Today’s Dramatic Stock Drop

It seems like the markets are finally starting to correct after the unprecedented rise we’ve all been experiencing. I honestly thought it would happen at the end of 2016 when Trump became our president. I wrongly assumed his Tweets would cause investors to lose confidence and I was wrong. Thankfully, I didn’t let the thought of that deter me from investing as the past year has been kind to us all.

Today’s drop does remind me a lot of this quote by JL Collins:

Everybody makes money when the market is rising. But what determines whether it will make you wealthy or leave you bleeding on the side of the road is what you do during the times it is collapsing.

I know that corrections and recessions happen, and you have to stay the course. Keep your same investing habits as if it gaining 40% a year. In the end, it’ll all work out. The market always goes up.

As someone that only invests in index funds and has limited knowledge of the market, I do find this swing interesting in that it’s coming off the heels of the tax plan. They are claiming will make the market continue to rise, but not many are talking about our huge national debt and the increases in it to pay for it. Maybe that’s why the market is now turning? I’m sure no one knows.

I know very little about economics, but I find it interesting how the markets react to different things and always have to remember to stay the course and not live fearfully. Beyond that, ​I’m most concerned about who is going to get the blame for this. We’ve all been trained over the past year that the administration is only responsible for positive​ things, so it’ll be interesting for sure.

Live Events is Twitter at its Best

I’ve been on Twitter since January 2009, and live events are​ still the best use of the platform. Super Bowl LII (52) just ended, and it was one of the most exciting games I’ve seen.

What made it great was scrolling my feed as the commercials where happening as well as the game action. That is what made me always love Twitter.

Even though I think it’s great for the live events I keep coming back to something I read on the IA Blog:

There seems to be a weak undercurrent of old and young bloggers like us that feel sentimental or curious and want to bring back blogging. Blogging won’t save the world. But, hell, after two weeks now, we can confirm: it feels great to be back on the blogging line.

If you are one of those old or young bloggers, please join in. Drop Facebook, drop Twitter and drop Medium for original thought. Own your traffic. You can use them to engage in discussion. But don’t get lost in there. Write daily. Publish as often as you have something to say. Link to other blogs.

The curmudgeon in me wants blogging to make a huge comeback​ but I know it’ll never happen, but now that I’ve blogged something every day of 2018 it’s starting to get fun again. I just hope that enjoyment continues.

Take a Break to Solve the Problem

Today is beautiful in North Carolina. Clear blue sky, no clouds, but cold with the current temperature of 42F. Tomorrow’s forecast is rain, and although I had a few tasks to get done, I knew I better get a mountain bike ride in today.

With these goals set I knew I had two options. The first was to knock out all my todo’s at home, then go ride. With the temperature being crisp and chilly I knew by the time I would finish I’d end up deciding against riding. I’d come up with an excuse and sit on the couch and be lazy.

So instead I decided to pack up my laptop and head out to the trails and do my tasks while sitting in the truck and using my phone as a hotspot.

I was expecting all the tasks to take me an hour and a ​half, but I blazed through them in about 20 minutes and then got stuck on a logic problem with a new feature I was building. I decided it should wait because I wasn’t making any progress, so I unloaded my bike and took off.

My goal with the ride was just to put in some miles and as my mind wondered and daydreamed​​ came up with a solution to the problem. As soon I finished the ride I loaded my bike, jumped in the truck and banged out the code to complete my last task. It was a good day.

Much has been written on this phenomenon, and I know it usually works, but if it was a workday and I was “on the clock” I’d feel guilty leaving everything and going out for a walk or ride, even though I’d get the solution faster. On the surface, it feels like I’d be cheating my employer, but in reality, I’d be saving them money.

USNWC, Charlotte NC.

How To Properly Respond To a Tweet

One of the big complaints about Twitter and social media, in general,​ is how impersonal it feels. You can share with the world a new job, a new baby, or some other huge milestone and all you get is friends spending a half second of their life clicking a little heart button.

Maybe instead of sharing life moments, you decide to share an opinion on something you’ve been thinking about for the last five days. Then instantly get overwhelmed with pedantic responses ​and righteous indignation.

Many people are leaving social media because of this, and both Dorsey and Zuckerberg are getting a lot of anxiety from this epidemic and I’ve heard they aren’t sleeping well. I’ve found what I believe is the perfect solution to stop this vicious cycle. I think its time we all come together and do what our forefathers did. Write a letter.

Because this is a lost art, I’m going to go through each step and show you how it’s done.

Find, Print, and Cut out the tweet

Find a Tweet that you really want to respond too. Next, open Photoshop and create a new printable document (just a standard page size). Make a screenshot of the Tweet and add it in various sizes:

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Print it out and cut out each Tweet with scissors.

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Attach the Tweet To a Piece of Paper

Get some tape or glue or whatever and attach the Tweet to a piece of paper.

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Write your message

Now, get your most excellent fountain pen and write out your response. Your forefathers would write this message in cursive, and if you are responding to someone older, it’s acceptable.

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Put it in an envelope

You’ll need to buy an envelope if you don’t have any around the house. Just be careful when opening as we wouldn’t want a paper cut to send us the ER.

Fold your original letter into thirds and place it in the envelope. Next, lick or seal the back.

Bonus: Becoming Verified!

No gatekeepers​ here! If you want to be verified, you can be verified, and it looks way cooler than a digital blue checkmark.

This is an advanced step and you’ll need some supplies:

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Melt some wax on the back and use your seal to make your verified stamp.

Find their address

This step is a little tricky. You’ll need to find the persons mailing address, and few people put this on their “contact me” page. So you’ll need to do some detective work.

Once it’s found, write this on the front of the envelope, head to the post office to get a stamp, and send it off. In a few days, it’ll arrive at their house and they will get read your beautiful prose and your well-thought​ opinion.

Enjoy!

FAQ:

Q. Is this not too much trouble?
A. Yes, thank you Capt. Obvious.

Q. Are you telling me to really spend an hour of my life replying to a Tweet?**
A. Sure why not.

Q. What if I get stuck at any of the above steps?**
A. Then your 2¢ isn’t worth sharing.

Facebook Really Spams You to Come Back

Sarah Frier writing for Bloomberg:

It’s been about a year since Rishi Gorantala deleted the Facebook app from his phone, and the company has only gotten more aggressive in its emails to win him back. The social network started out by alerting him every few days about friends that had posted photos or made comments—each time inviting him to click a link and view the activity on Facebook. He rarely did.

Then, about once a week in September, he started to get prompts from a Facebook security customer-service address. “It looks like you’re having trouble logging into Facebook,” the emails would say. “Just click the button below and we’ll log you in. If you weren’t trying to log in, let us know.” He wasn’t trying. But he doesn’t think anybody else was, either.

I’ve been getting these emails too and what was weird to me is I have two accounts, one super old that I deleted years ago, and another that is current. I would get the same “It looks like you’re having trouble logging into Facebook,” email at the same minute. Which means either someone knows both my emails and can attempt the login really fast, I’m on some bot list or something else entirely.

Hearing this story makes me think it’s either a widespread bug on Facebook or they are indeed being shady. Unfortunately​, based on their history I’m not sure I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Streaks

At the end of December, ​I always take a week or two off and use it as a time of regrouping, planning, and just relaxation before the new year starts. 2017 was no different and during that time I felt like I wanted to do something different to start the year.

Some writing or creation that was totally for me​. I decided to attempt to blog something every day, and “something” was taken very liberal. It could be just a quote, or a picture, commentary on a story, or something that was on my mind. It didn’t matter as long as I hit publish every day.

Back around six months ago, I noticed that I was going through something internally where I stopped wanting to publish any new content on my primary site. As I looked inward to figure out why, I noticed that it all came down to popularity and traffic. The site had its best year yet and tons of people are visiting it all across the world, which you would think would make you want to publish more, but that wasn’t the case.

Just thinking about that put me in a mental shutdown. I became too worried about making everything perfect and worried about feedback and just negativity all around on my part.

Flashback to December and I had this in my mind when I made the goal to publish something every day, and I jumped in, but I decided to not share new posts on social media, to leave the comments open, and treat it like no one would be reading. I will admit as the month dragged on finding inspiration for content got harder and harder, but I struggled with it.

I made a few mistakes where I didn’t uncheck the social share options and had a few good discussions, but over all, I call this month a success. I meet my goal. I had fun. Most of all it has taken the negativity away from publishing.

I’m not sure what the rest of this year will look like for this site, but I hope to continue posting more, and I doubt I’ll share it on social media. So join the old school RSS feed if you want to stay up to date. Or not. 🙂

Watch The Total Lunar Eclipse Online

From the NASA announcement:

If you live in the western part of North America, Alaska, and the Hawaiian islands, you might set your alarm early the morning of Wednesday, Jan. 31 for a lunar trifecta: a pre-dawn “super blue blood moon.”

Beginning at 5:30 a.m. EST on Jan. 31, a live feed of the Moon will be offered on NASA TV and NASA.gov/live. You can also follow at @NASAMoon.Weather permitting, the NASA TV broadcast will feature views from the varying vantage points of telescopes at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California; Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles; and the University of Arizona’s Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter Observatory.

“For the (continental) U.S., the viewing will be best in the West,” said Gordon Johnston, program executive and lunar blogger at NASA Headquarters in Washington. “Set your alarm early and go out and take a look.”

The Jan. 31 full moon is special for three reasons: it’s the third in a series of “supermoons,” when the Moon is closer to Earth in its orbit — known as perigee — and about 14 percent brighter than usual. It’s also the second full moon of the month, commonly known as a “blue moon.” The super blue moon will pass through Earth’s shadow to give viewers in the right location a total lunar eclipse. While the Moon is in the Earth’s shadow it will take on a reddish tint, known as a “blood moon.”

For more information on what to expect check out this video: