Been meaning to mention this to the Religion Marketing Dept.  It’s time to remarket and change up a bit on Good Friday.  You see every Friday is good.  So how about we change this name of this one to Great Friday?

Of course, Palm Sunday might be due for an overhaul, too.  Not a lot of Palms north of the Mason-Dixon, so perhaps something more inclusive.  Bay Laurel Sunday which I think would grow everywhere…..

Back to point: Since tomorrow is a semi-Holiday, we will make an effort to be cogent and to the point his morning (for a change).

First up, I got the kick of email yesterday that makes all our hard work on the Peoplenomics side of the house totally worthwhile:


I am up 26.96% this year, thanks to Mr. George Ure.  THANK YOU George,  I am humbled by your superior knowledge !!

Curtis B

That makes me feel totally pleased.  Making money around here is a group effort and the more brains we can harness to pull in the same direction, the better.

Yes, occasionally, we will screw up, but our Big Picture view of investing seems to be working fairly well.  Not only for us, but others, as well.

The (ongoing) Adventures of G II

My son (the one who is getting married, though we don’t know when precisely) continues to make a name for himself in something than  the AIDS/HIV research he’s doing up at the University of Washington.

He’s an article which describes on of his recent skydiving activities which marries two hobbies together:  skydiving and electronics.  “Extreme range-testing goTenna, a half-mile off the ground.”

I’ve been  coaching him to look for other airborne “product testing” ideas. 

Elaine came up with a good one:  Remember the old TV ad where there was a suitcase thrown in a cage with a gorilla, which then beats the hell of things? 

“Why not have him drop something from, oh, 1,000 feet up, or so?”

Fine idea.  Or, something like the airborne electric shaver…”a close shave at any altitude…”  Oh, the mind reels.

ANOTHER Marriage Looms

Congratulations are in order for my brother-in-law Panama Bates.  He and the future Mrs. Bates (Donella) will be tying the knot a week from today up in Dallas.

This is turning into quite the spring for marriage announcements around us.  Something in the water?

The lucky couple has been house-shopping lately, but honestly, there isn’t much in the way of “real-deal” homes in this part of East Texas. 

On the other hand, we are thinking more and more about Killeen, Texas.  You can get 50% MORE home for the same price down there.  And since Bates is a retired SF lifer, he would have access to the BX and such which would keep the cost of living down.

But they’re having fun shopping, but I know what I would do.

Bates, meantime, has agreed to return for paid house-sitting gigs.  We never leave this joint unattended.  Just a personal security bug on our part.  I think paranoia meds might help.

The Economy Ahead

Speaking of major life changes, we have put our old Beechcrate up for sale on Trade-A-Plane.  You can see the online ad here.

Don’t get me wrong:  Secretly, I hope is doesn’t sell for a while – we’d like to do our July Seattle trip in the plane.  But driving works, if it comes to that.

Flying is not particularly difficult to learn (otherwise I wouldn’t be doing it) and we have enjoyed what are now three or four transcons not to mention umpteen closer runs that we don’t even keep track of.  Like up to Branson, MO and so forth.

I’ve priced the plane realistically:  It’s not a sleek go-fast plane, but if you don’t mind the ground going by at about 130-135 miles an hour it’s a great way to travel.  Lyft and Uber have mostly eliminated the car problems.

Might be worth thinking about if you have a younger family since the outlook for airline pilots is pretty good.   As you can read about over here, the first year after getting your commercial and ATP rating (and instrument, of course) can  be lean:  $25,000 to $50,000 – the latter if you are willing to consider moving and hook up with a regional carrier.  On the other hand, 10-years in the left seat of a big jet will be close to the $300,000 per year mark.

One of the real pluses of flying?  Most all the pilots and wives you meet are not dumb.  You can’t be dumb and fly

No, you don’t need to be Superman, but something of a head for numbers will help.  So will good eyesight and getting into the game young.

If you’re a serious potential buyer, Elaine and I will fly the plane anywhere in the country for gas money  (9-gallons an hour) and let you give it the once-over.  Y9u mechanic, too.  The only squawk at the moment is the cabin air off is sticky but Jeremy the mechanic will fix that here in the next week, or so.

We went up Tuesday morning – Elaine has been eyeing the controls.  But it was bumpy which wi9ll sometimes happen and it’s like boating:  You introduce things to people when conditions are ideal, never less.

At some point, it will be in the public interest to stop flying anyway…75, or so, seems right.  But we’re in this window in coming months where the economy should hang together well and it just seems like we should be eyeing new adventures.

Elaine has been looking at new homes – something in a city where there are leash laws, close to shopping, on one level, and so on.  If or when that happens, the funds from the airplane would buy a nice sports car for us…

We’ve done land, sea, and air now…so whatever the next adventure is, we’re looking for it.  You can never have too many adventures in life.  67 isn’t old, any more than 35 is.

New Toys

With company coming to the ranch in about 10 days, I have invested in (look surprised) another power tool. 

This one in a Black & Decker LCS1020 20V Max Lithium Ion Chainsaw, 10-Inch.

OK, why?

Well, in East Texas, real land moguls do something called “limbing up” their property.  This means stripping low hanging branches off trees so that you can actually see through the property.  (It may have something to do with deer season, too.)

imageBut to lug a chainsaw all over the property is a pain and the battery powered tools are about half weight of ICE (internal combustion engine) units.

Main reason for Black and Decker?  They have about everything for the yard.  And since we have a trimmer, hedge cutter, and such, by staying “in the brand” we are able to add batteries from other tools for big jobs.

That picture?  Mr. Ure’s charging station in the shop for the Makita power tools and for the B&D outdoor tools.  Yes I can mix 2-cycle, but not unless a BIG tree is involved.

I wrote the book on lazy.

Oh…sorry.  Efficiency!

Short column tomorrow with no market open on Good Friday, so if you don’t check in tomorrow Happy Easter and many happy returns.

Radical Change ALERT

I will be doing a major change to the look and feel of the UrbanSurvival site this weekend.  It will probably look different – and I hope a lot less “busy.”  So if things seem vastly different next week, it is because they probably will be…