So, umm, is something happening in Vegas this weekend?
I hope all of you degenerates have a great time. ScurvyWife recently started a new job so taking a trip just wasn't in the cards for us (har) as she's got essentially zero time off to spend, plus we're fairly pot committed (har) to spending time with her folks after going to Tennessee for Thanksgiving to visit mine. We're hoping to make it out to Vegas sometime soon, though, likely early spring.
I'm a perpetual hoarder of vacation days/assorted paid time off days at work, so December is usually pretty sweet, as I usually have to burn a goodly amount of vacation days to get under the cap that I can carry over to next year. So I'm taking off Tuesday-Thursday for the next two weeks, and then am off the entire week following Giftmas day. Add in the fact that I telecommute on Mondays and Fridays and after today I won't have to step foot into the office again until Jan. 2, 2007. This makes me a very, very happy monkey.
If you've ever lost money in any sort of investment and felt like a chump, hop on over to I Am Facing Foreclosure for a quick ego boost. I'm sorry but sweet Jebus, what a train wreck that is to read. Sort of like reading assorted poker blogs where you know that the person is destined for Bustoville, as not only has the kid dug a ginormous hole for himself, but apparently he hasn't learned a single thing along the way, still looking to swing more deals to get some "positive cash flow", still running up credit card debt, etc.
What is it in us that makes reading painful stuff like that so much more appealing than reading tales of success? Envy? Greed? A need for reassurance? Maybe I shouldn't say this out loud, but it's always more engaging to read about someone blowing through their bankroll and going busto instead of someone who has run up a tiny bankroll into many grandusands of American dollars. Which is weird. It's not that I'm bitter and jealous of big winners, or that I default to wishing doom and gloom to befall everyone but myself. It's simply just more entertaining to read about someone who loses the biggest pot of their life when a mouth-breather hits their two-outer on the river, despite the fact that I personally know that pain very, very well, and should instead be empathizing greatly with the blogger.
Staying pretty busy of late, mostly with Web monkey work. It's been kind of fun diving back into the world of SEO/Google Adsense and knocking some of the rust off there, as I'd gotten away from playing that game the last year or two. While building and optimizing sites solely to grab search traffic and monetize it via Adsense and similar programs is not the most exciting or rewarding work in the world, it's still amazingly easy, if you're savvy enough and can crank out content. It's also essentially cost-free (other than your time), as Web hosting these days costs about as much as a Big Mac.
While I don't really need more ways to waste time, I have been thinking about starting a new blog that's a bit like the Degenerate challenge thing I did here, as far as starting from absolute zero, with a goal of making $2K/$3K/whatever$K a month within a certain time span, likely 1 or 2 years, using nothing more than a working knowledge of affiliate marketing, a cheap hosting account, and my monkey fingers and brain. Affiliate marketing definitely isn't everyone's cup of tea, but it's an easy way to make money, and you can scale it to whatever degree you like, as far as making beer money each month or more substantial income. I think it'd be fairly instructive and helpful in general, and completely transparent "challenges" like that seem to motivate me fairly well.