Things I Think About...

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I have always been a dreamer. I remember nights as a child, staring at the ceiling and just THINKING. I would say strange things to my mother, for a child my age, like talking about God or why things the way they are (she would always tell me later in life about how wild it was to have a 6 year old saying things like, "Maybe God isn't an actual person, maybe he is in the trees and the plants and the stars...")

Anyhow, I have random thoughts all the time. I wonder about a lot of things, but like any Aquarius type - I don't seek the answers to fruition - I simply like to wonder...here are a few tidbits of the randomness...

-Cuba. I was thinking about Cuba the other night when I took my roommates to La Isla on 1st and Washington (mmmmm...Cuban Sandwiches) the other night. I was thinking that its an island about the size of Florida. Its located probably in the most perfect part of the equator for sun-worshippers, and about a 3 hour flight from New York city and Castro is 79 years old this August. All I know is that when Castro dies, i'm making pals with my Cuban-American friends and going to buy real estate in Cuba. Talk about untapped paradise. Think about it. Its a freaking island (hello, beachfront everywhere!), and the development of Cuba basically stopped in the 60's. Imagine when Castro dies - how long does the communism last? A year? Two? Eventually that island is going to be like a scene from Far and Away when everyone is going bonkers on the horses for the land grab. I'm telling ya - get a $50,000 loan and grab a parcel of land. In 30 years (after Castro dies) it will be your cheap retirement home.

-What's up with the Pope? The guy looks like he is about as lucid as Andy Reid walking by a McDonalds. I'm thinking that its time to put the Pope into pasture, and let his final years be peaceful - get a newer, younger Pope to revitalize the church. I can't be the only non-practicing Catholic who thinks that enough is enough.

-I have been passively searching for a condo, letting the agents bounce different ideas off me. The bottom line is that the market is white hot in Hoboken and to get something I like i'm going to be so screwed. Greenspan says "there isn't inflation". Yet, there is. Think about it - if I saved, say, $100,000 (I don't have this, its only a theory) for the last 3 years - would that buying power of $100,000 be the same today that it would be 3 years ago? In the housing market, no. So that just steams me to watch the prices off the charts. Funny thing about inflation - you can still get a BMW for $35,000 today as you could have gotten the same car 3 years ago. Maybe I should just do what other yuppie Hobokenites do - rent, buy luxury items and go into debt. All my past roommates are looking so smart for jumping ship and buying when they did. Like I wrote before, I know as soon as I buy a place the entire market will go "poof". Mark my words, i'm like the kiss of death when it comes to financial timing.

-I guess i'm starting to think like a typical 33-year old with my mid-life crisis...I think about the idea of "forever". We live life with blinders on, really. We don't think about the "big picture" of life because if we did - I think it would drive a person insane. There will be a day, in all our lives when we will die. That's it. Game over. You are put into a box, into the ground and if you are like me - you would like to think there is an afterlife, but have come to the realistic notion that we are a speck in the big picture of the universe. Everyone has the cutsie ideas of, "Live everyday like its your last, man!" We don't. We worry & fret about the most useless things (like housing prices in Hoboken). We let life pass us by, and always think that "There's always tomorrow". Tell that to anyone in your life that has passed away (i'm thinking of my dad, who died 6 months ago). I wonder if everyone thought in the big picture of life - the idea that this is it. This is all we have. You will never, ever have another chance to do this again. You will never, ever have another chance to love. You will never, ever have another chance to laugh. You will never, ever have another chance to soar. This is it. What are you doing? Sitting in some office somewhere? Waiting for the future to get better? Waiting for someone to come into your life? Waiting for that raise? Waiting for tomorrow? There is no tomorrow. One day you are alive and well. The next day you are sick, or in debt, or in the twilight of your life saying "What did I do with my time here? Did I do everything I could have done?". One thing I can always say is that up to this point, I have had a very fortunate and wonderful life - but I look around and see so much more that I could be doing aside from wasting my life staring at the bottom of a pint glass.

-I was thinking the other day about the notion of "white collar" and "blue collar" workers. Is there really a difference anymore? I think the world is divided into "People who make less than $200,000 and those that make more than $200,000". Is there really a middle class anymore? I really don't think so. I seriously think that someday, and we are close to it now, that there will be ridiculously rich people in America and the rest of the peasants who are barely keeping their heads above the water. I wonder when the next Revolution will happen...I think eventually you will have an America of "haves" and "have nots". Growing up, I never thought this way...and i'm a staunch Republican. One thing I think that should happen - limits on inheritances. Put a cap there. You have 10 billion? You can give each kid 3 million each, and the rest to charity. Doesn't make sense to me.

-Walked out of the apartment and heard a beautiful bird singing. It takes all the fun out of it when you realize that all the bird is doing is singing "My nest! My nest! My nest!".

...And now, for your daily dose of Random Thoughts...


-I haven't been sick for 6 months (but have plenty of mornings where I wake up saying "Oh I wish I could just call out sick!"). I'm starting to think that its the 1000mg of Vitamin C I take each day.

-I work with co-workers who speak Spanish. They speak English about 90% of the day and switch to Spanish from time to time. I feel like i'm in that Seinfield episode where the Korean girls are talking about Elaine in front of her in Korean.

-I had dinner with an ex-girlfriend (?) from 3 years ago the other night. The reason I question that is because we really dated only 6 weeks until she broke it off with me. The best part about it is that I got some closure from all of it. I found out a lot of details that she didn't tell me about what was going on during that time. It really was too bad now that I think about it. I told her that dating her was like reading a really good book...and having to stop reading it after Chapter 3. I know, and she agreed, that it would have been really great had we kept going. It was just bad timing.

-I'm trying to get a songlist of the best 80's new wave songs. I have a playlist right now on my IPOD:
1. Social Distortion: Story of My Life
2. The Clash: Should I Stay Or Should I go?
3. U2: Sunday Bloody Sunday
4. Social Distortion: Ring of Fire
5. The Alarm: 68 Guns
6. Social Distortion: Ball and Chain
7. The Ramones: Blitzkreig Bop
8. The Clash: London Calling
9. R.E.M.: Superman
10. The Cure: In Between Days
11. The Smiths: How Soon Is Now?
12. INXS: Don't Change
13. Depeche Mode: Just Can't Get Enough
14. New Order: Bizarre Love Triange
15. Modern English: I Melt With You
16. R.E.M.: Its The End of The World As We Know It
17. INXS: The One Thing
18. The Cult: She Sells Sanctuary
19. Echo & The Bunnymen: She Sells Sugar
20. The Sundays: Here's Where the Story Ends
21. Morrissey: Everyday is Like Sunday
22. Pixies: Here Comes Your Man
23. Indigo Girls: Closer to Fine
24. The Primitives: Crash
25. The Church: Milky Way
26. Siouxie and the Banshees: Dear Prudence
27. The Replacements: Kiss Me on the Bus
28. Sinead O'Connor: Mandinka
29. Gene Loves Jezebel: The Motion of Love
30. The Jesus and Mary Chain: Head On
31. 'Til Tuesday: Voices Carry
32. Hoodoo Gurus: What's My Scene
33. Ned's Atomic Dustbin: Happy (I'd rather have Green Cell Green here)
34. They Might Be Giants: Birdhouse in Your Soul
35. My Bloody Valentine: Only Shallow
36. Siouxsie and The Banshees: Kiss Them for Me
37. The Sugarcubes: Hit
38. Indigo Girls: Galileo
39. Camper Van Beethoven: Pictures of Matchstick Men
40. Cowboy Junkies: Sweet Jane
41. The Cranberries: Linger

I made a second playlist from other 80's bands that I missed on this list, like: Midnight Oil, Psychedelic Furs, Erasure, Madness, etc. But I keep searching for the one-hit wonders and great songs to get. Plus I want to make a Grunge 90's Playlist next with all the great songs from 1990-1994 - my college years. Any suggestions are appreciated!!!

1 Comment

1) I think there's been a lot of early-bird real estate speculation in Cuba already, legal or not (you can always get around US regulations via offshore corporations and other devices). I'd bet appreciation in values will happen in a very short time after Castro's demise. The idea is right though. If you look at change today with an eye toward similar change at an earlier point in time, the acceleration is remarkable. For example, the revolution that turned Japan from an industrial backroom into a manufacturing giant and then into a high-tech powerhouse took decades. A very similar change in China that began (more or less) a couple of years ago will accomplish the same effect by around 2010. The ramp-up so fierce it caused a worldwide steel shortage last year. Cuba's right next door - blink and there'll be Starbucks on every corner.

2) Don't all Popes die in office?

3) When you buy your condo, check before committing to see if there has been a rise in acceptance of first offers. That's the canary in the coal mine. No matter what you do, though, chances are that at some point you'll see a dip in prices that will take your equity down. It could last a couple of years, or a decade. But in the end, they don't make more land (more true now than ever, since high-rises are now a no-no and open space is in vogue). If you want to hedge your bets, there are areas in Jersey CIty that are quietly upcoming. (Of course, this would mean you'd have to rename your site).

4) Life is ephemral for sure. If you are uncertain in direction at least you are asking the right questions. Not everyone does.

5) America has always been a place of haves and have-nots. The world has, also. I think you would find that a larger percentage of "wealth" (however you measure that) has been distributed to a somewhat wider group. There are just more ways to amass wealth than ever, and some of them are even legal. That does not mean that wealth is equitably distributed, but then I don't know who is fit to determine what that means. Societies that have tried to enforce 'equitable' distribution have failed, and probably always will. One good thing about the current distribution of wealth, however, is that cyclical recessions have become less deep/long. Measure the length and depth of recessions back to, say, the 70's, and you see that the dips have become less severe over time. The most recent one did not have an accompanying real estate crash, and you should keep in mind that the severity of it feels exacerbated because it came off an extremely overheated economy. We had about as full an employment as is possible, people were lighting cigars with stock market profits. Right now, the ecomony seems flat, but what's happening is that the recovery has been unusually wide by historical standards. It's not a US recovery so much as it is a (nearly) worldwide expansion. That means more people worldwide will have at least a subsistence level income than ever before. This holds great promise for world stability and prosperity over a longer term.

6) What's the difference between a bird chirping about its nest and the guy on the next stool chirping about his condo? Right: we WANT to hear from the bird.

7) Wheatgrass juice. It's why cows are contented.

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This page contains a single entry by Furey published on February 17, 2005 9:37 AM.

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