Thursday, November 27, 2014

Lessons Learned

Interacting with others I have learned quite a lot here in NYC as well as in other parts of the world.  I had lost my faith in others somewhat as a young man but as I started to get out of the city I have seen first hand how people will for the most part want to help you.  Even if you doubt others look around you the bridges, parks and houses are all the result of people working together with a common goal.

Appearance can't really tell you much about a person I met a young man a while back who would share books and magazines with me a guy who most people dismiss and judge as uneducated.  It was through him that I came across some good legal advice.  You can work your whole life and try to do things right but just one mistake can destroy it all.  In certain states if you die and don't leave a will and specify who should get your assets your father and mother will automatically get it all.  This is fine if you get along well with them and want them to get it all.  But what if you also have siblings that you want to give assets to?

You also have to make sure you name beneficiaries on your accounts such as a 403b but if you're married your spouse will get 50% of your 403b assets even if you don't include them unless they sign a waiver.

Years ago I heard a financial advisor who worked with wealthy individuals say something that really made an impact in my life.  He spoke about a father and son who bought a stock in the 1990 dotcom era.  The stock took off like a rocket they went to see him to tell him about their stock that went from $50k to $700k they had no interest in selling despite his advice to take some profits.  Their reason was that they wanted to get to a million they visited him again when it reached $800k with no desire to sell.  They visited him again when the stock started to drop to $600,000 and again he told them to sell at least some of it to retain some of their gains.  They refused and told him they would wait for it to come back up and recover.  As we all know the end of the 90's marked the end of the dotcom bubble which ended with a crash very few Internet companies survived.

The advisor went on to say that the father and son did not sell any of the shares they owned they lost it all.  The advisor told us that what bothered him was that they could have taken some of that money and used it.  He didn't state the obvious which is to buy a nice car, house and fancy clothes.  What really stood out to me is that he stated "imagine all the education they could have bought with that money."  That is why I spend my hard earned money buying more education.  I would really regret losing $10k in the market and to not have used at least some of that money to buy more education something that a market crash can't take away from me.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The New Indentured Servant

Through my many travelings I have come across a variety of people that have helped me see the bigger picture in life.  While I was in another city I saw an older woman in a trolley with a male friend she was homeless and missing teeth.  I knew she was homeless since the trolley was free and a magnet for the homeless community while I observed her I saw her talking to the driver and her male friend they pretty much do the same routine everyday.  I like the fact that she was having a good time despite her poverty in her laughter at that moment I saw authentic happiness.  Then as I looked out the window I remembered this young lady I met in school a few years ago.  She was working on a second degree as her first degree proved to be a bad investment.  So now she was taking out loans and maxing her credit cards to pay for her education.  She was also living with a man who she stated was awesome yet he had her working 3 P/T jobs with very little clothes, food and no health insurance, I thought "boy isn't she lucky".

The point is I have never met anyone as stressed out as my former classmate.  I rarely saw her smile and when she did I did not see real happiness not like the homeless woman in the trolley.  Although she had a place to live, credit cards and a degree she was worth -$90,000 and counting.  The way I see it she may be repaying loans and credit card debt for life.  It is like some college students are the new indentured servants of our times but they will never repay their debt.  On the other hand the homeless woman may be broke but she is worth the $10-15 dollars in her pocket plus a cigarette and a lottery ticket.  Then I understood why she laughed and was experiencing periods of elation and happiness she is financially worth more than my classmate she doesn't need to worry about repaying a massive loan.

What can we say to young adults now a days that can make it all better?  We live in a society where the most basic things in life such as health and education are the top reasons that people file for bankruptcy or end up in massive unforgivable debt.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Money, Love and Risk

At some point in our lives most of us think about getting married.  Males and females play different roles in this matter.  The more someone earns the more likely it is that she/he will start demanding a better mate.  Yet there are quiet individuals such as scientists that may be too busy to hunt.  Then there are doctors that lose their social skills so they don't look much for love.  Some doctors marry amongst themselves.  There is an article written by a Princeton mom about well educated women only having a few years to find a suitable mate this is even more so when it comes to female doctors. They will have to deal with the burden of finding men that are able to keep up with their level of education and not feel threatened by their income.

The risk of family violence is greater when the man is less educated than the woman.

A male may not mind if a woman is not as smart as he is as long as he can have a stimulating conversation.  When I first started working at a hospital I overheard a nurse tell her buddies that wealthy men get the pick of the litter.  Educated men on the other hand don't see women as sole providers if given the choice they will prefer a high earner but it usually isn't on the top of his list.   Men want women that are kind and women that will not walk out on their family.  When women/men come off rude or cold this is a complete turn off and the more a person has (education/wealth) the less likely he/she will put up with it.  

Up to this part we have not touched upon the subject of risk.  Yes, a woman who is pretty may end up with a high earner.  A successful male entrepreneur (with an undergraduate degree or none) may end up with a female lawyer from an Ivy.  What can disrupt the norm is risk the risk either gender takes to get someone outside of their league.  I am talking about the woman that has very little income not much education and is not considered physically attractive by society who ends up with a CEO or millionaire.  Yes, I have seen plenty of this going on and it comes down to risk.  While women are busy with their careers and think that their profession or looks gives them the right to be picky and rude their men are being swept away by women who ask them out treat them with the utmost respect even though they may not have much they get the man they want.  Actually they take some of the best men out there.

I know women are usually taught to wait for a man to go up to them and ask them out but while they are waiting that dream man is sometimes taken away by a brave girl that is not afraid to ask him out.
I know of two physicians that got married this way and in both cases the women were not physically attractive, well educated or wealthy.  Society makes a huge mistake when it teaches women that looks are everything in life and that this will get them everything they want.

To enjoy the finer things in life sometimes you have to learn to put down your pride.

Women next time you see a miss match ask your self would I be willing to to go up to that man and ask him out? would I treat him with more respect than the girl that he is with (the answer most likely is no and that is why she has him and you don't) or would I make it impossible for him to get to know me and play little rude games and act like I'm a princess?  If you're a man ask yourself do I have the guts to go up to that girl and create a better quality of life for her and a future family? Would I complain about going to work? could I provide more than the man she is with (not likely otherwise you wouldn't be single)? would I be a good man or abusive? would I just have a good time with her or would I marry her?

The risk of family violence is greater when the couple are not legally married

It may appear that men have an advantage when it comes to finding mates.  Men do have a big responsibility and they will ruin their families and their opportunities if they don't man up and educate themselves more. The risk of family violence increases when a male is unemployed. The risk of family violence increases when a male's job status is lower than that of his spouse.