Finally, the weekly linkfest is old enough to drink — at least in Alberta. But it won’t because there are already enough typos around here.
Let’s talk a little about a movie the missus and I watched on the Netflix the other night called The Minimalists. As you might expect, it was filled with all sorts of self-righteous people who figured out that not only is the key to happiness getting rid of most of your stuff, but you also have to talk about it. Over and over again.
Every story was the same. We were struggling. I wasn’t happy. Life sucked. And then, suddenly, I discovered minimalism and everything ended up okay. Yay, minimalism! My life is so simple now!
I don’t want to totally crap on minimalism, because a really easy way to end up with more cash is to not buy so much stuff. Most people have a spending problem and should really embrace buying less junk. But for most of us, it’s really hard to go from “buy everything” to “reduce your life to 52 possessions.” No. Screw that. Buy things that make your life better. Just don’t go nuts about it.
There was one point in the movie where someone was talking about how he needed some object and didn’t have it, but it was okay because someone let him borrow it and gosh, what a nice thing. Look at how loving communities can be!
Barf. Screw the community. There’s something to be said about being self-sufficient. We all have that friend who asks for everything because they don’t even try to do stuff on their own. Don’t be that friend. “Hey, friend with stuff! Can I borrow some of your stuff?”
By far my favorite part about minimalism is when they start to travel. Because they always do. “I have no more things. Now I can do what I’ve always dreamed of. Traveling the world!” If that’s what someone wants to do, then go ahead. See if I care. But isn’t minimalism supposed to be about simplifying life? Tell me how trying to traverse a new city every few days is simple. Spoiler alert: it’s not.
Links I liked
Two weeks worth of links, huh? Oh, this should be easy.
1. Let’s start with Boomer and Echo, where Robb posted that his net worth surpassed $500k this year despite only having a lowly government job and a stay-at-home wife. Impressive results, except we can’t really rule out that he’s selling meth.
2. Divestor, one of my favorite investing blogs, is doing his own AMA. Feel free to go and ask him such questions as “who are you” and “what do you want.” And while you’re at it, feel free to ask me a question or two on my own AMA.
3. Ever heard of Napoleon Hill, who wrote the classic self-help book Think and Grow Rich? You probably have. It’s been a consistent best seller for decades now. Anyhoo, turns out Napoleon was quite the scam artist.
4. I enjoyed the year in review by Million Dollar Journey, who has been blogging for 10 years now. That’s impressive, but I’ve actually been blogging for 59 years. Yeah, I started in 1957.
5. Want to save $100,000 in a year? Steveonomics tells you how it can be done.
6. Congrats to Freedom 35 Blog who has officially moved from a middle-class income to upper middle class. Somebody better alert the authorities.
7. Next up is My Pennies My Thoughts, who points out that it’s really not that hard to become a rich renter. In fact, it might even be the ideal path to take in 2017 considering the insane price of real estate in most Canadian cities.
Jeez, this is tougher than I thought. There are a lot of bloggers who completely take the holidays off. Time for some big media I guess.
8. This has nothing to do with finance, but I still laughed my ass off. It’s an article called I don’t let my kids watch Winnie The Pooh because I don’t want them growing up idolizing a fat virgin.
9. Here are two hedge fund managers talking about how to identify crappy businesses.
10. And finally, here’s a convincing argument for investing in net net working capital stocks. These are the cheapest of the cheap stocks, and it turns out they’ve performed pretty well.
Stuff Nelson wrote
As a reminder, you can hire me to write for your blog, newspaper, or poorly-Xeroxed newsletter. Hit the ol’ contact me page to get the ball rolling.
Just a couple of Motley Fool articles this week.
1. Here are some timeless lessons from one of my favorite value investors, Walter Schloss.
2. And here’s a list of 10 of the cheapest companies in Canada on a price-to-book basis.
Tweet of the week
My new year's resolution is to watch the eastern feed next year and go to bed by 10:45 like a civilized person.
— Nelson! (@financialuproar) January 1, 2017
Have a good 2017, everybody.