Author Topic: Overheard at Work  (Read 8088698 times)

Debts_of_Despair

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14950 on: September 14, 2016, 05:56:42 PM »
Guy complaining about how gas taxes are too much and other states have it better, would save thousands if he moved out of state, etc.  This is coming from a guy who commutes to his office job in a full size pickup.  Because, you know, gas taxes are really important when you are getting 15 mpg.

pancakes

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14951 on: September 15, 2016, 04:57:07 AM »
Pay day yesterday including a small bonus.

Spendypants colleague was buying furniture for their house this morning. Another colleague pointed out that they are digging themselves out of debt and maybe don't need more furniture but should save that money.

Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

I can guarantee that as our next pay approaches we the office will be listening to this person complaining about how their credit card balance has ballooned and how tight things are. .

kayvent

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14952 on: September 15, 2016, 06:12:02 AM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant
« Last Edit: September 15, 2016, 06:14:08 AM by kayvent »

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14953 on: September 15, 2016, 10:51:26 AM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...
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BDWW

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14954 on: September 15, 2016, 11:27:15 AM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...

It's not that unbelievable though. One of realtor friends tells stories about how buyers get turned off by the most superficial things. One house had purple carpet in the living room, and fetched about 15K less than comps because the seller wouldn't replace it. It's amazing how many people can't see the forest for the trees.

MgoSam

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14955 on: September 15, 2016, 11:30:03 AM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...

It's not that unbelievable though. One of realtor friends tells stories about how buyers get turned off by the most superficial things. One house had purple carpet in the living room, and fetched about 15K less than comps because the seller wouldn't replace it. It's amazing how many people can't see the forest for the trees.

Absolutely! When I looked at homes, I could see things that would need to go if I owned it, but my approach would be to calculate how much it would cost and factor that into my ideal price.

That said, I do believe that sellers should stage their homes if they no longer live in them. The house I bought was empty and for that reason I know I could lowball them. Had they staged their house, I believe they would have gotten a better offer.

BDWW

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14956 on: September 15, 2016, 12:19:39 PM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...

It's not that unbelievable though. One of realtor friends tells stories about how buyers get turned off by the most superficial things. One house had purple carpet in the living room, and fetched about 15K less than comps because the seller wouldn't replace it. It's amazing how many people can't see the forest for the trees.

Absolutely! When I looked at homes, I could see things that would need to go if I owned it, but my approach would be to calculate how much it would cost and factor that into my ideal price.

That said, I do believe that sellers should stage their homes if they no longer live in them. The house I bought was empty and for that reason I know I could lowball them. Had they staged their house, I believe they would have gotten a better offer.

Personally, I was thinking, sweet 15k discount. Things like that don't bother me, I'm more interested in the bones: foundation, roof, siding, HVAC, electrical.   Carpet is very far down on the priority list.

Tangentially related to my biggest pet peeve about most modern construction. Cheap, shoddy construction hidden beneath a shiny veneer.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2016, 12:22:47 PM by BDWW »

TexasRunner

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14957 on: September 15, 2016, 01:10:37 PM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...

It's not that unbelievable though. One of realtor friends tells stories about how buyers get turned off by the most superficial things. One house had purple carpet in the living room, and fetched about 15K less than comps because the seller wouldn't replace it. It's amazing how many people can't see the forest for the trees.

Absolutely! When I looked at homes, I could see things that would need to go if I owned it, but my approach would be to calculate how much it would cost and factor that into my ideal price.

That said, I do believe that sellers should stage their homes if they no longer live in them. The house I bought was empty and for that reason I know I could lowball them. Had they staged their house, I believe they would have gotten a better offer.

Personally, I was thinking, sweet 15k discount. Things like that don't bother me, I'm more interested in the bones: foundation, roof, siding, HVAC, electrical.   Carpet is very far down on the priority list.

Tangentially related to my biggest pet peeve about most modern construction. Cheap, shoddy construction hidden beneath a shiny veneer.

Unfortunately my wife is very much like these people.  We tour a house and she says "I like the curtains" or "that carpet is nice"...   With a 200k purchase price, I want to know about the stuff that is over 500$ to fix.  Do the rooms flow correctly, is the house structurally sound, does it shed water appropriately, will the backyard flood, what are the risks of 500-year rain flooding the place...  etc etc.

When I sell my house, I will likely get 20k out of the flooring I put in myself for 2000$ (it looked old when we bought it).
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dragoncar

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14958 on: September 15, 2016, 01:21:47 PM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

I don't think you can believe some (most?) of what you see on HGTV...

It's not that unbelievable though. One of realtor friends tells stories about how buyers get turned off by the most superficial things. One house had purple carpet in the living room, and fetched about 15K less than comps because the seller wouldn't replace it. It's amazing how many people can't see the forest for the trees.

Absolutely! When I looked at homes, I could see things that would need to go if I owned it, but my approach would be to calculate how much it would cost and factor that into my ideal price.

That said, I do believe that sellers should stage their homes if they no longer live in them. The house I bought was empty and for that reason I know I could lowball them. Had they staged their house, I believe they would have gotten a better offer.

Personally, I was thinking, sweet 15k discount. Things like that don't bother me, I'm more interested in the bones: foundation, roof, siding, HVAC, electrical.   Carpet is very far down on the priority list.

Tangentially related to my biggest pet peeve about most modern construction. Cheap, shoddy construction hidden beneath a shiny veneer.

Unfortunately my wife is very much like these people.  We tour a house and she says "I like the curtains" or "that carpet is nice"...   With a 200k purchase price, I want to know about the stuff that is over 500$ to fix.  Do the rooms flow correctly, is the house structurally sound, does it shed water appropriately, will the backyard flood, what are the risks of 500-year rain flooding the place...  etc etc.

When I sell my house, I will likely get 20k out of the flooring I put in myself for 2000$ (it looked old when we bought it).

Well the expected value of a 500 year flood is under $500

arebelspy

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14959 on: September 15, 2016, 04:25:07 PM »
Well the expected value of a 500 year flood is under $500

Assuming the odds are calculated correctly, and it's not more like a once-every-75-year flood.  :)
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TexasRunner

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14960 on: September 15, 2016, 04:29:41 PM »
Well the expected value of a 500 year flood is under $500

Assuming the odds are calculated correctly, and it's not more like a once-every-75-year flood.  :)

Ya, we use rainfall data at work and it leaves me wondering how accurate data IS from 1910 or 1875.  Then the rates are supposedly based from verified dates/amounts of 1960's onward but they had to mathematically calculate what the rates were for 50 year rainfall and up...  The science of SWAGing numbers to be reasonable conservative, lol.
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scottish

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14961 on: September 15, 2016, 04:35:11 PM »
Whenever I hear "flood" I think this:

Actually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart.

Primm

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14962 on: September 15, 2016, 07:03:02 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.

arebelspy

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14963 on: September 15, 2016, 08:14:47 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.
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ender

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14964 on: September 15, 2016, 08:19:24 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Keep in mind depending on the geographic area the "500 year flood" covers, it's not really unexpected that they wouldn't happen.

If for example you split the USA up into 500 pieces, you'd get a "500 year flood" about every year, give or take, and it wouldn't be overly surprising statistically.

arebelspy

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14965 on: September 15, 2016, 08:32:02 PM »
True, there's definitely the same bias there that makes people think the world is dangerous today, but hearing about multiple in a given area is either faulty data/predictions, or really, really uncommonly bad luck.
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ender

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14966 on: September 15, 2016, 08:39:38 PM »
True, there's definitely the same bias there that makes people think the world is dangerous today, but hearing about multiple in a given area is either faulty data/predictions, or really, really uncommonly bad luck.


Plus there is always selfish interest in sensationalizing events, pretty much across the entire spectrum whether you are researcher or news media. No one really benefits from making a natural event seem more normal, it's boring. But make it rare? EXCITING.

Doesn't mean "500 year floods" aren't real, but also an added bias.

Pooperman

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14967 on: September 15, 2016, 08:40:45 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Keep in mind depending on the geographic area the "500 year flood" covers, it's not really unexpected that they wouldn't happen.

If for example you split the USA up into 500 pieces, you'd get a "500 year flood" about every year, give or take, and it wouldn't be overly surprising statistically.

Increasing sea levels aren't really helping, either.

A true 500 year flood will happen in the Seattle/Vancouver area at some point. That'll be nasty.

ender

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14968 on: September 15, 2016, 08:44:22 PM »
Increasing sea levels aren't really helping, either.

A true 500 year flood will happen in the Seattle/Vancouver area at some point. That'll be nasty.

I've wondered how much humans affect this, particularly in how drainage is managed. I know in my city we had some serious flooding within the past decade, but I think part of that is simply due to poor planning and drainage. Newer developments are deliberately and consciously managing this.

It's kind of interesting to think about, really. If you get an inch of rain in a city, think about how much of the city is no longer grass or otherwise capable of absorbing that water. Most cities of any size have a large percentage of land covered in either concrete or buildings. If you cover 50% of the ground, then every rain storm doubly taxes the grounds ability to saturate (ignoring drainage planning).

Similar to Katrina and New Orleans, you can't really build an entire city in a swamp/low area and wonder when it floods. The water has to go somewhere.

pancakes

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14969 on: September 15, 2016, 11:35:21 PM »
Spendypants colleague started ranting defensively, claiming they are out of debt as they owe less than $1000 to family and they need furniture because it is "for the house which is an investment" (house is owned by their parents and a bank, and they pay far less than the mortgage to live there).

He is not too far off unfortunately.

Before the '09 crash I watched a lot of HGTV and home selling shows for a period of one to two months. Why I stopped watching was this:

  • There was one episode of a show where a lady and her husband were unable to their home.
    • It was one the market for over a year and not a single offer
    • That meant no one was even interested enough to give a lowball
  • An interior decorator (the hosts) comes in, spends sub-300$ in paint and pictures and curtains, and rearranges the furniture
  • Within a few weeks their is a bidding war and they get more than they listed their house for

I had to stop after watching this madness. Just three hundred dollars and a day of labour from an interior decorator turned the house from pathetic to attractive. If a lowball was 15,000 below the listed price and they got 5000 over it, just for how the house looked buyers where willing to pay more than an additional 20K. No one saw the beauty within the home or maybe people don't realize that they don't keep the furniture in the house they buy.

/rant

Ok if they were intending to sell the house and realise some profit from their modifications but they have no plans to sell it.

cerat0n1a

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14970 on: September 16, 2016, 12:50:35 AM »
I've wondered how much humans affect this, particularly in how drainage is managed. I know in my city we had some serious flooding within the past decade, but I think part of that is simply due to poor planning and drainage. Newer developments are deliberately and consciously managing this.

Where I live, there are a reasonable number of houses in the centre of the village which are 500 years old and which were known to have never flooded. They've all been flooded twice since 2000. Not because of global warming, sea level rises or anything like that, but solely due to drainage effects. New houses built on the edge of the village in the 1970s/1980s with non-permeable driveways and roads means the water gets to the river more quickly than when it just soaked into the ground. Farmers have improved field drainage by digging ditches and removing hedges and small areas of woodland. This again puts any excess rainfall into the river system much more quickly and so river levels rise far more rapidly than the past.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14971 on: September 16, 2016, 01:34:39 AM »
$1000.  For a phone. The mind boggles.

I'm often surprised that while computers (and consumer electronics in general) can be had so cheap (Mini PC <$100, Netbook < $200) so many people are still willing to pay vast amounts of money for the premium stuff.

When I first got into the computer business I was selling 360K Floppy drives for $1,500 each (circa 1983).  I had (government) customers at that time who were still winding their own core memories.  Moore's law in action!
My Cousin's first electrical engineering co-op job was winding core memories (switching tapes?) for a government system... in 1989, I think.  Not so long ago.

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arebelspy

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14972 on: September 16, 2016, 01:52:40 AM »
I've wondered how much humans affect this, particularly in how drainage is managed. I know in my city we had some serious flooding within the past decade, but I think part of that is simply due to poor planning and drainage. Newer developments are deliberately and consciously managing this.

Where I live, there are a reasonable number of houses in the centre of the village which are 500 years old and which were known to have never flooded. They've all been flooded twice since 2000. Not because of global warming, sea level rises or anything like that, but solely due to drainage effects. New houses built on the edge of the village in the 1970s/1980s with non-permeable driveways and roads means the water gets to the river more quickly than when it just soaked into the ground. Farmers have improved field drainage by digging ditches and removing hedges and small areas of woodland. This again puts any excess rainfall into the river system much more quickly and so river levels rise far more rapidly than the past.
That is a good explanation.  Thanks Ender/cerat!
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MrRealEstate

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14973 on: September 16, 2016, 04:40:06 AM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14974 on: September 16, 2016, 05:08:50 AM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.
DC appealed new flood zones (and won) around the time I was buying my house, so I was pretty concerned in finding an appropriate insurance amount. . The new (proposed) 100 year flood zone would have put 1/4 of the city (including the national mall, any fed buildings and almost all of the SW quadrant underwater once every 100 years. That's a huge change in insurance costs, but also would have changed the building code for the area in 100 year zone. There is a massive redevelopment effort underway on the waterfront in that quadrant. that would have required building redesign and increased insurance costs, new building footing if it fell in a flood zone. But DC appealed, so no need to listen to experts when we have tax bureaucrats deciding the proper building code based on what they want to pay rather than on science-predicted events.
Just thought that was interesting.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14975 on: September 16, 2016, 05:19:50 AM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.
DC appealed new flood zones (and won) around the time I was buying my house, so I was pretty concerned in finding an appropriate insurance amount. . The new (proposed) 100 year flood zone would have put 1/4 of the city (including the national mall, any fed buildings and almost all of the SW quadrant underwater once every 100 years. That's a huge change in insurance costs, but also would have changed the building code for the area in 100 year zone. There is a massive redevelopment effort underway on the waterfront in that quadrant. that would have required building redesign and increased insurance costs, new building footing if it fell in a flood zone. But DC appealed, so no need to listen to experts when we have tax bureaucrats deciding the proper building code based on what they want to pay rather than on science-predicted events.
Just thought that was interesting.

Here's a future news story: "the city of New Orleans has won the appeal to keep the French quarter in the 500 year flood zone. 'The low tide mark is only halfway across the quarter, there's no reason we'll see any flooding' one official was quoted as saying.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14976 on: September 16, 2016, 05:48:56 AM »
Guy I work with, his partner (male couple) has acquired expensive tastes doing his job as an interior designer....

Wanted to purchase a $26,000 lounge.... work mate said no, put the foot down.

The partner does high end designing jobs, last one he was given a budget of $450,000 to furnish a home... just furnishing, no building/renovating.

Easy to lose perspective I reckon. Gotta be careful you don't pick up the habits of those you serve as customers.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14977 on: September 16, 2016, 06:25:40 AM »
Guy I work with, his partner (male couple) has acquired expensive tastes doing his job as an interior designer....

Wanted to purchase a $26,000 lounge.... work mate said no, put the foot down.

The partner does high end designing jobs, last one he was given a budget of $450,000 to furnish a home... just furnishing, no building/renovating.

Easy to lose perspective I reckon. Gotta be careful you don't pick up the habits of those you serve as customers.

This happens all the time in the restaurant industry.  Employees will spend all day serving $20 entrees, with bills totaling $50 and up.  Then they'll go turn around and do the same, spending $50-$100 for 2 people on $10/hr.  Because they earned it.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14978 on: September 16, 2016, 07:19:04 AM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Quote
The new (proposed) 100 year flood zone would have put 1/4 of the city (including the national mall, any fed buildings and almost all of the SW quadrant underwater once every 100 years.

I think you all (and a lot of officials) fall for a common misconception here.
A 100 Year flood does not mean you get a flood every 100 years. It means the HIGHEST flood in 100 years is this amount.
There is nothing in this statistic saying you cant have 3 100-year floods (3 times the water gets that high) in one year. Or 50 times a 99year-high flood in 100 years.

My 2 cents: If you want a realistic danger, go for the 10 or at most 20 year flood. 20 year is what german drainage in cities is build for btw. And about once a month a city is flooded because the drainage cant keep up. Because there is more then 1 city.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14979 on: September 16, 2016, 07:54:46 AM »
Guy I work with, his partner (male couple) has acquired expensive tastes doing his job as an interior designer....

Wanted to purchase a $26,000 lounge.... work mate said no, put the foot down.

The partner does high end designing jobs, last one he was given a budget of $450,000 to furnish a home... just furnishing, no building/renovating.

Easy to lose perspective I reckon. Gotta be careful you don't pick up the habits of those you serve as customers.

This happens all the time in the restaurant industry.  Employees will spend all day serving $20 entrees, with bills totaling $50 and up.  Then they'll go turn around and do the same, spending $50-$100 for 2 people on $10/hr.  Because they earned it.

Yet, for the vast majority of the customers the $20 entrees are a treat of some kind for a birthday or anniversary. They come out a few times a year, except for a handful of regulars for whom the restaurant is part of a lifestyle they're committed to and a substitute for other forms of socializing (example: choosing to live in a studio apartment, using a restaurant or pub once a week to socialize with family and friends, and having a lower net cost overall). Going out once or twice a week and spending that amount is overdoing it.

Interestingly, I got an insight on staff culture at high-end restaurants when I briefly went out with a man who was a professional server. By this I mean in the French style, where people do it as a career instead of as a way to put themselves through school or pay the bills until the acting career takes off. It turns out that most of the career waiters don't care to spend their off hours in a restaurant because it's too much like the work environment. The last place this guy wanted to go on a date was out for dinner.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14980 on: September 16, 2016, 08:16:14 AM »
[Tangentially related to my biggest pet peeve about most modern construction. Cheap, shoddy construction hidden beneath a shiny veneer.

I'll second that. Anecdotes I know.

Watched a roofing crew put new shingles on an old house a few years back. No roofing felt under the shingles.

Replaced a door+frame on my house recently. Discovered builders did not wrap the house. Did not attach door frame to the studs. Did not put anything under the door threshold to shed water or seal out water.

Basically build it as quickly as possible and sell it. Our house is okay and problems are getting corrected as we do maintenance like replace HVAC, doors, floors, etc. Well I mean we are doing them to a higher standard than the builders originally did.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14981 on: September 16, 2016, 08:51:19 AM »
[Tangentially related to my biggest pet peeve about most modern construction. Cheap, shoddy construction hidden beneath a shiny veneer.

I'll second that. Anecdotes I know.

Watched a roofing crew put new shingles on an old house a few years back. No roofing felt under the shingles.

Replaced a door+frame on my house recently. Discovered builders did not wrap the house. Did not attach door frame to the studs. Did not put anything under the door threshold to shed water or seal out water.

Basically build it as quickly as possible and sell it. Our house is okay and problems are getting corrected as we do maintenance like replace HVAC, doors, floors, etc. Well I mean we are doing them to a higher standard than the builders originally did.

One of the reasons I am glad we bought a house built in 1927. Sure, being that old presents a different set of issues, but at least it has stood the test of time so far.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14982 on: September 16, 2016, 11:29:21 AM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

It doesn't quite work out like that.  If you own a house for 100 years you don't have 100% chance of it flooding.  Just like if you roll a die once, you have a 1/6 chance of rolling a 6, but two rolls doesn't equal 2/6 odds, or else 6 rolls would be 6/6 (100%) chance of rolling a 6.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14983 on: September 16, 2016, 11:33:57 AM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Quote
The new (proposed) 100 year flood zone would have put 1/4 of the city (including the national mall, any fed buildings and almost all of the SW quadrant underwater once every 100 years.

I think you all (and a lot of officials) fall for a common misconception here.
A 100 Year flood does not mean you get a flood every 100 years. It means the HIGHEST flood in 100 years is this amount.
There is nothing in this statistic saying you cant have 3 100-year floods (3 times the water gets that high) in one year. Or 50 times a 99year-high flood in 100 years.

My 2 cents: If you want a realistic danger, go for the 10 or at most 20 year flood. 20 year is what german drainage in cities is build for btw. And about once a month a city is flooded because the drainage cant keep up. Because there is more then 1 city.

GOOD point.  Bottom line is you can't really predict this stuff ... You can look at historical records but it's really hard to make odds on black swans.  Insurance companies try, but I'm not convinced they do a great job

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14984 on: September 16, 2016, 03:00:11 PM »
I have a van, and I am starting to see more and more that trucks serve no really useful purpose- that is, intrinsic to trucks and exempt from all other types of vehicles...

A van, YES! We love our 1996 Savana. It's daily transportation, it can haul things, and it's awesome for road/camping/sports trips. It's got a full-sized bed in the back with storage underneath, and room to prepare food and make coffee roadside or on rainy evenings in the campground or rest stop. And, full-sized vans hold their value pretty well.

Those goofy, jacked-up trucks with their comically pompous tires make us laugh.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14985 on: September 16, 2016, 03:23:45 PM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

It doesn't quite work out like that.  If you own a house for 100 years you don't have 100% chance of it flooding.  Just like if you roll a die once, you have a 1/6 chance of rolling a 6, but two rolls doesn't equal 2/6 odds, or else 6 rolls would be 6/6 (100%) chance of rolling a 6.

Mustache Math!  :D It pervades this forum...
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dragoncar

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14986 on: September 16, 2016, 09:49:39 PM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

It doesn't quite work out like that.  If you own a house for 100 years you don't have 100% chance of it flooding.  Just like if you roll a die once, you have a 1/6 chance of rolling a 6, but two rolls doesn't equal 2/6 odds, or else 6 rolls would be 6/6 (100%) chance of rolling a 6.

Mustache Math!  :D It pervades this forum...

That's not how it works, apparently, but if you have a 1/100 chance every year, then over 30 years you have a 26% chance, which is not that different from 30%.  So you can quibble about the calculations, but either way the bank is taking a big risk.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14987 on: September 17, 2016, 12:30:42 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Quote
The new (proposed) 100 year flood zone would have put 1/4 of the city (including the national mall, any fed buildings and almost all of the SW quadrant underwater once every 100 years.

I think you all (and a lot of officials) fall for a common misconception here.
A 100 Year flood does not mean you get a flood every 100 years. It means the HIGHEST flood in 100 years is this amount.
There is nothing in this statistic saying you cant have 3 100-year floods (3 times the water gets that high) in one year. Or 50 times a 99year-high flood in 100 years.

My 2 cents: If you want a realistic danger, go for the 10 or at most 20 year flood. 20 year is what german drainage in cities is build for btw. And about once a month a city is flooded because the drainage cant keep up. Because there is more then 1 city.

GOOD point.  Bottom line is you can't really predict this stuff ... You can look at historical records but it's really hard to make odds on black swans.  Insurance companies try, but I'm not convinced they do a great job

Insurance compynies are really freaked out about climate change. (Yes, including those in the US, because its their money :D ) They calculate that at the end of the century they will have to pay a multiple because of natural desasters then today. Which they dont like, because they have to increase premium and that means that 1) less profit because the one who goes up first loses customers and 2) less profit because there will be people who cancel all those insurances.

btw here is a picture from my town, that often baffles people when they first see it
http://britische-huetehunde.de/picture_library/Landesgruppentreffen/2008/WanderungJanuar08/wand0801087.JPG
Its a bridge on the green, centuries old. Most years it just stands there and children play (on the other side is a playground)
But if there is a flood the water flows not only in the real river bed but also in the old one, around the old lower city, just at the line of the old city wall (which doubles as flood wall in those times, the parts that are still standing) and under that grass bridge. Like here:
http://www.mz-web.de/image/7751256/2x1/940/470/e59ab8ddc18d19bc12016c7f4d76eee0/Py/am-waldauer-anger--1294645914575-.jpg
This bridge is then the only way you can take if you dont want to drive 40-50km more.

Just a few years ago there was a really huge flood, the highest ever I think, where the water was so high that even the ends of that bridge were flooded - and parts of the lower city.   


merula

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14988 on: September 18, 2016, 04:55:29 PM »
Insurance compynies are really freaked out about climate change. (Yes, including those in the US, because its their money :D ) They calculate that at the end of the century they will have to pay a multiple because of natural desasters then today. Which they dont like, because they have to increase premium and that means that 1) less profit because the one who goes up first loses customers and 2) less profit because there will be people who cancel all those insurances.

This is absolutely true. I work in insurance.

Y'know the old Upton Sinclair quote "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it"? Well, there are more industries who depend on maintaining the illusion that climate change NOT happening (oil, automotive, plastics manufacturing, construction, real estate, etc. etc.) than industries that benefit if climate change is recognized and addressed (insurance, clean energy/technology).

Which is kinda weird, when you think about it, because there's not much else those two industries have in common, and frankly the general culture of insurance hasn't done well at addressing climate change, but we're doing better than most, precisely because we need to be able to predict the future in order to make money. We set the rates we charge for flood and wind insurance based on predictions from past events, but we recognize that the past events can't fully predict the future anymore.

TL;DR: Climate change is happening; you can tell because people who stand to lose money if we ignore it are saying so.


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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14989 on: September 18, 2016, 06:32:53 PM »

TL;DR: Climate change is happening; you can tell because people who stand to lose money if we ignore it are saying so.

I used to find more climate change information in the business section of the paper than the (almost non-existent) science section.  When a forestry company chooses which trees to use in its re-forestry projects it is making decisions based on projected climate change.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14990 on: September 18, 2016, 09:05:18 PM »
Husband's (all-male) team got onto the subject of WAGs and spending last week*.

One of the guys complained that his live-in girlfriend (previously mentioned in this thread) buys at least one new lipstick each month. At a cost of $180 each.

More than $2k a year on lipstick.

When they first met, she gave him a tour of her shoes. "These were $1500, these were $500..." It was only after they moved in together that she 'fessed up to $30k in CC debt.

nnls

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14991 on: September 18, 2016, 09:08:22 PM »
Husband's (all-male) team got onto the subject of WAGs and spending last week*.

One of the guys complained that his live-in girlfriend (previously mentioned in this thread) buys at least one new lipstick each month. At a cost of $180 each.

More than $2k a year on lipstick.

When they first met, she gave him a tour of her shoes. "These were $1500, these were $500..." It was only after they moved in together that she 'fessed up to $30k in CC debt.

I dont think all my shoes combined would cost $500

nobodyspecial

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14992 on: September 18, 2016, 09:12:56 PM »
I dont think all my shoes combined would cost $500
Well that would be an awful lot of thongs !
 

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14993 on: September 18, 2016, 09:31:55 PM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

It doesn't quite work out like that.  If you own a house for 100 years you don't have 100% chance of it flooding.  Just like if you roll a die once, you have a 1/6 chance of rolling a 6, but two rolls doesn't equal 2/6 odds, or else 6 rolls would be 6/6 (100%) chance of rolling a 6.

Mustache Math!  :D It pervades this forum...

That's not how it works, apparently, but if you have a 1/100 chance every year, then over 30 years you have a 26% chance, which is not that different from 30%.  So you can quibble about the calculations, but either way the bank is taking a big risk.

The other thing to remember is that when you draw the 100 year flood zone, the likelihood is only 1/100 years at the far extent of the zone, any closer to the river/low point and you're in a higher risk zone. So you could say that the river bank was 'in the 100 year flood zone' and it could flood every time it rains. Most places in a 100 year flood zone have a higher than 1/100 risk of flooding every year.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14994 on: September 19, 2016, 09:52:22 AM »
Regarding a 100 year flood zone and a 30 year mortgage, the odds of the house flooding while being owned by the bank is 30%. I know it's obvious when it's spelled out, but most people don't put two and two together. They only are unhappy when the lender requires them to purchase flood insurance.

It doesn't quite work out like that.  If you own a house for 100 years you don't have 100% chance of it flooding.  Just like if you roll a die once, you have a 1/6 chance of rolling a 6, but two rolls doesn't equal 2/6 odds, or else 6 rolls would be 6/6 (100%) chance of rolling a 6.

Mustache Math!  :D It pervades this forum...

That's not how it works, apparently, but if you have a 1/100 chance every year, then over 30 years you have a 26% chance, which is not that different from 30%.  So you can quibble about the calculations, but either way the bank is taking a big risk.

The other thing to remember is that when you draw the 100 year flood zone, the likelihood is only 1/100 years at the far extent of the zone, any closer to the river/low point and you're in a higher risk zone. So you could say that the river bank was 'in the 100 year flood zone' and it could flood every time it rains. Most places in a 100 year flood zone have a higher than 1/100 risk of flooding every year.
The 26% number is calculated 1-e^(-p*t), this is the probability that it happens, not the probability it happens exactly once.  The expected value is still 0.3 (p*t).  In that 26%, there's a chance for it to have happened 100 times in those 30 years. 

Like in the dice rolling, the expected value when rolling 6 times is 1, but 0 is possible and up to 6 is possible.  In that case, there's a 67% chance that any given number happens.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14995 on: September 19, 2016, 01:32:48 PM »
We've had two 1/500 year floods here in the past 40 years, and about 3 1/100 year floods.
Indeed.  I've heard similar things often. 

And I'd question the accuracy not only due to data limitations, as mentioned above, but (even if those were all accurate and 100% known) due to the ability to project forward based on them, mostly due to the climate changing.

Keep in mind depending on the geographic area the "500 year flood" covers, it's not really unexpected that they wouldn't happen.

If for example you split the USA up into 500 pieces, you'd get a "500 year flood" about every year, give or take, and it wouldn't be overly surprising statistically.
The frequency of these floods based on historical trends does little to account for the fact that we've been taking land that has traditionally retained or absorbed storm water, and we're paving it over so its impermeable. As a result, we end up collecting all that storm water in catch basins and dumping it into the nearest body of water (polluting our rivers every time it rains). Thats only going to make things worse during a flood. I like what they're trying to do in Milwaukee by tearing up old stormwater trenches made of concrete, and adding grasses and plants to a permeable trench system so they tend to drain and retain water during the beginning of any rain event, and channel water out of the city to the treatment facility during long/heavy rain events.

Debts_of_Despair

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14996 on: September 19, 2016, 04:49:09 PM »
Feel free to start a new thread about flood insurance. :)

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14997 on: September 19, 2016, 06:04:19 PM »
A new thread?

pffft there are multiple mini-threads in this one already :P

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14998 on: September 19, 2016, 07:21:56 PM »
This happened over the course of the past few weeks with a coworker.  Guy probably makes $100K.

Him:  I'm glad fall is almost here, I'm tired of being broke all the time.
Me:  Say huh?
Him: Yeah, I'm spending like $150 a weekend in fuel for my boat.  The slip (boat parking spot) is like another $200 a month. 
Me:  Wow, I had no idea it cost that much.
Him:  Yeah, I think next week I'll pay to have it winterized and put it into storage.
Me:  Oh, how much does that cost?
Him:  I think the winterizing cost $200, then it's only $80/month for indoor storage.
Me:  Oh.  OK.

About a week later...

Me:  Done boating for the year?
Him:  Yeah, but I think I'm going to sell my boat.
Me:  Tired of spending money on it?
Him:  Kinda.  I think I'm going to sell it and get a newer one with an aluminum trailer so I don't have to buy a F250.  I don't like towing mine with my F150.
Me:  How much does that thing weigh?
Him:  About 10K loaded.  I only get about 8 MPG pulling it.
Me:  I wouldn't want to do that either.
Him:  I figure I can probably sell my boat for $15K, but I hate to do it because I have some equity in it, and a new one will be about $35K.  Can't buy a F250 for $20K, amiright!
Me:  Well, good luck.

Ugh.  That was painful to read.  Imagine it's even worse in person.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #14999 on: September 19, 2016, 08:55:45 PM »
Feel free to start a new thread about flood insurance. :)

What does the black box say?  How about the orange box?   These floods are foamy!