Earlier this week, I got a memo at work about business discount arrangements that we're having with a few area restaurants. It's nothing new. For quite some time now, there's been a discount at the nearby hotel restaurant that I've never used because even at the discounted price, a lunch entree is about $12 and I'm sure they expect gratuities to be based on the sky-high non-discounted price. What's new is we now get 20% off every Friday at Boston Market one town away. So that's what I had for dinner this evening. (The memo said the discount was for lunch, but apparently it's good all day long!) Nice. Now if only I could get a business discount at LJS. :)
I also got a few straps of $2 bills at Commerce Bank in Ramsey. The trick seems to be to catch them when they have the bills because they didn't call back when I ordered the twos in December. So I entered all those bills into Where's George and I'll
Apparently, there are a few wrinkles to using a USB external hard drive. One such wrinkle is Windows won't stay hibernated while the drive is still attached. It hibernates and then immediately resumes. So I have to "safely remove" it before hibernating. The problem then is the system comes up with the drive still "removed". The workaround is to unplug it and then replug it into the USB port, but that could get annoying to do every time, so I wondered if there was a way to reattach it in software. Yes, there is, although I'm not sure that it's a much better solution because it does cause quite a bit of system activity searching for and reinstalling the drivers.
And finally, while reading some housing bubble blogs, I came across Zecco. I guess this is what happens when a brokerage goes Web 2.0. It even has blogs! The big draw, however, appears to be that it has zero commissions on stock trades. (both market and limit orders) There, I'm a bit skeptical. I had an account at Freetrade, Ameritrade's version of a zero-commission brokerage. Not even a year after I opened the account, they concluded that the zero-commission model didn't work because not too many people were using their paid services. (as I recall, one of their subscription services was real-time quotes, which I didn't need because the kinds of stocks I pick don't move very much within a minute or two -- not enough to make a difference in the quantities I traded anyway) So they moved everyone over to Izone, which has $5 trades. That wasn't so bad (although Sogo Invest and Interactive Brokers are cheaper), so I stuck with them and actually used them more than I used Freetrade. Anyway, back to Zecco: I think it would be wise to wait a while before putting money with them because they're very new at the game and need to work on a thing or two. This customer, for example, had a bad experience with their service recently. Perhaps I'll just sign up for the blogging. :)
1. When is your birthday?
2. How old will you be?
34, the next time around.
3. Do you prefer to throw a party or attend a party?
Which one is less work? Attend, of course!
4. Presents: take'em or leave'em?
Don't need any.
5. Best birthday so far?
I remember having Hurricane Isabel on my birthday in 2003. Wait... that wasn't the best one. I always did things on my own on the actual day, but my 2006 birthday was sandwiched between two events so that was fun.
1. favorite cereal and why?
I don't usually eat cereal. If I had to choose, it'd be frosted flakes because "They're Grrreat!"
2. what is the best thing about summer?
There's light until pretty late in the day. Can go out geocaching in the evening.
3. would you rather have a slurpee or a milkshake?
Milkshake. That's harder to get than a Slurpee.
4. If you could be a member of any band/musical group, past or present, what band would it be and why?
Any triangle-playing bands? :)
5. Who is your idol? What are they famous for?
No one. It used to be Warren Buffett, until he spoke out in favor of higher taxes.