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Occupy Seattle

October 16th, 2011 at 02:28 am

Today I visited Westlake Center to see what I can see amongst the Occupy Seattle group. A good thousand people were there. The energy was high, many of the homemade signs were clever and creative - my fave so far was Only Boehner's Tears Trickle Down. One sign had an Elizabeth Warner quote "The rich didn't get that way by themselves"; I had a nice chat with the lady (my age) holding it.

About 70% of the people were under 30, but there were a number of people my age also.

This whole thing, though, reminds me of the first day of the WTO riots before the anarchists came. And the anarchists were there, ever hopeful. Fewer black hoods and more Guy Faulks masks. I picked up the anarchist newsletter (which seems oxymoronic) where an article also compared this to the WTO riots.

Anybody else in a city with an Occupy group? Anybody else visit it?

good deed/bad deed

June 5th, 2011 at 02:39 am

Well, I walked a little bit further than I had wanted to - although I haven't suffered any. I walked my route with an older man who was looking for his car. I was a bit worried about him, he described himself as having troubles with short term memory. I didn't really want to take responsibility for finding his car that who knows where it was; I split off with him to turn back to walk back home, but I did look for the car and license plate on my way home. I figured that's all I'd need was watching him as a missing person on the evening news.

Within two blocks I found that car, I was certain of it. By then he was a good four blocks away....moving away slowly, but fast enough that I had to jog to catch up to him. I told him the full license plate and I was right - it was his car. So pwhew ... a good deed but who knows whether other drivers on the road would agree.

Now for the bad deed. This in front of my former bank, the Chase on 85th. In case you have troubles reading it, it says, "Jobs Before Bonuses. Move Your Money." The part that got cut off said, "No job, No home, No fear."

And in front of the ATM. "Tax Dodger."

Can't say that I've monitored the chalk graffiti over the past several years, but I think this is the first I've seen of this stuff.

moving the CD, et al.

November 10th, 2010 at 05:12 am

One CD matured yesterday and I've moved it to the checking account. I have it scheduled to be moved into my ING account early next week.

There are only 5 people in the canning exchange, which is good news - my other 6 half pints will turn into Christmas/ hostess gifts. Cracked open one and had several tablespoons in a cup of plain yogurt. Was a bit syrupy, and that was perfect for the yogurt.

Discovered another symptom of this recession: a very large banner advertising "we take EFT and SNAP dollars." Its great that this place does, its a new produce stand, but I've never seen a gigantic banner proclaiming it. Usually I've seen the window sign or a sticker at the checkout.

Haven't declared that we are in the season of Venus yet, which is lax on my part, because we have been very much under Venusian skies this week. It is early enough in the season, though, so drivers apparently having to get used to it. On my walk today I saw a large truck drive the wrong way on 2nd Ave ... a street that you do not want to be driving upstream of. He made the corner before any serious damage was done. Nobody honked though. Also saw a car neatly front end an ornate cast iron street light. Bad day for someone else. If he was one of those drivers that really gun it as he turns right out onto the street ... well, then he got his just desserts.

in the process of consolidation

October 20th, 2010 at 04:10 am

One thing that one has to know about my little fiscal empire - I have money scattered throughout several banks. It worked well once when the interest rates were reasonable, the FDIC limit was $100K, and I needed a bank with a fair number of branches so visiting my sister wouldn't be a hassle. (Remember those days. My, it seems so long ago!).

Course it was explained to me that no bank really needs a depositor anymore; they get all they need from the Federal Reserve at 0.25% or even 0%.

Anyway, now my savings seems scattered and unwieldly. If I'm not going to be earning much in interest, at least I should put it in a place easy to manage and consolidate. As my CDs mature, I'm planning to move them to ING. Turns out that even the Electric Orange checking has a better rate than many 1yr CDs out there. I'm sure that there are places with a higher interest rate, this consolidation just feels like the downstroke of a heart beat - send the savings out when times are good, bring them back in and wait.

I'm going to go a bit slow and see what I can and can't do with Electric Orange. Best case is that I can do anything and the ATM situation is good, which means I can move the CDs, and even move the Chase account. I like the brick & mortar (I'm over 40 after all), and it turns out that ING has a brick & mortar site about 4 blocks from work.

you know you are in a recession when ...

October 5th, 2010 at 04:36 am

You wake up to the NPR beg-a-thon, and a primo thank you gift is: one of the gigantic coupon books. This is the

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one in our area.

how rainy was it?

April 3rd, 2010 at 03:20 am

Saving log - $0 tip box + $1725 tax refund, dividend check
Spending log - $1.75 coffee + $10 lunch
Found money - $0.12 (parking meter, road)

Saving log - $7 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.36 (parking meter, sidewalk, road)

Almost at $32...
$31.96: 791 pennies, 30 nickels, 129 dimes, 30 quarters, 2 $1 bills, a 10 pence coin worth 15 cents.

How rainy and stormy was it today? So rainy and stormy that the mayor rode up to the bus stop on his bike and took the 355. He nodded at me as he rode up; I nodded back.

I figured that I would be late for a training, but if I got commented upon, I could always say that the mayor was late too.

Heard from the production company (the one with the Emmys) that the HDef transfer was ready, and I pick it up Monday morning.

Only gossip in the financial issues today. Rumor has it that one WA bank is in such bad shape that unless they get a buyer by mid-April, they will be taken over. I have to say that at least rumors imply that there are some cracks in the fiscal omerta. But the lovely

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gossip about this bank is that the bank president resigned because he was not allowed to take a spring break vacation. You know, dude, if you fail in getting a buyer for your bank you will be taking a spring break, and a summer break, and a fall break. I expect that since he's a fat cat he will land on his feet (they always do). Who can hope for a 1yr or 2yr break in employment...after all, he's probably considered "talent". Methinks its the opening shots to a lawsuit and scheudenfruede-tainment for years to come.

Interesting timing with this bank and work. We received a corporate gift check and a letter from this bank. Felt a little queasy about cashing it ... the bank employees might need the money more than we would.

2 more fiscal reminders of the recession

March 12th, 2010 at 04:31 am

Saving log - $1 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee + $11 groceries
Found money - $0

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.03 (road, sidewalk, parking meter)

Saving log - $12 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.03 (road, sidewalk)

3/11 - no car, 2 mi walk, 13.5 mi bus
3/10 - no car, 3 mi walk, 12.5 mi bus
3/9 - no car, 3 mi walk, 12.5 mi bus

Finding pennies, but I haven't been looking all that hard. I'm still not 100% after Saturday. Maybe by the weekend I'll pick up my ambitions. However, I'm finally under 170. 168.8 as a matter of fact. I owe it to the food poisoning diet plan.

$28.45: 724 pennies, 27 nickels, 143 dimes, 29 quarters, $1 bill, 1 10 pence worth 15 cents.

Haven't been writing much because not a lot has been happening fiscally. Why rack my brain trying to figure out the creative way of saying nothing's happening?

But today a couple of fiscally, recession-y things did happen. First off, I'll remind you that I work to book pledges and data to my non-profit, our large local node of a national system (ends in -Way). In the course of my job I asked one WA-state bank (bank #1), who took over another WA-state bank which had been closed by the FDIC (bank #2), about whether we can expect data from bank #2. Nope, I learned. The FDIC canceled the pledges as part of shutting the bank down. Makes sense once you learn it, but very interesting nonetheless when we have a fair number of WA-state bank pledges and WA state banks are in such shaky shape.

Then in the mail tonight I got a pleady note from Chase about Debit Card Overdraft Coverage. "Soon we can no longer provide this coverage automatically" and "your everyday debit card transactions will be denied" if you do not have enough money available to cover a purchase.

Hahhahahahahahahaahaahahaaha. (stop to gasp.) Wow, what a threat. I've bounced one transaction in 5 years. Stupid $35 overdraft fee protection is a bug, not a feature.

SAM for a library card

March 1st, 2010 at 05:17 am

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $35 (breakfast for 2 w/tip) + $19 groceries (for work food and snacks so I can avoid stopping for lunch)
Found money - $0.49 (road, planting strip)

Saving log -$0
Spending log - $3.88 coffee, bagel + $9 headphones + $3 tea + $12 groceries
Found money - $0.09 (sidewalk crack, road)

Got V.I.s nails clipped yesterday, and it took about 10 minutes. The vet tech said that she was no trouble. What happens is that kitties get so surprised, then so relieved that its just the nails that she can get in there and trim fast...not to mention that it isn't her kitty, so its routine to her.

Took a 5 mile walk yesterday, and was finding coins all over the place... most of them, though, in the road. No dimes though, but several nickels. I generally find fewer nickels than quarters, so it was a tad surprising. $27.49: 669 pennies, 27 nickels, 110 dimes, 28 quarters, $1 bill, 1 10 pence coin worth 15 cents.

Today I went to the Seattle Art Museum - if you showed your library card, you got in for free - and saw the Calder exhibit. (So I missed the hockey game.) Fantastic show, seeing a few of the paintings and non-mobile sculpture, including a rare wooden one he did during WWII when metal was scarce. And of course there were tens of mobiles - little ones, big ones, delicate ones, burly ones. You could see the Matisse and Mondrian in them, and in a couple,

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ikebana. I heard about this event from the paper - due to the recession, there is now a Freeloader alert column promoting and itemizing free stuff/events. I hope that when this recession ends that the column will continue ... but I know that's unlikely.

One other fiscal thing to get off my chest. I was walking past a neighborhood thrift store and saw in the window display a quarter holder. Not just any quarter holder, but one for the
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new set of 2010 to 2020 quarters, these honoring select National Parks. Now I'm as fond as the next person in getting (rescuing?) an interesting coin, but somehow in these times of need ... did we really need to spend money to make pretty quarters? I'm sounding like my grandpa more and more.

Umpqua is eating another WA bank

February 27th, 2010 at 03:21 am

Saving log - $3 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.01 (gravel 2 blocks from my house)

Payday! Hard to believe its nearly March!

Couldn't resist taking a peek at the FDIC site - its Friday after all - and it looks like Umpqua Bank out of OR has eaten another WA bank. First it was Evergreen Bank, now its Rainier Pacific.

Umpqua, Umpqua ... sounds like a burp. At least the

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logo is pretty (left corner).

catching up with friends Sunday & Monday

February 9th, 2010 at 05:14 am

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $14 breakfast
Found money - $0.44 (planting square, road, car wash parking lot)

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $3.88 coffee + $7.50 rennet + $13 groceries
Found money - $0.05 (Safeway change cup)

Saving log - $2 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee + $6 lunch
Found money - $0

Boy, Jeffrey wasn't kidding when he suggested cutting through parking lots with car washes on them to hunt for dirty money. I cut through a car wash parking lot about a mile from my house - 11 cents right off. Something about people washing their cars, then detailing them, means the customers get a bit sloppy as they run the vacuums over the mats. I'll have to cut through the car wash more often.

$23.68: 593 pennies, 23 nickels, 101 dimes, 22 quarters, $1 bill.

Friday I got weighed by the trainer - 170.8. That's with my shoes on. Nobody in the gym would want me to weigh myself with clothes and shoes off, but I'll bet I'd be 169 if I did so.

Went to visit the Duvall friends for the Super Bowl - DH made no knead pizza crust, and we put a lot of anchovies on one. We also went out during halftime to watch ducklings still in their cute fuzzy phase and to admire the new fencing. (How was The Who anyway?) The Duvall friends are planning on adding goats to their menagerie (chickens, ducks, geese). They have the land for the goats to clear, and they want to start to make cheese from the goat's milk.

Their first attempt of cheese was an attempt - they got yogurt, and yogurt cheese, but not cheese yet. Hence they wanted us to pick up fresh rennet from a

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contact very near us. We'll have to start hanging out in there - the store has homebrew equipment, rennet and cheese making equipment, and vinegar mother.

Today I had lunch with lawyer friend and screenwriter friend in the Columbia Tower food court. Only a couple years ago, we would have had to hunt hard for a table at noon and every place would have had a line. Now, its take your pick even at noon. Lunch seemed to be cheaper also - $6 bought a fairly nice lunch. Lunch conversation turned around screenwriter friend - his son made a great 80 minute film for his senior project. The Seattle Independent Film Festival (SIFF) is going to premiere it in June. Very exciting - as a matter of fact, its more exciting for us than it is for the film maker, who is a tad too teenage-casual about the whole thing. Oh well, you learn as an adult that great progress doesn't fall in your lap. If something succeeds, pounce!

winding down

January 26th, 2010 at 05:26 am

Saving log - $7 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.01 (road)

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $3.88 coffee, bagel + $2 apple, bulk catnip
Found money - $0.02 (crosswalks)

Saving log - $0
Spending log - $14 brunch + $5 mocha, slice of banana bread + $12 groceries
Found money - $0.27 (sidewalk, road)

Ever since DH pointed it out to me, I've been noticing that there are no advertising placards on the inside of buses these days. Only stuff about Metro (our transit entity), how to prevent the flu, throwing money away if don't fill out your census form, maybe a couple of jobdango ads. Probably due to the recession; the pendulum has swung from

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this gem. I suppose I shouldn't complain.

Feels like less and less change to find out there. Over the holidays, everyone was spending money and careless about coins. Now? Mostly pennies, maybe a dinged up dime or two.

Everything is winding down, quiet and blah.

$22.02: 562 pennies, 19 nickels, 92 dimes, 21 quarters, $1 bill.

broke the streak

December 30th, 2009 at 05:40 am

Saving log - $1 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee
Found money - $0.03 (sidewalks)

Saving log - $2 tip box
Spending log - $1.75 coffee + $12 lunch
Found money - $0

Well, the 38th day in a row finding found money was not to be. I found nothing yesterday, but got back on the horse and found three pennies today.

Abandoned most of the frugal principals yesterday. I was going to decline a lunch screenwriter friend and lawyer friend's partner, but I sniffed the lunch that I had in the work fridge - it turned, and I thought, "a bought lunch with friends would be money well spent."

Work is picking up - I expect that it will be hopping by Thursday the 31st. This year is shaping up to be a strange one: more antsiness about making sure that the credit card is charged by the 31st than in previous years. Also, we are seeing a rise in bad credit cards again, as in 2007.

DH joined our death bet.