THIS BLOG IS MY BLOG. THIS BLOG IS MY BLOG. Welcome to the Home of Hyperopia.: July 2006

Sunday, July 23, 2006

On Compound Interest - Part 2+2=5

There is wisdom in thrift.
There is wisdom in frugality.
There is wisdom in parsimony.

If your goal is to increase your net worth, anyway.

Benjamin Franklin agrees:

  • "A penny saved is a penny earned."


  • "If you would be wealthy, think of saving as well as getting."

These ideas are especially true if you aspire to accumulate wealth and if you, like me, are an employee not an owner. A laborer, not a master. Those of you who have been following along here may object given that you know I am a "lawyer." But the fact remains: I get paid for MY work. I get paid by the widget (piece of legal work product), if you look at it one way, or by the hour (time spent working through legal problems of client), if you look at it another way. I don't get paid because of profits of the business resulting from the toiling of my colleagues. (The owners reap that benefit.)

So money that flows to me from my work does not experience compounding. There's no leverage. There's only so many hours in the day. There's only so many "widgets" one lawyer can make. Even if he can type over 90 w.p.m. with 97 to 98 percent accuracy.

Say you decided not to buy that fancier television for five more years, saving yourself a cool $1000 in crisp hard currency. And say then you invested that $500 for twenty years in investments returning a compounded five percent (5%), ten percent (10%), fifteen percent (15%), and just for fun, if you followed the advice in this book and history repeated itself, thirty percent (30%).

Here's how much you'd have at the end of those twenty years (i.e., here's how much that puny little $1000 scrimped and saved over that five year period turned into through the magic of compounding):

  • at 5% - $20,012.92.
  • at 10% - $38,228.75.
  • at 15% - $75,271.60.
  • at 30% - $599,657.19.

So buy that book and save that $500. And compound those returns. And buy a yacht.

(Note the same math applies to things like late fees for rented movies. The younger you are, of course, the more time you have to compound, assuming you achieve the average life expectancy. Oh, and don't smoke. For example, three dollars compounded at 30% for 40 years is $78,363,730.35. Is it really worth almost $80 million to you, the hassle of taking back movies to the rental place on time?)

Photo Credits: here

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

On Lifetime Goals - Part 3 (?)

This might be the first lifetime goal I've shared. I was reminded about this lifetime goal by viewing the video available here, which is this totally incredible video of this totally average fellow doing this totally awful dance in front of this totally stunning number of travel destinations all in just over three minutes.

It's pretty cool.

It's also pretty famous so please no hatin' on me for linking it. I am absolutely not claiming to be some superduper unique internet user who just "found" this amazing thing. A friend of a friend of a friend of a friend sent it to me the other day. Several years later than the cool kids in school got a copy.

So ... my lifetime goal is to spend a winter in Barrow, Alaska. Sometime. It would be even better if I was going to try to do this without internet access or without other modern electronic distractions. But I'm not that cool. For me this idea is just about spending a very long period of time in a very forbidding place, climatologically (sp?) speaking. I wonder how my generally cheery disposition will hold up after month after month of darkness. My expectation is that so long as the northern lights show up from time to time, I'll be so in awe of the nature all around me that I'll be fine. Of course if my poker play goes poorly (as it most generally does), maybe I'll go Red Rum on everyone.

Anyway, here's a couple of pictures of some woman up there (according to the internet) that I found.




Saturday, July 15, 2006

On Gravity, Inverted - Part 1

So I'd say there's about an eighty percent probability most of you have heard of this guy: Mr. Newton.

He wrote best-selling books.

And, among other things, he was a scientist.

He studied apples.

* * *

And I'd say there's about a ninety-nine and forty-four one-hundredths percent chance most of you have heard of this guy: click here.

He is a fool.

And any of you who have heard of me but not of Mr. Newton, I am sending out a prayer for your family. Especially your offspring.

* * *

So anyway, the topic is gravity. Sort of. I'm sure someone who knows physics knows the answer to this question. But I don't. I don't know physics or the answer to this question. And with my limited resources (pool with maximum depth of five feet; mediocre swimming abilities; plastic inflated balls of varying sizes but also varying stabilities; toddlers in their first year of borderline swimming to watch after) I was unable to perform experiments satisfactory to reach any intelligent conclusions.
  • QUESTION: Does a large ball filled with air that is submerged in a body of water rise to the surface of said body more quickly than a small ball filled with air submerged in that same body of water assuming everything other than the size of the ball and the volume of the air in the ball is equal (e.g., air pressure inside the ball, temperature of everything, depth from which the balls are released, etc.)??


Photo Credits: here and here (not necessarily in that order).

Friday, July 14, 2006


Here we see a photograph of a young Jim Morrison/Doors fan.

Get it?

Monday, July 10, 2006

On Cheese (of the Rancid Variety) - Part 1

Last week I had the happy pleasure to come into the digital possession of an mp3 file of Cher's extremely popular but not especially macho single, Believe. And I listened to it about forty times in a row the first day I had it [1].

At work.

At a reasonably significant volume.

While I was wearing a pink shirt.

All of which prompted one of my colleagues to email our CEO and CFO to alert them to the possibility that I was in need of abrupt clinical intervention and also inquire as to whether they had any data to support the notion that I had experienced a dramatic modification in preferences. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Never one to pass up an opportunity to amuse myself, I promptly authorized my source to provide me as many other songs which would've enjoyed a secure spot on the playlist of SNL's Ambiguously Gay Duo as he could find. He complied. And I have enjoyed myself immensely sampling these doozies in an "accidentally" public way. But that's not what I want to talk about today. I want to talk about a totally unanticipated side benefit of these songs.
The lyrics.

There were some WILDLY CHEESY lyrics in these 1980s love songs. I had no idea. The cheese factor is off the charts. It's out of this world. It's beyond your wildest imagination.


Here are two of my favorites.

First, from Air Supply's fantastically and spectacularly glorious and delightfully and ridiculously formaggioly "Making Love Out of Nothing At All" there is the following mind-numbingly stunningly cheesy phrase in the lyrics:
  • The beating of my heart is a drum
    and it's lost, and it's looking
    for a rhythm like you.

* * *

Now that is gorgeous. That is one hundred percent Grade AA fabulous Gorgonzola Dolce.

I think that line has got to be competitive for cheesiest line in the history of popular music.

I am not making this up. (credit - Dave Barry)

Which brings me to the second contender (for today). Bonnie Tyler. Her hit "Total Eclipse of the Heart." Includes the following formidable classic lyric:

  • I don't know what to do and I'm always in the dark;
    We're living in a powderkeg and giving off sparks.

Holy Toledo, Batman! That's pure limburger. Stinking it up.

* * *

So good enough. That was fun. Now, for the participatory part of the entry, please submit your contenders. I hope to enjoy many cringing readers' submissions of similarly rancid cheese.

Bring it on.

For your arithmetic junkies, that means I listened to that song for about two and a half consecutive hours (the song is 3:45 minutes long; 3:45 times 40 is 150 minutes).

Photo Credits: here and here.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Ben Folds, Gangsta Rapper Wannabe

So tonight I'm listening to Ben Folds' version of "Bitches Ain't Shit," the Dr. Dre rap song. Special thanks to cycling Velvet Fog for introducing me to this classic.

You can hear it here [corrected] but please note it has a wee bit of profanity and other politically incorrect phrases in it.

But whether you listen to it or not, I just wanted to let you all know that "chin checking" (a phrase used in the lyric to the song) means "feuding."

At least according to the internet.

I looked it up.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006


It's been one year since I started blogging. Exactly. So it's time to reflect. Time to take stock. Time to look back. Time to review. Time to examine where I thought I was headed. Time to evaluate whether I was remotely close to properly predicting where my blogging would lead. Well, on second thought, it's not really time for me to do that.

That's your job.
I just type here.

Anyway, to help you happy readers on your way, here's what I said in my Opening Salvo.

And now, over two hundred fifty (250) posts later, it's time to celebrate with a little contest. The (booby (literally)) prize for which will be the use, by me, of the un-retouched version of the photograph set out below in this post as my "profile" picture for one month. Trust me, you will all enjoy it. I will not. In the un-retouched photo, you'll be able to clearly see that I am wearing this swimsuit.

  • CONTEST: I have identified my all-time favorite comment left on my blog over the past year. That fact is not relevant to the contest. I just thought I'd mention it. Now, with respect to the contest . . . . If, during a period commencing upon the publication of this post and expiring seventy-two hours after such publication, twenty (20) different people show up here on my blog and leave a comment on this post identifying their favorite post on this blog (or someone else's blog if they didn't happen to enjoy any of the posts on this blog over the past year), I will begin using the above-referenced unretouched version of the photograph set out below for my profile picture, and I will continue to use the above-referenced unretouched version of the photograph set out below as my profile picture for one month or until enough people ask me to stop. Which could easily happen. Seriously.

So ... that's it!

Happy anniversary, darlings!!

My favorite comment ever?
Of course you want to know.

It's appended to this post, my third or so. And it's from an anonymous poster commenting under the handle "Funshine Bear" (how could you not love it?) who said: "A Finnish peasant woman, a harvest field mouse, whips, chains, whistles, yoyo's, my grandma riding by on bicycle giving me the finger, and a duck."