lights! camera! roundup!

Three utterly unrelated short thoughts:

On Roundups and Linklings

1.  I’ve stopped calling these things ‘linklings’ – which I thought was clever enough but probably confused some people.  After some intense discussions amongst the Money Writers this week, though, I decided I needed to try to put a bit more effort into these roundups, so enjoy the next few weeks before I lose enthusiasm or get busy and go back to just dropping 10 links in a post!

On Inception

2.  Inception may have been the most disappointing movie I’ve seen in years.  I finally caught it on DVD and maybe I was just overexcited after seeing The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan directed both movies) but I liked Inception better when it starred Keanu Reeves back in 1999.

On disarming

3.  I am sure it will be obvious what I’m referring to here.  Kurt Vonnegut (one of my favorite authors) put these words in the mouth of a character in his novel Deadeye Dick*, shortly after his pregnant wife was killed by a rifle shot:

My wife has been killed by a machine which should never have come into the hands of any human being. It is called a firearm. It makes the blackest of all human wishes come true at once, at a distance: that something die. There is evil for you. We cannot get rid of mankind’s fleetingly evil wishes. We can get rid of the machines that make them come true. I give you a holy word: DISARM. **

* Note 1: not an affiliate link, I would not want to profit in any way from this particular event.

** Note 2: any political commentary on that event or related to it won’t make it through my comment moderation.  Go on over to Daily Kos or Red State to hash that out.  Normally I’m happy to debate things but I’ve seen how this conversation goes.  But I was saddened and thought all of the political furor on both "sides" was inappropriate.  The issue above is at the core of the problem.

On to the links

Abandon resolutions. Stop looking for a soulmate. Reject positive thinking: An interesting take on resolutions and how to make positive changes in your life. Not sure I agree, but certainly made me consider a few things differently.

4 Lessons Learned from Job Search in 2010: A relatively new blog to me – these are some good lessons and quite appropriate for the job seeker in 2011, as well.

Forecasting The Stock Market Is More Art Than Science: I’ve thought this for years – the stock market bears a closer relationship to the weather than to physics or chemistry. The actions and reactions within the stock market have more in common with the chaotic interplay of global climate patterns (think the Butterfly Effect) than they do with Newton’s Laws, for example.

I Just Lost My Job! How I’m Downsizing My Household Expenses: I guess the only comment I’d make to be a spoilsport is that many of these sound like good ideas even if you haven’t lost your job – why wait until you lose your job to cut out unnecessary expenses?

H&R Block Free Federal Premium Tax Filing: I have used TurboTax for years or else I’d be jumping on this offer.

Why I Joined a Gang: I’m in the same gang; I wouldn’t be writing this blog today if it weren’t for my gang, frankly. I think I might have given up by now.

» On gratification:  In this very Seth-Godin-like post, Jacob makes a good point, although I’d argue that unless you inherited the wealth, you must have done something ELSE to pay for it.  But I get his point – it’s easier to be proud of the direct result of your own efforts than it is the indirect result of working at something else in order to afford to pay someone else to build/create/do it for you (my comment is longer than his post!), which is valid.

Destroying 7 Money Myths:  I have an issue with #4, since I do believe the markets are unfairly manipulated – and as someone who’s worked at various investment banks and private equity firms over the last five years as a high-level audit consultant, I think I have some insight into it.

And a few other good ones: