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I isn’t perfect

I’m praying to 8lb 6oz baby jesus that I am not your primary source of financial wisdom. I should be ranking somewhere between MSN Money and People Of Walmart. Over the last year, a few of you have began to confuse me with serious PF blogs. I regret to inform you, I ain’t one of ’em.

That said, I do love me some personal finance. I probably read between 5 and 10 PF related articles and news stories a day. I follow other PF blogs. And have been known to read a PF book or two. I know more about money than the average citizen, but probably WAAAY less than you.

I’ve received a hand full of comments and emails over the last couple months indicating some of you are concerned with the direction of my blog. (As if I ever had a clear direction in the first place?) I assume this is a result of my tendency to blog about my engagement.

Every person that has recommended I “get back to my roots” has been a dude. Dudes don’t like wedding talk. I can’t really blame them for not wanting to read about it once or twice a week. Lord knows I don’t follow any wedding blogs. While I understand where they are coming from, I have no plans to redirect this ship.

This whole marriage thing is a pretty big deal. It is not only the most significant life change I’ve ever made, but also the biggest financial change. I blog about things that are directly relevant to me. That means sometimes my posts will tickle your fancy, and other times you’ll think “Oh no, not another post about apartment shopping!” They are looking for the meat and potatoes of personal finance, when I am more like the soggy left over broccoli that no one wants to eat.

So let’s clear the air. I really only have a few goals when it comes to this here bloggy. 1) Be personal 2) Hopefully make you laugh from time to time 3) Tie in the majority of my posts with some element of PF and 4) Make a little money (hey I’m being honest). I’m not trying to change the world. I’m not trying to inspire you to change your financial perspective (although that would be pretty awesome if I did). Nor am I promising to be the most cutting edge and relevant PF blog out there. If you haven’t been feeling my blog as of late, you may or may not be able to unsubscribe by clicking here ;).

In an attempt to satisfy all PDITF readers, I’d like to ask a few simple questions.

Where do you get your financial counsel? I’m talking specifics; i.e. what blogs, books, websites, or shows. Feel free to link to them below so we can all have access to the cream of the crop.

What are some of your favorite topics I write about? What are your least favorite?

If you had to kiss me or Tom Cruise, who would it be?

Only you, and baby jesus, can help make PDITF a little less miserable, so please give me your two cents.

If you have enjoyed your time here, would you consider subscribing to my blog? If you don’t want to subscribe, I’ll just assume you’re a racist (only kidding). Oh, and if you’d prefer to receive updates via email you can do so by clicking here.

p.s if you click the link where I said “you can unsubscribe by clicking here, you’ll get a special treat 🙂

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  1. 1. Frugal dad, Get Rich Slowly, Simple Dollar, and recently len Penzo. I actually thrive on comments from all these blogs.

    2. My favorites are money saving articles, but I like all your stuff. You shouldn’t feel pressure to cater to the’re not some sell out are you?

    3. Not cool. I’d be pissed if I were girl ninja…and how is this question supposed to help cater to your dude readers?

    Lastly, I like your blog a lot because you solicit advise on almost all your articles. Being older and sometimes wiser, it makes me feel like my life experiences may have a small impact to you or your readers someday (Although now I’m thinking of my uncle who always gave unsolicited advice that I ingored regularly). I also feel nostalgic reading your blog. Life was a lot simpler before house and kids and it’s fun to hear someone talk about those days.

  2. Ninja – I love hearing about your engagement and wedding, and you’re right that will have a huge impact on your financial future. Please don’t stop telling us about it!

  3. Ninja- write about whatever you want. I enjoy all elements of your blog. Your marriage/engagement/wedding stories take me back 20 years to when I was going through it all.

    I generally don’t look for super-serious financial advice from a blog. I read basically to get starting points for my own thoughts. I have picked up a ton of money saving tips, investing ideas and more. That is my starting point, and I then do more research and take it from there.

    You can’t please everyone 100 percent of the time, that is for sure. So don’t even try.

  4. 1. for sensible and simply expressed advice. for really smart analysis, but last time I opened his site it was infected. is the best forum.
    The Bogleheads guides to investing and retiring are very good.
    Beth Kobliner’s Get a Financial Life is sensible, though my copy is out of date.
    Liz Pulliam Weston’s on-line columns are very good.
    The Suze Orman Show is good for a laugh mainly at her expense, but I wouldn’t take anything much of what she says seriously.

    2. Up to you. Su casa, sus reglas.

    3. The answer should be obvious.

  5. Yo,

    I love your blog. I get sick of the 5 ways to save on grocery shopping on one blog then 7 ways to save on grocery shopping on another, then 100 ways to save on grocery shopping on another. All on a tuesday morning! You move beyond the common sense stuff. And your cartoons are legendary.

    Yes, wedding stuff can be boring- but at least you are trying to be funny. A lot of guys deal with their spouse thinking differently about money so it will be fun to hear about some of your dealings with that.

  6. personally a blog is supposed to be personal…I can’t stand the ones that arent….applicability is key

    Keep up the go work love the blog…will subscribe eventually…not sure when but eventually

  7. Ahh… haters. God love em. Blogs make people feel like they have influence over you just because they read and comment on your life/thoughts… being a third-party observer does not give you license to meddle!

    My favorite money books: It’s Not About the Money, Your Money or Your Life and Asset Allocation (by Roger Gibson)

    The rest of the magic is done in excel. Isn’t Excel amazing? Lesigh…

  8. do your thing ninja,its yoru blog and you can do with it what you want. im surprised people have actually suggested to you what you should do with your own blog. if you dont like it, go read a different one! and i think you are doing exactly what you set out to do, especially the part about making your readers laugh!
    Preferred Financial Services

  9. My financial counsel comes from Consumerist, Forbes, Kiplinger, Smart Money, MSN Money, and Get Rich Slowly blog (Not in that order).

    My favorite posts are when you write about how your financial goals intersect with your relationship with GN (i.e. weddings, moving in together, searching for apts). As a 20-something male going through similar situations, I relate and find wisdom in those posts, as does my girlfriend.
    My least favorite topic is net worth. I like seeing how you calculate net worth, but I’m always jealous of your net worth and it’s just a boring topic. Might be better as sidenote to another topic.

    I’d pick Tom Cruise. My mom always had a thing for him.

  10. I used to read A LOT of PF blogs but stopped because, quite frankly, a lot of PF blog are very redundant (like Ted pointed out) super bossy (ZOMG!!! MY WAY IS THE BEST WAY!!!) or totally irrelevant to my life. And, oh my goodness, if I have to read more article about how making my own laundry detergent is the cornerstone to financial security, I will stab my laptop.

    It’s hard to find a blog that mirrors my situation. You know, young, soon to be DINK, not rich but debt free and comfortable… Ambitious enough to dream of a retirement that doesn’t involve cardboard boxes and cat food but not trying to be a millionaire in five years.

    The ugly side of young PF bloggers is that, sooner or later, without a doubt, there is bound to be a ACCEPT ME FOR WHO I AM OR GET OUT!!! post. Look, I imagine it sucks have a bunch of strangers tell you that you’re doing it wrong and, there’s no doubt that those people are rude. But, one thing you have to realize is that when people write posts like that, it kind of makes the rest of feel a bit uncomfortable. Think of it this way:

    Say you’re throwing a party at your place. The music’s awesome, the food is awesome, for the most part, you and your guest are having fun. Then, in the corner, you hear a few handful of people just trashing you and your party “OMG, I can’t believe he’s playing Ke$ha!” “I know, and where did he get this food? The dumpster behind Costco?” “Dude, did you see his bathroom? What grown man still decorates with rubber duckies?!” Would you just kind of ignore them? Speak to them in private? Or, would you turn the music off, stand on top of the coffee table, stop the party just to announce, “EXCUSE ME! Those people over there are complaining about my party. If you don’t like it, just LEAVE!” It might make YOU feel good but what about the rest of your guest? How do you think they feel?

    Granted, your “Haters: Leave! The Rest of You: Tell Me Why You Love Me!” post is a lot less obnoxious than most but it’s still a buzz kill.

    In a perfect world, people would refrain from saying anything rude and just quietly leave your blog without hurting your feelings. But, you’ve said so yourself that you want to monetize this thing so, wouldn’t you want people to tell you why they’re leaving?

  11. 1. Regularly? Here and Get Rich Slowly. I occasionally read articles or websites elsewhere, but none that are bookmarked. I used to listen to Dave Ramsey, but haven’t done so with any regularity in several months. (I mostly listened for the “Oh man, these people are totally crazy and I want to hear a man with a Southern accent yell at them” factor)

    2. Most of it is pretty interesting, to be honest. I’m a 20 (nearly 21!) year old male, so information on how to look for an apartment and save money on grocery shopping is pretty timely. I just got back from a a friend’s wedding last month so that’s sort of on my mind, so I actually am not bothered at all by all the wedding posts. (I’m not getting married anytime soon, but it’s pretty interesting information anyway. People rarely talk about the financial aspect of weddings outside of their families, so it’s nice to see how someone else is doing it) So not all of your guy readers are actually that put off by all the wedding talk!

    3. Although a little by the kissing comment! I would flee, to fight another day.

  12. Where do you get your financial counsel?

    I pick and choose what to listen to from everywhere – public radio, blogs, tv shows I see my husband watching, etc. I read at least 27 pf blogs a week, but these are the ones I read every day:

    * – she’s a lot like you – covers a lot of different topics and makes me giggle.

    * – if you’re reading this, you know why I like it…even the commenters have a sense of humor.

    * – pure personal finance and a hint of personality once in a while. Great commenters.

    * – JD covers a lot and the comments can be interesting too.

    * – again, I seem to like personal takes on personal finance.

    * – Ninja, you’d love this guy…he’s you in two or three kids…

    * – I just found this guy and am sad that it took so long.

    What are some of your favorite topics I write about? What are your least favorite?

    If I didn’t like what you wrote, I wouldn’t be leaving comments. If someone doesn’t appreciate some of your posts, they could always just check in tomorrow, right? I probably have a ton of readers who do just that…

    If you had to kiss me or Tom Cruise, who would it be?

    You’re a dork for asking and Tom Cruise is way too strange. I’ll make out with my husband though. 😉

  13. “You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.” Keep it up, Ninja!

    I like the humor you bring to the [boring, un-sexy] subject of PF. I get most of my inspirations from the Early Retirement Extreme blog and the ‘Your Life or Your Money’ book.

    Both Tom Cruise and Ninja.

  14. I love your blog! Keep at it. It’s PF with a twist. I usually can’t stand boring PF blogs but I follow yours daily because of the humour and I love hearing about your wedding news. Your blog posts are hilarious, don’t listen to them! A pf blog shouldn’t simply be about money, it’s the personal stories that are tied with it that make it all interesting haha. Love your blog, Ninja!

  15. 1) yours,,, yahoo, msn.

    2) I like all of your stories and analysis, I reallllly could do without pictures of pooping stick figures.

    3) GRODY!

  16. Short time reader, first time commenter. I get my legit counsel from Get Rich Slowly, Dave Ramsey with a grain of salt, MSN Money, Yahoo! Finance, a couple podcasts including Money Girl. Mostly though I feel like I’m where I have all the information relevant to me right now, so I’m more interested in awesome fun blogs like yours and J. Money’s.

    As a mid-20s guy, I don’t mind the wedding stuff. It was more relevant to me when I was thinking about proposing, but that ship has sailed. Still not put off by the wedding posts though, it’s interesting stuff that will apply to my life someday. For the most part I like posts about living and finding your way in the world financially and otherwise, including GN posts and ones about your own (seemingly) ridiculous personality. Also, the ones about dealing with people not as PF nerdy as you are. I agree with another commenter that your budget/net worth posts are a bit boring, though better than most sprinkled with your ninja-y awesomeness.

    Screw Tom Cruise, I want to have your babies. Hope Girl Ninja doesn’t mind.

  17. I read at least 27 pf blogs a week (those are on my list and I follow links elsewhere), but here are the ones I try to read every day and in this order: – funny with experience – funny and learning – funny and personal – funny…like Ninja in two or three kids – funny and personal – deep and all personal finance – pure finance – finance and a hint of humor – frugal tips with personality…I pick and choose ones I could stand to do…she’s a little hardcore sometimes

    I like all your posts but I mainly read for the humor and personal stories. I’ve already done the wedding and house and budgeting thing, but I love your sense of humor and day-to-day stories.

    I wouldn’t kiss either of you, but I’ll make out with my husband. 😉

  18. Darn it…my other post wasn’t there before I reposted two hours later, I swear…sorry everybody! I never know when my post will take or not from work thanks to our wonderful Nazi-like spam catchers…

  19. I read many blogs, but my Tax crush is Kay Bell’s Don’t Mess With Taxes.

    I don’t mind the relationship talk, as I’ve been there done that. It’s interesting to see your take on it.

    I take choice number three. Erin Burnett. Not everyone is a fan, but I find myself attracted to her. She is the one person on the planet I have my wife’s explicit permission to sleep with and not be in trouble. Kind of like girl ninja saying it’s fine to sleep with Angelina Jolie if she offered. Good luck with that.

  20. Seriously? I LOVE your blog. There are a million pf blogs that all seem exactly alike and want to teach me five ways to do this or that. I love reading yours because it’s different. Keep that up. And I really like reading about the engagement and the life change stuff. It’s pretty fun to read in my opinion. 😉

  21. I love it. It’s intriguing to see all the details of the wedding and etc. Keep it up! It’s your blog, I don’t see why others feel the right to tell you to change your direction.

  22. I really like your blog. I don’t read a lot of personal finance blogs, I have one that I subscribe to, but I can’t remember the name of it and I’m too lazy to look through the hundreds of blogs I have in google reader, but I read one and then I read yours. I like yours though since it is more personal. I have to be in the right mood to read the other one, it’s boring. Informative, but boring. Yours is more fun and has bits of info thrown in, which is way better than feeling like a textbook.

    I seriously don’t know if I’m making any sense. I’m half asleep.

    Favorite topics you write about? I actually have really liked hearing about the wedding and I like when you talk about you and girl ninja managing money together. I’m going to be living (in sin) with my boyfriend soon, and hearing about how you and girl ninja do/plan to do things is great.

    Tom Cruise is crazy. But I’d kiss him AND you AND girl ninja. I’m a slut like that.

  23. Ninja, you’re right that you can’t please everybody all of the time. As a woman, I love reading your posts about the wedding, your marriage and apartment hunting, as these are all things I’ve been through in the last year so I can relate. I stopped reading blogs like Simple Dollar because they are SO centered around PF advice. My favorite PF blogs are the ones that include a lot of personal and a lot of finance. It feels like I know those bloggers better than the ones who just blog advice, and I can get more out of someone else’s failure/success story than reading a list of tips. So, please, don’t change your direction! This blog is about PERSONAL finance, and if readers don’t like it, they can go elsewhere until after the wedding. 😉

    1. I’m subscribed to this blog, Fabulously Broke in the City, Rainy Day Saver, Affecting Change in Me, Funny About Money, Little Miss Moneybags, and My Pretty Pennies, just to name a few. All of these blogs dole out financial advice while including their own personal situations. It makes them feel more human than blogs like Simple Dollar.

    2. My favorite topics you write about… Hmm… Well, I’ve enjoyed every single one of your wedding/marriage related posts. They’re very relatable, as almost everyone has lived with a significant other or been married. I also enjoy your posts on apartment hunting, budgeting and your hypothetical scenarios. They’re always pretty hilarious. Like some others said, I don’t dig net worth posts on any blogs I read. I guess I’d rather read personal stories about getting out of debt than see the actual numbers at work. I get enough of that working my own budget. 😉

    3. Sorry, Tom Cruise, I’m taken! :-p I never have thought he was that attractive though. A little too short.

    p.s. Your unsubscribe link was hilarious.

  24. I get a lot of my financial education on the internet and on the street. I was first introduced to the concepts of investing and financial intelligence through many of the books I read, and now I stick around on PF blogs to further my education on the matter. I also spent a lot of time with people I know in person, learning from people who blunder in their investments. You know, the buy hold and pray gambling approach that the typical person does. It gives me insight on what not to do. Heh heh.

    I’m particularly infatuated with precious metals. I love writing about it. It’s been one of my most favorite asset classes, even long before this particular bull market has happened. Being a dragon and all. 😛

    No need to ask; I’m already subscribed. 😛

  25. I’m actually so happy to see someone blogging about the costs of a wedding, as well as cost of living (apartment shopping) in other parts of the country. I am from West Virginia, which is considered a “poor state”. I will soon be going through a lot of the stuff you’re going through, and possibly leaving my protective bubble to live somewhere else (more expensive D:).

    P.S. Tom Cruise is insane, so I’d kiss you.

  26. 1. Dave Ramsey. I admit I am a full-on disciple, as I’ve mentioned here before. I also sometimes listen to this local radio dude named Denny Smith… but honestly, he’s pretty much a local Dave Ramsey without the Tennessee accent and I’m convinced that the radio station likes it that way because they don’t have to shell out the big bucks to have DR’s syndicated show. And that, my friends, is using DR’s plan against him. (Kinda like buying his books used. Muahahahaha!)

    2. I can’t think of any posts that I really hate. The cartoons keep me coming back fo’sho’.

    3. Tom Cruise is crazy. Besides, he’s married, but mostly he’s crazy. I’m married and you’re almost married. So how’s about I keep my lips to myself? (Or rather, share them with my own hubby.)

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