Thursday, November 2, 2006

The fall of Fall

We've skipped right to winter, and it's only the second day of November. The weather report this morning is calling for snow, and I wonder why we bother with autumn in the first place.

Cold brings a project-oriented mindset, since you're mostly stuck inside and unable to take walks in the park - unless you're insane, in which case, have at it.

My project has been selling my knick-nacks on eBay - a site whose popularity has dwindled, judging by the bid counts on the items I want to sell. Who knew, five years ago, that the Simpsons collectible action figures would be a bad investment? Who knew that a tin Spider-Man lunchbox would fail to impress even the smallest niche of hobbyists? eBay is a good stopping place if you're looking to find a bargain on a CD or DVD: most go for only a few bucks, with shipping, which beats even the discount used movies I pick up from Blockbuster.

The project is a result of the doldrums, true, but also of the financial class Suzanne and I are taking with guru Dave Ramsey - a smart guy from Tennessee with an accent and little patience with debt. I'm weary of the get-rich-quick classes that so many around here are taking these days (probably because of the piss-poor job market and economy), so much so that I'll ignore polite offers. And this one I was skeptical of, too, but I'm glad Suzanne invited me. Ramsey is a crock-pot, not a microwave, in his philosophy, in that getting out of debt and building wealth take time. One of his recommendations is to sell the crap you don't need.

So selling the crap I don't need, or that's taking up too much space, or that I haven't seen in years. Except this opens up a whole world I'm not familiar with, what with all the bubble wrap and packaging tape and feedback points.

The cold also means dark, and while the sun shines in the morning - as it should - it disappears right about the time I wake up from a nap. And that's horse-pucky. My winter blahs don't need to start any earlier than they have to.

The blahs help, though, when watching my new favorite show - "The Office" - and "My Name is Earl" when I can catch it. I hear that iTunes saved the show, which I don't doubt, but I think it's humor and wit will see it through.

No more baseball games with Cowboy and Keith, sadly, but I may still have some travel left in my bones. And when I don't, I have another Office - Veach's bar - to look forward to with Mel, Jenny, Don and the crew. It's usually too loud to conversate, but never too loud to play drunken card games.

Winters are more bearable when you're buzzed, but my new budgeting superpowers make buzzed harder and harder to achieve.

What I do hope to achieve is a haircut of some sort, some financial peace, and a steady income from online auctions.

And maybe a sense of accomplishment, when crypto-Nazis like Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum burn in their own hellfire and brimstone. But with the unreliable voting machines - like the ones Randi and I saw in "Man of the Year" - it's hard to say who has the power anymore.

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