Thursday, April 15, 2004

the tokyo world lanes bowling center is the largest bowling establishment in the world with 252 lanes...

Sometimes I think I'm a glutton for punishment, but when it comes to physical labor I actually kind of enjoy it. Over the past couple of weeks, Eric and I have been scraping the old lead paint off of our house. We're getting it ready for a fresh coat of a, so far, unselected color. We're thinking it's going to be a grayish green if there is such a thing, but who knows at this point. See, this decision isn't up to us. We don't own the house. When we moved into it, we signed an agreement to paint the house before our lease expired in exchange for a $200/month discount on rent (totally worth it so far). We planned to do it back in the Fall, but the winter snuck up on us out of nowhere. We ran out of good weather to paint in (you can't paint when the temperature gets below about 50 degrees Fahrenheit), so we had to wait until the Spring. Well, here we are in the Spring...just scraping our little hearts out in our spare time. We're about two thirds finished scraping. I'm not sure how long it will take to actually paint this monster, but as soon as we finish, it will be about time to move again. The new owner is moving into the house as soon as our lease is up. Bummer, huh? I can't even stick around to enjoy the house with it's new face lift.

I'm starting to really enjoy this job of mine. It isn't exactly the most exciting thing all the time, but there are a few little things that make up for it. Like today, I got a pretty nice little bonus just for pulling some overtime the past few weeks. Also today, I signed up for a 401k plan (if you don't know what that is, read this). This is a huge step in preparing for my future. I use to laugh at things like this, but now that I'm surrounded by older people who constantly express their regret for not starting a retirement fund earlier in life, I'm beginning to understand what the big deal is. I did a few calculations this past week, and I discovered that by the time I retire I will be a millionaire if I keep up my 401k and adjust it to my (hopefully) increasing income. I've read lots of stories about this exact thing. There's one guy that started working at U.P.S. when he was 20, and when he was 32 he had to leave. During his 12 years there, he had 15% of every paycheck put into his 401k plan. When he talked to the investment firm about transferring his plan to something else, they informed him that even if he didn't contribute one more dime to his plan that he would retire at the age of 65 as a millionaire! Now that's something to think about.

Whip me, beat me, make me scrape the paint off of your house.