March 30, 2015

Car Shopping

I'm considering replacing my car.

Now, the family tradition was to drive a car until it was totaled or until it is utterly uneconomical to repair. My current car doesn't qualify. It's an '04, but it's seriously only got 60k miles on it. It didn't get used much while I was deployed, and then when I was in university I found it was faster to ride my bike right up to the building I had class in compared to finding a parking space and walking.

But the latest Consumer Reports magazine was their car issue, and it had a checklist for "Should I keep my current car?" Mine is a great candidate for keeping, what with being low mileage and in good shape mechanically. But it lacks pretty much all recent safety features. It has no side-curtain airbags, no traction control, and doesn't even have anti-lock brakes. CR recommends replacing a car without those.

Further, it's a coupe, not a sedan, and the two-door configuration makes getting people or stuff in the back seats a huge pain in the rear, if you'll pardon the pun. Also it's a stick shift, which is fun, but my wife still hasn't learned how to use it. That means we can't trade cars, so we're missing out on one of the advantages of being a two-car family.

I'm currently thinking about getting a new Honda Fit. I'll have to schedule a test drive sometime. There are several dealers in the area, so that shouldn't be hard, and also if I decide to get one I can get bids from all of them.

Posted by: Boviate at 04:11 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment
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March 16, 2015


Today I've been doing the taxes. Why didn't we file earlier? Two reasons: First, we're missing some paperwork and have had to request replacements. Second, my estimates are that we won't get much of a refund if any, so there's no reason to rush. Normally a refund is a tax-free loan to the government, but interest rates are currently so low that we're not really forgoing much money.

It's been an eye-opening experience. I'm finally working a professional job, so I'm making much more money. Plus, I married a woman working a professional job. So there's so much income to report! It's amazing! To me, at least.

It's also so much more complicated. Perhaps I should have asked my father-in-law the retired accountant to do it for me. But I've got software doing the heavy lifting, the only really difficult part so far has been figuring out Form 8949. Which capital gains are covered, which are noncovered, etc.

Posted by: Boviate at 09:23 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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March 04, 2015

The Sun Never Sets

Recently several branches of the bank I work for were picketed by the John Birch Society. I'm kind of surprised that Lyndon LaRouche is still going strong. At any rate, for the rest of the day we joked about being in the pocket of Queen Victoria.

Posted by: Boviate at 07:21 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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