Author Topic: How to kill the dragon  (Read 10831 times)

Classical_Liberal

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #50 on: August 23, 2017, 12:45:29 PM »
I'm not sure who to attribute this to; you are (at least partially) the sum of the five people you spend the most time with.  Do you plan to spend your post FIRE time with Physicians (or others) who are trying to "one-up" each other materially?  If not, I wouldn't worry about it.

I've absolutely noticed the tenancy in myself to spend more on things or activities when I am spending a lot of time with people who spend on things and activities.  When I'm alone, I am content with spending less, when I spend time with people who are content with spending less; I am happier.

GreenEggs

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #51 on: August 23, 2017, 01:14:51 PM »
Just keep reminding yourself that consumerism is a weakness, like a disease.  If you know it'll depreciate like a rock, then you know it's a foolish thing to want. 

If you really want one anyway make yourself hunt for a lightly used one and rejoice over the fact that the 1st owner was the fool that bought it new.

evanc

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #52 on: August 23, 2017, 01:22:13 PM »
I've not felt car jealous in quite a long time.

I feel almost the opposite...genuine pity for people with expensive cars they (probably) cannot easily afford

 I have a neighbor whose house was scheduled for public auction due to mortgage default.  Somehow he miraculously escaped the foreclosure, but now has not only one, but two porches in the driveway.  What could possibly explain that type of spending behavior other than compulsion? Pity, indeed.

markbike528CBX

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #53 on: August 23, 2017, 01:37:55 PM »
I have a neighbor whose house was scheduled for public auction due to mortgage default.  Somehow he miraculously escaped the foreclosure, but now has not only one, but two porches in the driveway.

I thought porches came with the house (or were they the portion foreclosed upon and left sitting in the driveway)?  Still, two porches does seem anti-mustachian.

Disclosure:  I have one small porch and a Boxster (Porsche).

evanc

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #54 on: August 23, 2017, 01:41:16 PM »
I have a neighbor whose house was scheduled for public auction due to mortgage default.  Somehow he miraculously escaped the foreclosure, but now has not only one, but two porches in the driveway.

I thought porches came with the house (or were they the portion foreclosed upon and left sitting in the driveway)?  Still, two porches does seem anti-mustachian.

Disclosure:  I have one small porch and a Boxster (Porsche).

Haha, I'm blaming Siri :p

Doc Holiday

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #55 on: August 23, 2017, 10:39:29 PM »
That reminds me of the blond joke who came up to a house and said she would paint the porch for $20. She surprises the guy by coming back 15 minutes later, saying she's done. "Oh, and it's not a porch. It's a Lexus."


In spite of the good natured car banter going on here, I want to clarify a couple of things. One is a) I bought my 911 at 1 year old and saved about 40k (options never resell well). I paid cash. B) I could FIRE now if I wanted to with 35x annual expenses invested.


Much more importantly, the post was more about the relapse of material desire and becoming a pawn in an unwinnable game. The car thing was really just an example. I don't care if someone has an expensive car. Some cars are truly amazing experiences to drive and experiences are what life is about. If you don't care about driving (or houses or photography or travel or anything else that people spend a lot of money on), then it would never make sense to buy it. If you really (truly) love an experience with a material object, then there is value. If you can't afford it, get one that is close (e.g., a Miata). I have more recently discovered many experiences in life that require very little cost and bring me as much happiness as anything I could buy and occupy zero space in my physical life (travel, hiking, sports, talking with my best friend,  music, hanging out with my wife and family, etc.) Buying something for show should land you in some circle of Dante's Inferno.


But my issue, dear psychiatrists, was about taking the bait from a person who has an effed up sense of materialism by wanting to make people jealous with stuff. My own selfish pride, as well as my stash, said I could easily out compete her financially, but why on earth would I want to do that? Vanity, competitiveness, ego. Wrong damn reasons to live. How to avoid falling in this trap was real question. I agree now with several posters that selective choices of our surroundings is key. But my overly optimistic philosopher wanted to be able to not fall for the materialistic three card Monty anywhere anytime. Shouldn't we meditate in a loud bus station instead of a quiet room? Isn't that what we are training ourselves to do with meditation? But I think now, that if I can create a quiet room, why not stay there?




Ok, back to cars!
 
“The art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.”   -Voltaire

Dicey

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #56 on: August 24, 2017, 08:28:57 AM »
Keep in mind you are buying something that is more expensive valuable than any car - freedom.
FTFY
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And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

FIREby35

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #57 on: August 24, 2017, 12:01:51 PM »
That reminds me of the blond joke who came up to a house and said she would paint the porch for $20. She surprises the guy by coming back 15 minutes later, saying she's done. "Oh, and it's not a porch. It's a Lexus."


In spite of the good natured car banter going on here, I want to clarify a couple of things. One is a) I bought my 911 at 1 year old and saved about 40k (options never resell well). I paid cash. B) I could FIRE now if I wanted to with 35x annual expenses invested.


Much more importantly, the post was more about the relapse of material desire and becoming a pawn in an unwinnable game. The car thing was really just an example. I don't care if someone has an expensive car. Some cars are truly amazing experiences to drive and experiences are what life is about. If you don't care about driving (or houses or photography or travel or anything else that people spend a lot of money on), then it would never make sense to buy it. If you really (truly) love an experience with a material object, then there is value. If you can't afford it, get one that is close (e.g., a Miata). I have more recently discovered many experiences in life that require very little cost and bring me as much happiness as anything I could buy and occupy zero space in my physical life (travel, hiking, sports, talking with my best friend,  music, hanging out with my wife and family, etc.) Buying something for show should land you in some circle of Dante's Inferno.


But my issue, dear psychiatrists, was about taking the bait from a person who has an effed up sense of materialism by wanting to make people jealous with stuff. My own selfish pride, as well as my stash, said I could easily out compete her financially, but why on earth would I want to do that? Vanity, competitiveness, ego. Wrong damn reasons to live. How to avoid falling in this trap was real question. I agree now with several posters that selective choices of our surroundings is key. But my overly optimistic philosopher wanted to be able to not fall for the materialistic three card Monty anywhere anytime. Shouldn't we meditate in a loud bus station instead of a quiet room? Isn't that what we are training ourselves to do with meditation? But I think now, that if I can create a quiet room, why not stay there?




Ok, back to cars!

It seems to me that controlling our desires and ego is an unfolding process. First you realize the process is even happening. Then you have the strength to barely resist it like a recently planted tree sapling needing protection to survive. After that you become like a palm tree, swaying with the heavy winds but strong and able to resist even hurricane force winds. Ultimately, you become like the mountain - unmoved and unchanging no matter how strong the storm.

This is the reason we begin meditating in a quiet room. Don't kid yourself, there are many people who walk around in every day life meditating while acting and in circumstances other than perfect silence. It's a process that unfolds.

Sorry for mixing metaphors (i.e. the tree and mountain). The other way to see the tree metaphor is that you start as a sapling and you must first attend to your own survival. Only when you are strong in your control of your own mind and desires can you consider yourself a fully grown tree, with deep roots, casting shade about to the benefit of others.

People like the doctor friend are fools because they don't understand how their actions contribute to a) their own mental anguish and suffering and b) they delight in inciting mental anguish and suffering in others. It's a really shitty way to be. The buddha says, "Should a seeker not find a companion who is his better or equal, let him resolutely pursue a solitary course, there is no companionship with a fool." That goes to the second tree metaphor. While people like that still incite any negative emotion in you, it's best to keep them out of your life - there is no companionship with a fool.


Sorry for typos or any not fully thought out ideas - gotta run to a meeting.

Doc Holiday

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #58 on: August 24, 2017, 01:42:29 PM »
Good post, Fireby35, mixed metaphors be damned.


I'd say I'm about at topical palm level-- mostly sunny skies and the occasional nor'wester that blows in and I drop my coconuts. I'd say I have pretty good roots, but I'm not a giant shade tree


I find the buddha quote interesting (about the solitary path), but really true for me. Kind of sad because most of us hope for an extended family of friends--maybe that's what this forum is....if not friends, at least like-minded people.


Also sad that  buddha didn't have facebook...can you imagine if he did how funny that would be? "Yo, hanging with my homies under the bodhi tree!" (Duckface).

“The art of medicine consists of amusing the patient while nature cures the disease.”   -Voltaire

Gunny

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #59 on: August 24, 2017, 05:48:10 PM »
PBKMaine, meet CaptJRod!
Similar sentiments that I love. There is true joy in having good quality things that are solid, well-designed and functional. And not paying full price, or maintaining them well makes them worth even more emotionally.

Prior to car lust, I had guitar lust. I remember thinking I wanted a Martin, and I heard a guy playing a beat up garage guitar and it made my jaw drop. So much more is in the doing than in the having.
I also get beat regularly in tennis by a guy with a racket that is about 5 product cycles out of date!

Thanks for your words of wisdom! I will adopt them posthaste!

I also LOVE guitars.  Wanting a Martin, I settled for a less expensive Taylor that I found for 30% off.  Somehow that $1000 savings over the Martin sounds pretty good when playing my rendition of "Wildwood Flower."

Larsg

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #60 on: October 11, 2017, 01:47:19 AM »
Try to replace the voice of your Lizard with the superiority of being smarter and of better character where you don't need meaningless costumes or to overly decorate yourself to feel good as those things are fleeting and expensive. The money can be put to far better use, for you and your families future and to have a positive impact on the world. New Cars and new things for the sake of feeding the ego/lizard wastes precious resources from this planet and has nothing to do with who you are. This is a tremendous opportunity to set an example for your kids. And some day, after you have driven the porch out of your system, you may even work up to trading it in for a subaru...it could happen. I feel your plight. Years ago when our paid off car was stolen for the second time, my competitive boss took me to a Mercedes dealer and practically forced me to buy it. He waled into the finance office and said I've brought you another rising star, give her the usual deal...I thought there was no way out and the car was such a pretty silver blue. It looked like something far out into the future and for a brief moment, I clung to the dark side. I have since paid off that car and never bought another one - it has been good to me and I will probably keep it forever with some learned maintenance to keep the costs low. But, if we ever needed another, we won't be going for the showy route ever again. I a embarrassed that at the time I did not have the conviction or maturity to refuse such a ridiculous purchase and I think of all that money that could have been invested better and grown by now - be we live and learn.

Good luck and look forward to your new found superiority in the face of people who must have those things due to insecurity, or nothing substantial inside to replace them with.

MrThatsDifferent

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #61 on: October 11, 2017, 03:49:57 AM »
You kill the dragon by digging deep within yourself to understand what’s causing you to want to fill some hole and compete with an unworthy person who thinks love equals things. When you become fulfilled with your own purpose, and not that of others, your dragon will have no chance against you. Only weak people follow the leadership of other weak people. You’re not a weak person, choose befitting who you are.

ROF Expat

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #62 on: October 11, 2017, 09:01:11 AM »
 What killed the dragon for me was the realization that, if you buy something because it is the newest/fastest/trendiest/edgiest/most expensive, in a year or so you will be unhappy because there will be something newer, faster, trendier, edgier, and more expensive. 

Now I buy things because I like them and I don't really care whether other people are impressed.  I wouldn't pay $160K or so on a Mercedes SL550 that will just be another used Mercedes in five years time.  I would consider buying a Porsche 356 or a Jaguar XKE for similar money or a really clean pagoda roof Mercedes 280 SL or first or second generation Corvette for a fraction of the price.  Real classics just get cooler as they age.   

o2bfree

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #63 on: October 12, 2017, 07:29:13 PM »
The words of the Buddha came up...consider the big picture from a Buddhist perspective. As Zen master Dogen said:

To study the way is to study the self. To study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be enlightened by all things.

Maybe we should aim to be enlightened by all things. Not just excited about or proud of the flashy new car or mondo custom home or whatever. Particular things depend on particular conditions, and conditions are always changing. True freedom and happiness lies beyond conditions.

pecunia

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #64 on: October 16, 2017, 08:06:34 PM »
Quote
Prior to car lust, I had guitar lust. I remember thinking I wanted a Martin, and I heard a guy playing a beat up garage guitar and it made my jaw drop. So much more is in the doing than in the having.

Thanks Doc - I still have the $15 electric guitar and amp I bought when I was 15.  No time to play all these years, but the music is still inside.  I'm hoping retirement will give me a chance to let some of the music out.

No one else may like it, but it will be beautiful to me and that's enough.

There's more than one type of dragon to be slain.

AdrianC

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #65 on: October 17, 2017, 08:10:41 AM »
So my $7000 Miata gave me a far superior experience to my bosses $100k Porsche because the effort I put into making it unique gave it soul.
Totally. Though your boss could be like my neighbor, who doesn't mod his car but does spend hours caressing it on the driveway every Saturday. Which is funny because he then leaves it out all week instead of clearing space in his garage for it.

Miata lover here. I've had five. I'm in the process of selling my current one. Two years ago I got caught up in the hoopla around the 2016 model and somehow ended up buying one, brand new. It's a great car, lot's of fun...but no more fun than the $6K 20 year old one I had previously. I just couldn't stand to see it sit in the garage another winter, mocking me, not being driven, because it's "never been driven in winter" and I don't need to go anywhere in it anyway (I have another car).

I'm slowly getting out of this mindset that a new car, motorcycle, house, whatever will make me happy....though I'm about to go out on my new mountain bike and that does make me happy!

RedmondStash

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #66 on: October 19, 2017, 10:18:14 AM »
Time is the ultimate luxury item.

Guarantee that if you FIRE early, some of your colleagues will be burning with jealousy because even if they earn more $$ than you, they're in debt up to their eyeballs, and they will not for the life of them be able to figure out how you got out.

So you will have something to feel smug about, even in FIRE.

AdrianC

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Re: How to kill the dragon
« Reply #67 on: October 20, 2017, 06:57:58 AM »
Time is the ultimate luxury item.

Guarantee that if you FIRE early, some of your colleagues will be burning with jealousy because even if they earn more $$ than you, they're in debt up to their eyeballs, and they will not for the life of them be able to figure out how you got out.

So you will have something to feel smug about, even in FIRE.
Great stuff!