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45 Comments

  1. I listen to a couple of Vince’s interviews a couple of podcasts during the last month and it was a great story of him being aware of his finances while shooting weddings. It’s really cool that he can select what football games he wants to shoot instead of going to do photography every week during the season. Now’s that’s what you call FI!!

  2. Nice concept.

    I’d say that this needs to be a widespread attitude shift.

    There’s no shame in doing any work. What matters is showing equal respect to the people doing that work.

    I’ve always been happy to do what’s necessary – just don’t treat me like I’m lesser for doing work that’s “below” you.

    Great post!

    • Mr. Groovy

      “There’s no shame in doing any work. What matters is showing equal respect to the people doing that work.”

      You’re very wise, Elle. When I was a foreman for a highway department, I routinely did “menial” things like cut grass, shovel asphalt, and pick up litter. And while the taxpayers never treated me and my crew badly, the sense that they looked down upon us was palpable. Thanks for stopping by, Elle. I really appreciate what you had to share. Cheers.

  3. This is the perfect example of never taking oneself too seriously or thinking any work is below you. I always ascribe to the thought that I would work in a variety of less than stellar jobs if we needed to make ends meet. When one starts to consider themselves above menial work, that can turn into a huge problem.

    • Mr. Groovy

      “When one starts to consider themselves above menial work, that can turn into a huge problem.”

      Love the way your mind works, Kate. No one should be above getting “dirty.”

  4. Mr. and Mrs. G,

    I really enjoy the endearing George and Gracie routine you guys have perfected – entertaining, underpinned with affection, and always building one another up. Even the Groovy Ranch arguments are conceded respectfully.

    It is in keeping with your class act that you’d take the Rockstar Rumble as an opportunity to highlight fellow bloggers. From this podunk little-timer, please accept a sincere thanks for the shout out.

    As for egotrage, I think you’ve made a compelling case that it is an ideal lubricant – professionally, socially and financially.

    Here’s to more clever neologisms from you in the future!

    Fondly,

    CD

    • Thanks for the kind words, CD, and for the reference to George and Gracie. What a lovely compliment! And you’re probably one of the handful of our readers who know who they are!

    • Mr. Groovy

      “Say good night, Mrs. G.”

      Haha! All I got to do is start saying that catch phrase and smoke cigars and we’re all set–the modern embodiment of the great Burns and Allen team. Thanks for your very kind words, CD. And thank you for your awesome example of egotrage. The thought of a doctor wheeling a patient to the x-ray department gives me a tremendous CMLT. Cheers.

  5. When we hit the road in the future for our big adventure, I’m thinking about starting a mobile car and RV detailing business we can run as we move campground to campground. We’re also thinking about serving as campground hosts. Between these two gigs, we could offset a lot of our living expenses!

    • Mr. Groovy

      I love it, Claudia. You got entrepreneurship in your blood. Can’t wait to meet up with you guys when we hit the road for our big adventure too. Cheers.

  6. “Egotrage”, I love it!

    I think a great example of egotrage would be delivering groceries through one of those App services available now like Instacart and Shipt. I’m a fan of doing what Crispy Doc does, adapted to lawyer work (my line of work), because sometimes all it takes is a few extra steps to really help move things along in a hectic day! I think it also gives you the advantage of learning all aspects of your job, which is always a plus and can be handy if one day you’re in a bind and you need to do it yourself. On the downside, you don’t get extra money for this, but more work.

    I’ve considered (and secretly wanted) to be a dog walker like Kevin the Financial Panther; I’ve wanted a dog for so long but I know logistically and financially it’s not the best time. I’ve been a bit scared to try out Wag because I don’t know what skills I should have to do this type of work, but I might look into it because the fun of getting to be with dogs and the potential income sounds awesome. Thanks for sharing this useful information!

    • Mr. Groovy

      So true, Lily. For the last 10 years of my professional career, I worked with data. And the most productive managers I had were those who know SQL. Why? Because some days, you can’t wait for the programmers and engineers to get data for you. And if you know SQL, you can query a database yourself and get the data you need. Love the way your mind works, Lily. Can’t wait to read your first dog-walking post. Cheers.

    • We would love a dog too, Lily. But now that Groovy Cat is gone, logistically it makes no sense to start up with pet parenting again, especially since we plan to travel. But we’re looking forward to being dog sitters, too — and I also wonder what kind of credentials are needed.

  7. I can’t tell you how much I like this post! I’ll have to check out that podcast – I haven’t heard of it before.
    Off now to vote in today’s competition. Good luck. 🙂
    I know that when it was my day in the vote it was the last day of my summer holidays and I was checking how the votes were going all the time! Hardly got a thing done…

    • Mr. Groovy

      Thank you, Frogdancer. Let me know what you think about the Countdown to FI podcast. Mrs. Groovy and I really love it. But we may be biased towards husband and wife teams. Cheers.

    • Mr. Groovy

      Haha! I feel your pain, Tom. Snow is something I definitely don’t miss from Long Island. When I was on Long Island, I worked for a highway department. So every time it snowed, I was plowing streets and shoveling driveways for the elderly. It wasn’t fun, but it was one of the few times my work had a clear–and beneficial–impact on the taxpayers.

  8. Love the term and the original post. My example of egotrage would be after graduating college I got a summer internship that I hoped would lead to a full-time gig. In my spare time I worked a second job at a sporting goods store to bring in some extra money. Pretty much all of my coworkers were still in school.

    Voted for you guys, good luck!

  9. I get the concept but I think it is nuts to trade your time for small money if you can get bigger money for it instead. You only have limited time so spending that time to make $10 per hour might not make sense if you could spend it learning the skills to earn $100 per hour. If it is mostly a hobby then ok, or a limited time investment. I mean I sacked groceries one Christmas break to earn enough money for a nice audio system, plus the grocery checkers were way cute and sophisticated 25 year olds!

    • Mr. Groovy

      Excellent point, Steveark. But I still think there’s value in getting “dirty” and knowing intimately what the “little” guys and gals go through.

  10. Dave Ramsey has a catch-phrase, “live like no-one else so that you an live like no-one else.” But it took you to give a name to this idea. Kudos.

    One of the key findings in “The Millionaire Next Door” is the notion that those people who look rich are UAWs (under-accumulators of wealth) and those who actually ARE rich don’t flaunt it. This is why the millionaire lives next door instead of in that high priced suburb on the other side of town.

    Egotrage! It’s better to be rich than it is to look rich.

    I recently reflected upon this and found a counter-example for when it’s wise to try to look rich: when you’re appearance of wealth is part of your branding strategy you can use to drive sales. E. g. the Amway double-plutonium-Andromeda-direct distributor who breezes into your friend’s living room to recruit you into his sales organization. (Not a pyramid as I’ve mentioned elsewhere.)

    Since I ain’t in sales, egotrage is my new favorite word. I’m stealing this.

  11. Really love this term. I’ve been mulling this in my own head for a while as a big benefit of all of these little side hustles I do – it gives you a sense of humbleness.

    It’s easy to fall into the “big shot lawyer” mindset – but much easier to stay grounded when I’m also out doing deliveries or other random service jobs like this. You stay much more grounded when you’re out there being a “lowly” delivery man like me.

    I deliver to a lot of students, law students too, and none of them realize that I might be someone they would want to network with. So a reminder to everyone, don’t treat the “help” badly. You never know who they might be these days.

  12. Definitely not worried about ego… for me it’s more time. I often think it would be fun to take a job solely based on the benefits.

    I actually looked at becoming a janitor in the First Class lounge for Qantas, so we could get free flights. Alas I ended up with another data engineering job.

    • Mr. Groovy

      I also wonder if an active mind needs a rest every so often. After writing code and solving problems for twenty odd years, I really enjoy doing a mindless activity like picking up litter.

      • I think you’re right on. I think that’s why folks come home and watch tv all night.

        Thinking is exhausting, just as much or more so than physical labor.

  13. Egotrage goes beyond demeaning work. It’s driving an old embarrassing car, wearing clothes from Goodwill, or cutting your own hair.

    These are great examples and as I read what others are doing, it makes me look up to them. They are honorable in our FI world!

    You’ve coined a word that will sweep the world (okay, if a broom isn’t beneath them).

    • Mr. Groovy

      Great comment, Susan. I love it. When will people realize that the surest way to riches is driving an embarrassing old car, wearing clothes from Goodwill, and cutting your own hair!

  14. This is awesome!!!

    One thing I find really funny is when me and some buddies/work colleagues go out for a drink. Most of these guys will just grab a typical Bud light or Yuengling. Over the years as some of them have advanced their careers and got more money, they began ONLY drinking “high quality IPA’s”, which are around $7- 9 instead of the typical $5 beer they would usually get. When I asked why the sudden change, I normally get something along the lines of “because I am not poor anymore.” It’s really funny to me how we as Americans seem to refuse things we have always had the second we obtain more money.

    • Mr. Groovy

      So true, Sean. I’ve seen what you described many times, especially when it comes to cars, clothes, and vacations. But oddly enough, for whatever reason, my friends and I never suffered this lifestyle inflation when it came to beer. When we were in high school, all we could afford was Schmidt’s, Schaefer, and Pabst. And to this day, we’re all perfectly happy with a cheap tap beer. A nice local IPA on occasion is nice, but it’s never our default beer. Thanks for stopping by, my friend. Great insights as always.

  15. Now that I’m semi-retired at my job and part time, I went from Director of a large office to doing things deemed much less important and “workerbee”. So I’m kind of practicing egotrage at my job now all the time. My coworkers still see me as a big-wig senior manager type, but then they see me back in a cubicle when I used to have a huge office, and working on more mundane stuff.

    To me, it has been a bit of a challenge but I’m not too bothered by it. I don’t enjoy explaining to people why I’m doing what I’m doing, so I try to avoid the conversations if possible. But it’s a great exercise in humility and egotrage, and a reminder that I’m no more important that they are, just way more financially independent 🙂

    • Mr. Groovy

      Hey, AF. I love exercises in humility. And you are so right about those exercises being more bearable when you’re financially independent. Here’s an example. When I was back in New York, I worked for a highway department. And for a while, even though I had a master’s degree, I was out in the field doing such “lowly” tasks as shoveling asphalt, cutting grass, and picking up litter. My biggest fear was being seen by a friend or acquaintance picking up litter. I would have been mortified. But now, some 11 years later, I pick up litter for a hobby and I welcome my friends and acquaintances seeing me with my picker. And it’s all because I’m now financially independent. Thanks for stopping by, my friend. Have a great weekend.