Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Renovation, Taxation and Resusitation

With only about five minutes to write before class, we'll see how this goes. Again, things are as busy as always. Class has just started (first day back), Jessica and I were able to get through most of the office renovation, make some progress on our taxes, and begin to revive a dead business.

Now that our roommate has left, we began working on the office on Saturday with a trip to Lowe's. We were both a little bummed because the countertop color we wanted wasn't in stock, though the website said it was. However, when we were rang up incorrectly for the pieces we bought, things seemed to make sense. Nevertheless, we bought 20' of countertop to line two of the walls in the office. By Sunday it was all installed, with only some painting left to be done.

Since we both got our W2s, we decided to also tackle our taxes. It turns out my ideology of making little money this year payed off. Though she paid more taxes than me and made a little more than I, she ended up owing while I have a net return. However, being a slacker for a few hundred bucks was not my true intention. Because my income is lower, it should put me in a better position to apply for aid to UCSD. *bling*

Lastly, I've revived FourthAxis with a new name ReefOutdoor. The site is looking mangy right now, but a link can only help my google rankings. Right?

Friday, January 16, 2009

Almost the weekend

After a crazy week, it's almost time to unwind. Yesterday I rode to San Marcos to apply for a sellers permit, then by work to pick up my check. Surprisingly, I received my permit confirmation via email today. I've also signed up for a software account to manage my retail sales. So...I guess the retail site will be up very soon. We're already doing a number of closeout sales for a partner company so that's cool. Even if it were $10K a month, I'd still wouldn't be content so... Here we go.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

On the Offensive

Damn. It's been a busy couple of weeks and I think things are just going to get more hectic till summer arrives. It has been a while since I've said much about what's going on in life. I figured now would be a good time, since I'm going "On the Offensive."

Most of you know I moved to CA to go to school, and I've been doing just that. It's been slow because I had to wait a year to get residency, then caught caught up living the good life. Nevertheless, it's been going well and I'm in my last year of community college.

Thankfully California has many great programs to help students get to where they want to be (cough cough Indiana). The first is subsidized tuition. I've been paying about $25 per credit hour for classes. Therefore full time tuition is about $300 a semester. Compare that to the $1200-1600 per semester I was paying at IUPUI and you can understand why I can afford work and go to school despite "how expensive" it is in CA. The quotes are because that line is a bunch of crap. My rent is about the same. The weather allows me to bike most places, and public transportation allows bikes. Since I can pretty well travel anywhere in the 4,200 square miles (yes, four THOUSAND) of SD county, I ditched the car long ago and cut my bills. Nevertheless, I'm still poor, but what do I care. The second educational program is "Transfer Admission Guarantee." Basically the program has students follow a specific academic path that allows them guaranteed admission into the state schools including Cal State and UC. The good news is that if all goes well I'll be transferring to UCSD in the winter of this year!

On the professional front...if you can call it that. I almost got sucked into a career in my first couple years out here. The cash was great, but the glass ceiling of the undereducated sucks rocks. Since then, I've had a couple offers to be a career man, but I've declined till I can finished school. I am however gainfully employed - with a growing sports apparel company and as a tutor at the college. I'm also fairly confident about the prospects of staying such. Now that the economy has gone to pot, I'm thinking my timing is pretty good. When I'm done with school, I should be walking into a job market that is happy to see me....that is if I go searching for employment. That brings me to my busy weeks.

I've recently met an incredible woman and it's been a whirlwind of activity. She moved in with me almost immediately, and we took on a temporary roommate to line our pockets. Now that our guest has moved on, the real work is beginning. Since Jessica is a super creative evil genius and I'm the financial equivalent of a pitbull, we've decided to incorporate under the name Reef Holdings LLC. Reef Holdings will therefore act as an umbrella company for both of our projects. We've recently filed with the secretary of state and are currently awaiting approval.

Jessica will be focusing on JessBecause - a "vintage inspired modern boutique" and I will be generating capital through any legal means - U.S. economy be dammed. More specifically, I will be focusing on starting an investment fund. Once the LLC is approved, I will need to take the series 65 test, register with the state, and being soliciting capital. In the mean time, we'll be renovating our spare bedroom into a dedicated office, registering for a tax ID number, opening banking / brokerage / vendor accounts, possibly starting another online retailer and so much more. Oh, did I mention I'll still be tutoring calc and racing bikes? Ha Ha! My hope is that I won't get spread too thin, but my school schedule will thin out over summer and fall, and I'm more than willing to drop racing, hire help.

Stay tuned!

Is disgusted

Apparently israel wants to be the new "america," and I'm glad to let them take our imperialistic throne.

UN headquarters in Gaza hit by Israeli 'white phosphorus' shells

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Losing the war

It shocks me to still here pundits talking about what it will take to "win the war." First I need to make sense of what war they're talking about...Afghanistan or Iraq. Usually, they're talking about the "war on terror." Nevertheless, most talking heads seem to use them all interchangeably.

Either way, their statements pose so many questions. When referring to the conflict in Iraq (yes, it's still going), I get confused as to the endgame. If you remember, the U.S. first invaded Iraq because of weapons (damn is it hard to avoid using the now infamous phrase). When the weapons failed to materialize, the mission seemed to change to liberation, fighting "insurgents", and fighting terror. So when I heard statements by McCain about how we must leave victoriously, I got really confused. If the U.S. is there to liberate, what is there to "win" or "lose?"...and once the evil Saddam was toppled, why would we stay? Mission accomplished right? If the U.S. was there to "fight terror," how exactly does one win a war on a noun? When fighting a noun, when does one know the fight is over? If vanquishing terror is the true objective, why not fight terror in all of the places it rears? Like...Gaza, Darfur, North Korea, Tibet, China, Myanmar, and so on?