12.19.07

Ron Paul Supporters Donate $6.04 Million in Tea Party ’07

Posted in Politics at 11:18 pm

That’s right!

Join the revolution today!

1 Comment »

  1. Lon said,

    12.20.07 at 7:32 am

    Viva la rEVOLution!

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12.16.07

Good Riddance Smart Money Magazine – A Smart Money Review

Posted in Book Reviews, Investing, Rants at 11:19 pm

Dear Smart Money Magazine Editors,

For three years, I’ve been a loyal subscriber and reader of Smart Money Magazine. It was always a well-written magazine with solid advice. The articles and stock picks were often winners, and the writers always gave compelling arguments and entertaining insight.

However, over these years, I’ve come to watch your magazine turn into a pile of non-technical financial fluff with egregious amounts of cardboard inserts, advertisement-fueled centerfolds, and consumer-driven spending spree recommendations.

I could handle the tripling of cardboard inserts and ads over the past year. My first mission upon opening a newly arrived Smart Money was to tear out all cardboard and throw it away. Seriously though, if I’m a subscriber to your magazine, how many damned business reply mail cards do I need to re-subscribe to the mag? Isn’t one enough?

I could also handle the annoying centerfold-style articles that span four pages so that Smart Money can sell monstrous ads to Genworth Financial and T. Rowe Price. But as much as I love looking like a complete jackass while gawking over an enormous centerfold on a crowded airplane, I prefer to keep my centerfolds in magazines that do NOT sport pictures of Ben Bernanke.

However, the tipping point for my frustration with your publication came in the December 2007, with the cover article Best of Everything — 9 New Splurges You Deserve.

Let me tell you Smart Money hypocrites something – if I am subscribed to something titled Smart Money Magazine, chances are that I don’t want to read your recommendations for a 3,450 dollar fucking watch. How dare you insult me with your half-assed third of a page to recommend plasma TVs! And I certainly don’t need you telling me where to get a road bike or silk scarves of all things. You call this SMART money?

If I want to find the best television, guess where the last place I’m going to look for advice is: that’s right, a financial magazine. If I needed a buying guide, I would go get Consumer Fucking Reports, not your joke of a monthly publication.

So essentially, the money I’ve paid you this past year to give me financial advice has gone towards receiving advertisements and learning how to piss away my money on your recommended product-placement-driven luxary goods?

Well guess what Smart Money – I’m done with you. My subscription ended with that December edition and you will not be receiving any more money from me. Good luck with your spa bathrobe recommendations to your moron customers who sit in debt while I read how to actually properly SAVE money from your competition.

Sincerely,
Mike Roberto
Hermosa Beach, CA

So I’m now on a mission to find a REAL financial magazine, something with real technical analysis, a worldview, written and edited by people who aren’t complete sell-outs. I’m currently thinking of getting The Economist, which is an England-based weekly news magazine. Despite being less financial-based, having four times the content will more than make up for Smart Money’s monthly blundering babble.

Any recommendations would be appreciated.

1 Comment »

  1. Lon said,

    12.17.07 at 11:00 am

    I have been s subscriber to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance for a couple years now. While they have also recently discovered the difficult to read on the can centerfold article, the content is actually finance based. I have picked up Money magazine on occasion and KPF kicks it’s ass every time. You may find them a little slow though as this month they are recommending Cemex which you were all about last month.

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12.12.07

Berto’s Pre-Surfing Workout For Lon

Posted in Fitness, Sports at 10:59 pm

This weekend, Lon will be visiting me after doing some work in San Diego. On Saturday, we will go surfing, which will be Lon’s first time. Depending on surf conditions, hangovers, and the weather, we will be going to either Seal Beach or El Porto.

In order to get Lon ready for the surf, I am proposing Berto’s Pre-Surfing Workout. Lon will have two grueling days to prepare for the time of his life:

  1. The Pop-Up

    Popping up is the first thing you need to learn if you want to get up on your board. The pop-up is where you go from laying on your board to the surfing position in one smooth move.

    First, lay a towel on the ground the width of a surfboard (22-23 inches should be good). Next, put your hands flat on the towel like a close-grip push up, hands at the chest level.

    Launch yourself up in the air high enough to bring your knees up in a twisting motion landing in a balanced surfing crouch in one move. This is about a shoulder width half squat position.


    Do something like the above picture, but with a less homo-erotic look on your face, take the goddamned sunglasses out of your hair, don’t grow your hair out like that, and don’t grab the rails of your board like this fool unless you want to eat shit on the bottom of the ocean. And if any of you have bought a towel like this, you are a retard.

    Anyway, as a right-handed person, you will most likely want your left foot forward. If this is uncomfortable to you, then put your right foot forward, thus making you a “goofy-footed” person.

    Tips: Keep your butt down. You want to squat, and stand from there, keeping your butt pointing down. If your butt is up, you are looking down, and you will fall over or pearl. Pearling also occurs when you are too far up on your board. Pearling sucks.

    Do 3 sets of 10 pop-ups.

  2. Balance
  3. Your shoulders and chest are probably a bit tired now, so let’s do something easy. You can’t surf without balance. Luckily, you are shorter than me and have better balance, as proven to the left. All you need to do is stand on one foot for 60 seconds at a time. This will work your stabilizer muscles.

    Do 2 sets of 60-second balancing for each leg (ie. this will take 4 minutes)

  4. Shoulder Raises
  5. Since we’ll be padding a lot, you’ll need your shoulder strength. If you have any 10 or 15lb weights, use these. If not, lift your laptop bag, your favorite Ayn Rand book, or your daughter Vanessa (all about the same weight!) to a 90 degree angle in front of you, one arm at a time. Do not go beyond 90 degrees, this puts too much torque on your shoulders!

    Do 3 sets of 15 front shoulder raises per arm, vary reps depending on weight.
    If you are feeling saucy, also do some lateral shoulder raises.

  6. Core Strength – Abs – Flutter Kicks
  7. We’re going to do flutter kicks here, because they’re related to swimming (you won’t be kicking, but you never know) and Navy SEALS do them — luckily you won’t have to do them with heavy rubber fins on. Lie on your back, tuck your chin, raise your legs 6 inches in the air, and alternate your legs while keeping them straight with your toes pointed out.

    Do 5 sets @ 20 seconds of flutter kicks. Count slow, do not cheat! If you’re not tired yet, do 10 close-grip pushups in between sets.

  8. Squats
  9. Last one, let’s finish with the legs. Perform squats with no or little weight. Keep your back straight.

    Do 3 sets of 15 squats. If you are feeling tough, do one-legged squats against the wall, 3 sets of 10 on each leg.

Now get ready to rock and let’s have some fun in the cold water! And of course, let’s make sure we hydrate ourselves Friday night!

3 Comments »

  1. Billy said,

    12.13.07 at 6:58 am

    I suggest that you start with the slide up approach. It helped me quite a bit. It is still one motion but is much, much easier.

    Costa Rican Beginner Surfer King

  2. Uncle A said,

    12.13.07 at 1:19 pm

    Hey Berto, Thanks, I did all the above and am now in Hillcrest hospital. Will be out in time to make the mussels and smelts for Christmas Eve. Have fun

  3. Bill said,

    12.14.07 at 10:37 am

    When you get right down do it surfing is pretty easy. All you have to do is put yourself in the way of a wave that wants to drill you into the sand, before it does that just stand up.

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12.09.07

I Turned 26 Today…

Posted in Life, The Universe, and Everything at 12:58 pm

… and I feel great!

4 Comments »

  1. lon said,

    12.09.07 at 6:23 pm

    Happy Birthday Brosephine!

  2. Berto said,

    12.09.07 at 6:59 pm

    Thanks Lon… and the Browns gave all of us a nice little present with the major away victory!

  3. Uncle A said,

    12.12.07 at 7:56 am

    Happy Birthday. Didn’t forget, but nobody really has a birthday the day the Browns are playing to make the play offs. It amazes me how everyone has a birthday in the same year. Hard to remember them all.

  4. Lon said,

    12.16.07 at 9:34 am

    It was good seeing ya man. Thanks for the lessons.

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12.03.07

Ohio State to Exorcise Its Demons (and LSU) in the BCS National Championship Game

Posted in Sports at 5:24 pm

I’m not the kind of fanboy to say something like “the implications of this game are monumental”… but… the implications of this game MONUMENTAL.

This game means everything for Ohio State, the Big Ten, and the Midwest. Another humiliating defeat and we will forever go down as a second-rate team and conference. Only a victory, and nothing less, will bring status and relevance back to the conference.

While I’m not going to guarantee victory, I will guarantee that Jim Tressel will lead a motivated and well-prepared team on the field to play a good game in New Orleans. Thankfully, we are the underdogs, something that suits us well.

3 yards and a cloud of dust, Go Bucks!

1 Comment »

  1. Big Mike said,

    12.04.07 at 1:08 pm

    The big key to this game is DEFENSE…..
    LSU averages 448 yards per game to opponents 284.
    The Buckeyes have got to hold um down to win…..

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