Monday, October 29, 2018

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes!

Yogi Berra once said "When you come to a fork in the road, take it."  Evidently he was giving directions to Joe Garagiola to follow to get to Berra's home.  That notwithstanding, I've always liked the quote in its simplicity.

Lots of Forks in the Road upcoming this week.  Indeed, a veritable plethora of forks in the road, some may even be silver (also referenced in the attribution to Berra).

The first fork deals with Mrs. J.  That lady is a smart business woman.  She's run 3 small businesses, a wine store, a wine tour company (the first in the region, now there are dozens) and a Bridal and women's wear store, all from Main Street in our little town.  She sold the first two over the years, profitably, and has been operating the latter for 5 years.

But, as the title of the post would suggest, there have been some changes lately and it's time for one of our own.

Seems there have been some large scale migrations here.  Certain states have had mass emigrations, I believe based on politics, but YMMV.  In any case, these folks move here after selling their 1200 sq ft. bungalow for a cool $1.6 million and move here to buy their dream home.  

"So....how much are you asking for your home?"  

"$350K"  (5 years ago it would have been $200K).

"Well, I can't pay you any less than $600K"

Pause (for exactly 1.2 nanoseconds)

"Sold"

Which sounds like a great place to be.

If you're willing to move.

We're not.

So our property taxes go up to reflect the price of the most recent "comp".

This also happens to the buildings on Main St.  The owners usually don't maintain a business in them themselves, instead rent them out.  Property taxes go up, guess what follows.

5 years ago, Main St was almost exclusively populated by Mom and Pop stores and had a very eclectic variety of shopping choices.  It's now mainly populated by Wine Tasting Rooms and boutique wine bars.  The feel of the town has changed and not for the better.

In this environment, Mrs J has decided to close he store.  Seems Wine Drinkers aren't all that interested in women's clothes.  More's the Pity.

The silver spoon?

She's gotten her Travel Adviser certificate and is looking at setting up Designer Vacations for people.  Those of you who've read my travelogue posts over the past few years (and enjoyed them) can credit that to Mrs J.  She did all the planning and coordinating.

She's going to do fine.

Fork # 2

Tuesday, we become official "empty nesters".  While MBD and Little Juvat left for college in '07 and 02 respectively, one or the other always seemed to migrate home on a regular basis.  With MBD's wedding in July, she's wrapped up with that.  Seems to want to spend a lot of time with him rather than us.

Wanting Grandchildren, we're encouraging that.

Little Juvat is doing well in his career and has completed two tours in the Sandbox, solo.  While he was doing his bit for "God and Country, the DIL elected to move here and teach school.  While Little Juvat was on his first tour, she experienced an unnecessary tragedy which took a while to recover from emotionally.  We filled the parent role during the recovery process.  We got pretty used to her coming over for dinner and stuff. It also prevented "empty nest syndrome" from setting in.

But Little Juvat and she are deploying back to the sandbox, albeit a somewhat less unfriendly area than his last posts, and which, obviously, allows dependents to accompany.

So, Mrs J and I will be empty nesters and given that she will be working from home vice having a place of business, face time between us will be greatly enhanced.

Which is a polite way of saying, the honey-do list will be 1) long and 2) supervised.

So....I've got that going for me.

Fork #3

Wednesday, I will put my papers in.  No turning back, sink or swim.  Yadda, Yadda, Yadda.

That will give them 2 months to find a replacement.

Hope it goes better than the launching of the Principessa Jolanda.

So, 3 forks in the road.  All, or none, could be silver.  Just takes a little elbow work to find out.


But there will be changes.


52 comments:

  1. I hope that with all of these forks in your road, you suffer no punctures. Best of good fortune to you and Mrs. J.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

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  2. Hopefully these aren't Californians moving to Texas to escape their own failed state. They usually try and make their new place just like California. Ask Coloradoans how that's working out for them. (Note to all, I went to college in Ft Collins, hence my usage of "Coloradoan." The Denver Post prefers "Coloradan," but they're a progressive rag, who cares what they think?)

    Hope all goes well for all these changes, things might be rough going at first, but you two are smart, you will succeed.

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    1. Well, there certainly are a lot of them from that state out west. However, there are also a lot from a state near you with Orange and Blue license plates.
      Which brings up another irksome trait. They don't change their plates when they get here. I saw one the other day (from out west) that had expired in 16. "Hey, I got it that you left because taxes and things got expensive. They're lower here, but not gone. Fork over the $75 and get real tags." Just sayin'.

      Thanks

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    2. Those are faux Californians, Sarge.
      The true, native, Californian will adapt to his new environment.

      Juvat, I’m familiar with the folks who overpay for property.
      They’re under the impression that not having to pay capital gains taxes is some kind of savings.

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    3. Good point Skip. Personally, I think the housing market is going to collapse and house prices will fall. Those that have sunk all their moolah into the house will be hurting at that point. I think I'd prefer to hold on to the cash by buying a reasonably priced house, even though I have to give Uncle his share.

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  3. Good luck with those changes. It sounds like your wife is a true Proverbs 31 lady. You chose..... wisely!!

    I'm looking around for options as well. This burg down here thinks it's the new King William district, while actually being 3rd Ward (think Houston). The pretentious stuff they are coming up with is beginning to wear on me. While searching for land to acquire and move out of this hole, I've run up against the Kalifornian Millionarios all over. Driving up the price of marginal land because they have money to burn. What a mess.

    And I'm a bit behind you on the retirement train. I'm pretty sure I'll slide right into poverty whenever I choose to retire. So I got that going for me.

    Fun times... fun times... Getting old isn't for the weak.

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    1. No, no it isn't.

      I hadn't read that passage lately. A fine description of Mrs J. Thanks.

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  4. Congrats on your up-coming forks in the road! Enjoy the changes!
    Just for the record, Hubbies says it is very nice to be retired, especially with a wife who isn't, just yet. More $$ to have fun with...or in our case, to put a new roof on the barn with...
    At the very least, you folks will be able to have some nice travels together.

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    1. Well, I certainly hope we'll be able to travel still. Although, our next $$ will be spent on a new road. Ours didn't survive the rain. So.....It's always something.

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  5. Losing that small town feel is happening all over, sad. I've learned to like the empty nest, means the new nests ae doing well. Regarding Yogi's quote, his house was in the middle of a circle which would be reached regardless of which direction of the fork you took, so "Take it."

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    1. Ahhh, well that makes sense. However, it does take a bit away from the Berra-ism doesn't it?

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    2. Yogi claims he only said half of the things he said, but this was one of them.

      The man was a treasure.

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  6. I feel your pain. The Texas Hill Country sounds like it is getting Califoricated and that can't be a good thing. There are good things about being retired. You will treasure those days when the weather is bad and you can just roll over and grab another half hour or so in the sack. When there is snow and ice and the poor people are fighting the elements to get to their places of work you can just throw a log on the fire and enjoy another cup of coffee. But you are right, the Honeydo list grows to fill the time available. Retirement always reminds me of my favorite Sam Rayburn story. He was the long time Speaker of the House of Representatives and one day a freshman congressman came to him to complain about the seniority system in Congress that gave all the good assignments to senior members. The freshman wanted it changed and Mr. Sam just smiled at him and said, "Son, the longer you are here the better you'll like it."

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    1. I think the Supervised Honeydo list is actually a perk. I can get pretty lazy unsupervised. I don't mind doing the things she asks, but when left on my own I usually find an interesting solitaire game or something.

      Good Story

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  7. Changes are changes, they happen. It does sound like you're on top of yours which is (IMO) a great thing! Good luck!

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  8. Like it has been stated..."Nothing is more constant than change."
    ...having a few of my own of late.
    Even the wheat farmers are feeling the turbulence of the times.

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    1. Yeah, I can imagine. Hang in there!

      OT, but I really liked your computer series last week. A lot of truth and quite a few giggles in it.

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    2. The Calvin and Hobbes series has been hilarious. The snipping tool and email has gotten the team rolling on the floor recognizing our kids in a given strip.

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  9. Fork 1: Sorry to hear. From what I could see it looked like a great little business, although being a guy, there was nothing that interested me. It sounds like your wife is like a cat though, always landing on her feet.

    Sounds like Texas needs a Proposition 13: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/California_Proposition_13_(1978), which keeps people in their homes when property values get crazy.

    Fork 2: Congrats! Working on it ourselves, getting housing/services for my son is proving difficult though.

    Fork 3: Mega Congrats! Must be tough working for an institution that doesn't value you. Time to clean those work shoes: “And if any place will not welcome you or listen to you, leave that place and shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them."

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    1. I've been touting the value of the property should not be based on what another property sold for, it should be based on the value I paid for it. That value should only be changed when someone buys it from me. (which is what Prop 13 said).

      You'll get there and still miss it (somewhat).

      Thanks, Yep!

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    2. Prop 13 brought about a bunch of much needed reforms which the legislaturists and special interests immediately started drafting and passing new regulations and taxes to circumvent the reforms.

      My grandma, being a juggernaut of the senior community at the time, hated P-13 because her people would be losing money for special funding for all sorts of inane programs. So she spent 5 years setting up a bunch of workarounds that didn't cost the state or local government or the taxpayers any money and she was actually happier about that than when all her programs were funded by Uncle Bear.

      Oh well, at least y'all in Texas have Open Carry. So far.

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    3. No one like to see their Ox gored, but I am glad she was able to get the job done without an increase in taxes.

      Yes we do have open carry. Just wish folks wouldn't flaunt it.

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  10. I wonder how long it will be before the folks who work there won’t be able to afford to live there?
    That’s one of the biggest changes I’ve seen here.
    Sadly, local governments love seeing property values increase because it helps their tax base.
    Proposition 13 helped for awhile here, and still does if you don’t move, in CA.
    Sloppy personal economics is the real problem

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    Replies
    1. That's a REALLY BIG problem here. There are Hiring signs all over town, but the wages available don't allow people to live here and while our economy has been great for years, now other more affordable towns are hiring. It's a vicious circle. Less help ->Less Sales->Less Money->less help......
      You're right about personal economics though. The free money idea that politicians tend to sell isn't helping.

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  11. So. What you're saying is your town has been taken over by a bunch of rich mean drunks, amiright?

    Hope they don't kill all the wonderful things that make your town your town. Sorry to hear about that.

    As to the housing issue, one of the lesser known things that Barky Moonbat the First did was slam regulations returning some sub-prime mortgage lending requirements back in, located in such things like Barkey Moonbat Care and other non-associated exec orders and legislature. It worked so well for our country under Billy Jeff, right? (I am actually thinking BJC is the 2nd worst, taking over for the peanut farmer, who is now in a tie for 3rd with LBJ (hwack-ptoie) for worst prez of post WWII. Why post WWII? Well, Woody Wilsonovich, that progessive Bolshevik bastige, pert near destroyed us, removing many gains made since the (un)Civil War, like desegregation and such.)

    You aren't serious about them wanting you to find your replacement, right? If so, juvat's Consultation Service should open early and much more expensive (maybe have your wife officially run it, she was a Personnel Officer, right?) Because any tasking to find your replacement will ensure that the extremely qualified candidate you find will, as of midnight on your effective retirement date, the School Board supervisor will find his retarded step-nephew-in-law (who's going through the transition to niece-in-law) is a much more qualified candidate because his wife says he/she/it is. You might as well get some cold, hard cash for the family J.

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    1. As to the Lovely Mrs. J's boutique, on-line sales are killing everything. Real shoe stores, where the salesman measures your foot 30 separate ways, are only for the hoi-poloie these days. And clothing boutiques are on the way out.

      So, I am sorry that stupidity has killed your wife's business. Sigh. Sometimes progress isn't. But it sounds like she has good plans for the future.

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    2. I don't know if they're rich, MEAN drunks, but they are rich, stuck up, drunks.

      I didn't mean to imply that I was the one who would be finding my replacement, merely that I was giving them two months to make a decision. It will also be surprising if they even ask for my opinion/input on what skills they should have. This is based on the fact that they didn't during the hiring process for my bosses successor, nor has that successor contacted any of us since then (she starts the first Monday in Dec). So, while I feel like a rat leaving a sinking ship, the fact still remains that the ship IS sinking.

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    3. Sounds like you'll be using the patented Martin-Baker escape move pretty darned quick. Good for you. Can't wait to hear the future stories of 'juvat, Gentleman Farmer of Texas.'

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    4. Senior Frijole; I saw my first double sided foot measuring device in many moons at the Red Wing store this month. I usually burn through those plastic duty boots in 8 months or so, and they are a 100 bills... I figured going made in USA might give a longer MTBF. I didn't expect to see such a majestic measuring device there. It was pretty cool.

      I'm not hoi-poloie, just barely housebroke. I am after all a native born Texican... BTG*!

      *Big Texan Grin

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    5. Dang, forgot Red Wing. The last great real shoe store.

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    6. Hmmm...Never heard of them, and evidently there's three in San Antonio. May have to check them out.

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  12. OOOOOHHHHHH....Señor Frijoles....I like the sound of that. Do we need to file for an exception to the "...once the callsign is bestowed, there is no changing." codicil if it's just a changing of the default language?

    Especially since said language seems to have a fair chance of becoming the default language.

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  13. "....Señor Frijoles....I like the sound of that."

    I like that too; perhaps so much so that I will steal/use it instead of or in addition to AW.

    Paul

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    1. I'm kinda partial to that as well, "Señor Frijoles" has a certain je ne sais quoi... dontcha think?

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    2. "...je ne sais quoi..."

      Well, that's either a fancy French wine or perhaps a girl with whom you to high school ( Jenny Saqua ).

      Paul

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    3. She was a cutie, yes she was!

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  14. By the way juvat, do you have a special keyboard that allows you to type an 'ñ'? If not, how does one do that?

    PLQ

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    1. While holding down the Alt key, use the number pad to enter 164. (165 for upper case.)

      Ñ and ñ

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    2. OR.....
      Type "Mister Beans" in Google Translate, select Spanish and Copy and Paste. Uses less Memory.

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    3. I wished I had thought of that...

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    4. The KISS principle is high on my list of programming priorities.

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  15. Think you will find fork #3 most satisfying. The world is a brighter place when you stop herding cats.

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    1. I expect that's so. One way or the other, we're going to find out.

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  16. Best wishes for your 'third' careers! :-) Glad you're getting out of that particular rat race!

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Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)