Monthly Archive for March, 2005

salmon

Meg and I made pan-seared salmon last night. With peas and rice.

Why do I love salmon so much!? We cooked like, 2.5 pounds of fish, and ate probably 2 pounds of it last night. I brought the rest in for lunch today.

I usually like salmon when it’s poached or grilled… but Meg talked me into pan-seared. I have to admit, I didn’t think i could make it turn out as well as it did, but it was awesome. Also, I think it takes a little practice. Overall, it’s kinda like making pancakes: you have to have the heat level and oil volume just right. Sure, 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil might not look like a lot, but trust me, it’s plenty.

And, one should resist at all costs the urge to throw more than a few drops of water into a pan of very hot oil. Any more than a VERY few drops, and you run the risk of IGNITING the oil on fire. I know this doesn’t quite sound right, but I’m living proof that columns of flame can exist as a by-product of hot oil and water. Thankfully I had the foresight to not stick my face over the pan, or I’d be without eyebrows, lashes, or any other facial hair.

I’m typing this as I sadly gaze upon the last bite of leftover salmon. Goodbye, friend: I’ll miss you!

the future

The future is one of the weirdest things to think about: it doesn’t exist yet, but EVERYONE is doing something about their future. People plan weddings, buy houses, have babies, etc. All of it, careening into the future.

Today, I embraced my future. Economically speaking, that is: I purchased the first of (hopefully) many $50 I-Series Government Savings Bonds.

My goal is to buy a $50 i-bond a month for the rest of my life. If I treat it as an expense (like a cell phone bill, or rent) it’ll be money i can justofy spending. Sure, my budget will get the slightest bit tighter, but if I focus on the realization that this is an expense that purchases more money, I’ll feel a lot better about it,

I-bonds are cool because they have a built-in compensation for inflation. The composite interest rate is computed by using a combination of the fixed flat rate laid out at the issuance of the loan, and the consumer price index (a common tool used in measuring inflation rates) which changes every 6 months (I believe on may 1st and November 1st).

When the rates change, the bond draws interest for that period at the composite rate, and then a new composite rate is computed for the resultant sum of last period’s interest and the principal investment of the bond.

For example: if i purchase a bond today at $50 principal, with a rate of %3.5 on May 1st 2005, it will draw interest on the 50 dollars at 3.5% for the first 6 months. then, on November 1st, 2005, the interest will pay to the bond value: the bond is now worth 50 dollars plus 3.5% interest, or $51.75. The inflation rate may have gone up, say, 0.4%… this will factor into the composite rate of the bond, and bring the interest rate up to (if i did my math right) 4.47%. So then on May 1st 2006, the bond will draw interest at 4.47% on top of the $51.75, not just the $50.

Long story short: if i assume an average rate of %3.5 over a 20 year period, with interest paid twice a year, the bond will be worth over $200.00

It quickly becomes obvious how awesome this is. If I buy one of these every month, in 20 years, i’ll be getting an extra $200/month of income.

florida, v.3

So I got back on sunday from my 3rd trip to Florida as an adult. The 2nd time that Meg has joined me.

We got there thursday night to 48 degrees and rain. Gross.

Friday and Saturday did not disappoint, though. mid to high 60′s and sunshine.

We went sailing on Saturday. It was really awesome. I’d been on boats before with engines and what-not, but this was really genuinely cool. Totally at the mercy of the wind. I learned some neat names: Gibe, Gib, Main sail… it turns out also, that there is no such thing as a “rope” on a boat. Apparently, all the lines have fancy names.

All in all, a good time.