Victor Niederhoffer

Back up a bit. It must have been about 10 years ago — ’97 or so — when I last walked the streets of New York City. Whenever I’m in a great city — be it New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, etc. — it is my consistent habit to be out and about fairly early in the morning. Lots of reasons why, but I suppose it’s primarily that I like seeing the things come alive as they do.

Back then, I recall grabbing a sausage, egg & cheese croissant, tater tots and coffee from a Burger King and then browsing the tables of a sidewalk book vendor. Fitting, I thought — seeing as I was in NYC — to pick up this book, The Education of a Speculator, by Victor Niederhoffer. But through some set of circumstances I no longer recall, I got sidetracked somewhere near the beginning of the book, put it down, and forgot about it. Then I saw it two weeks ago amongst my significant book collection that I keep up at the cabin. Seeing as I now trade virtually full time, I took it down, began reading, and began googling here and there about the man.

And he’s a most interesting guy. On the heels of the book being published, he lost it all. Tens of millions — his own money and clients’. Now he’s back on top, taking the hedge fund he started in 2002 from $2 million to about $350 million now. That’s of course both additional capital from new investors and capital gains. A $1 million investment in 2002 would be worth over $4 million today. Not bad. Of course, to invest in a hedge fund, you have to be an accredited investor — a silly, depression-era law that appears to be growing new legs rather than being dumped as it ought to be. On the other hand, in practical terms, it’s probably just as well. Nobody cares if a hedge fund loses billions for rich people. Indeed, most "working people" chortle with glee at the prospect. This affords hedge funds some measure of freedom in managing their own affairs and the affairs of their clients. "Too many" people are now reaching the $1 million watermark and it’s a virtual certainty that you’ll eventually have sob stories about moms & pops who invested their life savings in a hedge fund and lost it all, "not realizing" that the 50% annual returns imply sometimes huge risk.

Check out his reading list and note what comes first. What have I been telling you forever? Note also the Liberty Reading List at the bottom. Yea, I’ve read many of those myself. I know a few people who’ve read all of them.

He also maintains a blog, Daily Speculations that I have found quite interesting to have in my RSS. So bookmark accordingly, if it suits you.

Radley Roundup

Another victim of commonplace police and prosecutor criminality is set free after being held as the slave of Los Angeles County for 20 years. Meanwhile, other similar criminal behavior is exposed for the 200th time. [BalkoLink]

What do you think would happen to you if you got drunk, argued with a police officer about whether you were fit to drive, then pulled out a gun and shot him? Why not a paid vacation?

Two of the three cops who broke into 92-yr-old Kathryn Johnston’s place in Atlanta last November, murdered her, planted drug evidence, and solicited the help of an informant to lie about a drug buy go down in a plea of manslaughter in exchange for testimony as to how the Atlanta Police Department is a band of thugs and criminals. One to go. Note: this is some justice being served on these two thugs. Kathryn Johnston can’t get any justice. She’s dead.

Patterico (Patrick Frey), the LA County assistant DA (criminal prosecutor) gets it wrong, as usual. He’s not the only one. You can dig through the comments if you like, in search of a good argument as to why — should your home ever be invaded by armed intruders — the burden is upon you to correctly, unequivocally, and with utter precision determine whether you have a legal right to defend your life, on the basis of information you can’t possibly know. You won’t find one, and commenter "Sk" pretty cleanly cleans up here and here. Read both. Understand. Now I know why Frey isn’t billing at $500 per hour at my cousin’s LA firm.

The lives and freedoms of ordinary people (and extra-ordinary 92-yr-old ladies) aren’t the only casualty of the criminal War on Drugs. Arguably worse, in an historical and cultural context, is the obliteration of reason. It’s DOA. The whole thing ought to be renamed: War on Drugs, America, and Reason.


Looks like it’s been about three weeks since I told you I was going to build a marine aquarium. Well, I’ve been telling everyone who has any idea of how difficult this is to get right that I’m embarrassed because it’s just going so damn well. I’ve never had a tank go so perfectly, but I think I owe that to using 100% live sand (wet sea sand actually bagged and shipped out from Fiji and other tropical regions) and my live rock was well cured. Essentially, this gives you all the bacteria and other micro-organisms you need for a stable saltwater environment. Then, of course, you’ve got to keep it that way, unless you want to do water changes every week. A competent saltwater aquarist ought not have to do any more than a 20% water change once per month.

Alright, so here’s where we are, so far. Ideally, that link takes you into a new tab or window and Quicktime will play the video in highly resolute 640×480.

All those corals and polyps are live, of course, and there’ll eventually be a lot more. You have to add stuff slowly, so as to not overwhelm the creatures that take care of all the crap. Underneath what you see is a protein skimmer (the bubbling plexi tube) and a refugium where you grow macro-algae, so as to use up nutrients for same in order to keep the algae growth inside the tank to a minimum.

Alright then. Until the next update.

Pascal’s Folly

Would that Sam Harris laid it to the dustbin of history once and for all.

One Man’s Tale

A well written, very credible account of one man’s experience with the exceedingly corrupt Dallas SWAT, Dallas Sheriff, Dallas Police, Dallas Code Enforcement and the Dallas District Attorney; along with their partners in crime at Granada Entertainment and A&E Broadcasting.

Make no mistake: all of the above are the criminals in this story.

The show of force and weaponry
brought by the cops was simply outrageous and unjustified, given the
circumstances, but, then again, are they enforcing the law or making a
TV show?

You decide. How much of this do you suppose goes on against those unable to express themselves as well as this innocent man, the victim of legal predators.

A Friday Afternoon

Alright. What a week, what with the Va-Tech massacre and attendant gun-control lunacy in wake. Rather than another post about why there’s no guarantee attached to "gun free zone," I thought I’d just go out and reaffirm my own disposition.

Those shots were aimed at the head on the left. Not too bad, I’d say, since it’s been like 1988 since I shot one-handed (I’m holding the cam in the other hand and we’re shooting at 10 yards). Yea, you don’t need to let me know that it’s a hostage target and I’m not supposed to shoot the guy on the right. I didn’t want to buy another target, okay?

What you can’t see in this version (it’s reasonably clear in the native file) is the Colt .38 I show sitting on the bench. That was my grandmother’s "snub-nose," and it sat on her bedside table (loaded) for as long as I can remember as a kid. My grandfather had a .38 as well, but with a long barrel.

I’ll leave you with Ted.

Update: Oh, yea. It’s a Sig-Sauer P-229; .40 S&W.

A Comment

I imagine that in those awful, brutal moments during the assault; with sounds of pop, pop, pop; with people screaming as the marauder rampaged from room to room… many must have been wishing, lamenting that the government had just done something more — somehow — to halt the proliferation of guns. Can you just imagine — in their final moments of life or safety —  how they must have yearned and longed for guns to have just been banned altogether?

On the other hand, perhaps they all just wished they had one in hand.

What would you have wished for?

That was my comment to the morons, dinks and imbecils commenting here. Other than Brian Ross and Dana Hughes, the morons, dinks and imbecils are easily identified by their moronic, dinky, and imbecilic comments.

That’s all.

Larry Hincker

That’s the moron so roundly put down and kicked about yesterday by every rational person with keyboard, blog, and righteous rage.

Well, it seems like the moron himself feels qualified to write on these matters. The only real difference between his screed and the thousands of imbecilic screeds like it is that he bet against the odds of being proved stupid, and lost.

Guns don’t belong in classrooms. They never will. Virginia Tech has a very sound policy preventing same.

Well, mutherfucker, your "sound policy" and $3.50 will get you a latte at Starbucks, you brainless and dangerous shithead.


What I’d been wondering but didn’t mention

There are reports — granted unconfirmed at this time — that several
students were forced to line up, kneeling, and executed from behind.

I pray to the old gods — the gods of war and blood and thunder — that this is not the case.

I pray that some students went down fighting.

Because as bad as this is — and this is a horror — as bad as this
is, if fifty some-odd people were injured and killed by one person
whilst on their knees begging like so many Eloi, like a herd of sheep
— if no one stood up and fought back, then this is becomes an example
of evil.

Not the evil that allows a man to kill other men — although that is
here in abundance. No, I am speaking of the putrescent evil which
convinces good men not to fight back; the sordid filth of the soul
which allows one bad man to prevail against fifty — or 25,000 — good
men because good men have been systematically denied the mindset
required to meet with, engage and defeat evil — even if all you have
is fingernails and rage.

One man. On a campus of 25,000 people. 25,000 people surrounded by
fire extinguishers, book bags, pencils, pens, drafting compasses,
chairs, broom handles, power strips, ceramics, chains and everything
heavy and/or sharp.

One man managed to gun down fifty people — or more — without being
stabbed and bludgeoned to death where he stood by the other 24,950

I weep for the dead. I weep for the families who lost their treasured children today.

I weep even more for a land which not only denies the tools required
for self-defense, but also denies the very mindset required for

(LawDog, via Bill St. Clair)


I don’t know about you, but I have nothing but a deep and profound loathing for that whole cop-scene looping continuously on the news surrounding the Virginia Tech mass murder. I hadn’t a chance to watch any TV while things were unfolding yesterday, but I flipped around the dial last evening and was just appalled by the display. Don’t know I could put it any better than Billy:

…where all the video shows us these slug-ass cops running to & fro with all their fine army-man wannabe costuming.

Bunch ‘a pussies. Losers.

You got that, Blacksburg Police Department, County Sheriff, SWAT, BATF, and all the rest of you dipshits who got all dressed up so’s you could parade your worthless carcasses around the TEEVEE all day looking all toughass?

You’re putrid and disgusting. Every one of you.

Actually, you’re worse than worthless. I could be grudgingly satisfied — or at least resigned — with worthless. But what you guys do is actively perpetuate the fraud — you get that: fraud — that honest and peaceful people are safe around you — that you’ll protect them; when in point of observable fact, you’re either preening your costumed candy asses in front of the TEEVEE completely out of harm’s way, or else you’re busting down the doors of unarmed and peaceful people where you know you’re not going to face any serious armed opposition.

Anyone with any sense at all sees completely through this charade. You know what? Here’s how worthless you are; you, with your dozens upon dozens of "highly trained officers," G.I. Joe dress-up, assault vehicles, and dogs sniffing who knows what: a 100-lb freshman girl with a decent weapon in her backpack and a bit of nerve would have easily put you all to shame.

You’re a bunch of predators and crooks — and pussies (did I mention?). Go fuck yourselves. And while you’re at it? Blow your own brains out in shame (that’s if you all weren’t such pussies).


What can you say? It has only been thousands of years of civilization and yet "we" still don’t seem to understand the distinction between good people of honest character and bad people of a predatory bent.

There’s no guarantee that this would have prevented or stopped what happened at Virginia Tech, today, but it’s a certainty that disarming the former kind of people did nothing whatsoever to discourage, prevent, or stop the latter kind of person.

Let’s go ahead and just quote that entire article. Tell me you don’t get a very eerie feeling reading it. All emphasis of irony and stupidity, mine.

Gun bill gets shot down by panel

by Greg Esposito

A bill that would have given college students and employees the
right to carry handguns on campus died with nary a shot being fired in
the General Assembly.

House Bill 1572 didn’t get through the House Committee on Militia,
Police and Public Safety. It died Monday in the subcommittee stage, the
first of several hurdles bills must overcome before becoming laws.

The bill was proposed by Del. Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah County, on
behalf of the Virginia Citizens Defense League. Gilbert was unavailable
Monday and spokesman Gary Frink would not comment on the bill’s defeat
other than to say the issue was dead for this General Assembly session.

Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker was happy to hear the bill was
defeated. "I’m sure the university community is appreciative of the
General Assembly’s actions because this will help parents, students,
faculty and visitors feel safe on our campus

Del. Dave Nutter, R-Christiansburg, would not comment Monday because
he was not part of the subcommittee that discussed the bill.

Most universities in Virginia require students and employees, other
than police, to check their guns with police or campus security upon
entering campus. The legislation was designed to prohibit public
universities from making "rules or regulations limiting or abridging
the ability of a student who possesses a valid concealed handgun permit
… from lawfully carrying a concealed handgun."

The legislation allowed for exceptions for participants in athletic
events, storage of guns in residence halls and military training

Last spring a Virginia Tech student was disciplined for bringing a
handgun to class, despite having a concealed handgun permit. Some gun
owners questioned the university’s authority, while the Virginia
Association of Chiefs of Police came out against the presence of guns
on campus

In June, Tech’s governing board approved a violence prevention
reiterating its ban on students or employees carrying guns and
prohibiting visitors from bringing them into campus facilities

I wonder how "happy" Virginia Tech spokesman Larry Hincker is right about now. Huh? I can think of about 64 parents, 108 grandparents, and who knows how many siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles that ought to be righteously securing many pounds of flesh among the pond scum, douche bags, and ass wipes peopling the Virginia "House Committee on Militia,
Police and Public Safety."

Damn all those who presume to dictate the safety requirements of others.



Well, I think Radley’s about one-thousand percent right about this. Until Republicans stop supporting the War on Drugs Americans; stop calling for "tougher laws;" stop angling for harsher prison sentences; stop vying for mandatory minimums; stop cheering for "more cops on the streets" … they can all go fuck themselves.

I’m not interested in what any of them have to say about the Duke matter. They have no qualifications, much less a scintilla of credibility in such matters.

Update: as I was sayin’.

“Nappy-Headed Ho” Redux

Here is likely the best analysis of the whole Imus incident and its political and cultural underpinnings. But first, along the way, there’s this gem about Howard Stern:

Whenever I listen to Stern, I feel unclean, as if I have been in the
presence of cretins who live in a sewer and revel in it and mock anyone
with pretensions higher than a sewer.

Me too, though I understand Stern has his fans; and so far as I can determine, neither he nor them are hurting anyone at all; everyone else is free to ignore them as much as they want.

He goes on to talk about blacks who use racially loaded language (usually directed at whites) to get a laugh, or for whatever other reasons may suit them. Like Myrhaf, I often enjoy this sort of making fun. I understand that there are differences between races and cultures, I’m glad for it, and sometimes those differences are funny. People and their habits and quirky dispositions are funny. I often think we take ourselves far too seriously where we oughtn’t and don’t take ourselves seriously enough where we ought.

What is the difference between Tom Joyner’s racism and Imus’s? In our
egalitarian, altruist culture, one can joke about the powerful, but not
about the weak and oppressed. Some collectivism is respected, some
collectivism will get you fired from CBS. If media corporations were to
fire all buffoons who make collectivist statements, then all buffoons
would be fired. Indeed, some broadcasters who are not considered
buffoons, such as Tom Joyner, would be fired. Imus was attacked and
fired not because he was collectivist, but because he was

New Left is multiculturalist — a crude, racist vision of the world
that views people not primarily as individuals, but as members of a
racial group. Imus, a white male, attacked African-Americans, a class
of victims, and this speech is forbidden. As altruism demands, the
strong must sacrifice for the weak. White males must not make racist
statements about African-Americans.

Racism is a terrible evil, a form of collectivism as Ayn Rand wrote,
but the left only views racism by the strong as racism. Egalitarian
racism, or multiculturalism, is one of the pillars of the New Left. As
egalitarian racists, today’s liberals are the most predominant racists
in American history. They are also the most dangerous racists in
American history. Not only is egalitarian racism (multiculturalism) not
reviled, it is idealized throughout our culture and indoctrinated into
students. The New Left is transforming America from an individualist
nation into a racist one.

Be sure and read the whole thing.


The Liar’s Name is Crystal Gail Mangum

Let’s hope nobody ever forgets it. Note to the liar, Crystal Gail Mangum: people have rightly ended their own lives on far less justification.

Think about it.

And the very least the media networks could do — who so promoted and pumped this false story, this obvious lie, for all it was worth  — is fire each and every "newsperson" who piled on, and then reimburse the $3 million in legal fees incurred by the three completely innocent men and their families.



Hah. Indeed.


“Enlightenment” in the Service of the Infantile

I’ve never seen or listened to more than about three minutes of Don Imus. My impression of him is negative, which may be accurate or inaccurate according to my values, but I really don’t care enough about him, one way or the other, to find out whether I’m missing anything I’d rather not miss.

I was driving home from a grocery run and NPR had the nappy-headed hos Rutgers women’s basketball team on with their press conference and I just couldn’t help but laugh my ass off. Jesus Christ. On and on. Poor little babies. They got called names. Just look at those pathetic faces.


Reminds me of my 4-year-old nephew, Hunter, when he thinks he’s got an angle on some sympathy. Reminds me… Shit; it’s exactly like my 4-year-old nephew. Aren’t children supposed to have learned the sticks-&-stones meme before going off to college?

Look; I’m not adverse to the general enlightenment (which is exactly what it is: racism, bigotry, and what have you, is chiefly a symptom of ignorance). This is not enlightenment. This is the politics of victimhood and pond scum like Jesse Jackson, et al, are happy to chew these pawn-girls up in the service of their fraudulent shake-down looting — upon which they always get a pass because they’re black. Race-excused thugs: Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and a lot of others.

It’s a con, just like these things always are. Keep it in mind: when you’re asked to act like a 4-year-old in order to "raise consciousness," pass. The good opportunities will come along now and then.

Collective Assimilation

I’ve never once made any bones about the fact that I spent eight years as a U.S. Navy officer because it seemed like a cool and fun thing to do. It was. I never once regretted it (quite the contrary). It was a job. I signed a contract. I performed on that contract and was paid (well) for my services.

Truth be told: I have always felt as though I got the better end of the deal.

And you know what? If military service isn’t your thing, then by all means stay as far away as you can. The flag-waving patriotic bullshit is bullshit. "Serve your country?" Fuck that. Do your fuckin’ job; do it well, or keep the eff out. If working in the military isn’t something you can respect and be enthusiastic about qua JOB, then "service to society" becomes for you an insolent and miserable self-sacrifice likely motivated by guilt you haven’t a good reason in the world to harbor.

All this to preface a letter by Donald Bourdreaux to the Washington Times responding to this Op-Ed piece. Since it’s buried in an archive, I’ll post the whole thing.

Dear Editor:

Brendan Conway is charmed by Philip
Gold’s notion that every American male "should spend some time in
uniform as a normal part of life and of citizenship" ("Selective
service," Feb. 6). I’m not so charmed.

Society remains primitive insofar as
individuals are regarded as agents to butcher for – and to be butchered
for – the collective. Society progresses only as the depraved romance
of the collective gives way to respect for the individual – the
individual whose life and property are never regarded as being at the
disposal of the state.

Donald J. Boudreaux
Chairman, Department of Economics
George Mason University


(De Coster)

Big Fucking Impact Man

I believe I’ve come across the perfect little character attribute that best serves to differentiate me from the eco-freaks and other assorted lefties. Just a couple of hours ago I was in the car listening to NPR and this guy,

Sort of. I don’t really begrudge him his crazy values. Hey, if he wants to fantasize about what a great guy he is because he takes his own cloth napkin to a restaurant and a host of other meaningless (to me) and empty (to me) acts, fine. In fact, there was a portion of the radio interview where I actually had some respect for the guy. He said that for years he had bitched and moaned about what all sorts of laws we need in order to compel people to do this and that (uphold his values) and at a point he realized that he just needed to go and worry about himself, about his own "impact on the planet." He learned to kind of mind his own business and put his own bullshit to the test. Good, as far as it goes. I think it’s nuts and stupid, but the only impact of his that concerns me is his impact on me (and I noted I could turn off the radio any time it suited me).

No Impact Man. Indeed, if only it were so for the whole lot of ’em and extended as far as their commie politics. Puny. Insignificant. Of no import. Meaningless. All attributes that would apply to anyone sincerely wishing to make "no impact" with their lives. In essence, it’s the perfect expression of a life with no point whatsoever — which is, of course, the whole point. Unfortunately for the rest of us, making "no impact" is exactly the opposite of their intentions.

Man, I’m just fundamentally different. I’m actually a human being in the classic sense, which means: I want to make a big fucking impact. In fact, I’d like a planet all to myself just to see what I could do with it; …just to see how I could mold and shape it precisely to my own interests. Hell, I’d like a galaxy –failing that, at least a solar system — all to myself. Maybe I could figure out how to generate a Big Bang out of it, or something. I’m not talking nihilism here. Quite the contrary; what I’m really talking about is human control of existence for our own greater and greater wealth and benefit — all of it, without artificial limitations.

By the way? I adore landfills. Aren’t they cool? They just have the whole look and smell of human progress, wealth, plenty. Absolutely love ’em. More landfills. Big Fucking Huge Ones.

Factual Relativity

Back in 1999 when we moved out of an apartment in downtown to a fixer-upper in the ‘burbs, I took down my large marine aquarium that I’d maintained for a number of years. This was a big reef tank — 220 gallons in all — with a good 300 lbs. of live reef rock and other stuff. In terms of dimensions, we’re talking larger than a coffin. It was big. But the immediate future held lots of work for me on the new house so I took the tank and all the equipment down to Henry’s shop.

I always figured I’d set up another system and a few weeks ago a friend in our building set up a reasonably large one (150 gallons) and I pitched in with a bit of advice from my experience — though as a PhD in chemistry this sort of thing is right up his alley. So I caught the bug again. Interestingly, things have changed; it’s become easier, actually, so yesterday I went about setting up a smaller system — about 50 gallons. I’ll try to get into all that later, but for now, it’s 6 a.m. on Easter Sunday so I must post something about religion.

Suppose someone — maybe like the guy in Henry’s shop yesterday afternoon admonishing that he "ought to go to church on Sunday" — wants to set up a saltwater aquarium but wishes to disregard all the many inviolable principles having to do with the laws of nature. Rather, he believes that little microscopic fairies will take up residence in his tank and protect his biota.

Suppose further that someone like me comes along and stridently insists, without slightest equivocation, that he’s wrong and that all his stuff will die and rot. Sure; he has every right to do with what he wants with his tank and livestock, but the facts of reality aren’t up for grabs. Facts aren’t relative to anyone’s preferences or fantasies.

Granted; the guy might get all offended and bent out of shape if I go right ahead and ruin his pleasant fantasy about little fairies living in his tank, protecting his livestock. It’s such a nice fantasy. So comforting. It’s hard to imagine living in a world devoid of marine fairies bestowing their blessings upon reefs. How depressing: to confront the mean — indeed, hateful — inflexibility of water chemistry.

But he’s just one misguided soul. Nobody’s going to rush to his defense. Of course, if there were hundreds of millions world-wide — who believe in marine fairies — that might be another story. You’d have articles like this.

The problem with the neo-atheists is that they seem as dogmatic as the
dogmatists they condemn. They are especially frustrated with religious
“moderates” who don’t fit their stereotypes.

In his bracing polemic “ The End of Faith,” Harris is candid in
asserting that “religious moderates are themselves the bearers of a
terrible dogma: they imagine that the path to peace will be paved once
each one of us has learned to respect the unjustified beliefs of

Pay attention, because if this whole "neo-atheism" thing keeps on keepin’ on, you’re going to see this "argument" more and more. But it’s no more valid than the objection that I ought not be too "dogmatic" about marine water chemistry in the face of someone who’d rather believe in little marine fairies.

It’s everyone’s right and pleasure to decide which, if any, fantasies they wish to entertain and to what extent. What they don’t get to do, unchallenged, is to pass off fantasy for fact; and at root, that’s what this is all about and all it will ever be about. Today, billions of supposedly intelligent beings will file into large buildings far and wide to celebrate the fantasy that God was killed 2,000 years ago and rose from the dead. Alright; perhaps it’s a nice story — to each his own — but it’s simply a "nice story," if you go in for such things, and doesn’t necessarily mean a single thing to anyone but you.

I love it when a plan comes together

I really do love craigslist. What a value, and yet I’ve never paid them a dime — not that I wouldn’t, should they ask.

The first time they got me out of a jam was a few years back. I got an eye for a new travel trailer of a hybrid design. You may have seen them. They’re like a normal trailer, but all the sleeping compartments fold out from the side, sheltered with tenting. This affords the advantage of having your sleeping surfaces available 24/7 rather than having to break down and set up tables to sleep on, etc. At any rate, I owned a Coleman pop-up trailer and the dealer for the new one would only give me two grand in trade. I thought I might be able to get more, so I went ahead and bought the new trailer and the dealer assured me with a handshake that if I couldn’t sell my pop-up for more within a couple of weeks, he’d still take it for the original offer.

So I went home, awoke the next morning and went to work on it. I spiffied up the Coleman and called my brother to post to his pop-up camping club that it was for sale. He says: "Why don’t you put it on craigslist?" I dunno. "OK, I’ll give it a try." Within two hours I had two people out to look at it, and the next day, I got $4,500 cash. Cool.

So we’ve been doing a bit of shifting stuff around, and in that process, made our former dining room into a TV room so the front room no longer has a TV and we’ve been focussed on making it into a nice room for visiting and conversation.

But the modern black leather sofa just didn’t work, and so I spotted a new one from Z Gallery (brown leather; classic design) and purchased it on the spot a couple of weeks ago. "Three to four weeks for delivery," but they called in two. Oops. What about the old one? So I post it to Craig a couple of day ago…and nothing. This morning, I realize: that new couch is coming this afternoon, so what are you going to do?

I deleted my old ad, posted a new one, and started getting inquiries. Sorting out the ones from Nigeria who want to pay me double, so long as I reimburse the balance to their shipper and keep $100 for my added trouble…, I find a gem from a gal up in Berkeley, CA. She wants it, offers $100 under my asking price and I come back with a counter to split the difference — all ‘couched’ in a polite presumption of her acceptance.

She makes the 50 mile journey; the deal is concluded; and I help her load it onto her truck, tie it up for her proper, and I’m saved again.

It’s not an hour later and the guys arrive with the new sofa.