Eleven Gems on the Net #2

Hi readers,

Welcome back to another episode of eleven gems on the net, where i share few interesting links I’ve found on the web. More information about the series can be found in the first post.

There’s not a common theme among these links, which is “work as intended”. I’m thinking that since my curiosity flies in thematic waves I may orient the series to revolve around a central theme per post, allowing few links to diverge from it. Dunno yet. We’ll see.

Anyway… yes, it’s not been a very long time since last episode in this series. Just a week, actually. I expected a lower frequency. I’ve been travelling quite a bit recently so I had more time to read than to write. So… enjoy!


1) Stuff Cloud.

Last time I shared the Buy Nothing Project. Interesting project based on the fact that you’re probably going to thrash something that would be valuable for others. The Stuff Cloud idea (it’s not a concrete project yet) differs slightly because it’s not about transferring an object possession, but it’s about freely renting it from someone willing to let others use it for free. Both projects are about true sharing economy, a project any frugal person like me can’t help but love them. Anyway, it’s not a project yet. None is jealous of their idea here. You’re more than welcome to take initiative and implement it 🙂

2) Millennial Revolution retrospective about not buying a house.

Is it worth to buy a house? In Italy everyone will tell you you’re crazy and should be sent to doctors if you don’t buy but rent. But in the worlds of FI this is a valid question and the opinions varies a lot. Jim Collins and James Altucher say “never buy a house!”, while almost all the others are ok with owning their primary residence. A lot reached FI via rental properties, so for them it’s a no-brainer.

This couple from Toronto (Millennial Revolution) centered their blog around the rejection of the “you must buy a house” commandment (take a look at their welcome video and their guest post on Financial Samurai about why cash is better than a house).

Well, after 4 years they wrote this article analyzing in retrospective how would have been their life in case they purchased the house back in 2012, when the didn’t. Amazing detailed analysis (even though, as I pointed out in comments, in my opinion they adapted the math to make their message).

They also wrote a follow up post, analyzing the impact of the mortgage leverage effect and still no, it still would have been worse to have bought the house. Even considering that the house market did great in these 4 years!

3) Rewirement by John Bowman.

Yes, we’ve finally found the missing word! We all agree that the word “retirement” is ugly, old and unrepresentative of what we aim to once FI.

This John Bowman solved the problem: not retirement, but rewirement:

Rather than retire, my generation would rather rewire. That is, prepare our minds, our bodies, and our plans for years of continued growth ahead.

Inherently optimistic, this new life-stage begins with deeply understanding who you are and where you’re going, determined by knowing fundamental personal and communal values that drive you.

This guy is a CEO of a certain age, so he’s probably just trying to feel young while retiring at a traditional age. But what he doesn’t know is that he found the missing word!

I’m actually thinking about renaming my blog in Rewire in Progress. Not joking.

Anyway, I found this while reading the MrFireStation blog. Why not go back to school again – to rewire – when retired? Amazing idea!

4) Scared of retiring early once your FI? What about our Super Asset? By LeisureFreak.

You want to be FI right? You know how to save, how to spend less than you earn, how to be frugal. You run retirement calculators, crunch numbers, calculate your FU Number and your WR. You are cautious, you don’t want to fail. You set safety margins to play even safer. Once you reach FI you work One More Year, just to be safe…

But come on guys, what are we scared of? We know we have a secret weapon. The supersafe plan we’re drawing is overshooting 99% of cases. LF says our secret weapon is knowledge. I loved the article, it put on paper (well, on screen) my disorganized thoughts. But I think the secret weapon(s), more than knowledge is resilience. Plus creativity. Plus curiosity. Plus problem solving.

5) Investment analysis: Real Estate vs Blogging by Financial Samurai.

Every article by Financial Samurai deserves to be in this series. He’s so original, deep and productive. I wish I had a thousandth of his thinking and writing skills! Anyway, as to push the “Real Estate vs Stocks” discussion a step further, he analyzed differences between Real Estate and Blogging as investment strategies. Actually, you can substitute blogging with any other kind of startup/freelancing activity. Very deep analysis and interesting conclusions, even though I think the blogging outcome is too optimistic.

What I loved most – food for thought – is that I can connect dots here: there’s a ladder of earning quality. At the bottom there is “9 to 5 till 65”. Then you learn how to send your money to work for you. But at the beginning you’re ok with low bonds returns. Then you invest in something more risky/brave like real estates / stocks. Then you invest in yourself. Higher risks, higher returns.

Blogging, for example, follows this pattern.


6) The Ultimate cheat sheet for investing your money  by James Altucher.

…Yeah, James Altucher goes all in! I love his posts about investing in yourself (he wrote a book about that). In this post you’ll find his unsettled anger toward wall street and the stock market. His advices are interesting and worth reading but I think his goals differs from mine. He states that stocks are boring and those who make money are “the thieves/experts”, so you should run away. Disagree James, sorry. I never liked so much an article with whom I disagree so much!

Anyway, I know one day I will say “James was 100% right”. I both dread and dream about that day.

7) Spend Generation Manifesto.

This post made me angry with myself. I hate when I feel something being so totally wrong but I can’t came up with a couple of sentences explaining why it is wrong. I have skill, but being concise, succinct is not one of them. This post is about a guy who’s proud of spending all his 130K yearly salary while still living with his parents.

I don’t want to spoil more. If you have 10-15 minutes please read it. It’s a long article, but well worth reading.

8) Q&A at Camp Mustache hosted by the Mad Fientist.

Podcast of the Q&A session at Camp Mustache, a meeting between American Mustachian that I dream about joining one day. This podcast is an hour long and there are amazing questions asked by the audience to the four speakers: Pete (MrMoneyMustache), Paula (Afford Anything), Doug (The Military Guide) and the Mad Fientist. They all already reached FI.

Questions were about suggestions to beginners, motivations for those halfway through, investing in the stock markets at the all time high, challenges once FI, what to do after, how to relate with other people…

I learned few things I didn’t know that will help me on my journey:

  • the impact of negativity on a community.
  • the importance of practicing gratitude.
  • the importance of leading by doing and being consistent.

Food for thought, as usual.

9) XKCD on global warming.

Let’s admit that: Randall Munroe is everybody’s imaginary best friend. No? Cool, than he’s all mine! His depth of thoughts and how amazingly he can put things on paper using just stick figures is worth a nobel prize at least. This episode is slightly more complex and puts time into perspective while analyzing global average temperature on earth in last 20,000 years (well, what we know about it, since thermometers weren’t there 20K years ago…).

Essentially we, the human race, survived through a glacial era, when cities like Boston were covered by a miles (A MILES, in height) of ice. Since then the average temperature rose by 4 celsius degrees till 1990 (26 years ago) and another degree till today. Forecasts say we may gain another 3 degrees by 2100.

Denying human effects on global warming after having seen this graphics seems so silly. A picture is worth more than billions of words!

10) Hilariously Accurate Comics About Adulthood And Life By Owlturd.

I Follow the boredpanda on facebook. This page satisfy at least one of my two basic requirements for a social media entity to be worthwhile: being informative or being entertaining. This post were both. It made me discover this owlturd blog and his amazing drawings. The drawings are about adulthood life situations, where emotions are personified a là “Inside Out”. It made me laugh and think, which is the definition of success for me.

11) [Special] Little Boxes by Malvina Reynolds.

The special section is reserved for something that’s not new, and this video definitely isn’t. The song is dated back in 1962, closer to the first world war than to today. But I just discovered less than 24 hours ago, following a deep youtube vortex with at a friend’s house (curious? Last 3 steps were thisthis and this).

I’ve consumed hours of Malvina Reynolds songs while working yesterday at Hooli. I can’t help but keep going. She was (when she died I wasn’t one year old yet) an anti capitalist singer and songwriter of the flower power era. This song is an efficient criticism to conformism, urbanization and capitalism. I perceive my whole body feeling happy when listening songs of this kind, even though I know and accept the apparent contradiction of being anti consumerist (I don’t spend) and capitalist (I invest, i.e. I rely on other people spending).

My heart belong there, among the flowers!


  1. Thanks for the LF-post mention Mr. RIP. You have nailed it. Resilience, Creativity, Curiosity, Problem Solving, all the skills we accumulate and successfully practiced during our FI journey. You spelled it out beautifully.

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