New Foreigner Book!


a few hardcovers and pbs available from Closed Circle, signed. Latest: Moonlover and the Fountain of Blood, Jane Fancher short story. Chernevog, part 2 of the Rusalka trilogy co-written by CJ and Jane; and Orion's Children, a tetralogy from Lynn.

Another quote from the Science Channel…

From How It’s Made.
“…quote from How It’s Made…Science Channel…
“Now full of sweet fruit, the worker positions the crust over the pie…”

Discuss. [facepalm]

53 comments to Another quote from the Science Channel…

  • @Walt, in re: Social Security, my current payments look to be about $950/month if I take it out at age 62 (this July). If I wait until I’m 67, the payments go up to around $1350/month. That’s a difference of $15,000 if I live to be 82. $243,000 for 10 years at $1350, or $228,000 for 20 years at $950.
    I also have approximately $1,700 from my military pension and another $820 from the VA every month. It’s not like I’m saving to go to college, I don’t have any heirs, and I don’t see over the long run how waiting until I’m 67 or 71 is actually going to benefit me.
    My credit card balance is just about $1100 right now, I pay $250 per month on it, and will put an extra $300 on it this month from my income tax refund. That would take me down to $850, and if I can get through the next couple of months, that will be down to an even more manageable level of under $200.
    The more I think about it, the more I’m inclined to start at 62. Please note, I’m not working, so I get no further income, nor am I paying any more into Social Security in the form of FICA taxes.
    On the “Peacemaker” front, I got an email from Amazon that said my credit card was declined. Um, yeah, when I checked, I could see why….wrong expiration date :(, so I fixed it, and hopefully, Amazon will still let me have the book at the price it was when I ordered it.

    • Walt

      I ran your numbers, and I get a “cross-over point” (where it doesn’t matter) of age 78. But I think you only need to wait to 66 (born ’43-’54) for full benefits, which would bring in that age to 75. If you wait until age 70, you get a bonus of 8% x 4 years waited or 32%, or $1782 (I assume it doesn’t compound). I’m working from:

      My concern would be (and is for myself) needing assisted care, that is, you need to get an apartment with meal and maid service. That’s thousands a month, I’m not really sure how much; it undoubtedly depends a lot on location. It sounds like you have a solidly positive cash flow; I’d be inclined not to take benefits I didn’t need immediately, but I’m a compulsive saver. You might check with the VA to see if they have a financial adviser (which I am not); one way or another, I suggest you get a pro to run the numbers with you. Some choices cannot be un-chosen.

      If you want to take a trip or something, it might make sense to borrow the money (not on a credit card!) instead of taking SS benefits earlier than you absolutely need to.

      You do have an heir. The state, I think. You might want your money to go somewhere else: A local museum or college, the Red Cross….

      Thank you for your service.

      • Walt, I have several nieces and nephews who are named in my estate. I have also designated my college fraternity (Alpha Kappa Psi – the original professional business fraternity) in my estate.
        There are a couple of professionals I could ask about the benefits or drawbacks, so I can go that route, too.

    • Walt

      Oh: “…I have an 8MB/second connection…”

      Even if that’s 8Mbits/s, that’s plenty to stream. I monitored my internet connection streaming Cosmos (thanks for the reminder!) and it was usually under 400 KByte/s. PBS was far less.

    • If/when someone gets to where they need more complete care than assisted living, it can cost upwards of $3K per month for residency. Generally, this requires selling one’s home and pouring the funds (all of them) into an account to cover that sort of care. — Yes, it’s pretty shocking and awful. No one has money like that. I was paying quite a lot per month for in-home, “unskilled” care for my grandmother, plus her other needs. This is, and was, financially crippling. (Not to mention emotionally breaking.)

      I don’t know about a more conventional assisted living complex for seniors, which is essentially an apartment complex with added benefits like maid service and the option for meals and community activities, which are good for socialization and keeping body and brain active and happy. — I have known seniors who moved into places for that very reason, who were smart enough and tough-minded enough to foresee the need and prepare for it beforehand, rather than having someone else do it for them later. Those who did this for themselves were happy with their decision. They were freed of things that were getting too much of a hassle or physically not so possible to do for themselves. They had the chance to enjoy life more fully for more years.

      My grandmother refused all offers, all suggestions, all entreaties, to accept my offer for her to sell her home and move in with me. Her attorney (a family friend), her minister, her brothers and sisters, her best friends, church friends, my overly polite, overly cautious attempts to argue the case. — Until she was unable to make the decisions for herself and was no longer aware she could not. — And I compounded that by being in too much of a mess, emotionally and physically burdened by then, to do things quickly enough. — I say this only to caution folks to provide for themselves, make tough decisions beforehand, and arrange with friends and/or family, whoever you wish to be responsible for you when you begin to need it, and when you reach the point, for whatever reasons, that you can’t make decisions for yourself. — I will be facing that eventually too. (I’m 48 now.) — For my grandmother, it was Alzheimer’s, extreme old age, and increasing physical troubles. She reached 102, an amazing age. But the last year or two of her life were not what I’d wish on anyone. She at least never forgot it was me, her grandson. But there were times she didn’t want me there, because she didn’t know anymore that she couldn’t do whatever she pleased, as she had (rightfully) always been able to do. And, well, she didn’t dang well want any man, or some “kid” like her grandson telling her what to do, when there were times that had to be done for her well being. I learned a lot more than I ever would’ve wanted to know about some aspects of personal care.

      Obviously, Joe, you’re nowhere near that point in life. — That’s me sharing over-much, like an overly vibrating string shedding felt, I guess. — But the anxiety, I know does still show. And for anyone who’s facing hard decisions and needs for someone they love, or eventually (in some years’ time) for themselves…. We think it won’t happen to us until it does. I never would’ve imagined my grandmother’s mental abilities and personality and habits changing to the degree they did. I also would never have imagined how I dealt with some things so well and others, I didn’t handle well at all. At least I’m not one to panic in an emergency. Only have ever done so twice, and then still recovered sense enough to act. Otherwise, I tend to do fine in crisis, all business, and then later, when it’s done, fall apart in private a bit. Not perfect, though, in how I handle things. I’m still getting my life into any kind of order, more than two years later, and would not have expected how far down I got in any sense.

      I value friends here and elsewhere online, who’ve been there for me more so, often, than people locally, who often melted away entirely.

      Anyway — All else aside, I’d urge people to plan ahead for the eventuality when you or someone you love begins having trouble making decisions and handling physical tasks, and then for the case when you or that loved one can no longer make decisions for yourself / him-/herself. My grandmother outright refused to do what would have helped immensely, and I was soft-hearted and avoided too long in stepping in, on top of that. (It was both characteristic and uncharacteristic of us both.)

      Best Wishes, and my apologies if this is too close to home for others. It’s a tough subject, and as hard emotionally and physically as it is financially.

      I have lately wondered why we don’t have some more communal “assisted living” setup for neighborhoods, so that everyone, kids, single moms and dads, teens, adults, older folks, people with health conditions, all have a group of people to rely on for help with things like meals, housework, simple companionship, and more. We have become so overly independent and mobile, and so scared of what “someone” might do that’s odd or harmful, that we’ve short-circuited the things our ancestors did, the community or village raising a child, caring for the old and sick or disabled, the needs of people without enough support, such as young moms, dads, kids and teens, all those things that neighbors and extended family were supposed to do for each other. I wonder if the “communes” of the 60’s and 70’s, and the “community centers” and “assisted living” of today, might have something important to offer, in an age when governments and corporations are increasingly making it harder for the average person or family to take care of basic needs of the home and family or individual unit. — Where’s my love beads, baby? Heh.

  • Joe nadi, one sympathizes on the infernal social insecurity income.

    Do double-check that Amazon processes the order now that the card’s expiration date has been fixed. — I *think* I updated everything that needed it when I received a new card this month. — But from past experience, Amazon may hiccup over such a circumstance, so check it. I did pre-order with the old card’s expiration date, then updated my card info there mid-month, prior to the pre-order being processed just this week.

  • paul

    You won’t believe this one! Too much time/slime on their hands, obviously.

  • ready4more

    Peacemaker has appeared on my Kindle. Let the read begin!

  • Peacemaker is about to arrive in my Kindle for iPad app.

    The HB book is due before 8:00 pm, Amazon assures me, and as of this time last night, was between Fort Worth and Houston, to land upon my doorstep.

    BTW, I had a post which, perhaps due to length, is in the filter, I think; relevant to Joe’s and Walt’s discussion above.

    Tangential, but iTunes chose at random, MLK’s speech on “The American Dream” from the album, “The Best of the Speeches.” He died before I was born, and yet so much of what he said still is a problem in our America today. I wish we all could do better at living out that dream, making it part of ourselves, not just thinking about it. I am not perfect either, in that.

    I would like to believe that in a generation or two, people then will look back and wonder why we had such backward ideas on things like skin color or sexual orientation or public health care and welfare or education, or so many of the social problems that affect our nation and our world now. I see us slipping, and the world slipping back, on too many things that we should be able to cooperate on.

    Paraphrasing: “We have made of this world a neighborhood and we must make of it a brotherhood.” He was talking about airplanes for rapid global transit, and mass communication, which he was using for a platform to reach people. If he could’ve seen how the internet and further mass communications and mass transit have connected our planet, and how that’s put us all in a global neighborhood, yet still with those old disagreements…I wonder what he’d say today.

    Meanwhile, in some part of the fictional universe, a translator-diplomat and others are trying to avoid conflict within two different species and between the two species.

    Bren tends to worry and to discount himself. … Sounds very familiar, like someone I know.

    I’m in the middle of a writing session, and before I hit the sack, I’m going to download Peacemaker. Thank you for writing it!

  • nighthawkatshejidan

    Hi Joe, here’s what I did about Social Security: I started taking it at “regular” retirement age, around 65 for me, although I was still working. And put it in the bank. When I finally retired, at 73, I had a nice nest egg for travel. (I actually worked part-time for a while during those years, so didn’t always put it all away, but it still added up over the years.) Perhaps you could take Social Security now, put half in the bank and use the other half to add to your current monthly income. That way you could build up savings for emergencies, or just for fun, and wouldn’t have to budget as tightly now.

    • Jcrow9

      That’s my plan as well, nighthawk. Though I have a ways to go yet… tomorrow I be 55.
      If it is possible to take SS at earliest opportunity, and bank/invest it all, you would in all likelihood come out ahead versus waiting for your full benefits date, pretty much regardless how long you live.

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