Nov 17, 2014

Thank you

Several of you reached out to lend an ear after my last post. It's appreciated.

And, inevitably, there have been some good moments to help outweigh the unpleasant ones.

Nov 14, 2014

A couple for the wish-list

My selection of actions and calibers is pretty well-rounded... but there are a couple holes I'd like to fill:
- a Glock 19 ... because good lord they're everywhere. And I can get Blue Label pricing.
- a bolt-action .223, leaning towards a Tikka T3 Lite stainless.
- a big-bore. This is WAY down the list, but I'd love to have a .338 or larger in the vault.

Nov 12, 2014

A month in... and a few thoughts

I've been working at the new job for almost a month. It has not been all sunshine and light.

My assigned trainer was there my first day, and then went on vacation. (He has since returned.)

I had a bit of a flap with my interim trainer.

I have (more than once) questioned my ability to do the job.

I have taken a significant pay cut (again).

I have come home from a shift absolutely braindead. I ate dinner by muscle memory and collapsed into bed until the alarm went off again the next morning.

I have had to work hard to break some really bad habits.

I have worked more fires in four weeks than in the preceding fourteen months.

I have received my complete uniform issue (A's, work, and accessories).

I will be released from my training period effective at 1800 Saturday.

All that said...

This department is an order of magnitude busier than anything I've ever dealt with before, and I have been warned that nights (where I'm heading) will see a lot of trauma and other unpleasantness. It's going to take some adjusting.

I have already had more than one call that's necessitated a fifteen-minute break and walk around the building while I say some quiet words. I can't go into specifics here for obvious reasons... but for those of you in the field, if you see me on IRC or FB and want to lend me an ear for a few minutes, I would kind of appreciate it.

Nov 3, 2014

WTF, silver?

Back in January, I wrote:
For the silverbugs who read, it has been on a pretty steady (albeit gradual) decline for several days and is now flirting with $19/oz. Can it go lower? Of course. Will it? Maybe a bit. I personally feel the days of $10 silver are long gone; $20 is my "buy what you comfortably can" price and if it went to $15 I'd be looking to load up at the expense of other things. 
Well, it has continued a generally down slope these intervening nine months, and spot is now around $16/oz (having dropped over $2 in the last six weeks). The end of Quantitative Easing 3 seems to have influenced the price, but I don't pretend to understand why.

Life changes lately (namely the job change and attendant pay cut) have made buying a lot of extra stuff less attractive. I did buy a few small pieces with my severance check, and I have another ATB set coming soon, but otherwise? Not likely to buy much. That said: if you can, it sure is a nice time to look at silver and gold, as both are awful close to a five-year low.

And it bears repeating:
If you're investing with plans to flip for a profit... One: do your own research. Past performance, future results, etc. I'm not an adviser. Two: the handling fees (shipping, insurance, etc) on flipping physical items can eat up any profits in a hell of a hurry unless the spot increase is huge. Three: investors do silver on paper (SLV options, and calls, and lots of other words I don't pretend to get).

If you're hedging with an eye towards a tangible asset with long-term stability, then physical precious metals are a great bet, and fitting them into your budget is a great way to build a nice nest egg. (Look up dollar-cost averaging. Buy a set dollar amount monthly, regardless of the spot price.) But only do this if the rest of your house is in order. Food, shelter, etc.