Author Topic: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)  (Read 3656893 times)

Parizade

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6250 on: April 24, 2019, 07:40:44 AM »

I feel this is a "problem" because we are tired of optimizing the best solution with the house and now the car thing hit us. If we didn't have savings and the ability to borrow good credit (HELOC) we'd be screwed &/or more incline to flex our frugal muscle. The problem is I have a good chunk money sitting there, & I'm so friggen frustrated I don't want to flex my muscle. 

If you are "optimizing" to a point where you feel frustrated and deprived I think you need to take a hard look at your budget and lifestyle and make some tweaks. Those tweaks might include a bit more money in your "fun" bucket, OR you might just be in need a more free self-care (exercise, fresh air, good sleep, etc). I find the "cheap things that make you happy" thread to be good inspiration.

FI is a marathon, not a sprint. You need to set a pace for yourself that will get you to the finish line healthy enough to enjoy the victory. The pace you are running at now seems to be wearing you out, slow down and hydrate.

TVRodriguez

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6251 on: April 24, 2019, 08:52:43 AM »
I try to be frugal and Mustachian but when things go to SHIT are you ever tempted to just throw money at it to solve it?

In the past month we have had a major home repair, our 9y old car may be dead (or at least the engine), and a few other unusual expenses.

This isn't really a set of "just for fun" problems but we could say "shut up and take my money" throw about 6-9 months of savings at this and be done with it. (OK maybe even more depending on how the car plays out.)

I feel this is a "problem" because we are tired of optimizing the best solution with the house and now the car thing hit us. If we didn't have savings and the ability to borrow good credit (HELOC) we'd be screwed &/or more incline to flex our frugal muscle. The problem is I have a good chunk money sitting there, & I'm so friggen frustrated I don't want to flex my muscle. 

We luckily (or unluckily) hadn't thrown a bunch of savings over the wall into tax advantaged account until we see what we owe in taxes. If the money was over the wall I probably wouldn't touch it & may need to find other solutions. (I especially wouldn't touch our RRSPs and maybe not even our TFSA).

When you have enough money do you want to say "F-it I can fix this."?

Sometimes sh-t happens.  And sometimes it's okay to throw money at a problem (this is one reason I like to keep an emergency fund, so I can borrow from myself).  Other times it can be fun to see if we can find a workaround that costs less than the handfuls of money we might throw at it.

penguintroopers

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6252 on: April 24, 2019, 09:19:25 AM »
See? This is why biweekly salary is confusing and silly for workers with an annual salary.* The number if work hours is never going to be exactly the same due to weekends, Leap Years, etc, and the fact that there aren't an even number of weeks in a year means that the paycycle will be off sometimes. Different companies are going to deal with all these problems different ways and none of them make much sense, even if you do technically get all the pay you're owed eventually.

The whole point of being salaried and exempt from overtime is not have to worry about time worked down to this level of detail.

*I can definitely see the benefits of keeping the paycycle an even number of days for hourly workers, though.

Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

(I would also accept being paid on two set days of the month like the 1st and 15th or whatever).

LennStar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6253 on: April 24, 2019, 09:24:11 AM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

penguintroopers

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6254 on: April 24, 2019, 09:55:56 AM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

merula

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6255 on: April 24, 2019, 10:04:27 AM »
I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

Intuit (owner of TurboTax) and H&R Block spent millions lobbying against this exact idea. https://www.nbcnews.com/business/taxes/turbotax-h-r-block-spend-millions-lobbying-us-keep-doing-n736386

OtherJen

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6256 on: April 24, 2019, 10:12:49 AM »
I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

Intuit (owner of TurboTax) and H&R Block spent millions lobbying against this exact idea. https://www.nbcnews.com/business/taxes/turbotax-h-r-block-spend-millions-lobbying-us-keep-doing-n736386

As with pretty much everything, the lobbyists get in the way of actual efficient governance.

CoffeeAndDonuts

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6257 on: April 24, 2019, 10:59:18 AM »
Executive summary: We've optimized our home energy use such that I can no longer find ways to financially justify capital expenditures to further improve it. That competes against our desire to reduce carbon footprint. Decisions are becoming more difficult.

Longer Story: I'm working from the premise that whenever we can financially justify an investment in reducing our carbon footprint, we will. After all, we're ideally situated to and if we won't, who will.

We're also doing a small renovation that presents a rare opportunity to make smart investments our HVAC and water heater systems.

No matter how hard I try to justify the additional spending's return, I run into the same problem. Our use & thus cost is so low due to behavior changes and rate optimizations, that I can't justify any meaningful upfront capital cost.

Latest case in point, I got all excited about a heat pump water heater to replace our nat. gas water heater. We have cheap electric costs ($.07-$.10 with taxes and fees per kwh) and it's greener so I should be able to make the ~$1000 extra up-front work.

... Except I can't. Our natural gas bill for water heating and cooking is approximately $65/year. Even if I cut that in half, I'd save a mere $320 over a decade (ignoring time value of money).

The same problems, at a larger scale, occur when I dig into alternative heating solutions. Heating is ~$720/year which is pretty low in Minnesota (even with the polar vortex, we hit just $175 that mo) and I can't get a reasonable solution using heat pumps powered by electric put together.

I've been successful justifying EV and solar investments operating at a profit. I was hoping to find more easy to justify wins here. Looks instead like I need to make hard decisions about how much we're willing to pay to reduce carbon footprint.

Glad we've got the means to but optimizing thus stuff is mentally taxing.

Imma

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6258 on: April 24, 2019, 01:01:13 PM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

We've had this for a couple of years now in my country. Works perfectly. You just add any income the government isn't already aware of and add your deductibles.

I'm paid weekly as well and I dislike it too. I used to get paid monthly and almost all my bills were automatically withdrawn from my bank account in the same week. I would leave a set amount of spending money in my account and transfer everything else to savings/investments. Now I leave 1/4 of my spending money in my account every week and transfer money back from savings every time a bill needs to get paid. Well, it's still better than paying bills manually.

ixtap

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6259 on: April 24, 2019, 01:03:25 PM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

We've had this for a couple of years now in my country. Works perfectly. You just add any income the government isn't already aware of and add your deductibles.

I'm paid weekly as well and I dislike it too. I used to get paid monthly and almost all my bills were automatically withdrawn from my bank account in the same week. I would leave a set amount of spending money in my account and transfer everything else to savings/investments. Now I leave 1/4 of my spending money in my account every week and transfer money back from savings every time a bill needs to get paid. Well, it's still better than paying bills manually.

How is investment income handled? RSUs ESPPs, income generated in the HSA, etc are the time sucks in doing my taxes in the US.

gaja

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6260 on: April 24, 2019, 04:03:44 PM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

We've had this for a couple of years now in my country. Works perfectly. You just add any income the government isn't already aware of and add your deductibles.

I'm paid weekly as well and I dislike it too. I used to get paid monthly and almost all my bills were automatically withdrawn from my bank account in the same week. I would leave a set amount of spending money in my account and transfer everything else to savings/investments. Now I leave 1/4 of my spending money in my account every week and transfer money back from savings every time a bill needs to get paid. Well, it's still better than paying bills manually.

How is investment income handled? RSUs ESPPs, income generated in the HSA, etc are the time sucks in doing my taxes in the US.

In Norway, the banks report all that stuff automatically. We can choose to ignore the tax form completely; if you don't make any changes before the deadline, the state will consider the automated version as correct. I like playing around with rules and regulations, and we have had some income and deductions related to selling stock photos that we need to report manually, so I do spend a few hours every end of April on our taxes. But more than half the population just ignore it, and the number is growing.

DaMa

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6261 on: April 24, 2019, 07:05:52 PM »
A friend of mine is an admin assistant in a public school district.  Her annual salary $x is usually paid biweekly at $x/26.  This year there are 27 payments, and she is being paid $x/27.  So it does happen.

Imma

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6262 on: April 25, 2019, 12:25:31 AM »
Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

You know, I am 100% sure someone would say that is socialism. Or even communism. Just because it's standard procedure in "socialistic" Europe.

I listened to a podcast yesterday about how American taxes could be so much easier. A pilot program in California was done with "Ready Return" where all you had to do was review the FILLED out form the government sent you,  make any changes for additional income above your W2s and other streams of income the government was aware of, and mail it back. I'm all for this, as we're in the year 2019 and could have way better systems by now for taxes. But no, America, the land of the free, the country of "innovation", has less logic with taxes than most of Europe and Australia.

Call me a crazy liberal.

We've had this for a couple of years now in my country. Works perfectly. You just add any income the government isn't already aware of and add your deductibles.

I'm paid weekly as well and I dislike it too. I used to get paid monthly and almost all my bills were automatically withdrawn from my bank account in the same week. I would leave a set amount of spending money in my account and transfer everything else to savings/investments. Now I leave 1/4 of my spending money in my account every week and transfer money back from savings every time a bill needs to get paid. Well, it's still better than paying bills manually.

How is investment income handled? RSUs ESPPs, income generated in the HSA, etc are the time sucks in doing my taxes in the US.

Investment income isn't taxed as such. Instead we have a wealth tax - although I don't think anything tax with that name would ever work in the US, it's a pretty convenient system.

Total wealth is calculated by adding up all investment income, savings accounts, all property except for the one you live in, minus any debt (and pre-tax accounts are obviously not included). Then you pay a small amount of tax over the total wealth and that percentage goes up the more money you have: 0 over the first 25k per person, 0,5% over the next 75k to 1,6% over the part that's over 1 million. Dividends are taxed as well but domestic brokers pay them out net of taxes. You only need to keep track of dividends paid out through foreign brokers.

The percentages assume a stock market growth of 4-5% each year, so if you make more you're lucky, and some years you have bad luck.

This is true for all investments except when you own more than 5% of the shares in one company, you are then taxed as a company owner.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6263 on: April 25, 2019, 04:51:51 AM »
In Norway, the banks report all that stuff automatically. We can choose to ignore the tax form completely; if you don't make any changes before the deadline, the state will consider the automated version as correct. I like playing around with rules and regulations, and we have had some income and deductions related to selling stock photos that we need to report manually, so I do spend a few hours every end of April on our taxes. But more than half the population just ignore it, and the number is growing.

One of my credit card banks did not report my debt (the little debt at the end of the year that I put on the card the weeks before). The bank did inform the customers by mail. So I had to make a little change and add some more debt to my assets. Otherwise, unfortunately, I had nothing to change in my advantage, as it is often very correct.

PMG

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6264 on: April 25, 2019, 05:37:05 PM »
I reserved an economy rental car for a (long drive) business trip.

When I went to pick up the car, all they had was an SUV so they "did me a favor" and I "got upgraded like 3 levels" to the SUV for free.

All I can think about is the 8 extra galloons of gas this beast will waste versus the nice 40mpg economy I wanted.  It also drove like a tank. I feel like I was supposed to be appreciative of the extra headroom or whatever it is that people casually rent SUVs for in the middle of a week in the summer.

When that happened to me I complained and they gave me a free tank of gas.

GreenSheep

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6265 on: April 26, 2019, 08:12:22 AM »
I reserved an economy rental car for a (long drive) business trip.

When I went to pick up the car, all they had was an SUV so they "did me a favor" and I "got upgraded like 3 levels" to the SUV for free.

All I can think about is the 8 extra galloons of gas this beast will waste versus the nice 40mpg economy I wanted.  It also drove like a tank. I feel like I was supposed to be appreciative of the extra headroom or whatever it is that people casually rent SUVs for in the middle of a week in the summer.

When that happened to me I complained and they gave me a free tank of gas.

I'm going to have to try this! Not that a free tank of gas makes up for everything, but at least it's something. I get "upgraded" from an economy car fairly regularly... either to an SUV (it's just me and my carry-on in this thing, people!) or to some ridiculous sports car that I'm embarrassed to be seen in. I wish free flight upgrades were so frequent!

I-Ranger

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6266 on: April 26, 2019, 09:13:56 AM »
-Forgetting to flush at the homes of friends and family, out of habit from the strict "If it's yellow, let it mellow." policy at my own home.

-I unloaded my clown SUV, bought a sensible used hybrid on Craigslist, moved close enough to work to walk there every day, and started biking most other places. I now re-fuel so infrequently that, seven months after buying my hybrid, I still forget to hit the "open gas cover" button before I get out to pump.

-Friend of mine's Mom is moving out of state, and he offers me her year-old, self-propelled lawn mower for cheap. He is borderline offended that, rather than accept his generous offer, I decline and choose to continue using my beer-gut propelled reel mower on my half-acre lawn.

-Forgetting to turn heat up when friends and family visit, as my 60 degree "meat locker" elicits shivers and complaints of how "shockingly" cold it is.

-Having to fake happiness when certain friends or family tell me about new car/boat/ATV they are getting, when I know how much they hate their job and how little they have saved for retirement. Inside, I'm screaming "Noooo! You're pissing away your freedom!", but I know a pep-talk about Mustachianism would only be met with staunch incredulity.

-Momentary sadness that all tax-advantaged accounts are now maxed for the year, meaning eight months of taxable account contributions knowing Uncle Sam will take a larger cut.

-When co-worker tells me about the 300 different "favorite" TV shows she has, and having to lie and say "I'll put that one on my list" every time she says "You have to watch it." Seems unproductive to tell her my true feeling, which is: As far as I know, we get one chance at life, so I can't possibly fathom spending hours and hours staring at a TV every day, when there are endless fascinating things in the world to learn, experience, and share. Reminds me of a hilarious scene from American Dad, where Roger is on his death bed and says "My only regret is that I didn't watch more television." :)

jps

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6267 on: April 26, 2019, 09:26:12 AM »
-When co-worker tells me about the 300 different "favorite" TV shows she has, and having to lie and say "I'll put that one on my list" every time she says "You have to watch it." Seems unproductive to tell her my true feeling, which is: As far as I know, we get one chance at life, so I can't possibly fathom spending hours and hours staring at a TV every day, when there are endless fascinating things in the world to learn, experience, and share. Reminds me of a hilarious scene from American Dad, where Roger is on his death bed and says "My only regret is that I didn't watch more television." :)

This is one that really gets me. I'm not much of a tv show watcher, other than an episode of The Office a few times a week with my wife. I feel pretty ashamed about my tv consumption already.

There are lots of times when I'll be with a group of guys, and they start cycling through conversations about at least like 5-6 new tv shows and what they like/don't like/think will happen. Many of these guys have families. I want to interrupt and be like, "How do any of you guys have any time for this?" How can you have the mental energy to keep track of so many tv shows?

ixtap

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6268 on: April 26, 2019, 09:52:48 AM »
It's the "you have to" that gets to me/amuses me, depending on my mood and relationship with that person. It generally involves a complete inability to understand that someone might choose not to participate in that activity.

You have to:

Have a bigger house: We got a roommate because we were overwhelmed with the size available where we wanted to be. It took us two months to find a suitable roommate and we only ever went in that room to open and close the windows. I already find it annoying that it is difficult to communicate between the kitchen and the living room (there is a dining room in between). We have discussed how either the master bedroom or the kitchen/dining are could be turned into a fully functioning apartment. WTF would I do with bigger?!

Try this restaurant: I could not tell you the last time we went out just to go out to eat. We join other people and go to dinner dances, we do not go to a restaurant for the sake of the restaurant itself.

Try this make up: I tried make up briefly as a young teen and decided it wasn't for me. WTF, why did you just smear that crap on my face, it burns! No, I will not get used to it!

Exotic location: We prefer to use our time off to visit family or use our boat. Yes, family is vacation, if you can avoid or manage the toxic ones.

Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.

Try this food, it's all natural: so is arsenic (or hemlock or whatever your poison of choice is).

Amazon Prime: I have ordered one item from Amazon this year and paid extra for same day shipping, which Prime still would not have gotten me.

bluebelle

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6269 on: April 26, 2019, 10:12:33 AM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

Just Joe

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6270 on: April 26, 2019, 12:01:16 PM »
As with pretty much everything, the lobbyists get in the way of actual efficient governance.

I wonder if the "Smaller Gov't" party will ever rail against lobbyists? Or will like several other themes important to them - will they say one thing and act the opposite?

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6271 on: April 26, 2019, 12:46:19 PM »
As with pretty much everything, the lobbyists get in the way of actual efficient governance.

I wonder if the "Smaller Gov't" party will ever rail against lobbyists? Or will like several other themes important to them - will they say one thing and act the opposite?
For a long time I've been convinced that if we want to remove money from politics, we need to first remove the politics from money. IOW if there weren't as much to gain from lobbying, there'd be less lobbying

OtherJen

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6272 on: April 26, 2019, 08:33:37 PM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6273 on: April 26, 2019, 11:47:41 PM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

Agreed, I feel the same about Siri and Ok Google.

LennStar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6274 on: April 27, 2019, 01:22:10 AM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

Agreed, I feel the same about Siri and Ok Google.

just fyi:
Alexa does not "activate itself". Alexa is always on, always listening. And sometimes sending what it hears not only to other computers, but to humans who listen to it to "improve service".
 

dragoncar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6275 on: April 27, 2019, 01:26:30 AM »
Ok google?  More like Nokay google.  Amirite?

However, my dog does a much worse job of playing my favorite pandora station.  Believe me, Iíve tried.  Guess Iíll stick with alexa

Morning Glory

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6276 on: April 27, 2019, 03:54:28 AM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

I saw an ad for something like that. It even had the exercise lady from the beginning of the book. The fact that there is actually a food called Soylent also boggles my mind. Who buys this stuff?  Does nobody read anymore?

I have been creeped out by my phone giving me ads for things that I talked about with friends in person before. I don't like it but not sure how to stop it other than giving up the smart phone altogether.

Linea_Norway

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6277 on: April 27, 2019, 04:07:40 AM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

I saw an ad for something like that. It even had the exercise lady from the beginning of the book. The fact that there is actually a food called Soylent also boggles my mind. Who buys this stuff?  Does nobody read anymore?

I have been creeped out by my phone giving me ads for things that I talked about with friends in person before. I don't like it but not sure how to stop it other than giving up the smart phone altogether.

In 1984, it was the government listening in to what was said in your house, with the purpose of arresting you and reprogramming you think differently. Moderne spying devices from facebook, google, apple, etc work by detailed algorithms who try to discover your patterns, to give you personalized content and commercials. You won't get arrested for it. But I do agree that it is pretty scary. As soon as I ever google once on some subject, facebook starts showing me adds about that subject for a long time...

rantk81

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6278 on: April 27, 2019, 06:46:23 AM »
But I do agree that it is pretty scary. As soon as I ever google once on some subject, facebook starts showing me adds about that subject for a long time...

Some strategies to deal with this (if you are willing to go out of your way, and deal with some inconvenience): 

1) Use a browser with cookies disabled (e.g. incognito mode), so that your browser doesn't store data that can be retrieved later, and

2) Use a trusted VPN provider, so these spying sites can't cross reference your browsing patterns by IP address. (it will be aggregated with a bunch of traffic from others, so pretty anonymized/scrubbed in the end.)


Parizade

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6279 on: April 27, 2019, 07:06:47 AM »
I have been creeped out by my phone giving me ads for things that I talked about with friends in person before. I don't like it but not sure how to stop it other than giving up the smart phone altogether.

I went over to a neighbors house once for a glass of wine and she told me about some good quality socks she had bought for her son in law at a local sale. I did NOT have my smart phone with me, but the next day ads for those socks popped up on my facebook feed. Her smart phone must have  picked up our conversation and somehow recognized that she was talking to me. That was the creepiest experience I've had with Big Brother.

Taran Wanderer

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6280 on: April 27, 2019, 04:57:15 PM »
While I use Chrome, I use DuckDuckGo as my search engine, and I installed a DuckDuckGo plug-in to reduce traceability in Chrome. Still need to pursue a VPN. Anyone have experience with ProtonMail or something like it?

Tom Bri

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6281 on: April 27, 2019, 08:10:58 PM »
I have been creeped out by my phone giving me ads for things that I talked about with friends in person before. I don't like it but not sure how to stop it other than giving up the smart phone altogether.

I went over to a neighbors house once for a glass of wine and she told me about some good quality socks she had bought for her son in law at a local sale. I did NOT have my smart phone with me, but the next day ads for those socks popped up on my facebook feed. Her smart phone must have  picked up our conversation and somehow recognized that she was talking to me. That was the creepiest experience I've had with Big Brother.

Was discussing buying furnace filters with my wife a few weeks ago. Next time I opened Fac book there was an ad for our exact size furnace filter. We don't even own a smartphone.

dragoncar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6282 on: April 27, 2019, 09:06:57 PM »
One time I had a dream about an old friend, and the next day I saw him on the street!  Thatís why I donít buy pillows anymore.  Big pillow is listening to your DREAMS

Parizade

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6283 on: April 28, 2019, 09:03:40 AM »
I reached FI a couple of years ago, and my COL is so low I don't have to pay much attention. I've set up my checking account to accept ebills. I get an email notification when an ebill arrives, it takes about 2 minutes for me to log into my checking account and send a payment. Since I am retiring in just a few weeks I logged into my account to check balances and possibly move things around. Between my direct deposit paycheck, annual bonus/raise, and tax returns from Federal and state my checking account balance was outrageous. Seriously I could pay off my mortgage and have money left over. I did move it from checking into savings but I really need to find a savings account that pays better interest or invest that pile of money.

MPP = once you become established in a Mustachian lifestyle money starts to pile up like old magazines if you don't pay attention. It takes some diligence to keep those little green employees productive.

SwordGuy

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6284 on: April 28, 2019, 10:13:45 AM »
I reached FI a couple of years ago, and my COL is so low I don't have to pay much attention. I've set up my checking account to accept ebills. I get an email notification when an ebill arrives, it takes about 2 minutes for me to log into my checking account and send a payment. Since I am retiring in just a few weeks I logged into my account to check balances and possibly move things around. Between my direct deposit paycheck, annual bonus/raise, and tax returns from Federal and state my checking account balance was outrageous. Seriously I could pay off my mortgage and have money left over. I did move it from checking into savings but I really need to find a savings account that pays better interest or invest that pile of money.

MPP = once you become established in a Mustachian lifestyle money starts to pile up like old magazines if you don't pay attention. It takes some diligence to keep those little green employees productive.

Put the investments on auto-pilot.  Be aggressive.   We set ours to auto-invest 5 days after payday.   Occasionally, if we got a big bill, we just stopped investing for a month or two.  Vanguard makes that super easy.  Solves that problem very nicely.

Parizade

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6285 on: April 28, 2019, 11:28:37 AM »
I reached FI a couple of years ago, and my COL is so low I don't have to pay much attention. I've set up my checking account to accept ebills. I get an email notification when an ebill arrives, it takes about 2 minutes for me to log into my checking account and send a payment. Since I am retiring in just a few weeks I logged into my account to check balances and possibly move things around. Between my direct deposit paycheck, annual bonus/raise, and tax returns from Federal and state my checking account balance was outrageous. Seriously I could pay off my mortgage and have money left over. I did move it from checking into savings but I really need to find a savings account that pays better interest or invest that pile of money.

MPP = once you become established in a Mustachian lifestyle money starts to pile up like old magazines if you don't pay attention. It takes some diligence to keep those little green employees productive.

Put the investments on auto-pilot.  Be aggressive.   We set ours to auto-invest 5 days after payday.   Occasionally, if we got a big bill, we just stopped investing for a month or two.  Vanguard makes that super easy.  Solves that problem very nicely.

I only have 2 or 3 more paychecks before I retire so it's a bit late for me to set that up but what a great idea.

SwordGuy

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6286 on: April 28, 2019, 01:43:48 PM »
I reached FI a couple of years ago, and my COL is so low I don't have to pay much attention. I've set up my checking account to accept ebills. I get an email notification when an ebill arrives, it takes about 2 minutes for me to log into my checking account and send a payment. Since I am retiring in just a few weeks I logged into my account to check balances and possibly move things around. Between my direct deposit paycheck, annual bonus/raise, and tax returns from Federal and state my checking account balance was outrageous. Seriously I could pay off my mortgage and have money left over. I did move it from checking into savings but I really need to find a savings account that pays better interest or invest that pile of money.

MPP = once you become established in a Mustachian lifestyle money starts to pile up like old magazines if you don't pay attention. It takes some diligence to keep those little green employees productive.

Put the investments on auto-pilot.  Be aggressive.   We set ours to auto-invest 5 days after payday.   Occasionally, if we got a big bill, we just stopped investing for a month or two.  Vanguard makes that super easy.  Solves that problem very nicely.

I only have 2 or 3 more paychecks before I retire so it's a bit late for me to set that up but what a great idea.
@Parizade , see, I'm SO helpful that you found ANOTHER mustachian people problem you have!!!

Parizade

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6287 on: April 28, 2019, 03:09:53 PM »
I reached FI a couple of years ago, and my COL is so low I don't have to pay much attention. I've set up my checking account to accept ebills. I get an email notification when an ebill arrives, it takes about 2 minutes for me to log into my checking account and send a payment. Since I am retiring in just a few weeks I logged into my account to check balances and possibly move things around. Between my direct deposit paycheck, annual bonus/raise, and tax returns from Federal and state my checking account balance was outrageous. Seriously I could pay off my mortgage and have money left over. I did move it from checking into savings but I really need to find a savings account that pays better interest or invest that pile of money.

MPP = once you become established in a Mustachian lifestyle money starts to pile up like old magazines if you don't pay attention. It takes some diligence to keep those little green employees productive.

Put the investments on auto-pilot.  Be aggressive.   We set ours to auto-invest 5 days after payday.   Occasionally, if we got a big bill, we just stopped investing for a month or two.  Vanguard makes that super easy.  Solves that problem very nicely.

I only have 2 or 3 more paychecks before I retire so it's a bit late for me to set that up but what a great idea.
@Parizade , see, I'm SO helpful that you found ANOTHER mustachian people problem you have!!!
Indeed @SwordGuy MPPs are the only problems I really don't mind finding so thank you for pointing out yet another!

dcheesi

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6288 on: April 30, 2019, 10:52:50 AM »
Alexa: I read 1984. Besides, when we lived aboard, as Alexa gained in popularity, our home internet consisted of 1 or 2 GB each on our cheap phone plans.
I love this!   Biggest reason I will never have a smart home.   But so few people have read 1984, I rarely use that reference.  People don't understand that Alexa is always 'listening', and there aren't adequate privacy rules.  Plus, I don't want to hand my security over to a third party.

I wonít have an Alexa or similar device in my house. A friend and I recently had a very creepy experience at her house when her Alexa self-activated (we hadnít said ďAlexaĒ) in the middle of our convo.

I also donít understand why someone would want a TV with a built-in camera. Isnít that a telescreen?

I saw an ad for something like that. It even had the exercise lady from the beginning of the book. The fact that there is actually a food called Soylent also boggles my mind. Who buys this stuff?  Does nobody read anymore?

I have been creeped out by my phone giving me ads for things that I talked about with friends in person before. I don't like it but not sure how to stop it other than giving up the smart phone altogether.

In 1984, it was the government listening in to what was said in your house, with the purpose of arresting you and reprogramming you think differently. Moderne spying devices from facebook, google, apple, etc work by detailed algorithms who try to discover your patterns, to give you personalized content and commercials. You won't get arrested for it. But I do agree that it is pretty scary. As soon as I ever google once on some subject, facebook starts showing me adds about that subject for a long time...


zolotiyeruki

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6289 on: April 30, 2019, 12:00:37 PM »
In 1984, it was the government listening in to what was said in your house, with the purpose of arresting you and reprogramming you think differently. Moderne spying devices from facebook, google, apple, etc work by detailed algorithms who try to discover your patterns, to give you personalized content and commercials. You won't get arrested for it. But I do agree that it is pretty scary. As soon as I ever google once on some subject, facebook starts showing me adds about that subject for a long time...
Unfortunately, it's a bit more insidious than that.  It doesn't only affect what ads you see, but it also affects what prices you see.  Amazon, specifically, has been caught showing different prices to different users.  All that data can/will be used to maximize their profit from you.

kanga1622

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6290 on: April 30, 2019, 12:06:40 PM »
See? This is why biweekly salary is confusing and silly for workers with an annual salary.* The number if work hours is never going to be exactly the same due to weekends, Leap Years, etc, and the fact that there aren't an even number of weeks in a year means that the paycycle will be off sometimes. Different companies are going to deal with all these problems different ways and none of them make much sense, even if you do technically get all the pay you're owed eventually.

The whole point of being salaried and exempt from overtime is not have to worry about time worked down to this level of detail.

*I can definitely see the benefits of keeping the paycycle an even number of days for hourly workers, though.

Hourly employee here. Believe it or not, I'd like monthly paychecks as well. Literally all of my obligations are paid on a monthly basis, and I'm tired of the headache of my paychecks moving to whatever flippin' day of the month they feel like being on. I'd rather just get all my money on one day, and blast the auto pay to everyone a couple days after and just be done with it.

(I would also accept being paid on two set days of the month like the 1st and 15th or whatever).

DH and I work for the same employer. We get paid once a month on the last working day of the month. Then we push through payments to all the utilities, mortgage, savings, etc and leave the budgeted spending amounts in the checking account for use throughout the month. Weíve been on this pay cycle for over a dozen years and I love it! DH has a side hustle right now that pays every two weeks and I forget when those paydays are since they are constantly changing. Good thing that income is moved into an IRA so we donít really have to worry too much about the exact date it hits - just transfer at the end of the month. 

Alternatepriorities

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6291 on: April 30, 2019, 01:06:01 PM »
Quote
If Iím visiting your house, weíll have a boring day if we play board games, but a great one if we rake the leaves and dig some trenches for an irrigation system.

https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2017/09/20/seek-not-to-be-entertained/

Last night my wife and I stayed with one of her coworkers in another town. There was wine and conversation inside and a pile of unsplit firewood outside... I'm really not antisocial just "different". Our hostess does appreciate it.

Loren Ver

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6292 on: April 30, 2019, 01:28:49 PM »
Quote
If Iím visiting your house, weíll have a boring day if we play board games, but a great one if we rake the leaves and dig some trenches for an irrigation system.

https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2017/09/20/seek-not-to-be-entertained/

Last night my wife and I stayed with one of her coworkers in another town. There was wine and conversation inside and a pile of unsplit firewood outside... I'm really not antisocial just "different". Our hostess does appreciate it.

Haha.  This really made me smile.  My DH is similar he would rather be doing than "visiting".

LennStar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6293 on: April 30, 2019, 01:33:57 PM »
Unfortunately, it's a bit more insidious than that.  It doesn't only affect what ads you see, but it also affects what prices you see.  Amazon, specifically, has been caught showing different prices to different users.  All that data can/will be used to maximize their profit from you.

Hint: Don't go online-shopping on an Apple product.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6294 on: April 30, 2019, 01:57:02 PM »
Quote
If Iím visiting your house, weíll have a boring day if we play board games, but a great one if we rake the leaves and dig some trenches for an irrigation system.

https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2017/09/20/seek-not-to-be-entertained/

Last night my wife and I stayed with one of her coworkers in another town. There was wine and conversation inside and a pile of unsplit firewood outside... I'm really not antisocial just "different". Our hostess does appreciate it.

Haha.  This really made me smile.  My DH is similar he would rather be doing than "visiting".
Heh, I resemble this remark!

Hirondelle

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6295 on: April 30, 2019, 02:13:29 PM »
On this forum I regularly post financial information and my home currency is euro. However, I bought my current computer while living abroad and somehow it does not have a euro sign (Ä). I've tried virtually every 'how to get a euro sign on my keyboard' sign but still haven't found one that works. As posting in $ feels inaccurate I have to either copy-paste the euro sign from an old post of myself (e.g. in the race threads this is easy) or to go to Google, type in euro sign and copy paste it from there.

The effort I do to keep my financial info accurate here..

dragoncar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6296 on: April 30, 2019, 03:46:07 PM »
On this forum I regularly post financial information and my home currency is euro. However, I bought my current computer while living abroad and somehow it does not have a euro sign (Ä). I've tried virtually every 'how to get a euro sign on my keyboard' sign but still haven't found one that works. As posting in $ feels inaccurate I have to either copy-paste the euro sign from an old post of myself (e.g. in the race threads this is easy) or to go to Google, type in euro sign and copy paste it from there.

The effort I do to keep my financial info accurate here..

Which OS is this?  Thereís definitely a way

Alternatepriorities

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6297 on: April 30, 2019, 04:05:58 PM »
Quote
If Iím visiting your house, weíll have a boring day if we play board games, but a great one if we rake the leaves and dig some trenches for an irrigation system.

https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2017/09/20/seek-not-to-be-entertained/

Last night my wife and I stayed with one of her coworkers in another town. There was wine and conversation inside and a pile of unsplit firewood outside... I'm really not antisocial just "different". Our hostess does appreciate it.

Haha.  This really made me smile.  My DH is similar he would rather be doing than "visiting".

Thatís a great way to put it.

APowers

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6298 on: April 30, 2019, 06:43:04 PM »
On this forum I regularly post financial information and my home currency is euro. However, I bought my current computer while living abroad and somehow it does not have a euro sign (Ä). I've tried virtually every 'how to get a euro sign on my keyboard' sign but still haven't found one that works. As posting in $ feels inaccurate I have to either copy-paste the euro sign from an old post of myself (e.g. in the race threads this is easy) or to go to Google, type in euro sign and copy paste it from there.

The effort I do to keep my financial info accurate here..

Which OS is this?  Thereís definitely a way

Press and hold the alt key. Then type 0128. Then release the alt key. Boom. ÄÄÄÄÄ

dragoncar

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Re: Mustachian People Problems (just for fun)
« Reply #6299 on: April 30, 2019, 07:01:23 PM »
On this forum I regularly post financial information and my home currency is euro. However, I bought my current computer while living abroad and somehow it does not have a euro sign (Ä). I've tried virtually every 'how to get a euro sign on my keyboard' sign but still haven't found one that works. As posting in $ feels inaccurate I have to either copy-paste the euro sign from an old post of myself (e.g. in the race threads this is easy) or to go to Google, type in euro sign and copy paste it from there.

The effort I do to keep my financial info accurate here..

Which OS is this?  Thereís definitely a way

Press and hold the alt key. Then type 0128. Then release the alt key. Boom. ÄÄÄÄÄ

AFAIK this only works with a numpad and there could be easier ways based on the Os.  On windows 10, eg you can switch to the international keyboard and right alt+5