Tuesday, March 28, 2023

When did Furniture Flipping become a thing?

 As a distraction, I thought I would take up Furniture Flipping as a hobby.  For those who may not be aware, Furniture Flipping is taking a used piece of furniture and fixing it up to resell, hopefully for a profit.  I did not expect to make a ton of money or even turn into a side hustle.

I actually inadvertently dabbled in FF back in Chicago when I got a couple items off that didn't work out and had to get rid of them.  I don't recall the exact timeline or precise price but going off memory:

The first was a table that I thought could work for something.  I got it for $5 and found that with some good cleaning and posting at a different virtual garage sale, I sold it for a small profit.  

Another was a free table our neighbors had on their lawn the afternoon of the annual neighborhood yard sale.  it had a sign that said, please take it away.  We tried to make it work but Moose and Squirrel were only going to destroy it.  I cleaned it up and sold it for about $50 (at least six months later).

The last piece was a dresser from my mom's house.  I tried to bring it to Salvation Army to give away but because it was in the vehicle upside down, it looked like the drawers were falling apart and they refused to take it.  Again, some clean up, and new hardware sold for around $30.

Had I known about FF in 2020 when I was laid off, I might have tried to make it a side hustle.  People give away a lot of stuff in big cities, especially around moving days.  

Alas, this piece that I found for $12 isn't going to work out.  The time investment is too high. There is just too much sanding involved.  I also let Moose and Squirrel do some work on it and they went overboard.

I might still try to work on it just for practice to take my mind off other things.  We'll see.

Thursday, March 16, 2023

2023 Bears Playoff Prediction: take it with a grain of salt

 I was asked the following on Quora so here is my answer.

ATA OQ: Will the Chicago Bears be able to make it into the playoffs next season? This answer is for the 2023 season.

The Chicago Bears have two ways to make the playoffs: Win the Division, or via WildCard.

Winning the Division:

Currently, in the NFC North, the Lions are trending up, the Vikings are trending down and the Packers are in disarray. Whether Aaron Rogers stays or leaves, they are not the juggernauts they have been for the last decade.

Therefore it is possible that the Bears could win the division but they have to win at least one game against the Lions and sweep the Vikings and Packers, along with winning more games than the other teams in their division. Because the Bears often do not control their destiny and lose tiebreaker scenarios.


In theory, this should be easier. Last year's Bears lost a majority of games by one score or less. It was only a combination of bad luck, bad execution on final drives, turnovers, and not playing to win (to get a higher draft pick) that led to their fate. They are making some good moves in Free Agency and we will have to see how they do in the draft, but I'm gonna say they are only gonna get better than last year's team.

We know who they are playing but we don't have the schedule set yet. A lot of winning in the NFL depends on when you play a team as much as how you play them. Catch a team before they find their identity and it looks like an easy win. Catch them during a winning streak and they blow you out. Or if they haven't won in 5 or more games, you are the trap game.

We have to see what moves all the teams make during and after the draft but based on what we know, here is what the Bears would have to do based on last year.

HOME (6 - 2, worse case 5 -3)

Lions - gotta win.

Packers - gotta win.

Vikings - gotta win.

Falcons - they almost beat them last year and the Falcons are with a QB committee. Should be a win, especially at home.

Panthers - they are rebuilding. if this game is early in the year, the Bears win.

Broncos - We all laughed at Russell Wilson last year but now that he has had a year and a new coach, I think Bears are upset at home.

Raiders - The Raiders had a lot of pieces last year but bad luck. I think with Jimmy G at the wheel, the Bears lose this one.

Cardinals - This team starts hot and then fades so if Bears get them later in the season at home, in the cold, count this as a win. Update from the Future:  Now that the schedule has been released, count this as a win.

AWAY (4 - 5, best case 6 - 3(5 -4, best case 6- 3)

Lions - Last year the Lions were in most games until the end. I expect very few losses at home. Bears lose a close one.

Packers - gotta win and it's possible the Bears win in Lambeau for the first time since 2015.  Update from the Future:  Now that the schedule has been released, count this as a loss, unless a playoff berth is on the line.

Vikings - Last year was a fluke. This year Bears sweep.

Chiefs - This is expected to be played in Germany. If the Bears arrive early and the Chiefs fly in late, Bears take this one.  Update from the FutureChiefs got to decide which game gets played in Germany and they absolutely did not want to lose Bear fan revenue for a home game, so this will be at Arrowhead.  The only hope for the Bears is this is Week #3 so Mahommes might still not have found his rhythm.  

Chargers - Chargers seem to get hot later in the season so it depends. I'll count this as a Bears loss.  Update from the Future:  Now that the schedule has been released, count this as a win.

Saints - I'm gonna say Bears take this in an upset only because they have lost to New Orleans over the last half-decade, including the playoffs.

Buccaneers - Baker Mayfield has something to prove and the Bucs' defense is still stout. Bucs win.

Commanders - Bears should have beat them last year. I think they take this one.

Browns - It seems if the Bears play the Browns early in the season they lose, if it is later, they win.  Update from the FutureNow that the schedule has been released, count this as a win.

So conservatively they go 9 and 8 (I cannot calculate potential tiebreakers at this point) which might get them the last wildcard. It comes down to the Browns and Cardinal games. Anything better than 9–8 likely gets them in.

If my optimism is correct, they are 12 and 5 and easily secure a wild card berth well before the season is over, and might even be able to rest players if the math shows they cannot improve their position.

Note: I do not believe they can make enough changes in 2023 to go to the Super Bowl or deep in the playoffs. Most likely they are one-and-done in the playoffs. Best case they move on to the divisional round.  

Sunday, March 12, 2023

an incesstrious industry

 This happened.

Senior recruiter reaches out to me at 12:24 pm 3/8/3023

we talk at 3:30 pm.  I explain how it's very likely one or more persons in his organization know me and doesn't like me.  he says he's going to submit my resume anyway.

this morning at  8:06 AM

Hi, I spoke with the team this AM. At this time, they are moving forward with another candidate already in the interview process. I appreciate your time yesterday. Feel free to keep in touch!


Sent the following messages at 8:38 AM

I had a feeling.   :-)   Things do change and directors come and go so if there is a changing of the guard, please keep me in mind for future opportunities.

I give the recruiter props for reaching back with the best letdown message he could come up with under the circumstances.  He is lying and knows that I know he is lying.  

I've burned many bridges in my career.  Some of it was my immaturity.  But some of it was also standing up for myself, setting boundaries and not letting people treat me like crap.  

I cannot say who this company is but I did apply with them in 2015 and also got this after a first-round interview:

It was a pleasure speaking with you to discuss your background and interest in HBR Consulting.  We appreciate your time, attentiveness and patience throughout the interview process.  While we were impressed with your qualifications, we are unable to offer you a position at this time.  We will retain your resume on file and should our needs change, we will contact you.

And then a few months later I was hired by a Big Audit and we engaged said company to work on a project.  It doesn't look like lightening will strike twice though.