Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Come Baaaaaaaccckkk, Vacation

So, umm, yeah. Vacation rocks.

ScurvyWife and I spent the weekend in Ruidoso, NM, which was pretty damn cool. I'd been close to that area way back when I was a wee kid (visiting my crazy grandmother on my Dad's side of the family who lives in Alamogordo), but never really got to the mountains. Did lots of touristy things (Alien/UFO museum in Roswell plus trekking into approximately 172,198,271 tourist shops all selling the same damn things) and got a little degenerate gambling on, hitting up the horse track at Ruidoso Downs and the casino at the Inn of the Mountain Gods.

Other than the 10% rake and no alcohol served on the casino floor, the poker room was decent at the Inn of the Mountain Gods. I think I ended up down $30 playing $2/5 NL, but it wasn't for lack of a juicy game. Min buy-in was $100 but the max buy-in was only $300, and there seemed to be an endless stream of clueless people who'd sit down, buy in for $100, lemur it off within 15-20 minutes, and get up, only to be replaced by an exact RepliBot who'd do the same damn thing. Unfortunately all of the chips migrated to the luckbox to my right, who bought in for $50 and probably had $1,000 sitting in front of him when I left.

We closed on the house on Thursday, got back from vacation on Monday, so yesterday was the first full day of happy fun-time work at the Lockhart house, as I'd taken an extra day of vacation to be able to get started on things. I spent most of the day pruning trees and ripping up carpet and other monkey work, including prep work for the Great Hardwood Floor Refinishing Orgy scheduled for this weekend.

I also managed to sneak in a wee bit of poker last night, playing 2/4 NL at Titan. This month is pretty much going to be consumed by work on the house(s), so I'm probably going to keep poker expectations pretty low, largely limited to whacking around at 2/4 NL late at night, unwinding from a day of monkey labor. The degenerate bankroll is taking a sizable hit from all the house-buying and renovating work, and I really don't have the roll to play much higher than 2/4 NL anyway.

I'm also rolling around the idea of further depleting the roll in a few months, and buying another house in Lockhart, as a second rental property. We could swing it pretty easily if we cashed out the bulk of our money in equities + a sizable chunk of my degenerate bankroll. It'd also likely be a slightly more ghetto house, which you can pick up for $40,000-$50,000, so we're not talking the same level of financial committment as in some areas of the country.

One nice thing about driving out to New Mexico for our last mini-vacation was lots and lots of uninterrupted thinking time, and the net result was that I need to get off my ass and take more chances. I work hard and stay busy, on a consistent basis, but I also tend to stay in my own little comfort zone, once I arrive there. I've always thought I could make damn good money by investing in real estate, whether it be flipping houses, rental properties, or some combination thereof. My excuse, for many years, was that I simply didn't have necessary capital. And I didn't, making it very easy to live in ComfortLand, which is just adjacent to Don'tTakeLotsofRiskLand.

But, lo and behold, now we do have the capital to make a go of it. And yeah, there's a fair amount of risk involved in further extending ourselves by buying another house (not the least of which is the implosion of my day job, which could happen, oh, any second now), but it's also not the riskiest thing in the known universe. We've got plenty in savings, we're sitting on a hefty profit when we decide to pull the trigger on selling the Austin house, and I'm still grinding out nice profits from my online degenerate activities, even when factoring in recent donkey behavior. Long story short, I'd be so much happier if my day job involved buying, renovating, and selling houses, and that becomes a potential reality much, much sooner if I get motivated, take some shots, and work my ass off in the next year, instead of comfortably cruising along.

Congrats to Matt, Ryan, and Tuscaloosa Johnny for keepin' on keepin' on at the Main Event. I hope all of you bastards continue to run very, very well. Not that I'm jealous or anything. Nope, not at all.

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