bad for the world as a whole. We’ll learn to conserve only because it’s forced on us.

Ten years from now, when we’re all driving electric cars that get recharged from solar panels on our rooves, we’ll look back and think about how great this change was. Until then, go over to CNN and enjoy the articles with people bitching about fuel prices.

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WedInks is Coming

April 23rd, 2008 No comments

I’ve really been slacking lately, but here is a link to WedInks.com. This is what I’ve been working on in my spare time with the wife.

Her vision is to provide uniquely designed wedding invitations, save the dates, thank you cards, etc. It will definitely be interesting to try and put some of my previously unused MBA skills to the test and try to attract customers to the site.

Did you know that in the US, people spend over $1 billion dollars a year on wedding stationery?  That’s a “1″ followed by 9 “0″s….   $1,000,000,000.

If we could get 1% market share, I think we could retire :)

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Update on the Carpool

April 18th, 2008 No comments

On 4/2/08 I wrote about how gas prices were killing me.  But instead of just complaining about how it cost me $72 to fill up my tank, I did something about it.

I joined a carpool.

Well, today is the 18th (over two weeks later) and I still haven’t been to the gas station.  Joining the carpool did effectively cut in half the amount of gas I’ve been using.  Even still though, gas has continued to rise since then and is currently around $3.40 where I live for a gallon of regular.

I’ve been having an internal debate whether to buy a new(er) car or not since at this time it doesn’t make sense for me to be driving a big ‘ole truck.  I haven’t used the bed of the truck in over 6 months, and I’m essentially paying to push a lot of extra weight I don’t need around.  Overall it seems kind of wasteful.

The only problem I have is that it seems more wasteful to go out and buy a new vehicle because it’s more in line with my needs.  I have under two years until this one is paid off, and I like the sound of not having a car payment.  On top of that my current insurance is dirt cheap and once it’s paid off, I could drop down to only liability coverage and make it even cheaper.  

By taking on a new car payment:

  1. My monthly payments would be extended by 3 years.
  2. I would get screwed on trading in my truck (since no one else wants to buy one right now).
  3. My insurance would go up.
  4. I might not be as reliable as my truck if I bought a used one (I’ve had the truck since new).

The biggest positive to buying a new car is that my monthly payments *might* go down due to a lower payment and lower fuel costs.

Also, I forgot to mention how picky I am about cars.  Honda Civic?  Nope.  Toyota Corrola? Nope.  

Well, time to go before the carpool train pulls out…

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Pickin’ Berries

April 11th, 2008 1 comment

Last weekend we went out to Pappy’s pick your own berries for the first time.  I believe we met Pappy (or some other random old guy with his wife working the cash register) who immediately told me

“We don’t have any beer here.”

I thought, “wow, is this guy good at judging people or what…”.  I chuckled and told him I would make do.  A little later the wife made a good observation that I was wearing a shirt that said “I LIKE BEER!” across the front of it.

And it all made sense…

Strawberry Field

Strawberries

The strawberries were really good, and pretty cheap as well.  We opted for the sweeter variety they had.  Supposedly on the other side of the field there were ones that grew bigger and had more of a strawberry taste to them.  Either way, you couldn’t really go wrong.

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Weekend Hike

April 9th, 2008 No comments

This last weekend, the wife and I went out to Little Big Econ State Forest for a short hike.  It was definitely one of the nicest trails I’ve walked on in Florida.  This may have been due to the recent rain since everything was nice and green, or it could have been because it wasn’t 95 degrees with 100% humidity like some of the other hikes I’ve gone on down here.

littleeconhike2

After we got started, apparently we took a wrong turn and went in the opposite direction we were planning on.  I kept looking off to the right trying to spot the river, and I was pretty confused when it showed up on our left.  It was no big deal though, since it was still a nice walk, and the trail was well marked so there was little chance of us getting lost.

littleeconhike1

I’ll definitely be returning to this Park for more exploring, possibly fishing, and later in the year when it cools off, we might even go there for a night and camp out.  If you’re in the area you should definitely check it out if you like the great outdoors.

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