Author Topic: Overheard at Work  (Read 5303802 times)

oldtoyota

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #550 on: July 22, 2013, 07:55:31 PM »
Thanks for making me google. I've been making cake in a mug for some time now, but apparently the possibilities are endless:

http://www.number-2-pencil.com/2013/02/26/30-mug-recipes/

You can also make them in small canning jars and send them overseas to military service members--or anyone else who would be cheered by a little cake.

jrhampt

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #551 on: July 23, 2013, 02:44:35 PM »
Well for brownies you potentially have three bowls. One for wet, one for dry and one to melt butter in. 

Is this a homemade vs. box thing? I've never ever used 3 bowls to make brownies.

Word.  I actually mix the whole thing up in the baking pan and thus have one measuring cup and one baking pan.

Undecided

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #552 on: July 23, 2013, 03:03:56 PM »
Anyone who is or who has a relative considering law school, feel free to PM me. THE KEY is to IGNORE the usual advice (i.e. "go to the best law school you get into") and instead go to the best-ranked school that meets these three criteria: (1) gives you a significant scholarship and/or is otherwise dramatically cheaper than the other schools you got into--e.g., a public university instead of a private one; (2) is accredited and has been for at least 20 years, preferably much longer; and (3) is either located in a place where the kinds of post-law-school jobs you want are plentiful (hint: cities, especially "secondary" cities like Pittsburgh and Cleveland and such, are good for this--the firms there like to hire locally and thus will give you interviews even though you're not at a top-ranked school, and there's also often lots of courthouse, district attorney, etc. jobs).... or is a known feeder school for some esoteric kind of law job that you would like (e.g., maybe you want to go into environmental activism; there are a couple of law schools that are really known for that--unsurprisingly they're in Vermont and Oregon).

If you can't get into a school that meets ALL THREE criteria, DO NOT go to law school.

I suppose that's a strategy if it's consistent with your goals, but if you want to work in a high-profile transactional or litigation practice, for example, I wouldn't say that sounds like the best way to get there.

I went to a traditional top-5 law school (for which I paid a lot of money, sure) and then to a corporate practice at a "branch" office of a very prominent firm, in a market that was (and is) very desirable professionally and was also very desirable to me personally, but which I hadn't really considered before I started law school (and which was effectively as far away from my law school as could be, without leaving the U.S.). I later had the chance to spend some time working abroad for the same firm before coming back to the U.S. I've developed great (and very marketable) skills and a good professional network. I know that my choice of law school was the "safe" (but expensive) route into that kind of career, but I can't say I regret how it all worked out or that I begrudge my law school its tuition.   

rocklebock

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #553 on: July 24, 2013, 07:04:14 PM »
OK, I finally have something for this thread. Today a colleague invited me for lunch at the very exclusive athletic club she belongs to. It's basically an urban country club, if that makes any sense - there are enormous gym facilities that overlook a sports stadium, but also a restaurant, shop, meeting rooms, lounges, etc. Annual membership dues are over $10k. She has been a member for decades. She also confided that she doesn't actually use the gym. So $830+ per month, for years, for somewhere to socialize and eat. She and her partner are both retired from high-income professions, so at least it's probably in the budget.

The food was pretty average, if you're wondering.

On a related note, this same club is about to replace their private park (one city block) with a seven-story apartment building, which will also include 200+ new parking spots for members.

gooki

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #554 on: July 25, 2013, 01:16:28 AM »
Annual membership dues are over $10k. She has been a member for decades. She also confided that she doesn't actually use the gym.

Insane.
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AlmostIndependent

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #555 on: July 25, 2013, 01:25:24 AM »
Annual membership dues are over $10k. She has been a member for decades. She also confided that she doesn't actually use the gym.

Insane.

Understatement of the year.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #556 on: July 25, 2013, 08:32:12 AM »
That gym sounds like the equivalent of selling water - so crazy, it just might work! We'll make a fortune! Agh.

Daleth

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #557 on: July 25, 2013, 10:45:45 AM »
Anyone who is or who has a relative considering law school, feel free to PM me. THE KEY is to IGNORE the usual advice (i.e. "go to the best law school you get into") and instead go to the best-ranked school that meets these three criteria: (1) gives you a significant scholarship and/or is otherwise dramatically cheaper than the other schools you got into--e.g., a public university instead of a private one; (2) is accredited and has been for at least 20 years, preferably much longer; and (3) is either located in a place where the kinds of post-law-school jobs you want are plentiful (hint: cities, especially "secondary" cities like Pittsburgh and Cleveland and such, are good for this--the firms there like to hire locally and thus will give you interviews even though you're not at a top-ranked school, and there's also often lots of courthouse, district attorney, etc. jobs).... or is a known feeder school for some esoteric kind of law job that you would like (e.g., maybe you want to go into environmental activism; there are a couple of law schools that are really known for that--unsurprisingly they're in Vermont and Oregon).

If you can't get into a school that meets ALL THREE criteria, DO NOT go to law school.

I suppose that's a strategy if it's consistent with your goals, but if you want to work in a high-profile transactional or litigation practice, for example, I wouldn't say that sounds like the best way to get there.

I went to a traditional top-5 law school (for which I paid a lot of money, sure) and then to a corporate practice at a "branch" office of a very prominent firm, in a market that was (and is) very desirable professionally and was also very desirable to me personally, but which I hadn't really considered before I started law school (and which was effectively as far away from my law school as could be, without leaving the U.S.). I later had the chance to spend some time working abroad for the same firm before coming back to the U.S. I've developed great (and very marketable) skills and a good professional network. I know that my choice of law school was the "safe" (but expensive) route into that kind of career, but I can't say I regret how it all worked out or that I begrudge my law school its tuition.

What makes you assume that the advice given above wouldn't lead to high-profile transactional or litigation work? I can't give details without outing myself, but I followed the advice I set forth above, and here's where it took me: I was a summer associate at one of the top-25 law firms in the world and as a litigation associate there, I worked on some cases worth anywhere from $30 million to over $900 million, at least one of which was discussed some years back in detail on TV (CNN, among others). Because the firm has offices all over the world, transfer almost anywhere is possible (not just theoretically, but I actually discussed transferring to--again no detail so as not to out myself--a major Asian metropolis and a gorgeous city in Western Europe).

That's the kind of job I went to law school to get, and before choosing my school I looked at the websites of the firms I was interested in to confirm that I could get hired there from my school. Granted, it would've been hard to get hired into the firm's NYC office from my school, but they have an office in the city where my school was, and that's what made it possible. Two people from my graduating class were hired to that office, and most of the other hires in my year were from regional schools too (translation for non-lawyers: schools that are not nationally known and/or generally do not send graduates all over the country straight out of law school; rather, most graduates of regional schools at least start their careers in the same region).

And my brother did about the same thing. He did go to a "national" school, but one ranked lower than Harvard, which he also got into. He paid *no* tuition--it was all covered by his merit scholarship--and went on to clerk at a federal appeals court, work as a litigation associate at two of the biggest law firms in the country and then become a professor at a well-ranked law school.

And in case anyone here suspects that the options my brother and I had are not open to everyone, I just want to mention that there was no affirmative action going on here. I'm talking about merit scholarships that are open to everyone.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2013, 10:48:58 AM by Daleth »

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #558 on: July 25, 2013, 11:24:51 AM »
Anyone who is or who has a relative considering law school, feel free to PM me. THE KEY is to IGNORE the usual advice (i.e. "go to the best law school you get into") and instead go to the best-ranked school that meets these three criteria: (1) gives you a significant scholarship and/or is otherwise dramatically cheaper than the other schools you got into--e.g., a public university instead of a private one; (2) is accredited and has been for at least 20 years, preferably much longer; and (3) is either located in a place where the kinds of post-law-school jobs you want are plentiful (hint: cities, especially "secondary" cities like Pittsburgh and Cleveland and such, are good for this--the firms there like to hire locally and thus will give you interviews even though you're not at a top-ranked school, and there's also often lots of courthouse, district attorney, etc. jobs).... or is a known feeder school for some esoteric kind of law job that you would like (e.g., maybe you want to go into environmental activism; there are a couple of law schools that are really known for that--unsurprisingly they're in Vermont and Oregon).

If you can't get into a school that meets ALL THREE criteria, DO NOT go to law school.

I suppose that's a strategy if it's consistent with your goals, but if you want to work in a high-profile transactional or litigation practice, for example, I wouldn't say that sounds like the best way to get there.


What makes you assume that the advice given above wouldn't lead to high-profile transactional or litigation work?

I know you're a litigator, but you're trying to dispute something I never said. Your personal success aside, I still wouldn't say that sounds like the best way to get there. I expressly acknowledged in my post that my route was the "safe" one to such an outcome---hardly a claim that nobody will get there through a different path.

DougStache

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #559 on: July 31, 2013, 08:31:42 PM »
This is pretty tame compared to most posts here, however it reminded me of the reality most people limit themselves to.

A coworker of mine and his wife have two cars.  Currently, one is in the shop.  Since his wife had an appointment this morning, he was unable to come into work (7 miles from home) because they only have one working car.  This is in a city that has (in my opinion) great and cheap public transit, and is remarkably bike-able. 

It leaves me flabbergasted that my fourth transportation option (walk -> bike -> bus -> *car*) is most people's ONLY transportation option.  But then again, just 3-4 months ago *I* considered it my only transportation options; my how times change :)

chesebert

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #560 on: August 01, 2013, 12:16:46 AM »
Anyone who is or who has a relative considering law school, feel free to PM me. THE KEY is to IGNORE the usual advice (i.e. "go to the best law school you get into") and instead go to the best-ranked school that meets these three criteria: (1) gives you a significant scholarship and/or is otherwise dramatically cheaper than the other schools you got into--e.g., a public university instead of a private one; (2) is accredited and has been for at least 20 years, preferably much longer; and (3) is either located in a place where the kinds of post-law-school jobs you want are plentiful (hint: cities, especially "secondary" cities like Pittsburgh and Cleveland and such, are good for this--the firms there like to hire locally and thus will give you interviews even though you're not at a top-ranked school, and there's also often lots of courthouse, district attorney, etc. jobs).... or is a known feeder school for some esoteric kind of law job that you would like (e.g., maybe you want to go into environmental activism; there are a couple of law schools that are really known for that--unsurprisingly they're in Vermont and Oregon).

If you can't get into a school that meets ALL THREE criteria, DO NOT go to law school.

I suppose that's a strategy if it's consistent with your goals, but if you want to work in a high-profile transactional or litigation practice, for example, I wouldn't say that sounds like the best way to get there.

I went to a traditional top-5 law school (for which I paid a lot of money, sure) and then to a corporate practice at a "branch" office of a very prominent firm, in a market that was (and is) very desirable professionally and was also very desirable to me personally, but which I hadn't really considered before I started law school (and which was effectively as far away from my law school as could be, without leaving the U.S.). I later had the chance to spend some time working abroad for the same firm before coming back to the U.S. I've developed great (and very marketable) skills and a good professional network. I know that my choice of law school was the "safe" (but expensive) route into that kind of career, but I can't say I regret how it all worked out or that I begrudge my law school its tuition.

What makes you assume that the advice given above wouldn't lead to high-profile transactional or litigation work? I can't give details without outing myself, but I followed the advice I set forth above, and here's where it took me: I was a summer associate at one of the top-25 law firms in the world and as a litigation associate there, I worked on some cases worth anywhere from $30 million to over $900 million, at least one of which was discussed some years back in detail on TV (CNN, among others). Because the firm has offices all over the world, transfer almost anywhere is possible (not just theoretically, but I actually discussed transferring to--again no detail so as not to out myself--a major Asian metropolis and a gorgeous city in Western Europe).
I generally agree with Undecided but I think your advice on law school is not without marginal merit - obviously it worked out great for you.

What I imply and understand from your responses is that (i) you and your brother are very smart, (ii) you are very hard working and (iii) you are very lucky.

I believe "luck" played an important role in your success and you are trying to generalize an outlier case to law students in general. Typically top-25 law firms do not hire from lower ranked regional schools unless (i) you are in the top of your class after the first year and you remained in the top of your class throughout law school or (ii) there is the x factor that plays in your favor (e.g., your dad is the chief legal counsel at a F50 company). I presume you belonged with the frist group (otherwise your advice would be toally meaningless). However, telling prospective law students that they can go to a regional school and have a shot at a top-25 firm if only they make it to the top 1% is disingenuous, as 99% of them will fail by definition.

If you want to share your sucess story with prospective law students, you should do that on the other more dedicated websites. Law school is probably no longer a good investment and is therefore antimustachian IMHO (going for free is not mustachian if you can otherwise make $50k/yr). 


« Last Edit: August 01, 2013, 12:19:12 AM by chesebert »

mpbaker22

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #561 on: August 01, 2013, 08:25:32 AM »
A coworker of mine and his wife have two cars.  Currently, one is in the shop.  Since his wife had an appointment this morning, he was unable to come into work (7 miles from home) because they only have one working car.  This is in a city that has (in my opinion) great and cheap public transit, and is remarkably bike-able. 

It leaves me flabbergasted that my fourth transportation option (walk -> bike -> bus -> *car*) is most people's ONLY transportation option.  But then again, just 3-4 months ago *I* considered it my only transportation options; my how times change :)

I can see both sides.  I'm now a multi-use commuter.  I ride my bike half the time and drive the other half.  Walking is out of the question since it's 13 miles, and bus is a no-go for other reasons.

It's nice to have the feeling that if I got into an accident or my car just broke down (it does have 156k miles), I could ride my bike every day till the issue was fixed.  It certainly saves the stupidity of having car rental on your insurance!
My conclusion - This is a perfect situation to poke fun of as anti-mustachian.

MissStache

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #562 on: August 01, 2013, 08:51:51 AM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.  Drives to the train.  Takes the train to the Metro.  Takes the metro to work.

And then once he gets to work he buys breakfast for himself at Panera because it's "been such a long trip."

I was so atonished I just stared at him open-mouthed.  He laughed "The only thing I do at home is sleep!"  I asked why he lived so far away and he said "I just love living in the country- it is so beautiful out there." 

Me: "...but you just said you're never there!"
Him: "...yeah, I guess you're right.  Hmmm..."

And then he wandered off with a pensive look in his eye.  Maybe he  will see the light!

mpbaker22

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #563 on: August 01, 2013, 09:01:34 AM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.  Drives to the train.  Takes the train to the Metro.  Takes the metro to work.

And then once he gets to work he buys breakfast for himself at Panera because it's "been such a long trip."

I was so atonished I just stared at him open-mouthed.  He laughed "The only thing I do at home is sleep!"  I asked why he lived so far away and he said "I just love living in the country- it is so beautiful out there." 

Me: "...but you just said you're never there!"
Him: "...yeah, I guess you're right.  Hmmm..."

And then he wandered off with a pensive look in his eye.  Maybe he  will see the light!

Yep, I talked to a guy at my company who commuted 100 miles each way to work.  Even driving 10 mph over the speed limit and 20 mph over in the city, that's a 2.5 hour trip each day.  So, it's not quite as long, but at those speeds, he's spending $35/day in gas.

lisahi

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #564 on: August 01, 2013, 09:34:10 AM »
I generally agree with Undecided but I think your advice on law school is not without marginal merit - obviously it worked out great for you.

What I imply and understand from your responses is that (i) you and your brother are very smart, (ii) you are very hard working and (iii) you are very lucky.

I believe "luck" played an important role in your success and you are trying to generalize an outlier case to law students in general. Typically top-25 law firms do not hire from lower ranked regional schools unless (i) you are in the top of your class after the first year and you remained in the top of your class throughout law school or (ii) there is the x factor that plays in your favor (e.g., your dad is the chief legal counsel at a F50 company). I presume you belonged with the frist group (otherwise your advice would be toally meaningless). However, telling prospective law students that they can go to a regional school and have a shot at a top-25 firm if only they make it to the top 1% is disingenuous, as 99% of them will fail by definition.

If you want to share your sucess story with prospective law students, you should do that on the other more dedicated websites. Law school is probably no longer a good investment and is therefore antimustachian IMHO (going for free is not mustachian if you can otherwise make $50k/yr).

I was agreeing with your right up until your last paragraph. Especially the "going for free" part. So you can make $50k per year for the 3 years you are in law school (going for free)? Chances are, even in this economy, you'll be making more than that after you graduate from law school. I work as an attorney for the government, so I make less than your average attorney. I still make more than $50k per year. In the long run, a free law school experience will put you ahead money-wise.

For me, I have law school loans. I'm still able to set aside quite a bit of money for retirement. And my job is awesome.

chesebert

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #565 on: August 01, 2013, 09:58:34 AM »
I generally agree with Undecided but I think your advice on law school is not without marginal merit - obviously it worked out great for you.

What I imply and understand from your responses is that (i) you and your brother are very smart, (ii) you are very hard working and (iii) you are very lucky.

I believe "luck" played an important role in your success and you are trying to generalize an outlier case to law students in general. Typically top-25 law firms do not hire from lower ranked regional schools unless (i) you are in the top of your class after the first year and you remained in the top of your class throughout law school or (ii) there is the x factor that plays in your favor (e.g., your dad is the chief legal counsel at a F50 company). I presume you belonged with the frist group (otherwise your advice would be toally meaningless). However, telling prospective law students that they can go to a regional school and have a shot at a top-25 firm if only they make it to the top 1% is disingenuous, as 99% of them will fail by definition.

If you want to share your sucess story with prospective law students, you should do that on the other more dedicated websites. Law school is probably no longer a good investment and is therefore antimustachian IMHO (going for free is not mustachian if you can otherwise make $50k/yr).

I was agreeing with your right up until your last paragraph. Especially the "going for free" part. So you can make $50k per year for the 3 years you are in law school (going for free)? Chances are, even in this economy, you'll be making more than that after you graduate from law school. I work as an attorney for the government, so I make less than your average attorney. I still make more than $50k per year. In the long run, a free law school experience will put you ahead money-wise.

For me, I have law school loans. I'm still able to set aside quite a bit of money for retirement. And my job is awesome.
going for free is not maynot be mustachian if you can otherwise make $50k/yr.

Error corrected. I think going to the worst ABA accredited school in the country for free is probably worse than making $50k/yr for the three years you are in school (not counting loans for living expenses).

AlmostIndependent

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #566 on: August 01, 2013, 10:04:29 AM »
commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day. 

Holy shit. That's 6 hours a day. 30 hours a week. I know people who work 30 hours a week and get benefits. Fucking insane.
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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #567 on: August 01, 2013, 10:54:45 AM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.  Drives to the train.  Takes the train to the Metro.  Takes the metro to work.

I know a guy who commutes 2 h one way, but he didn't really design it that way. It started out at 1 h 20 min, but the the company and his job which he likes moved 40 min in the opposite direction of the house he had recently bought.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #568 on: August 01, 2013, 11:19:29 AM »
I know a guy who commutes 2 h one way, but he didn't really design it that way. It started out at 1 h 20 min, but the the company and his job which he likes moved 40 min in the opposite direction of the house he had recently bought.

I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through.

He'd have max 2 hours to make/eat dinner buy and eat dinner at McDonalds, relax and get ready for work the next day. Yup... I'd definitely go mental...
Corrected it for you ;)

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #569 on: August 01, 2013, 11:21:35 AM »
I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through
Are you far enough that you have to shower?

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #570 on: August 01, 2013, 11:30:23 AM »
I know a guy who commutes 2 h one way, but he didn't really design it that way. It started out at 1 h 20 min, but the the company and his job which he likes moved 40 min in the opposite direction of the house he had recently bought.

I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through.

It's complicated sometimes, his wife is a teacher and they live a cycling distance from her school...

mpbaker22

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #571 on: August 01, 2013, 11:34:31 AM »
I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through
Are you far enough that you have to shower?

I think 13 miles qualifies

MissStache

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #572 on: August 01, 2013, 11:57:19 AM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.

Holy crap sticks Batman! As said... that's like... 30 God damn hours a WEEK. I'd go utterly mental! The only reason I don't really mind my 1 hour commute is because it's on a train and I can read useful books on it for that time. Also it's free :P

I can't even imagine a day in the life of that guy. Getting in at 9am you'd need to leave at 6am... which means getting up at least by 5:30am. Then you'd only get home at 8pm and (given you're getting up so early) have to go to bed reasonably early (say 10pm). He'd have max 2 hours to make/eat dinner, relax and get ready for work the next day. Yup... I'd definitely go mental...

He gets up at 3 fucking forty five in the morning so he has time to go to Panera before he gets to work at 8:00.  EVERTHING ABOUT THAT IS NUTS!

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #573 on: August 01, 2013, 12:11:01 PM »

I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through

Have you considered an electric-assist bike? You plug it in to charge, and it gives you between 14 (cheap) and 30 (expensive, $1500 or so) miles of electric assistance. You still get exercise, but you put in half the effort and get to work sweat-free.

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #574 on: August 01, 2013, 12:11:42 PM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.

Holy crap sticks Batman! As said... that's like... 30 God damn hours a WEEK. I'd go utterly mental! The only reason I don't really mind my 1 hour commute is because it's on a train and I can read useful books on it for that time. Also it's free :P

I can't even imagine a day in the life of that guy. Getting in at 9am you'd need to leave at 6am... which means getting up at least by 5:30am. Then you'd only get home at 8pm and (given you're getting up so early) have to go to bed reasonably early (say 10pm). He'd have max 2 hours to make/eat dinner, relax and get ready for work the next day. Yup... I'd definitely go mental...

He gets up at 3 fucking forty five in the morning so he has time to go to Panera before he gets to work at 8:00.  EVERTHING ABOUT THAT IS NUTS!
....I am utterly baffled. However he just made me feel much better about my 30 mile, 35 minute commute

mpbaker22

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #575 on: August 01, 2013, 12:39:02 PM »

I guess if you like the job ... My company is considering moving me 4 miles, but the new offices won't have showers so no more bike commuting, and I'm very seriously considering quitting if it goes through

Have you considered an electric-assist bike? You plug it in to charge, and it gives you between 14 (cheap) and 30 (expensive, $1500 or so) miles of electric assistance. You still get exercise, but you put in half the effort and get to work sweat-free.

1) If I was going to spend $1500 on this, I'd just buy a motorcycle.
2) What's the point of riding a bike for exercise if you only put in half the effort?  Also, I'm pretty sure if I do half effort, I'll still be sweaty.

The idea isn't all that bad, it just doesn't look like something that's actually useful for me.

Upon further review, it looks like US law maxes these things out at 20 mph which seems even less useful.  I suppose it's still good going up hills or into a wind?  It must kick on and off making those easier?
It seems a loophole created a specialized bike that goes 28 mph, but it's $6000 (more than my car)
« Last Edit: August 01, 2013, 12:45:15 PM by mpbaker22 »

russianswinga

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #576 on: August 01, 2013, 02:04:45 PM »

1) If I was going to spend $1500 on this, I'd just buy a motorcycle.
2) What's the point of riding a bike for exercise if you only put in half the effort?  Also, I'm pretty sure if I do half effort, I'll still be sweaty.

The idea isn't all that bad, it just doesn't look like something that's actually useful for me.


Peugeot has some amazing electric bicycles, but of course, they're not sold in the US, and shipping them in a crate would cost thousands.
US has some Chinese ones, and some of them actually don't suck...
http://www.currietech.com/izip-electric-bikes/
The idea behind electric assist isn't that you just put in half the effort - it's to make it a feasible mode of transportation over a (relatively) long distance, and to tackle hills with the same amount of effort you would normally pedal.
Besides, you can always turn electric assist off.

I'd say it's still a pretty mustachian way of transportation. A motorcycle requires an M license, this doesn't and stays in the bike lane. Plus I'd never ride a motorized widowmaker, no matter how sexy a Ducati may look.

zinnie

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #577 on: August 01, 2013, 02:47:23 PM »
I finally have a story! My coworker frequently mentions renting a car for weekend excursions--most of these are to surrounding areas, 100 miles away or less. She rented an SUV to drive to the mountains in the summer, and another sedan to drive to other California cities. She has a Volvo sedan, not older than probably two years, which she bought new when she started this job. I finally got up the courage to ask why she was renting another car for trips. The conversation went like this:

Me: Maybe this is a dumb question, but why are you renting a car to go to LA?
Her: I don't want to put the miles on mine. I want to keep it in perfect condition for resale value.
Me: Oh, I see

That makes perfect sense, right? Buy an expensive car new and then refuse to drive it farther than a few miles? This rationale seems particularly silly considering she lives 20 miles from work, so she's putting 40 miles a day on it just living her normal life...






Maigahane

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #578 on: August 01, 2013, 03:01:11 PM »
That makes perfect sense, right? Buy an expensive car new and then refuse to drive it farther than a few miles?
I NEVER understood this. My roommate bought an expensive-to-him car and planned on driving his old truck instead of putting miles on the car... though guess how long that lasted. If only the truck would go away now....
And I had a friend just buy a brand spanking new Camaro with a 7 year loan and only plans on driving it about 5k miles a year because he's keeping his more practical car for every day use. Considering how many of these are on the road now it's not going to hold it's value all that well so I figured he's spending something like $1.39/mile BEFORE gas, tires, and fluids

dweebyhawkeyes

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #579 on: August 01, 2013, 08:48:47 PM »

1) If I was going to spend $1500 on this, I'd just buy a motorcycle.
2) What's the point of riding a bike for exercise if you only put in half the effort?  Also, I'm pretty sure if I do half effort, I'll still be sweaty.

The idea isn't all that bad, it just doesn't look like something that's actually useful for me.

I love love love my electric bicycle so I have to plug it here. I have a discontinued Giant Twist and it allows me to scale my super-hilly commute. I can honestly say that the only level part of my commute is a 100 foot stretch. You don't have to turn the assist on unless you are climbing a particularly nasty hill. It's probably just my particular bicycle, but I'm definitely pedaling way harder up a hill with assist than on level ground without assist. I do arrive to work sweaty and energized, but I'm sure you could buy a bike with much better performance so you don't sweat. Unlike a motorcycle, it's still legally a bike so zipping past traffic in the margins is possible. :] Also, it's much cheaper to maintain than a motorcycle. No gas. I charge the battery once a week for three hours. Love it and probably would've sunk thousands into a car by now if electric bicycles weren't an option. (Disclosure: I am a pretty wussy sedentary person so this slightly wussy option is perfect for me. YMMV)

If you live anywhere near Seattle, Electric & Folding Bikes Northwest in Fremont are the most knowledgeable, kindest, honest bicycle people out there. Buy from them. /shameless plug

geekette

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #580 on: August 01, 2013, 09:27:34 PM »
Ooooh, my SIL has a BionX which I LOVE - levels out the hills, as you say.  She used it for a pretty long commute (15 miles?)  With it, she could mostly travel on bike trails.  She's since quit that job and I hope she'll leave it here on the east coast when she heads west in a bit, IYKWIM.

Daleth

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #581 on: August 02, 2013, 12:38:08 PM »
Chesebert, I definitely acknowledge the role luck plays in my success (and in everything), but to be clear, this is not an "outlier" situation. I wasn't trying to say that you can go to any regional law school and expect to land at a top firm--there's a very important point missing from that: this method only works if you go to a regional school that is LOCATED IN a second or third-tier city where some top firms HAVE OFFICES.
 
Here's an example to show what I mean. We can both agree, no doubt, that Jones Day is a top law firm, right? They're huge and they pay well over $100k to students right out of law school (I think it's in the $130k-$160k range, depending on "market," i.e. depending what city the office is in). If you want to waltz straight from law school into a job at Jones Day in New York, San Francisco, etc., then yeah, you need to go to a major name-brand national law school, because everyone wants to live in those cities and competition is fierce.
 
But Jones Day has an office in Cleveland. And if you look at their website--if you go to the "people" section and run a search on "Case Western," which is the local regional law school--you'll see that this world-class law firm's Cleveland office has tons of lawyers who graduated from Case Western. Why? Because unlike New York, Cleveland is not a city that anyone really dreams of living in, and the last thing a law firm wants to do is hire a new grad from Harvard or wherever, spend hundreds of thousands of bucks in salary and benefits to get them trained as a competent young lawyer (which takes a good 2-3 years or so), and then have them up sticks and bolt for another firm in a fancier city. They prefer to hire people with demonstrable local ties, because that greatly increases the chances that those people will stick around long enough for the firm to start getting some payback on what it spent training them. And so big firms with offices in these second or third-tier cities will do on-campus interviews at the local law schools, solely to hire to the local office.
 
And once you're hired locally, if you've been there a few years and are doing well I've seen cases where the person wanted to move to a fancier city and the big firm, rather than see them go, gave them a job at the firm's office in said fancy city. So you can end up debt free and working right next to the high flyers with $200k in loans, or you can stay where you are and have a great life earning a ton of money in a secondary and much CHEAPER city.
 
So that's the path I followed, but it's possible to do something like that with major national schools too. For instance, my sibling went to a major national school and got a big-firm job in a fancy city right out of school--but the major national school gave him/her a free ride, because he/she also got into Harvard and the other school, seeing that he/she was obviously Harvard material, offered a free ride if he/she would come to them instead. That's how it works: if you can get into a school that's ranked X, you can get a scholarship at a school that's ranked distinctly lower, and if that lower-ranked school is either (1) still a name-brand school or (2) in a secondary city where the firms you want to work for have offices, you're good to go.
 
As for whether it's Mustachian (since you said "going for free is not mustachian if you can otherwise make $50k/year"), there are a couple reasons I disagree with you there.
 
First, there are still many six-figure jobs out there awaiting freshly graduated young lawyers; in secondary cities those jobs tend to pay in the $110k-$130k range to start.
 
Second, before law school I could've made $50k working in advertising (I interviewed for such jobs, and indeed years before law school I held one for about three months until they started layoffs), but there's a definite ceiling on what you can earn from such jobs; there is no point where you can make partner and suddenly vault into the mid-six figures or low sevens, and your options if you do get laid off or want to work independently are more limited. I mean, the worst-case scenario other than prolonged unemployment is you end up temping, but lawyer temps earn way more than graphic design or copywriting temps.
 
Finally, corporate jobs usually treat employees in a very undignified way--in particular, layoffs happen with no warning or severance pay (big law firms usually give lawyers a few months' notice). That can be financially and emotionally very difficult, and it also makes it harder to get a new gig (whereas if you're a lawyer knowing you're likely to be canned in a couple of months, you apply for new jobs from a position of power: "currently employed").
 
So it may look like an apples-to-apples comparison NOW, but the $50k law job and the $50k corporate job are not really comparable long-term.
 

mpbaker22

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #582 on: August 02, 2013, 12:40:34 PM »

1) If I was going to spend $1500 on this, I'd just buy a motorcycle.
2) What's the point of riding a bike for exercise if you only put in half the effort?  Also, I'm pretty sure if I do half effort, I'll still be sweaty.

The idea isn't all that bad, it just doesn't look like something that's actually useful for me.

I love love love my electric bicycle so I have to plug it here. I have a discontinued Giant Twist and it allows me to scale my super-hilly commute. I can honestly say that the only level part of my commute is a 100 foot stretch. You don't have to turn the assist on unless you are climbing a particularly nasty hill. It's probably just my particular bicycle, but I'm definitely pedaling way harder up a hill with assist than on level ground without assist. I do arrive to work sweaty and energized, but I'm sure you could buy a bike with much better performance so you don't sweat. Unlike a motorcycle, it's still legally a bike so zipping past traffic in the margins is possible. :] Also, it's much cheaper to maintain than a motorcycle. No gas. I charge the battery once a week for three hours. Love it and probably would've sunk thousands into a car by now if electric bicycles weren't an option. (Disclosure: I am a pretty wussy sedentary person so this slightly wussy option is perfect for me. YMMV)

If you live anywhere near Seattle, Electric & Folding Bikes Northwest in Fremont are the most knowledgeable, kindest, honest bicycle people out there. Buy from them. /shameless plug

May not be necessary since the woman specifically pushing our building move actually just announced she's switching jobs and will be going to that building on her own ...

On another note, I can't tell if I love or hate the multiple inter-woven conversations on this thread.

tuyop

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #583 on: August 02, 2013, 12:43:15 PM »
That Giant Twist weighs 46 pounds. The electric assist better be fucking awesome to make up for more than 20 pounds of bicycle weight.

Combine that with a more aggressive, aerodynamic position in a real bike and you might find that your commute is easier without the silly lead-acid boat anchor.

But, as long as you're happy then great! :)

smalllife

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #584 on: August 02, 2013, 01:33:56 PM »
That Giant Twist weighs 46 pounds. The electric assist better be fucking awesome to make up for more than 20 pounds of bicycle weight.

Combine that with a more aggressive, aerodynamic position in a real bike and you might find that your commute is easier without the silly lead-acid boat anchor.

But, as long as you're happy then great! :)

Ha, that's less than my mid-70s workhorse commuter (55 lbs)!  No electric assist, just good old fashioned steel.    Guess I need to get a real bike . . .   

And yes, I am happy with my salvaged bike that I got for free ;-)
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tuyop

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #585 on: August 02, 2013, 01:54:57 PM »
Man I recently did a half century (50 miles) on a 32-pound aluminum department store "road bike" with a broken front derailleur and mountain bike shifters and I thought I was hard. Good training, though!

minimalist

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #586 on: August 03, 2013, 12:24:57 PM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.

You commute ONE AND HALF HOURS ONE WAY to get to work. ;)

My commute is 15 minutes, so your commute relative to mine is probably as absurd as his is to yours.

Peanut Butter

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #587 on: August 03, 2013, 04:37:51 PM »
I was minding my own business at some family function when I heard my brother's long time girlfriend say she spent $300 on a sweater!  Beer almost started spewing out my nose as I whirled around.  THEN I realized it wasn't for her it was for her dog!!! 

You could tell she was guilty about it because she immediately got beat red and tried to change the subject quickly.  This was pre MMM but I still just raked her over the coals for being a dunce. The worst part is I am sure she talked to her side of the family and it was completely acceptable. 

PS - She probably makes 75k has probably 250k of debt and regularly buys designer clothes which cost minimum 150 $/piece.

Wow...I could never justify $300 for a dog sweater. Granted, I might justify spending hours creating a dog costume for Halloween...but even paying myself $50/hr wouldn't be that much.

I could see myself spending ~$300 on nice Norwegian or Shetland wool yarn to knit myself a sweater. But that money would come from the "entertainment/hobbies" part of the budget, not clothing.

Peanut Butter

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #588 on: August 03, 2013, 04:57:26 PM »
That Giant Twist weighs 46 pounds. The electric assist better be fucking awesome to make up for more than 20 pounds of bicycle weight.

Combine that with a more aggressive, aerodynamic position in a real bike and you might find that your commute is easier without the silly lead-acid boat anchor.

But, as long as you're happy then great! :)

Ha, that's less than my mid-70s workhorse commuter (55 lbs)!  No electric assist, just good old fashioned steel.    Guess I need to get a real bike . . .   

And yes, I am happy with my salvaged bike that I got for free ;-)

My commuter bike is 56 lbs unloaded. Windsor Kensington 8 from Bikesdirect.com. I call it The Beast.

Tempe

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #589 on: August 04, 2013, 08:25:04 AM »
I recently bought a 2003 car for 2800$ in cash. My car insurance is 52$ a month. My 19 year old coworker bought a 2007 2 door car with a loan. I'm unsure how much the car was, but she is paying 250$ a month for the car insurance alone D: and then has since mentioned she is struggling making payments alongside her student loans. We work in a salon and spa, so our incomes can vary wildly week to week and I just shook my head. I have hope for her since she recently asked how do I not spend money in a conversation, but in the mean time I'm still shaking my head.

StarswirlTheMustached

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #590 on: August 04, 2013, 03:31:12 PM »
I've never weighed my bike, but I do know that it's really, really hard to lift it over my head after a Critical Mass ride. Of course, I'm the typical twiggy cyclist, so maybe that's not saying much...

To be relevant to the thread:
During my undergrad, I had the 'pleasure' of having a classmate who had an apartment, though her parents lived in the city; had a car, though students ride the bus free, and she was on the direct route; got a new Macbook every year, though she only used it for websurfing; and had a gold-plated iPhone case. She whined endlessly about her student debt; she even went so far as to try and get people disqualified from a merit-based scholarship that she didn't have the marks for because they didn't "need" the money as badly as her.

whiskerstash

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #591 on: August 04, 2013, 07:11:23 PM »
Not work, but finally got one!

My friend convinced her uncle to by a brand new 2013 Ford F-150 who by the way is 60 years old, hasn't finished paying off his house and doesn't have a lot in the way of money. When I asked her why she talked him into it, she said,

"He has been working so many years and really deserves something 'nice'".

My response, "What he really deserves it to be able to to retire comfortably w/out having to worry about working longer than he has to".

Her response, "yeaahh, but you know, everyone's definition of success is different, even if it does take him a few years to pay it off"

SMH...
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brewer12345

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #592 on: August 05, 2013, 11:25:33 AM »
Geez...just left a conversation with a coworker who commutes THREE HOURS ONE WAY to get to work each day.  Drives to the train.  Takes the train to the Metro.  Takes the metro to work.

And then once he gets to work he buys breakfast for himself at Panera because it's "been such a long trip."

I was so atonished I just stared at him open-mouthed.  He laughed "The only thing I do at home is sleep!"  I asked why he lived so far away and he said "I just love living in the country- it is so beautiful out there." 

Me: "...but you just said you're never there!"
Him: "...yeah, I guess you're right.  Hmmm..."

And then he wandered off with a pensive look in his eye.  Maybe he  will see the light!

I commuted 70 miles each way between central NJ and Greenwich, CT.  This was all by car and I did it for 3.5 years.  It was ugly, to say the least.  In the mornings, it was reliably an hour and 45 minutes, since I would get up at 4:45, drive in, hit the gym, shower and get to work by 8 at the latest.  On the way home it could be over 3 hours sometimes and varied based on traffic.  Man, am I glad that is in the rearview mirror.
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Jamesqf

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #593 on: August 05, 2013, 12:09:34 PM »
He tried to tell me that we should do what they do in the US where they encourage everyone to get rid of their cars every 3 years and buy a new one because it stimulated the car making industry.

Someone has a false impression of US car ownership.  Some other countries are much worse for encouraging - indeed, you could almost say forcing - people to get rid of perfectly servicable older vehicles.  Japan is notorious for forcing people to scrap newish cars (which are often exported to other markets, or as parts).  Britain isn't a whole lot better...

tuyop

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #594 on: August 05, 2013, 04:09:27 PM »
He tried to tell me that we should do what they do in the US where they encourage everyone to get rid of their cars every 3 years and buy a new one because it stimulated the car making industry.

Someone has a false impression of US car ownership.  Some other countries are much worse for encouraging - indeed, you could almost say forcing - people to get rid of perfectly servicable older vehicles.  Japan is notorious for forcing people to scrap newish cars (which are often exported to other markets, or as parts).  Britain isn't a whole lot better...

What do you mean by "force"? Do the Japanese secret police make rounds of parking lots and driveways on the lookout for late model vehicles and immobilize the ones that they don't approve of?

In Canada we have to pass safety inspections depending on province. They check for things like rust holes, brake wear and functioning headlights. Often if you're driving a 15-year-old rust bucket it's more cost effective to scrap it and buy a new one than to make the repairs required to pass a safety inspection.

Zamboni

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #595 on: August 05, 2013, 04:48:34 PM »
I have to pass safety inspections and emissions.  Places that do repairs will fail items at a higher rate if they fix those items; this was well documented in my local paper.  The article showed that the local tire place failed cars at the highest rate; before the article came out we went there once and BOTH cars failed on tires.  One car had fairly new tires, but they failed it for "uneven wear."  Emissions is emission, but inspection standards for passing other things vary wildly.

The key is to find a place in a very poor part of town that only does inspections, not repair.  I've managed to find such a place in two different states.

Jamesqf

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #596 on: August 05, 2013, 05:15:21 PM »
What do you mean by "force"? Do the Japanese secret police make rounds of parking lots and driveways on the lookout for late model vehicles and immobilize the ones that they don't approve of?

Not "secret" police, just the Japanese equivalent of the DMV, which refuses to register older cars.  See "Japanese Domestic Market automobiles", e.g. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_domestic_market

Quote
Often if you're driving a 15-year-old rust bucket it's more cost effective to scrap it and buy a new one than to make the repairs required to pass a safety inspection.

Now there's a perfect example.  Why is that 15 year old car a "rust bucket"?  Couldn't have anything to do with a tacit conspiracy between automakers who build rust-prone cars, and state/provincial governments that spread large amounts of corrosive (and environmentally harmful) chemicals on the roads?

FWIW, my two vehicles are 13 and 25 years old.  Neither is a "rust bucket".  Both run fine, pass smog inspections, and get much better mpg than their nearest current model year equivalents.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2013, 05:20:28 PM by Jamesqf »

StarswirlTheMustached

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #597 on: August 05, 2013, 05:42:23 PM »
Not at work, but this came up, discussing someone's flying hobby:
"Twenty five thousand dollars, and I could have [an airplane] like that!" (snaps fingers for emphasis)
"... didn't you just re-mortgage your house to cover renovations? You don't have twenty five thousand dollars."
"Oh, but I've a hundred something thousand dollar line of credit..."

It goes into a shpeil about living your life to the fullest while you can, not waiting to save up for the things you want, et cetera. I just let the conversation die at that point, to be honest.  What can you even say?

Jamesqf

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #598 on: August 05, 2013, 11:51:12 PM »
It goes into a shpeil about living your life to the fullest while you can, not waiting to save up for the things you want, et cetera.

Or you just learn to prioritize.  As for example, I couldn't have afforded my airplane (partnership) if I'd followed the advice above, and believed I had to replace my cars with new ones every few years.

kms

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Re: Overheard at Work
« Reply #599 on: August 05, 2013, 11:59:44 PM »
We have the same safety inspection thing over here in Europe, although it varies from country to country. The British and French ones are known to be very lax (four wheels - check, driver seat - check, anchor outside passenger window to stop car - check. you're good to go) whereas the Germans and, believe it or not, Italians are very anal about this. The European Union even tried to introduce a yearly safety inspection for 'old' cars, old being defined as more than seven years or 100.000km, to discourage people from keeping their car for too long and encourage them to scrap it for a shiny brand-new one instead. European made of course.

Luckily it failed for now but as always in politics, it'll be back.
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