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When I told Grandma (sometime in the 1980s, I guess) that I was making good money in the stock market, she said, "Ahhhh....but is it all on paper?"

Grandma and Grandpa took a cruise to Europe in October 1929. While they were there, they met American expatriates who had been wealthy due to stock market gains, but lost so much in the crash that they couldn't even raise the money for a ticket home.

I absorbed the lesson and bought a house with part of my assets. I learned about the 1929 crash from Grandma but witnessed the recessions of 1974-75, 1980-82, the 2000 stock bubble burst and the 2008 financial crisis personally. As a result, I never invest money in the stock market that I could conceivably need in the next 10 years.

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