All Stars, Al Stars and the #BestOfFinancialForWeek

So the World Cup is finally over, congrats to the German team, we hope this means the beginning of a thousand years of supremacy in Football (maybe that isn’t the right phrase to use, but congrats). Interesting game to watch, glad it didn’t go to penalty kicks.

Bastille Day

Le 14 Juillet Bastille Day!
Image courtesy of noppasinw / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

For those that may have missed it on le 14 juillet it was Bastille Day, which might explain why any of your French associates seemed overly patriotic on that day.

The baseball All-Star game was played this week, in Minnesota. This game actually matters since the winning team’s League will have home field advantage for the World Series this year. Who won the game? Tokyo?!? I didn’t really watch it, but I heard it was good. Did the Human League win?

Weird Al Yankovic has a new set of videos out, and a topical one is included at the end of this article. I enjoy Al’s parodies of current hits, but nothing will ever top his classic White & Nerdy (with Donny Osmond).

Word is that Montreal would be an excellent site for a Major League Baseball team, as a die-hard Expos fan (I was in the original Rusty Staub fan club), I can only hope, but they better not play in the Big Owe. Must Keep Calm on this one (there is a video about that too at the end).

TigerDirect (CA) Summer Savings Event

My Writings for Week Ending July 18th

I have varmints eating my tomatoes and peppers in my back yard, aside from a shot-gun, can someone tell me the best way to get rid of them? A falcon sounds like a good idea, but I don’t know where to get one on short notice.

  • Employment in Canada continues to be better, but unemployment is still up last month as well, when will we see the boom of jobs that has been promised? Old farts like me are finding jobs, but the young folks are having a harder time, as Stats Canada Pointed out.
  • Meet the new Budget, same as the Old Budget was the initial title of my “New” Ontario Budget 2014 article, but I didn’t want the Who’s lawyers to call me about copyright infringement.
  • If you have half an hour, a kindle reader and $1 please read How Millenials Can Get Rich Slowly, by William Bernstein, it is well worth the time and money.

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After witnessing the Brazil Germany game this week, I have to wonder what would cause a powerful team like Brazil to fold up like a $1.99 pup tent like that? The Germans looked like they were playing the Brazil U18 team, it was a total victory by the Germans. If you reach the end of this article you will find a video montage that sums things up quite nicely. On the other hand we had Holland which decided to bore us to death, and then didn’t use the Goalie they brought only for penalty kicks in a game where they seemed bent on playing for penalty kicks? Must be Dutch Logic, but I did have a nice nap in the middle of that game.

The Tour De France shot through the Chunnel this week (for some reason it started in Yorkshire this year, which made me start watching All Creatures Great and Small on Netflix again), well it was only one rider and he zipped through a service tunnel, but he did travel the entire distance which was kind of cool to watch. The race is back in France now, and former champions are dropping out like wild (thanks to treacherous roads and rain).

I was sad to read of the passing of  William Tetley, former MNA for NDG (and a former Minister of Finance for Quebec as well) and the Dad of one of my childhood chums. One of my vivid childhood memories is going to a birthday party at Mr. Tetley’s house and seeing a machine gun nest (complete with 4 very large soldiers) on the front lawn of his house (during the October Crisis in 1970). It’s odd the things you remember from your childhood.

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My Writings for Week Ending July 11th 

It is the summer time and in Canada the CFL is in full swing, and the Ottawa RedBlackRenegadeRoughRiders will soon play their first home game:

  • I was a bit cheeky this week with my poke at the SEO and search engines in general with Credit Card Balance Transfer Trick, did a little bit of SEO chicanery and got a lot of folks dropping by for all the wrong reasons. I view SEO trickery as bollocks (pardon the language my brothers in the UK).
  • As with most things in life with Insurance Claims: Timing is Everything, but remember to check what kind of calendar your insurance company is using.
  • I have been rattling around my archives lately (deleting some of the really atrocious stuff) and figured I should do a retrospective on the whole tuition thing, which gave you University Cost How Much ? For those just entering the game, you have my sympathies.

To stop my front page from becoming far too long to load, I have added this helpful line (below), where you click to read all the rest of the regular fantastic posts from other authors.

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Tennis, Racing, Inflation and #BestofFinancial

I finally finished “the Stand” a novel by Stephen King, but I listened to the audio book, and it was 48 hours long (I am not kidding, click here to see it on Audible), but I am glad I listened to it. I am in a Stephen King mood right now, and I have always wanted to finish this book (never got passed the first 1/3 before), but now I can check that book off the list. Yes, I am bragging that I listened to a book.

Canadian Flag

Happy Canada Day

There have been many funny jokes written about the latest alleged incident at the World Cup of Football, where Uruguayan striker Suarez allegedly took a bite out of an Italian opponent in their previous game this week. I have seen a lot of weird sports things in my life, and this just adds to the list. We have seen biting in Hockey, but mostly players biting each others fingers and such, a shoulder bite is a much more interesting occurrence.

The Banks have their rules and their ways of doing things, but hitting an injured soldier with a $7K penalty while selling his home (that he could no longer afford due to his injuries), is a bit of a nightmare scenario. The unfortunate part is I am sure if someone in the head office, say in the media relations side of things, had heard of this earlier, they would have done something about it, but having it come out in the Media now paints the Bank as being heartless and uncaring. Funny how decisions at the local level can harm the reputation of an entire firm? (but not really).

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My Writings for Week Ending June 27th

Canada day this weekend, and most folks with sense (who are allowed to take vacation) are taking Monday off as well, thus creating an awesome 4 day weekend:

  • Yes, I think the Red Flags are up, and I write about them with Who said Inflation ? CPI Up in Canada, with Gas prices now a little out of control, we may see less economic stimulation from the Bank of Canada (soon).
  • The Electricity Quandary is a two-pronged discussion of the new “Smart Thermostats” that Ontario Hydro is pushing and a discussion of the future of the Electricity Grid in North America.
  • I have a massive archive of posts, so I am going back through many of them, so Thursdays looks to be Throwback Thursdays for a while, and with that I brought you, A Financial Plan B (revisited), do you have a Plan B yet?
  • I also appeared in this weeks Carnival of Risks #211 over at Workers’ Comp Insider, well worth a read if you are paranoid about lightning (like I am).
  • You do realize I have an odd sense of humor with Joke of the Day: Chickmunks .

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I finally finished “the Stand” a novel by Stephen King, but I listened to the audio book, and it was 48 hours long (I am not kidding, click here to see it on Audible), but I am glad I listened to it. I am in a Stephen King mood right now, and I have always wanted to finish this book (never got passed the first 1/3 before), but now I can check that book off the list. Yes, I am bragging that I listened to a book.

Canadian Flag

Happy Canada Day

There have been many funny jokes written about the latest alleged incident at the World Cup of Football, where Uruguayan striker Suarez allegedly took a bite out of an Italian opponent in their previous game this week. I have seen a lot of weird sports things in my life, and this just adds to the list. We have seen biting in Hockey, but mostly players biting each others fingers and such, a shoulder bite is a much more interesting occurrence.

The Banks have their rules and their ways of doing things, but hitting an injured soldier with a $7K penalty while selling his home (that he could no longer afford due to his injuries), is a bit of a nightmare scenario. The unfortunate part is I am sure if someone in the head office, say in the media relations side of things, had heard of this earlier, they would have done something about it, but having it come out in the Media now paints the Bank as being heartless and uncaring. Funny how decisions at the local level can harm the reputation of an entire firm? (but not really).


Tax Software That Gets You Every Penny You Deserve

My Writings for Week Ending June 27th

Canada day this weekend, and most folks with sense (who are allowed to take vacation) are taking Monday off as well, thus creating an awesome 4 day weekend:

  • Yes, I think the Red Flags are up, and I write about them with Who said Inflation ? CPI Up in Canada, with Gas prices now a little out of control, we may see less economic stimulation from the Bank of Canada (soon).
  • The Electricity Quandary is a two-pronged discussion of the new “Smart Thermostats” that Ontario Hydro is pushing and a discussion of the future of the Electricity Grid in North America.
  • I have a massive archive of posts, so I am going back through many of them, so Thursdays looks to be Throwback Thursdays for a while, and with that I brought you, A Financial Plan B (revisited), do you have a Plan B yet?
  • I also appeared in this weeks Carnival of Risks #211 over at Workers’ Comp Insider, well worth a read if you are paranoid about lightning (like I am).
  • You do realize I have an odd sense of humor with Joke of the Day: Chickmunks .

 

Kobo Canada

This Week’s Finest

An extremely long weekend ahead for those that can take Monday off, and luckily gas prices are at record highs (said he sarcastically):

  • It has been a year since the tragic death of Rowan Stringer playing rugby, and there are new findings that have been published about second impact syndrome, if your child plays a contact sport, you need to read and understand this.
  • A good rule in life is, “Just because you have $20, doesn’t mean you have to SPEND $20″, and Michael James expands on that with RRIF withdrawal rates do not have to rule your life.
  • You know technology is main stream when the NY Times writes about it, and glad to see the piece of A Breakdown of the Raspberry Pi, shows some of the nifty things being done with it.
  • I am simple soul, and I keep hearing about Market-Linked GICs, but I don’t understand them, however Moneysense (and Pat Bolland in specific) writes about Market-Linked GICs: Have your stock cake and eat it too, the title should really have added a question mark, I think I understand them better.
  • You on Pope Francis’ twitter feed? You should be, he says some interesting stuff (and I am not Catholic), like this, “How I wish everyone had decent work! It is essential for human dignity.”, note no mention of eating fish on Friday or women wearing hats in Church.
  • Time says that Sting (the singer, not the wrestler) will not let his kids walk in his fields of gold, nice Dad
  • Mark from 2nd Career Search points out that there is lots of good stuff on the Interweb even a Free MIT or Harvard Education if you want it. The interweb is good for something other than Porn? Whodathunkit?
  • If you read my Twitter feed this week you would have learned that my favorite Basic (programming language) game was HMRABI.
  • Kerry at Squawkfox tries to figure out why an “Over the Air” TV Antenna has got to be so expensive with Is Dollarama’s $3 HDTV Antenna worth it. That works great in the GTA, but in the frozen outback of Ottawa, you need some amplification for your antenna to get the best response.
  • Barry from Money We Have is still on a vacation kick so he explains to us Europe Food Costs, How I Ate Everything, hope he didn’t eat it all, think of the children!
  • Someone sent me two cans of Canadian Cider by mail, because I use their Social Media Tool (Klout), to paraphrase Yakov Smirnoff, “What a country!”. Who knew you could mail cider?
  • Jason over at For Funds Sake asks a very good question we should all ask (especially when buying big-ticket items) How Many Hours Did THAT cost ? That might slow down your purchasing speed.
  • How could a single hyphen destroy an $80M rocket? Read this Gizmodo piece on The Typo That Destroyed a NASA Rocket, hard to understand these days, but back then, it was all paper and pencil!
  • It is the summer time, have you Given Blood lately? Someone you know or love might need it, it is in you to give.
  • If you are on the hunt for a good Equity ETF with an international flavour Mark from My Own Advisor has for you Top International Equity ETFs for YOUR portfolio.
  • Mark the Blunt Bean Counter wanted to know Inheritance: Are you a loving child - a Waiter or a Hoverer ? I am more of a Vulture, much like on that 70′s T-Shirt of the two Vultures on a branch, one saying, “Patience HELL! I’m gonna go KILL something!”

Scene Visa

Seinfeld on Technology

If there is one thing that Jerry Seinfeld knows, it is technology, and here he is helping out Wired with some new rules about how to be stylish with technology.

The National Film Board, a National Treasure

You do realize pretty much every National Film Board short and such is on-line waiting for you to watch? Even Oscar-winning ones, like this:

The Cat Came Back by Cordell Barker, National Film Board of Canada

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Remember my RSS feed is available too, and I have added an RSS Comment Feed as well. Have a look at my micro-blog on Twitter, where you can see a whole plethora of good articles and pithy comments by me as well.

My Twitter feed is where I re-tweet many great articles by some of my featured writers (and make the occasional odd or off colour commentary on life (in 140 characters or less)). I am also on reddit, Tumblr, Pinterest and other Social Media sites (look for the BigCajunMan userid) as well. If you have social media accounts, don’t forget to vote for my posts (see the nifty dashboard on the bottom of each article, where you can cast your votes).As they say in Quebec, vote early and vote often!

This site is iPhone Friendly (and Android , iPod Touch and iPad Friendly), enjoy it on the go, in a readable format for the device. If you are reading with an iPhone or Android device, drop me a comment and tell me if this needs any improvements.

This site is also in the Kindle Blog list,if you are interested.

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The “beautiful game” continues on with the World Cup causing a huge drop in productivity world wide (I’d like to see a study on that if there is one that exists). We already know of the half-time kettel effect in the UK, where there is a spike in electricity usage at half-time of football matches, and we have an entire film based around the half-time toilet effect (Flushed Away), but no study on lost work due to the World Cup? C’mon it’s gotta be out there somewhere!

Flushed Away

If you want to buy a movie about Football and Rats click here!

One of my son’s favorite movies, where else can you see Hugh Jackman play a rat, hear far too many bad jokes about frogs, and about folks peeing in the London sewer system? As for Flushed Away, I suppose that is how the Spanish Football fans feel? (too soon?)

Did I mention sewers? I test drove a very good car, that I would have gladly bought, except it had a stench in it that made it impossible to purchase. It’s previous owner was a heavy cigar smoker, but after it had been shampooed vigorously, it was left with it’s windows shut (unfortunately). The combination of smells almost caused my olphactory system to eject itself from my head. I can still smell that smell, and now I really comprehend the Seinfeld episode, the Smelly Car.

The Washington Redskins have had their Trademark revoked, so it will be harder for them to protect their brand name (just the name, not their insignia). I was a fan of the Washington NFL Team, but I also think it’s time to think about a name change. The Washington Bullets (of the NBA) changed their name, why can’t the Washington Football team?

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My Writings for Week Ending June 20th

It is almost St. Jean Baptiste day (in Quebec), which signifies the start of the summer pour Les Quebecois, good times:

  • I remembered an issue I had buying the first Big C8j Mansion and outlined it in Credit Checks Can Cause Issues, remember every time someone looks at your Credit File, someone else notes that they did it!
  • I also hated when I bought the current Big C8j Abode having to pay the Land Transfer Tax, and feel it is an important part of the planning for any new house.
  • I had a picture of my cat sitting in a flower basket and I figured out a way to include it in a post, seriously, that is how some of these posts get written, Animals and Costs Revisited.

 

Kobo Canada

This Week’s Finest

Who is left alive in Game of Thrones? Who cares, who is left alive in the Ontario Provincial elections is a more interesting question:

  • Mark at 2nd Career Search took his CFP exam and felt it was a Humbling Experience, but then again, he hasn’t taken an exam since they used HB pencils filling in boxes and scanning of the results, no wait….
  • In my attempts to make you much more paranoid about the Internet, I give you Tapped in: How your phone gives you up to companies and criminals, please read and learn to be discrete on line.
  • Kerry at Squawkfox showed a picture of a Cyclist with no helmet carrying a chainsaw in Holland, I can’t top that.

    “I give you one helmetless commuter cycling with a chainsaw. Only in Amsterdam. #quirky “

  • Preet has been enjoying Dutch Treats as well, you’d have seen a few if you followed his Twitter feed.
  • I still have over 2000 Tweety followers, I guess my next goal is 2500 (or maybe to not drop back down to 1000)?
  • Michael Schumacher is out of his coma and is out of hospital, but it sounds like he has a long journey to recovery.
  • The Blunt Bean Counter helps us all out with a bunch of Excellent Income Tax Resources, go there and add these resources to your RSS feeds and your Tweety feeds.
  • Paul Krugman at the NY Times points out that You Can’t Have a Wage-Price Spiral Without Wages, which sounds obvious, but note prices are going up, but pay is not?!?
  • Michael James is slowing down for the summer, however he does give us an enjoyable Rant Which is the Best Credit Card, note the TD Visa card ad, at the end of this section.
  • I note that my Alexa rankings have been going up steadily with this new server set up that I have, I wonder why? You’d think I’d know more about my own business, but a lot of this SEO and Web Site fondness crap is just like High School Popularity to me (I never understood it).
  • I have a subscription to Audible.com and this weekend I enjoyed possibly the funniest Audio Book ever, Go the F*ck to Sleep as read by Sam Jackson, I had to pull over I was laughing too hard.
  • Chuck Noll former Head Coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers passed away last weekend, while Vince Lombardi is lauded as the greatest NFL coach ever, I think Chuck Noll deserves to be mentioned in the same group as Lombardi.
  • Mark from My Own Advisor is trying to save on monthly costs with Why I cut Rogers and went to Fongo Home Phone, sounds like something I might look into, or at least threaten Bell with.
  • With the coronation of Queen Kathleen of Ontario we must now figure out What is the Ontario Pension Plan, and luckily Barry from Money we have gives it a shot (and includes the Power Puff Girls, so that is cool too).

Scene Visa

A Real Football Video

How could Durex condoms make a funny ad for the World Cup? Enjoy, and it is very Safe For Work (unless you don’t like football embelishments):

Bat Dad Rises

Yes, Bat Dad returns, this time showing that he is a vulnerable super hero as well:

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Remember my RSS feed is available too, and I have added an RSS Comment Feed as well. Have a look at my micro-blog on Twitter, where you can see a whole plethora of good articles and pithy comments by me as well. Twitter feed where I re-tweet many great articles by some of my featured writers (and make the occasional odd or off colour commentary on life (in 140 characters or less)). I am also on reddit, Tumblr, Pinterest and other Social Media sites (look for the BigCajunMan userid) as well. If you have social media accounts, don’t forget to vote for my posts (see the nifty dashboard on the bottom of each article, where you can cast your votes).As they say in Quebec, vote early and vote often! This site is iPhone Friendly (and Android , iPod Touch and iPad Friendly), enjoy it on the go, in a readable format for the device. If you are reading with an iPhone or Android device, drop me a comment and tell me if this needs any improvements. This site is also in the Kindle Blog list,if you are interested.

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Canadian Personal Finance Blog is Stephen Fry proof thanks to caching by WP Super Cache