can you tell i’m not into blogging? new house stuff

Since I haven’t posted here in ages, I guess I don’t really have to state that ‘blogging’ isn’t my thing, at least not at the moment.

But this post is to confirm that I have a wordpress account and I still own, until I change my name.

News: it looks the comedy at the Grange Hall in SLO, CA is done. Too bad, but it’s tough to schedule comedians, no matter where.

I moved to Paso Robles – thank you to the mortgage meltdown for bringing home prices down. I may post soon about buying a house, moving in, cleaning up, etc….but it’s been done, right? Who wants to read about this Home Improvement-type crap?  All I know is that despite all the debate and articles on ‘renting versus buying’, buying/owning) a house adds a different element to one’s life – more responsibility? Tremendous debt? Maybe. But, when I was renting I had debt, so what’s the diff? And repsonsibility? I’ll take that over trying to get your full security deposit back. Anyway, if you’re renting, you still have the responsibility to manage one’s money for the future, so keeping on top of your investments is key. If you buy a house, you have similar responsibility, but in a more ‘present’ or real way – your investment is there, everyday, waiting for you to fix this, or paint that. You are never guaranteed a return, but you know you have a house, and property – actual land, like in that movie Far and Away, without the horse race and phony Irish accents – and except for a few cases (eminent domain or sink hole), that property will be around for years. Depending upon your location, that property may increase in value, for whatever reason. It may decrease in value, but for how long. There is only so much property to be had.

I’m no expert in real estate, finances (believe me, I’m not), but having had the good fortune to pick up a relative bargain in an expensive county, I think the odds are in my favor (unless an earthquake hits, then I’m screwed), and I think pro-rent articles are sometimes too dismissive of home-buying.  We are human. There is something to be said for having your own place. I’m not opposed to renting for sure – I am the least handyman person I know, so I dig being able to call the landlord and say ‘fix it!’. But, too late now for me.  This will be my main investment for now –  I’m too lax on keeping up with 401k/investing stuff. The fact that I call it ‘stuff’ tells you I am. And having rented rooms and apartments for the past 15 years, it’s a very cool feeling (and scary) to know that everything in the house and on the property is mine, good or bad. Besides, if it doesn’t go up in value, I’ll ask the government to cover the loss. j/k.

wiberg's new old house
Wiberg's new old house, built in 1918. Bought as a short sale - priced 30% lower than previous 2005 transaction. He's fortunate because there is a rental unit in back, which will help with the mortgage, and make him a Mr. Furley.

My conversation with Treasury Sec’y Henry Paulson Regarding Debt

As everyone knows, Henry Paulson is the Secretary of Treasury, and a banned candidate from the MacArthur Fellows Program (aka ‘ “Genius Grant”). And he’s been busy this week convincing everyone that saving these big loser banks is vital. Apparently he doesn’t think the Economy should be in one of those FAIL photo threads that are shared in emails around the world and if I had more time or interest, I would make one up.

Hey, guess who is not getting a "Genius Grant?"
Hey, guess who is not getting a "Genius Grant?"

Instead, I got Mr. Paulson on the phone, because I owe some money and I wanted to see if I could get it included in the bailout.

Mark Wiberg: Hi, Secretary of Treasury Paulson?

Henry Paulson: Call me HP.

Mark: Are you sure? Like the computer?

HP: Yes. Please. HP.

MW: Okay, HP. Hey, before I begin – you are the top dog at the Treasury Department, right?

HP: Yes I am.

MW: Did you see that movie National Treasure?

HP: I did, on an airplane some time ago.

MW: Is any of that true? Maybe we could use that treasure to help with the bailout? That stuff looked pretty real. It’s up in New York, I think, under Wall Street.

HP: (laughs) Yeah, sure it is. I don’t think that’s going to happen.

MW: What about National Treasure 2: Book of Secrets’ treasure?

HP: Again, I don’t think that the movies were entirely accurate in regards to the vasts amounts of treasure found.

MW: I dunno. I would maybe take a look at those movies again. It seems pretty accurate to me. Where did you go to film school?

HP: I didn’t go to film school.

MW: I see. Bad reel?

HP: What?

MW: Nothing. Listen, HP, I owe several thousand dollars to some very important people because I just had to have every DVD ever made and a kick-ass television that is so friggin’ flat and hi-def that’s it’s just sick. I thought they were all going to increase in value because sometimes DVDs go out of print and you can make like an extra $70 sometimes on a disc. It’s all pretty complicated business investment stuff tied in with major companies like Ebay and Burger King – I don’t have time to explain it – I just need action now. Can I lump my debt in with the big boys. Out of $700 billion, my money is like a drop in the ocean.

HP: I think we can help you out. And by “we” I mean everyone.

MW: Cool. Hey, can I ask you another question?

HP: Sure.

MW: Treasure of the Sierra Madre. Any chance that could help us?

HP: I don’t think so.

MW: Whatevers. I’m just saying “think outside the box” – if you’re going to pay off my debts, I want to make sure you do it in a responsible way, that you think of everything. But just make it quick!

Secretary Henry Paulson denies that the treasure from the film National Treasure could be of any use. I think he is a liar.
Secretary Henry Paulson denies that the treasure from the film National Treasure could be of any use. I think he is a liar.