Thursday, April 23, 2015

On the Mustachians

I'm off work this week and not shaving, going by the rule of thumb
that if I'm not being paid why should I shave?  It's not working too well
though, I'm looking less like Tom Selleck and more like Santa Claus.

The oilfield downturn, forced days off and a high chance of being laid
off means most of my brain's clock cycles are being taken up by money,
what is our burn rate and how long until we have to take up residence under
the bridge.

It would appear that by cutting back our outflows, we could limp to an age
where I'd start to draw a pension so I've stopped scoping out sub-ponte living
conditions and I'm reading more on retirement.  The expert on low cost living
and early retirement is Mr Money Mustache, who's blog details living well
below your means, saving intensely then retiring young.

With very clear prose he details the main barriers to retiring young, which
are spending too much while you are working so that one's saving level is
too low, the main culprit being cars and driving, and if you need a high spending
level to exist then when you run the numbers on the really great retirement calculator
at FireCalc, the estimate will be you can never retire.   It's a very circular problem,
spend too much, save too little and use those same spending estimates to predict
retirement predicts working until you are 80, and that leads to pissing away
even more money when you think it doesn't matter either way.

Here in Houston living without a car would be unpleasant at best, with a high
likelyhood of being squished by a semi-truck at some point.  Living in Colombia
would be much cheaper and no car is needed, but being shot down in a hail
of gunfire is pretty likely as well, so I really need a more in-between type
place.   Not too hot, not too cold, low crime, good schools...probably doesn't
exist.  I guess I'll just enjoy my last two days of lay-off then work even harder
to stay on payroll as long as possible, the upturn should start in 6 months or so.
Just 2 or 3 more boom-bust cycles and I can retire with or without a mustache.

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