The Important Jobs We Ignore 

If you keep it up, you’re going to end up as a plumber cleaning out poo pipes, my teacher hissed. The students in my class roared with laughter. I was bored and got caught goofing around. So, filled with fire and brimstone, my teacher threatened me with career purgatory in the form of a plumber. But my teacher's words struck...

8 Things I’m Teaching My Kids about Work

I don’t just want my kids to have fun during their childhood. I want them learn to work and add value to the world. An enormous amount of problems exist in the world today and what we need more than anything is a generation of kids that are being raised to both look for those problems, and tackle them...

How to Achieve Success Without a College Degree

Achieving a goal you have set for yourself is success. Examples might be earning a good living, having a really enjoyable job, having no debt, living where you want to, getting married, having a family, adding value to people’s lives, being in a position to help others and to change the world. For several decades we have been told...

I sold my House and moved to Hawaii, here’s what we are doing now

With three weeks left in our visit back to the mainland this past summer, we decided to sell our house in Portland, OR. This was not our plan, because if you plan ahead, you do not simply prepare a house for sale, finish 20 house projects, sell the rest of your belongings, pack and jump on a plane to...

The Story of the 62 Year Old Refrigerator

The only thing cooler than picking up a excellent condition, perfectly working General Electric refrigerator from 1954, is when the owner, a 94 year old WWII veteran, comes downstairs to tell you it's story.  A few days ago I was browsing the Craigslist appliance section here in Portland, Or (we are back from Hawaii visiting friends and family for...

How I Got A Concussion While Surfing

Everything went black. When the light returned, my head was spinning and I was overcome with dizziness. This is not good, I’m not in good shape I thought. Then I turned around and my heart sunk.  Building up and moments from crashing down on me was another wave with about a 12 ft face on it. A wave that...

They Used To Last 50 Years

Now refrigerators last 8–10 years, if you are fortunate. How in the world have our appliances regressed so much in the past few decades?  I’ve bought and sold refrigerators and freezers from the 1950’s that still work perfectly fine. I’ve come across washers and dryers from the 1960’s and 1970’s that were still working like the day they were...

The Things We Used To Love

Before this day is over, I want you to go do something you love. Something you stopped doing for one reason or another. Life changes, jobs change, you got married, had kids, moved, income goes up and down and sideways, our friends change and on and on. Some of our most favorite activities in the world begin to get...

Good Ideas Are Always Crazy Until They’re Not

"Good ideas are always crazy until they’re not." - Larry Page Do you want to make something that’s never been built? Do you want to solve a problem that other people don’t believe exists? Want to go down a career path that doesn’t make sense to anyone else you know? Want to upset an industry that is allergic to innovation?...

The Power of a Comment on Hacker News

A little over three years ago I wrote a blog post that made it to the front page of Hacker News. It was entitled How to Make It on Craigslist, and I wrote it for Priceonomics to share how I was earning my living on Craigslist. A lot of people commented on the post, but there were a few...