A Bodey in Motion

Building momentum, one step at a time

Quick Hits: Bankrupt athletes. Deputy behaving badly, part two. White House monsters.

  • Whatcha gonna do?The average NFL player earns over six and a half million dollars over his career. 78% of them go bankrupt within five years of retirement. Other professional athletes suffer similar fates, because the simple truth is that you can’t out earn stupid behavior. A million dollars isn’t as much as you might imagine, and without proper planning it can all slip away. It’s vital to learn the right way to handle money when earning just a little. When that big windfall or great opportunity comes, you’ll know how to properly scale your plan to handle it.
  • Last August I hit a story about Deputy Dominic Fornal and his incredible sense of smell. Fornal was reportedly able to discern that a car contained marijuana while it was traveling 35 mph with the windows up. (You’ll be shocked to learn that he was also wrong about the marijuana. Horribly, tragically wrong…for the car’s owner.) Well, he’s turned up again. This time he decided he needed to pour a bottle of liquor into a woman’s purse and the floorboards of her van as part of his law enforcement duties. He also called his fellow officer a ‘dumb-ass.’ That finally got him investigated by Internal Affairs which caused him to immediately resign. Good riddance, but the odds are high that another agency will soon hire him. How can you stop a bully with a badge, when they’re protected by the system they abuse?
  • If you think our current president is a blood-sucking monster, or you think the previous holder of that office was a mindless monster, then these are the toys for you. Shiver with fear as you come face to face with the Monster from the Watergate Lagoon. Stand in awe at the lumbering form of Lincolnstein. The whole set can be yours for just under $200. Order today!

March 22, 2013 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Going Broke from a Bad Break

Some recent personal events have encouraged me to post about the value of health insurance. However, that’s a topic that has become especially politicized, especially in the last few years. While I have my own opinions, like everyone else, I’m not particularly interested in elaborating on that here. There are plenty of other places to do that on the Interwebs. I’m just going to don my financial coach hat and deal with the dollars and sense facts about the topic.

Here’s the main point:

Health insurance is stupidly expensive, but emergency medical care without it is devastatingly more so.

When I write “stupidly expensive,” I mean stupid. The average healthy family is looking at paying over $1000 a month for coverage, and an individual will be lucky if they can find what they need for under $500. Just about any single other necessity on your monthly budget can be managed for less than that, but you can be warm in your house, eat your food, and drive your car. It’s easy to see why some people in the midst of a financial crisis would be willing to let insurance lapse. They can’t feel it.

Until they need serious medical care. Then they feel it big time.

You can try your hardest to avoid injuries, but accidents do happen.

A man flips, lands wrong, and slams his foot into the floor. Crack!

Oh, it’s just a broken toe. This isn’t a big deal. It hurts, and that jammed toenail looks nasty, but it’ll be fine. It’s just a toe.

Then the toenail gets infected.

Then the infection settles into the break.

Swelling. Intense pain.

Each day it’s getting worse and it’s moving into the foot.

What was “just a broken toe” becomes a trip to the Emergency Room. Two surgeries. An amputated toe. A week in the hospital.

When the bill comes in, the total is six figures. In excess of two hundred thousand dollars.

$200,000

Health insurance is stupidly expensive, but emergency medical costs can be financially devastating. Suddenly having this much debt dropped into a family’s life puts everything at risk. Every asset. Every necessity. Even the very bonds of their relationship. And unexpected medical debt is one of the top reasons people declare bankruptcy in this country.

I hate debt. I especially hate it when a medical crisis is compounded by a financial crisis. So, even though health insurance is stupidly expensive, you have to have it. And you have to take the time to make sure you have the correct coverage for you and your family. Being under-insured is no better. Take the time, shop around, and get this right.

The calm before the stormOh, and the broken toe story? Absolutely true. It happened to a good friend of my family who instructs Karate, and because of the down economy he was without insurance.

Now, I’m not alright with sitting by the sidelines and letting someone who means so much to my family suffer through that without trying to help out. So, I got together with the owner of the Karate school where he works and my family studies, and put together the Chance Ward Get Well Fund over at GoFundMe.com. (We thought about calling it the Chance Ward Lost Toe Memorial Fund or maybe Chance’s Lost Piggy – Nobody’s Home but that would have made a bit too much light of a fairly serious situation.)

Go check it out. I’ll wait.

Awesome. Right now we’re trying to work out additional ways to raise money for this effort, but our best opportunity is for a lot of people to be just a little bit generous and give just a few dollars. If 1,000 people give $30 each, we’re done. Chance has easily made a difference in that many lives over his career. Consequently, even $5 can make a huge difference. I would really appreciate it if all five of you who are reading this would step up and help us out.

Thanks.

March 11, 2013 Posted by | Marriage and Family, Work and Money | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Quick Hits of the Week

  • As a man who is now fascinated by personal finances, I’m always interested in hearing stories about herculean home cost-cutting. I thought my wife was doing a great job by keeping our grocery budget under $500 a month (including toiletries), but then I read Lydia Beiler’s savings tips that keeps her families groceries under $200 a month. Holy crap. I still think we do a great job, but obviously there’s room for improvement.
  • Joseph Sangl recently asked his readers what they would teach their children about money in 10 minutes or less. He had a huge response, and here he posts ten of his favorites. I’ll confess that one of those ten came from me. Can you guess which one?
  • Man, this was a rough post to read, but what a reminder. We’re responsible for raising and guiding our children, but they’re just on loan to us. They can be gone in a flash, and there could be nothing we can do to stop it. What will we teach them? I want my children to grow up to be adventurers on this rock hurtling through space, and not to live in fear of it. What about your kids?
  • It appears that Hostess is going to go bankrupt, and there doesn’t seem to be any stopping it. Funny how I remember it being an industry leader in my childhood. Those cheesy one page ads in the back of my comic books just got a lot more dated. So, given my post earlier this week, what caused this giant to fall? Scott Shackford offers up five four plausible answers, and one entertaining bit of lunacy. I think it was mainly number three, myself, but numbers one and two are making strong cases for themselves these days.

Is there something valuable or important or cool or funny or weird or awesome out there I missed this week? I can’t hit it all, but you should let me know about it by dropping me a line or sharing it in the comments below! I’d appreciate the heads up.

November 29, 2012 Posted by | Quick Hits and Links | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments