The Sunday Best is a collection of articles I’ve curated from the furthest reaches of the internet for your reading pleasure.
Every week, I scan hundreds of headlines, read dozens of posts, and bring you the best of the best to save you time and mental energy.
Financial Independence (FI) is a primary focus, but it’s an awfully broad topic. I tend to approach FI and early retirement from a fatFIRE perspective and through the lens of a physician, so expect to see those biases in the selected articles.
For more great articles, take a peek at The Sunday Best Archives. Now let’s get to the best… The Sunday Best!
The Sunday Best
There’s intentional medical tourism, and then there’s an open fracture while on a shore excursion. From Making Sense of Cents, My True Travel Insurance Story – A Broken Leg & Surgery in the Dominican Republic. Ouch!
A lot of us have saved money on travel this year, but our incomes have also been affected. How COVID-19 Has Impacted Doctors’ Personal Finances.
It’s easy to be down this year, but That Frugal Pharmacist keeps her chin up. Thankfulness in 2020. Being Grateful Despite Cancer and Covid-19.
I did something similar, making more than 12 dozen grants to charities chosen by others, and doubling the monetary impact of last year’s Giving Tuesday efforts. A $10,000 grant and a boatload of smaller ones in the plainly stated I’ll Give $100 Each to Charities Chosen by the First 100 Readers to Comment.
One thing I’ve learned in nearly five years of writing about charitable giving is that few people care to read about it. I get it. You’d rather read about something that more directly impacts you, like when Budgets are Sexy talks about SORR. Sequence Of Returns Risk – Why You Should Care.
Positive cashflow and lower volatility means a lesser sequence of returns risk and a higher likelihood of a successful retirement. Real estate investing can offer both. Passive Income MD details 5 Reasons I Prefer Real Estate Over Stocks.
- To be honest, a 6th reason would be that it’s easier to make money teaching and recommending real estate investing than it is when pushing index funds. It’s true. I can’t imagine a worse segue to the fact that I can save you $300 on the upcoming Zero to Freedom through Cashflowing Real Estate, but there it is. Join the waitlist for some free content and a discount on the pre-sale next week.
The White Coat Investor pushes back on the Infinite Return concept that our buddy Passive Income MD touted not long ago. Debunking the Idea of an Infinite Return.
He also debunks the idea that investing in a taxable brokerage accounts bests retirement account investing in these two posts. Why Early Retirees Should Max Out Retirement Accounts & We Need to Defend Retirement Accounts?
They’re earning $220,000 a year with plans to drop their earned income to 0. It’s painful to do this math, but His and Her Money Guide did it, anyway. The cost of retiring early: a lost career of wages.
Many investors lose years of wages to sketchy financial advisors, including those that call themselves fiduciaries. The FI Physician tells us he’s leaving medicine and that too many physicians are not much better than these untrustworthy advisors. Why “Fiduciary” is a Sales Pitch.
Some late-career physicians are keen on selling out to private equity groups and riding off into the sunset, leaving their junior partners in an unenviable position. Dr. Ben White looks at the ugly trend in Radiology and the Private Equity Bait and Switch.
I know all the words to a handful of songs and exactly one movie. Ben Carlson of A Wealth of Common Sense apparently shares an affinity for the same film. How Personal Finance Helped Launch Dazed and Confused.
Money Isn’t Everything
It’s the only thing. No! I’m not going to channel Vince Lombardi here, although I did once argue that money is everything in a very different context than the topic I’d like to discuss today.
Earlier this week, I learned that serial entrepreneur and near-billionaire Tony Hsieh passed away at 46 — he was a year older and almost a billion dollars wealthier than me.
Initial reports were that he died from injuries sustained in a house fire. That’s tragic.
As more details emerged, notably in Forbes’ Tony Hsieh’s American Tragedy: The Self-Destructive Last Months Of The Zappos Visionary, we learned that he suffered smoke inhalation after locking himself in a storage shed.
It’s easy to jump to conclusions based on that revelation, but it could have very well been an accident. By report, he was, at times, a heavy drinker, and in recent months had taken to drug abuse, partaking in the dissociative anesthetic gas Nitrous Oxide regularly.
Mr. Hsieh and his business partner sold their first company, LinkExchange to Microsoft when he was just 24. He later led Zappos to an astronomical valuation as the CEO and primary investor, selling the company to Amazon for $1.2 Billion in 2009.
He also invested hundreds of millions of dollars in an attempt to revitalize downtown Las Vegas, and he had more recently relocated to Park City, UT, buying up a number of properties and bringing in friends and confidantes.
He was known for prioritizing happiness for his employees and himself. He wrote a best seller titled Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose.
Somewhere, he lost his way. No amount of money will bring happiness if you’ve not covered basic needs including physical and mental health. Sometimes, you cannot buy your way out of physical danger.
My heart goes out to Tony Hsieh’s parents and family and to everyone whose lives he touched. There were many.
With the pandemic numbers setting record highs on a daily basis and a vaccine release imminent, we’re not taking many chances.
Some call it living in fear; I call it making responsible choices.
Two weeks ago, my family and I were planning to travel to Minnesota to join my parents for Thanksgiving. Both families have kept our respective “circles” very small. Still, as the hospitalizations and positive tests climbed, it didn’t seem like such a good idea.
I already had plans to buy my wife a new car (more on that in a later post) and to pick up my annual 16-gallon beer allotment in Minnesota. My wife and kids stayed put, and after a week of home isolation and a COVID test (which was negative, as expected), I made the solo trip to see my family. It was good to see them, and we were able to exchange Christmas gifts early.
This week, my family and I had plans to stay with my wife’s cousin downstate. They’ve got a short-term need for my wife’s nanny services, and the last time she volunteered for the job, we didn’t see her for nearly three weeks. This time, we figured we’d all go.
Alas, as you might guess, we canceled our plans to travel down together. Her cousin works in a hospital, and multiple patients are dying from COVID there every single day. The baby, at 5 months or so, isn’t quite ready to take care of himself, so my wife is still making the trip, but if she is exposed, she can either stay where she is or isolate at our cabin, much like I did for two weeks back in March.
I don’t know exactly what the upcoming holidays will look like, but I don’t foresee any consideration of travel or spending anytime indoors with extended family.
My hometown Timberwolves’ star Karl-Anthony Towns has lost his mother and six other family members to COVID-19. I’ve missed many holidays due to my education, training, and career. I’m more than willing to sit out one more under these dangerous circumstances, and I’d love to see everyone in both extended families next year when most or all of us are vaccinated and the disease has hopefully been all but eradicated.
Have a safe week!
-Physician on FIRE