I am trying to be more financially conservative, of course its always been a bad habit of mine to spend money wastefully, but I’m trying to improve myself. The thing is this year, I’m actually on track to get my mortgage down from $286k at the beginning of the year all the way to $200k! $86k in one year which is far more than I paid down any other year. I’m quite proud of that, but it begs me to wonder… how come I seem to have so much more money this year despite my salary not changing. So I did some investigation.
I keep track of all my spending on Mint and I have my own spreadsheet to keep track of my investments + mortgage + net worth and was shocked to learn that my net worth went from $43,000 in Dec 2014 to $49,000 in Dec 2015. You mean after a whole year making $62,000 net income, my net worth only went up $6k? Thats crazy. Where did all my money go?
Well I had a look and the usual suspect is there: shopping. Mainly its my bad habit of buying useless things and selling them at 50-80% loss. I feel free to share what I spend my money on so here’s what happened last year:
Travel (plane/hotels): $8717
Amazon stuff that I kept: $10000
Ebay stuff that I kept: $10405
Stuff that I bought and sold:
Bose headphones: $270 – sold for $60
Nokia ngage – $40 – sold for $20
Firefox phone – $70 – sold for $30
HP touchpad – $80 – sold for $50
Asus MyPal – $55 – sold for $30
Palm Treo – $13 – sold for free
Cybiko Xtreme – $25 – sold for $30
HP iPaq – $20 – sold for $20
Nokia N8 – $80 – sold for $70
Helios Pantech – $20 – sold for free
Casio BE300 – $65 – sold for $40
Gizmondo – $30 – sold for $20
Pepperpad 3 – $165 – sold for $70
Razer Seiren – $170 – sold for $120
OQO model 2 – $450 – sold for $300
Asus garminfone – $38 – sold for free
HTC status – $62 – sold for $30
HTC Quickfire – $30 – sold for free
BB Torch 2 – $44 – sold for $20
Samsung Q1 – $80 – sold for $70
Motorola Droid 4 – $47 – sold for $30
Motorola Backflip – $50 – sold for $25
NEC Terrain – $85 – sold for $50
Samsung Alias 2 – $50 – sold for free
Motorola Flipout – $50 – sold for $25
HTC mytouch – $41 – sold for free
Dover drive pedal – $200 – sold for $150
Nokia E70 – $120 – sold for $50
Nokia E71 – $35 – sold for free
Olio model one – $500 – sold for $300
Sony Ericsson P990 – $150 – sold for $50
Nokia 5700 – $75 – sold for $40
Nokia N93 – $110 – sold for $60
Hermida Reverb – $180 – sold for $120
Casio Ravine 2 – $45 – sold for $25
Asus R2H – $110 – sold for $80
Sony XEL1 TV – $500 – sold for free because I shipped it in a fragile package and item was broken when it got to the buyer forcing me to refund it
iPod nano – $70 – sold for $50
iRiver – $45 – sold for $30
Viliv S5 – $125 – sold for $100
Keeley Oxblood pedal – $200 – sold for $150
Nokia E71 – $75 – sold for $35
Farcry 4 – $60 – sold for $35
AC Unity – $80 – sold for free
Duke nukem – $50 – sold for $35
Gundam seed destiny – $54 – sold for $15
Stardock 4bay SATA – $330 – sold for free (seriously)
DJI Phantom 3 – $800 – sold for $600
Philips headphone – $300 – sold for $220
Transcend SSD – $65 – sold for $50
Canon Camcorder – $290 – sold for $180
Marshall acton – $250 – sold for $200
Synology DS215j – $200 – sold for $150
Fallout Pipboy – $120 – sold for $110
Yakuza games – $120 – sold for $40
SW Battlefront – $60 – sold for $15
Gechic touch monitor – $360 – sold for $200
Zoom iQ5 – $100 – sold for $50
sony walkman – $100 – sold for $80
Nokia N900 – $150 – sold for $80
Samsung Galaxy Golden – $350 – sold for $200
Klipsch KMC3- $240 – sold for $200
Fiio E10K – $75 – sold for $50
So yeah.. no wonder I had no money in 2015. First off, I bought $24,770 worth of electronics and games. And My 5 trips last year to SF (2 times), Toronto (2 times), and Eastern Europe cost me $8.7k in plane/hotel fees. Furthermore, I lost thousands of dollars by buying and selling items and shipping them at a huge loss. So last year was probably my worst year in spending yet. This year I seemed to have learned my lesson by reining in my spending. I regret not doing it sooner, but I will put up this post so that I can look back on it and learn from it.
Ok so first off, I’m back in SF, so I finally got a chance to review some really cool gadgets (videos below). I finally got to sell alot of my excess gadgets (though not all of them). Including my beloved Honda PCX which I had to sell because I wasn’t staying in SF long term, and it was taking up money parking it and keeping it in storage. Just before I sold it though, I took a few nice videos with it.
Now, onto some controversial topics I want to talk about. Ghost In the Shell, one of the most renowned Japanese Animes, has been adapted into a movie, and surprise surprise, Hollywood decides to cast a white actor. This is not the first time Hollywood has done this of course, they’ve done it with countless movies from Dragonball Evo to Avatar the Last Airbender to 21 to Aloha (with Emma stone playing an Asian), and now with Scarlett Johansson playing the character in a Japanese adapted film. Now, I realize people make excuses such as oh the character wasn’t written as an Asian person etc but why couldn’t they have cast an Asian still?
Hollywood seems to be getting more and more criticism for not casting women, blacks, etc why is Asian any different? It seems not casting Asians, or whitewashing Asian roles doesn’t seem to be criticized as much. Why? If Asian actors never get experience playing a lead, how can Asians ever get a lead role? It seems Hollywood just has something against Asians and lead roles, period. Its a vicious cycle.
Now, no one seems to care that Nick Fury is played by a black person in the movies, even though the original character was white in the comics. Imagine if an Asian person played Nick Fury in the movies. Shouldn’t make a difference since they both diverge from the comics, but I’m willing to bet people will have more issue with an Asian actor than a black actor playing the role.
Somewhat related to discrimination, another topic that I want to talk about (again) is feminism, in particular in the USA.
I’ve already talked about this alot, but I want to re-address this because it comes up more and more frequently these days.
I’d be following my news feed and my favorite channels IGN, Wired, Verge, TIME, Economist, etc and these feminist articles would be polluting my feed, like what the heck, what does TechCrunch or PC Gamer have to do with feminism? Well it all started 2 years ago in 2014 because of this controversy called Gamergate and along with the whole Reddit Ellen Pao fiasco that happened, “feminist” issues have suddenly started permeating everything from gaming articles to politics. So its everywhere now.
Why do I want to talk about this? Because I’m bothered and frustrated by it. Now, I am in full support of women’s rights, and I am not a misogynist, I don’t hate women or anything. Its just that I think the “modern day” feminists take issues with so many small trivial nonsensical things that have never really been an issue before and then complain about it to get recognition. What am I talking about here? this article that TIME published and I commented on perfectly sums it up. The word feminist is becoming corrupted these days because it is used by women who aren’t really feminists, but rather just women who like to whine and complain about under-representation and other things and delight in hating on men and calling all guys sexists and misogynists.
Don’t believe me? One such women called me out on Facebook with this message:
Quite equal? Really? How many members of the US government are female as opposed to male? How many times has there been actual legislature proposed by women to regulate what men do with their bodies? How many women CEOS are out there floating around in the world today as opposed to men and are you really trying to suggest that the ” glass ceiling” in that corporate world doesn’t exist? Equal…just like equal pay for equal work right?
Is that why young girls all over the world are murdered simply for going to school and are subject to arranged marriages? Spoken like a true chauvanist…things are ” quite equal,” simply because in I get to vote and can drive a car just like men folk do
This is exactly what I was talking about. And let me explain my reasoning here more in depth:
So called “feminists” these days like to complain that they are under-represented or over-sexualized or treated in a different manner in everything from movies to video games. These feminists like to think of themselves as exactly equal to men in every way, including wanting to serve in the military forces, even though being exactly the same as men would ruin the fabric of what makes men and women different.
Historically men and women have played different roles in society, and now that gap is closing, but to think that men and women must be exactly the same is nonsense. What makes men and women attracted to each other is the fact that they are biologically and behaviorally different. If they were the same, there would be less and less attraction between each gender.
So, I live in South Korea, where women are actually treated much differently than men are. They are told to put on makeup all the time, because its “manners”. They have the highest gender wage gap inequality in the OECD. They often have to be housewives, to cook and clean, and look pretty for the men on all occasions. This is a country where feminism is actually needed. There are not many feminists in Korea, due to it being a patriarchal society, but it is definitely more needed here than in the USA. Women in the USA are already equal to men, rights wise, in pretty much every way. In fact, I implore you to name a profession or position where women are not allowed to do.
Women in the USA are empowered enough to do anything they want, from serving in the military (not possible in a lot of other countries like Korea), to playing football/hockey (again in other countries, not possible), to becoming the front runner to be President of the United States (Hillary Clinton obviously). The USA is an equal opportunity country and anyone can be anything they want.
The supposed “lack of representation” in certain industries which is what modern day feminists complain about, is because men are traditionally trained to do those fields, like being an engineer for example, or being a soldier, or movie director, etc. Traditionally men were trained in those fields. If more women were trained in those fields, if they have enough experience, of course they could do those things.
Women are overly sexualized? Well how about guys needing to look buff and muscular? Its the exact same thing. Cherry picking positions where men were traditionally dominant? How about I pick a position like nurse or customer service where traditionally women were preferred over men. Is that being sexist to men? The “wage gap” between men and women in America is because of the same reason – guys generally have more experience in those fields, and thus are paid accordingly. Again, if women (like Marissa Meyer for example) have experience in those fields then they are paid accordingly as well.
So my point is, modern day feminists who complain about these issues aren’t really “feminists”. Because under-representation in a field has nothing to do with women’s rights. If women weren’t allowed to work in those fields, then thats a women’s right issue. However, thats not the case. Its just a matter of breaking tradition and getting more women trained in those fields, thats it.
And I also like how that girl called me out as a “chauvinist” like a true modern day feminist who just assumes that every guy who doesn’t agree with their views must hate women. Indeed.
What’s really ironic about these men-hating feminists is that, men were originally the reason why women got rights in the first place. Indeed, I know about the suffragists and the women pioneers, and not to take anything away from them, but it was true that men were in charge of everything back in the day. For most of history, men have been in charge, so in order for a woman to petition for and receive rights, that woman must have, at some point, convinced some men in a position of power to give them those rights. Which means that, at some point, men must have sympathized with those women pioneers and helped them get those rights, the rights to vote, the right to have abortion, etc all those rights were achieved with the help of men. I mean, how could they have not? Women didn’t have any power back then like people said. So its ironic that us men are now being hated on and called misogynists so readily these days.
I would also like to add this additional comment by a feminist here
The reason why women are stuck with uncomfortable, inconvenient and dysfunctional wardrobe/makeup/hair elements is because in our patriarchal society women’s value is a lot closer tied to her looks rather than her intelligence. Girls and women spend millions of hours more in their lifetime on maintaining their appearance instead of developing their careers, inventing things or earning money. Trust me, if it was found acceptable by society every woman would love to wake up with short hair, skip makeup and heels, put comfortable flat shoes on and non-tight pants with functional pockets and still be considered attractive and/or professional.
This is really revealing of the personality of American feminists – they think they can speak for every girl in the world and they think their opinion is always the best and right one. First of all, Western countries are no longer “patriarchal” and I would love to see evidence that it still is. Secondly, perhaps girls and women like to care about their appearance and wear skirts and heels because it makes them feel more like a woman? And since when are they forced to wear those outfits anyways? This isn’t the 1950s anymore. In the US these days, women can wear whatever they want and they won’t be ostracized for it. Again, I feel like there’s a cultural difference here because in Korea, almost every girl is wearing skirts/heels/makeup, whether they really like to or not. But they’re not complaining.
I feel like this idea that every girl wants to dress like a guy, or be “comfortable” like men, and do things men can do like serve in the army etc is being shoved down our throats when really, its only a small (and vocal) part of the female population that actually wants that. Most women that I know, wants to feel like a woman, dress like a woman, and behave like a woman because you know… they’re a woman. They’re not being forced to, they’re not being oppressed, thats just the opinion of a small group of women who like to complain about pretty much everything.
Anyways I hope I’ve made my point. American feminists complaining about these issues really need to take a step back and do some research on whether their complaining is justified, at least in comparison to other countries in the world.
After almost 2 years of living in Seoul, and going to lots of clubs/parties/online websites, I have accumulated enough experience to give a general guide on dating Korean women. Yes I know, I’m not exactly a playboy, but I’ve seen enough guys dating girls here and know enough about Korean culture to give my 2 cents on this, and I know that some foreigner guys come to Korea exclusively to find women here, so here it is.
HOW TO MEET A KOREAN GIRL:
-I am Chinese Canadian, so dating in Korea is a little bit more difficult for me than for white people. As with any other Asian country, White people have the most advantage due to Hollywood/America etc all that stuff that Asian women like. Like other Asian women, Korean girls think that every guy in America looks like Chris Evans and has alot of money. So if you are white, then definitely you have the most advantage.
-That said, out of all Asian girls, Korean girls are also the hardest to get for a foreigner. Why is this? Because its a small country. Koreans have a culture where they support each other, very family oriented etc which means that a number of girls strictly only date with Korean guys. This is not a majority of girls though, as a sizeable amount are open to dating with foreigners.
-The BEST way to date a Korean girl is to get introduced. The culture here emphasizes blind dating. So if you know a Korean friend, he/she can introduce you, thats the best way. Otherwise you will have to use online meetup websites, or language exchange sites, or applications like HelloTalk or MEEP to get to know a girl. This is more difficult to get to know them because Korean girls are super flaky. Out of the language sites and apps I used, only about 30-40% responded to me, and out of that response rate, maybe a third was willing to meet up while the other girls were Kakao chats only.
-Speaking of Kakao, that is the WeChat of Korea, the QQ of Korea, if you will. Absolutely if you want to contact a girl, be sure to download the KakaoTalk application and sign up, since every Korean girl uses that app to communicate.
-One night stand is fairly common especially in the areas of Seoul known for good nightlife like Hongdae or Itaewon. If you are white especially, just go to any club, be sure to have a wingman, and try talking up some girls and knowing a bit of Korean doesn’t hurt either. You should always be the one to talk though, Korean girls aren’t known for being loud or very talkative.
-Most young Korean girls can speak English alright, but not fluently. You should learn some basic Korean if you want to communicate with a girl effectively, but there are lots of girls in Hongdae/Itaewon who know English pretty well too, so if you go to those areas you might be ok.
-Do NOT make sexual jokes with a Korean girl or ask her over to your place unless you know them very well or if its a sleazy type of girl you met at a club. Most Korean girls will not go to a guys place the first time you meet them. They want to take time to get to know you first before they can come over.
-Lots of Korean girls go to church, how devoted they are depends on the girl, but church is always a good way to meet people, if your Korean is good enough to understand what they are saying.
-If you are brave enough, approaching a girl in a public area to ask for her number is actually done by many guys and is called “hunting”. Depends on the time and place, but it may work out, especially if you are white.
HOW TO DATE A KOREAN GIRL:
-A relationship with a Korean girl is a give a lot – get a lot type of relationship. You have to text/call her a lot, so Korean girls are definitely high maintenance. I’d say like 50-60 texts a day especially if the girl is young. What you get in return is a girl who really does care about you and very sweet and loving, in my opinion. They do little things for you like help you put on your coat, buy gifts for you, do cute things with you etc they can be very sweet if you put in the time for them.
-Usually on a date, the guy is expected to pay for the main meal, and the girl usually pays for coffee/tea later. One side doesn’t pay for everything.
-You are expected to remember the major couple days in Korea, and there is a lot, in addition to bday/anniversary there is valentines day (2/14) where the girl gets the guy a gift and white day (3/14) where the guy gets the girl a gift.
-Korean girls can be very jealous, and some girls might even ask you not to meet any of your female friends. This is normal in Korea, where relationships tend to be very exclusive, and time for meeting other people are restricted if you are in a relationship. This is in accordance with the give a lot / get a lot thing.
-Don’t be messy. Make sure if you invite a Korean girl over to your place, everything is super clean and tidy. That’s what they expect.
-They prefer the man to make the decisions for them. So when you set up a date, be sure to decide on the places to go, schedule, etc they will be expecting you to. They are very feminine and so they prefer guys to take the initiative.
WHY A KOREAN GIRL OVER OTHER ASIAN GIRLS:
-Korean girls are known as amongst the most beautiful women in the world, at least superficially, and they are probably the most self-conscious insecure women in Asia. Almost every girl wears makeup all the time, and dresses up like its clubbing attire all the time. Short skirts, high heels, transparent stockings (yes even in winter) are pretty normal wear for Korean women. You will probably find them the most feminine out of all Asian women. They all like to have pale skin, red lips and perfect straight white teeth (unlike Japanese girls).
-Yes alot of girls get plastic surgery but to be fair, 80% of the time, this is for getting double eyelids to make their eyes look bigger. This is why you will see more Korean girls with bigger eyes than Korean guys. If you have a problem with girls wearing a lot of makeup or having surgery on her face, then Korean girls are probably not for you (You should probably try Chinese girls instead).
-As I said, if you put time into the relationship, they can be very very sweet and loving women, and very devoted. I can’t compare with other Asian girls much, but definitely they put alot of effort into the relationship.
-No expectation for the guy to cook, since most Korean men can’t. But its always a plus if you can!
-Great fashion sense, and you’ll also notice 90% of Korean girls don’t wear glasses, preferring contacts or lasik surgery instead.
-Korean women shave every part of their body except the pussy, but some do if you ask them to.
-Most Korean girls are very polite and nice to people, but also very shy at first glance. You have to get them to open up.
-Korean girls can be very very superficial and shallow sometimes. They care alot about fashion, style, appearance, hygiene. They don’t like facial hair. So go for a clean cut appearance, tie and suit, blazer, collar shirt, khakis etc are all good. No baggy stuff, tattoos, beards, bling etc they hate that.
-Guys who are tall and fit and muscular definitely have an advantage over other guys.
-Again, the extreme jealousy part… Korean girls can get pretty crazy if they find you with another girl talking or texting. Be wary of these things.
-Yes some girls are gold diggers, but this can be said for any girl in the world, so take caution with that.
-The hottest girls (10s) don’t speak English at all. Which makes them pretty much Korean men material only. You can try but… unless you are a celebrity it will be very difficult.
All in all, Korean women IMO are the hottest girls in Asia, surgery or not. Their mind is in between Chinese women and Japanese women, which means they aren’t totally blunt but not totally hiding their emotions either. If you like a girl who cares about her appearance, and are willing to put in the time and effort you will be rewarded, so check out South Korea if you have the chance. Hope this post helps you guys.