Well guys and gals,
I did it.
I opened up that mailbox that I’d been cringing to look at for months.
To be fair, most of those 1,436 unread emails are “amazing guest post opportunities” from folks selling CBD and vitality supplements from halfway around the world. Not exactly the best fit for the well-educated Money Wizard reader…
But, a hefty portion were from real readers who I actually care about. So, I knew I needed to get myself in gear and start responding to the very people who make this website possible.
But as is the theme with these mailbags, why keep those fun money discussions hidden away in my outbox?
Here’s a few of my favorites, shared with the world.
Disclaimer: I am not a professional. None of my comments or responses should be considered advice. These are just personal opinions.
1. Are you alive?
Hey man – what happened to the updates? Selfishly I want them because I love reading them and you can talk me off the ledge that is the current market BUT also just wanted to check you’re all good?”
This was one of many similar emails I received about this.
I appreciate the concern.
Things are all good here, just been busy with life and other projects.
I feel bad about it, because it happened to coincide with the market downturn, so everyone thinks I’ve given up on early retirement or something.
Definitely not the case. I’ve just been at the blog for 7+ years so it’s easy to lose motivation sometimes.
On the plus… three late updates in 7 years ain’t too shabby!
That said, I’m doing my best to get back into the swing of things. I can’t promise updates will be as fast and furious as when I was a young whipper snapper in my prime, but I’ll do my best to not turn this place into a ghost town.
2. Why aren’t you chasing your dreams?
Hey! I recently discovered your blog. Thanks for the content! Quick question – it sounds like in your earlier articles you were excited to Coast FI at $600k when you hit 35. It looks like you’re past $600k and younger than 35, but still working the same job. Why did your plans change? Why aren’t you chasing your dreams, living as a ski instructor, etc.”
For folks not up on the financial lingo, “Coast FI” is a reference to Coasting once you hit Financial Independence.
The idea is that you hit a number that has you set for retirement, and then don’t really worry about saving for retirement at all.
By most definitions, I’m there. I’m currently 32 with a little over $500,000 to my name. If I stop investing entirely, that lump sum should grow to somewhere around $2.8 million over the next 30 years.
So why keep working?
I think the short answers is that I’m not 35 yet.
On the whole, my job is still going well, and while it’s a bit soul crushing on a day to day basis, I haven’t quite reached that point where I’ve needed to flip a table and never come back.
For now, I feel lucky to make good money, and I’m not quite ready to leave.
Instead, I plan to ride it out until age 35, at which point I’ll probably do something that looks like CoastFI.
Lady Money Wizard and I have been talking, and our current dreams include moving around the country for 6 months at a time. Hopefully, we’ll just need to make enough money to pay for food, rent, and some entertainment wherever we end up.
3. Thoughts on Bitcoin
Would love an update on your BTC investment and any updated thoughts on that?
Long time readers will know that after passing on Bitcoin when it was selling for $100, I eventually talked myself into buying some in May 2020.
By that point, long gone were the $100 days, and Bitcoin was now trading at nearly $10,000 a coin.
In any case, I’d convinced myself that it was a good diversification tool in my portfolio. It seemed clear that the internet money had cemented itself as a digital version of gold at a minimum, and something even more valuable at a maximum.
Since then, crypto has been on a wild roller coaster that’s included a $65,000 high back in November followed by a prolonged 8 month crash back down to about $20,000 today.
So the short answer? My tiny investment is still doing okay, and I am still a believer in the technology.
One change? Crypto is proving to be less of an inflationary hedge than I expected. In my opinion, the main reason for this is a double edged sword – the asset class gained the elusive investment of Wall Street, and all the mainstream adoption that comes with that. But at the same time, that mainstream adoption means that crypto now acts less like the fringe diversification tool it once was, and instead is trading similar to Wall Street’s other investments.
In other words, Bitcoin is looking like a more volatile version of a tech stock. And on that note, the technology hasn’t changed.
(If anything, it’s proved itself more and more with each new headline. Even China banning it, which used to be “one of the biggest risks” barely even made a blip in the asset price, nor did it actually affect the bitcoin network.)
To the moon we go!
4. Are I-Bonds Legit?
What are your thoughts on Series I Savings Bonds? They’re yielding 9% right now so I am considering them.”
Yes, they are legit.
I was first turned onto these from some helpful readers back in January. “I-Bonds” are definitely a real investment, and as shady as that TreasuryDirect.gov website looks, it really is the place to invest in them.
These bonds are indexed to inflation, which means that in high inflationary environments, like say… NOW… their payment jacks up considerably.
The cliff notes? You can buy $10,000 of them a year, and you have to hold them for a year before selling.
This is an investment that I personally plan on making over the next few months. I’ll just have to set up an account at the TreasuryDirect.gov website, which is currently down. (I’m sure there’s a joke about the government’s competency somewhere in there…)
5. Is this email legit?
Can SCIENCE help you make women sexually attracted to you? The answer is yes… In fact, studies pouring out of universities are talking about a secret language that will force a woman to stare at you… Chase you…”
I am guessing not.
Thanks for reading.
And a special thanks to readers who reached out with comments and questions.
I do my best to respond to all of them, although I’m sure several slipped through the cracks among my heavy handed deleting of amazing guest post requests and science making women attracted to me.
See you around!