Junk stocks are fun!

Since recently, I’ve started tracking adding all the pump-and-dump stocks I get in junk mail (real mail – all those “Secret Market Insider” newsletters etc.) into a special Junk portfolio for the sole purpose of seeing how much I’m missing on those “200% in 3 months” promises.

Needless to say, the hilarity ensues…

Maybe these are indeed useful for shorting the advertised names. Gotta try it sometime.

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Брайтон-Бич. Ужасы нашего городка

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Mint.com acquired by Intuit

This is sad news. While early Intuit was a pioneer of personal finance software, currently the company is a pale shadow of former self, driven primarily by greed and an urge to milk customers for as much money as possible. Annual rehashes of the buggy and bloated piece of software, each one with a time bomb to ensure customers continue to pay, in-program ads for those who have already paid, no visible progress over the last 5-8 years. Mac version that is a joke. You name it…

I’ve joined Mint precisely because it was an opposite of Intuit/Quicken. What an irony!

As much as I like Mint, I don’t hold my breath about it’s future, no matter how rosy the former owners’ prognosis is. As mentioned before, Intuit is greed-driven like few other companies. Free Mint cannibalizes the sales of one of it’s cash cows (albeit the smallest of the three) – Quicken. How long will it take before Intuit decides to increase “synergy” by limiting free features and offering a Mint Deluxe? I think, not long.

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Обалдели родители

Женька (пересказывая братику свежепрочитанную “Сказку о Рыбаке и Рыбке”): “Сидит она в тереме. На ногах у неё сафьяновые сапожки. Обалдел дедушка…”

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Время переходить на марсианский

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Игра “Gazprom”

Идея игры состоит в следующем: Есть Россия с Газпромом, который вырабатывает… м-м-м… газ. Россия окружена государствами, которым она газ поставляет. Все окружающие государства – vragi или таковые же, временно прикидывающиеся друзьями (но рано или поздно показывающие свою личину.)

Газпром прокладывает трубы и устранавливает на трубах вентили. И то и другое стоит денег, требуя тщательного планирования трубопроводной сети. Прокладка труб должна быть достаточно дорогой, чтобы предотвратить ситуацию, когда у каждой страны есть “своя” труба и/или “свой” вентиль. Цель игры – обеспечить газом друзей и закрыть вентили для vragov. Как отключение друзей, так и неотключение врагов чреваты снижением avtoritetа.

Дополнительные кунштюки: otkat за беспроблемные поставки, veernye отключения т.н. “друзьям,” возможность сбросить на соседнее государство бомбу.

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Интересно, на чем же я пролетел?..

Мой результат теста
“Проверь себя: Сдай ЕГЭ!”

Александр Беликов!

Твердая четверка. Если вы взрослый и уже давно окончили школу, значит, вы, видимо, много читаете или у вас гуманитарная профессия. Если вы юноша, готовящийся к выпускным в школе, вам стоит полистать учебник, чтобы закрасить кое-какие пробелы в знаниях.

Кстати, обращаясь к собеседнику, следует писать “Вы” (пример того, как не надо – здесь). Так что авторов теста – тоже в детский сад.

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Gap.com IT Development for dummies

Thank you Gap, for a wonderful offer!

I am going to pass on it, unfortunately. Not sure if I want the same coding monkey, who programmed this banner in the first place to write logic for my store card balance management.

Besides, I’d rather opt for the card that would allow me to save up to $I.nf instead.

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Products that suck: Frog Pod by Boon

There are crappy products and there are ones that are outright dangerous. Boon’s Frog Pod squarely falls into the second category.

The idea is nice: instead of stuffing child’s washing accessories around the tub or on unseemly shelves, one would use a cute frog-like container. It looks nice and it keeps things tidy and my kid absolutely loved the way it hung on the wall. Not bad for thirty bucks.

I followed fairly detailed instructions on surface preparation and mounting to ensure that there are no surprises. Friendly manual suggests that the Frog is “hung up out of the reach of children,” which is exactly what I did. The container was loaded with 2 small shampoo bottles, two rubber duckies, and a small washcloth.

Well, lo and behold – today, 5 days since I mounted the thing, I was greeted with a loud boom from my bathroom. Turns out, the damn thing came crashing down. It was mounted as instructed. It was not overloaded. The surface was prepared as expected. And yet it fell down.

I am very lucky that my daughter was not in the bathtub at the time – she could’ve been seriously injured. Because of this, Boon should feel very lucky as well, otherwise my lawyer would be already calling them.

Bottom line: unless you like things coming down on you in a surprise fashion, do not buy the Frog Pod. Alternatively, you can still buy it but do not follow the mounting instructions and opt for screw-based mounting. It is much more work, but your kids will thank you.

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Been there, done that…

create your own visited countries map
or vertaling Duits Nederlands

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