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From the Washington Post:

This is the most heartwarming article I've read in a while. I always said I would have retired 10 years earlier if I forsaw the great bull market in stocks.

This guy did it.

http://search.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/WPlate/1999-08/01/029l-080199-idx.html

intercst
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Intercst: Interesting story.

I was most intrigued by the folowing:

Thank God for Lana. Lana Puckorius, an Onancock, Va., certified financial planner who advises more than 50 former and current AOL employees, has one-third of McCabe's money under her gentle and steely control. She has put it in a diversified portfolio of bonds, mutual funds, variable annuities and blue-chip stocks. "I do see the dollars coming in and out, and if there is a big change, we will have a little chat," she says. "Hal makes me laugh. Then I say, 'Hal, you must listen.' "

It does not really explain the CFP's reasoning, but if she controls only 1/3 of th portfolio I cannot quite fathom the bonds or the variable annuities [note plural, which is quoted directly].

Regards, JAFO
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JAFO31 writes,

Intercst: Interesting story.

I was most intrigued by the folowing:

Thank God for Lana. Lana Puckorius, an Onancock, Va., certified financial planner who advises more than 50 former and current AOL employees, has one-third of McCabe's money under her gentle and steely control. She has put it in a diversified portfolio of bonds, mutual
funds, variable annuities and blue-chip stocks. "I do see the dollars coming in and out, and if there is a big change, we will have a little chat," she says. "Hal makes me laugh. Then I say, 'Hal, you must listen.' "

It does not really explain the CFP's reasoning, but if she controls only 1/3 of the portfolio I cannot quite fathom the bonds or the variable annuities [note plural, which is quoted directly].

Regards, JAFO


I thought the same thing when I read that paragraph. Bonds might be O.K. -- many retired folks keep from 3 to 7 years worth of living expenses in fixed income instruments. But a variable annuity? Few Fools would make that recommendation.

intercst

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Hal sounds like a nice guy. Sadly, the way he spends his money I'm guessing he'll be forced back into the workplace within two years.
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Hal sounds like a nice guy. Sadly, the way he spends his money I'm guessing he'll be forced back into the workplace within two years.

This was the same reaction I had. Hal seems to be feeling guilty and strangely uncomfortable about his good fortune, and his lack of enthusiasm and motivation seem close to depression.

This story sounds like some I've read in the newspapers about lottery winners who wind up broke a few years down the road. Without some sound money management techniques, Hal isn't going to have an easy time staying retired.

Pat
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Pat609 Date: 8/2/99 11:12 PM Number: 12744
Hal seems to be feeling guilty and strangely uncomfortable about his good fortune, and his lack of enthusiasm and motivation seem close to depression.

He describes himself as a left winger. It sounds like classic liberal guilt to me. The lack of enthusiasm is self imposed - he consiously bought into slacker ethics and designed his life around it. I think depression is a very likely byproduct of such decisons.
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Intercst writes:

<<This is the most heartwarming article I've read in a while. I always said I would have retired 10 years earlier if I forsaw the great bull market in stocks.

This guy did it.>>


Yep, he sure did. Unfortunately, given the undisciplined way he goes through the cash he will also probably go broke and have to return to the workforce at age 55 or so.

Regards..Pixy
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Intercst writes:

<<This is the most heartwarming article I've read in a
while. I always said I would have retired 10 years earlier if
I forsaw the great bull market in stocks.

This guy did it.>>


Pixy responds:

Yep, he sure did. Unfortunately, given the undisciplined way
he goes through the cash he will also probably go broke and
have to return to the workforce at age 55 or so.

Regards..Pixy


The pessimists have been saying he'll be broke in two years, and Pixy is giving him 27 years. I think it's in the middle.

This sure sounds like someone who doesn't want to learn, so I think he'll be successful in avoiding learning. My guess is that he'll be able to stay extravagent for two years, then squeak by while still unemployed for five years or so. For him to make it to double his current age would take a miracle though.
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Yeah, but the guy is such a L-O-S-E-R! A friend of mine is a roommate of a guy who started at AOL at the same time as this guy. And he says that the guy is a total tool.

I mean, you read the article, and he's just a dork. No personality. Sure, he's rich, but if he saw this, you know what? He'd probably be trying to find me, to buy me drinks, to talk me into liking him.

Anyway, I'd rather be a comfortable middle class kind of guy who has to go to work every day with a personality and a clue than this guy.
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tonyw44 wrote,

Anyway, I'd rather be a comfortable middle class kind of guy who has to go to work every day with a personality and a clue than this guy.

I don't know, Tony.

Being able to sleep 'til noon and not having to "report" to anybody sounds like the promised land to me.

intercst

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Having a personality and a clue -- well, that is something that is priceless. This guy has neither. Sure, he's rich. But he's not happy, he's clueless, and he has no personality.

I read that and all I could think is what a dork. When I read about other rich people, I might think they're jerks, I might think they're dirty players, I might think they're cool, but very rarely do I think what a dork.
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Watch out, tonyw44, even as we speak there may be a dork with his finger poised on the Fool Alert button.

Cheers,
JABoa
A Foolish Simpleton since August 1999
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>>>>>>>>>
Anyway, I'd rather be a comfortable middle class kind of guy who has to go to work every day with a personality and a clue than this guy.


I don't know, Tony.

Being able to sleep 'til noon and not having to "report" to anybody sounds like the promised land to me.
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

inter.,

Promised Land? even if you had to give up
your clue(s) ?

...on the Internet, no one know whether you have
a personality, but i,at least, have read enough
of your posts to know you have a clue or two.

(tho your "heartwarming" comment to begin this
did have me wondering).

rgds,

jp
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My question is, what will you do with your life? Sleeping till noon and not reporting to anyone is not merely a waste of a life but the waste of a terrific oppotunity. What's the use if you aren't useful to your fellow man? Even with my busy days and all the people I come in contact with, sometimes I wonder, do I make a difference? To me that seems the ultimate goal.

JLC
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<<Unfortunately, given the undisciplined way he goes through the cash he will also probably go broke and have to return to the workforce at age 55 or so.>>

That'll be fun! Returning to the work after 27 years of letting your skills become obsolete. He'll probably be qualified only for a position as Greeter at the WalMart.

Ray
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Rayvt writes:

That'll be fun! Returning to the work after 27 years of letting your skills become obsolete. He'll probably be qualified only for a position as Greeter at the WalMart.

I reply:

Naaah, those people are supposed to be happy. --Bob
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I'm just stating my opinion. If someone doesn't like it, they need to remember that I am only stating my opinion, and that's it.

Hey, I think that Donald Trump is an egomaniac, I think that Bill Gates is a shallow, obsessed, bitter man, and I think that there aren't too many rich people who are cool. But, there are some exceptions.

Hal McCabe isn't one of them.
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The thing is, that guy isn't doing anything. Heck, give me ten million dollars, and I'm not going to waste it on toys and watching videos. I'm going to travel. I'm going to go skiing. I'm going to go and learn new things. I'm going to spend a lot of time managing my money. I'm going to give some to charity. I'm going to do something fun.

I'm not going sleep until noon and not take a shower on most days.
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Even if this guy can make it financially, can he make it psychologically? By that I mean...he no longer has anyone to relate to and no purpose in life. All his peers will still be working. He can't call them up on a weekday--they're at the office. And when he does get together with them, what will they be talking about? Probably their jobs... Also, from what I've read, men in particular need to feel useful, need to have a purpose in life. Studies show that the most common cause of depression in men is loss of purpose (such as losing a job.)

This guy needs not only a financial plan, but a personal plan as well. Doesn't seem to me he has that yet...
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Hey, I think that Donald Trump is an egomaniac, I think that Bill Gates is a shallow, obsessed, bitter man, and I think that there aren't too many rich people who are cool. But, there are some exceptions.

I just had to jump in here with on off-topic remark.

I've had the opportunity to meet two billionaires. I interviewed with Gates for about 1/2 hour (if I had taken that job in 1983.....). He's every bit the nerd you see in interviews. A nice enough nerd, and a helluva businessman. But IMHO he doesn't have much soul.

OTOH, I've had the opportunity to work for the last 10 years for a non-profit corp started by the late David Packard; and to have met and talked with him on numerous occasions. What a great man! Not many people know that the Packard Foundation is one of the 3 largest in the US (may be higher now), rivaling Ford, Carnegie, and Rockefeller. That's because Papa Dave (as we have always affectionately called him around here) didn't like folks that "went Hollywood." He insisted on keeping a low profile. He and Bill Hewlitt would get into friendly competitions: Bill would build a symphony house or some such; Dave would then build a children's hospital. It'd make the local news, of course; but beyond that, they'd manage to keep it relatively unpublicized.

Dave seemed most at home in old clothes and fishing gators while out in the wilds. A real down-to-earth man, and a real human being. May he rest in peace.

Bob Herlien
Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI)
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I have found this post most interesting - 'insights on what retirement means'! I would also like to add an off topic comment:

I know the majority view in American is to work, put your money in investments and try to retire as early as possible. In this sense Hal seems to have reached this goal in spades. BUT, as many have eluded, now what for
Hal and many others who have achieved this goal. If through out your working years you didn't cultivate an interest or work on yourself (meaning knowing who you are, etc.) that future of not working might seem very bleek (now what do you do with your time).

If I may (as a possible topic for discussion) - I would like to state another way of looking at living life (one that my husband and I adhere to) We do not believe in retirement. This means there have been many times in our lives where we stop working for half a year, a year maybe two. Of course to do this, we have no debt, build a fund where we will draw for our living expenses during the time we don't work, never touching the nest-egg we know we will need in our declining years.

These periods of not working in a way is a short retirement - we stop and take stock of ourselves, we travel, maybe take courses in areas of interest - or plain simply wake up in the morning and enjoy a lengthy conversation over coffee.

The idea of working continuously to reach the end of the rainbow (retirement) could be for many a false path. We are not gauranteed of being healthy in our golden years and to us which is the more important issue - if no growth and cultivation of yourself has been done 30 years of living with little purpose might not be worth the sacrifices down along the way.

Thank you,

Helen
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Helen,

What a wonderful post...and attitude! I agree with everything you've written. I have never understood the current attitude toward retirement. Work like a dog for 30 or so years, then laze around and watch TV til you die. OK, I know many people (probably most people) don't do that, but that's how the message seems to me.

I've known far too many people who have worked hard for an early retirement, who have put off realizing their dreams (to travel, etc.) until after retirement, only to die soon after, their dreams and goals never reached.

I like your idea of "sabbaticals" from work. Actually, I've done this a couple times myself, and have known others who do this. It's very refreshing, and puts a whole new spin on my attitude towards work.

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<>
*******************************************************
I'd rather be a clueless dork who gets to sleep until noon.
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<<<If I may (as a possible topic for discussion) - I would like to state another way of looking at living life (one that my husband and I adhere to) We do not believe in retirement. This means there have been many times in our lives where we stop working for half a year, a year maybe two. Of course to do this, we have no debt, build a fund where we will draw for our living expenses during the time we don't work, never touching the nest-egg we know we will need in our declining years.

These periods of not working in a way is a short retirement - we stop and take stock of ourselves, we travel, maybe take courses in areas of interest - or plain simply wake up in the morning and enjoy a lengthy conversation over coffee.>>>

The long-deceased author, John McDonald, expressed a similar idea through one of his recurring characters --- Travis McGee. I do not have any of the books handy to quote, but I believe the explanation was to the effect "that I am taking my retirement piecemeal as I can afford and when something interests me, or when I need more money to support myself, then I take on paying work."

An interesting pholosophy but I could was too concerned about my own inertia and in skills rusting from non-use to really try it.

Regards, JAFO
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helenc wrote:
... We do not believe in retirement. This means there have been many times in our lives where we stop working for half a year, a year maybe two. Of course to do this, we have no debt, build a fund where we will draw for our living expenses during the time we don't work, never touching the nest-egg we know we will need in our declining years.

These periods of not working in a way is a short retirement - we stop and take stock of ourselves, we travel, maybe take courses in areas of interest - or plain simply wake up in the morning and enjoy a lengthy conversation over coffee.


helenc,
I like you and your husband's approach to living life!!

Just curious, what line of work are you in that you can step away for two years and remain competitive for good job opportunities when you get back. I saw "consultant" in your profile. What's your area of expertise?

messerb
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Hi Messerb,

you ask;

Just curious, what line of work are you in that you can step away for two years and remain
competitive for good job opportunities when you get back. I saw "consultant" in your profile.
What's your area of expertise? >>>>

My husband and I are usually hired by companies/corporations that use IBM 'TPF' as their main processing system. (In case, you don't know TPF is run on - what many now consider - the old dinosaur main-frame CPU's). Our jobs mainly consists of retrofitting new software releases from IBM to the control program, designing and implementing software enhancements to existing applications, and/or transfer skills to many who thought TPF was dead a number of years ago to now realize they are choking when they moved major input/output volume applications on server-based PC's.
Sorry I get carried away.

Helen
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