Can you really afford Netflix?

Can you really afford Netflix?

Netflix - Title ImageI watch a fair amount of TV… but I used to watch a crazy amount.

Not too long ago I followed more than a dozen shows, keeping up with characters and story lines that seemed super important to me… until it just got really hard. Finding sites to stream them wasn’t as easy, and the quality was getting worse. So my TV watching just kind of tapered off.

Until … there was Netflix.

Netflix is amazing.

Up here in Canada, we have significantly less content than you do in the States, but as much as we like to complain about it… it’s still pretty great. And for the low price of $9.99, it’s unlimited access to a crazy amount of media.

What could be a more frugal choice for your entertainment budget??? Especially when going to a movie now costs a bajillion dollars (that’s Canada dollars… it’s only about 16 US dollars… ) (more…)



I don’t think I really understood that people could make a living in the arts until I was well into my grad studies. I don’t know why it took so long… I honestly just didn’t really think about it….

Money isn’t something that gets discussed in artist training. In another faculty you might have some idea what the average starting salary will be, or an idea of what you could make when you’re a partner at the law firm… but as an artist… not so much…

But we did talk about ‘making it’.

The ‘it’ may have been poorly defined, but we knew that what ever ‘it’ was ‘it’ was really hard to make.

In fact it was repeated over and over to us…. “In this entire class only one of you might ‘make it’.”


That meant nose to the grind stone. Learn those five arias. Perfect that pirouette. Learn exactly what the oxford comma is…

We all wanted to make it. We wanted to be that one. A real artist.

And even though I can’t remember anyone specifically saying it… it became clear what they meant by making it… a lie that does all of us artists a lot of damage…


The Naked Truth: Figuring out your Net Worth

The Naked Truth: Figuring out your Net Worth

Net Worth TitleThe number one question people ask me about getting their finances in order is: Where do I start??

It can seem daunting trying to figure out a part of your life you may have been ignoring for years… but remember,  making a financial plan isn’t rocket science, or plant science, or any kind of science really. It’s about making a map, that helps you get where you want to go.

Figuring out what you want (where you want to go) is super important, but you can’t plan a journey without knowing where you’re starting from.

In other words… you need a point A in order to make a map to your point B.

So where are you?

In finance land, a big part of that question is answered by figuring out your net worth. In this case I’m not talking about the floofy holistic net worth that I talk about on the 1st of every month. I’m talking brass tacks. Money styles. Net worth classic.

Figuring out your net worth is pretty easy (although often depressing). It’s simply: (more…)

Unleashing a fiercer discontent: February “Net Worth”

Unleashing a fiercer discontent: February “Net Worth”

Fierce discontent

I’m not a negative dude, but honestly February was a tough slog. And it wasn’t because anything dramatic happened. It’s just the time when all my motivation seemed to run out, and the big goals and dreams of January started to feel heavy and impossible.

It’s a pretty classic February feeling, and I’m sure I’m not alone.

But it does really bother me.

I know it’s just a winter thing. Everyone feels this way.

But I’m sick of justifications, and I’m sick of excuses.

If there’s one thing that I know for sure it’s that waiting for habits and patterns to change doesn’t do anything. (more…)

Digging out the root of your money habits: Why it’s probably your parents fault…

Digging out the root of your money habits: Why it’s probably your parents fault…

Money Habits

You know how by the end of January all the gyms start to empty of all those fresh-faced eager members who joined in the first few weeks of the year.

It’s not that those wonderful well meaning folks are the worst…. it’s just that change is freaking hard. After all the excitement of the new year fades (usually around January 10th), the following few weeks of the month take all of your stick-to-it discipline to plow through. And just when you’re celebrating the conquering of January, February hits like a hammer.

Changing habits and patterns is hard.

And not because it’s hard to get to the gym, or make time to make better meals, or come up with a budget.

In fact, I don’t think it has much to do with the actual ‘thing’ you’re trying to change at all.

It’s mostly all in your head.

That doesn’t mean that it’s any less real (for confirmation of this please refer to the great wizard Dumbledore’s last words to the significantly less great Harry Potter).

We’re all walking around with tons of set patterns that we picked up years ago and that, since then, we haven’t ever really given a second thought to.

Understanding those patterns is a really important part of trying to change them.

So, what money habits are floating around in your head? (more…)

The Cost of Cheap (thoughts from the bus)

The Cost of Cheap (thoughts from the bus)

Cost of Cheap

I spent the morning walking through lower Manhattan, good coffee and a particularly delicious doughnut in hand.

I’m here in New York visiting my girlfriend who’s doing a gig. I mentioned recently that I am a proud member of the long-distance-relationship club (at least for most of the year) so I often find myself visiting whichever city she happens to be working in.

Whenever I come to New York (either on business or as arm candy) I fly on the wings of my Megabus chariot. Yes…. If you haven’t experienced it, it is as cool as it sounds. And no, just because I used the words ‘fly’ and ‘wings’ it doesn’t make it any less of a bus.

I’m not sure if all of you have experienced the wonders of bus travel.

They boast of their comfort, the convenience, the power outlets and wifi, and from the outside it seems… like it’ll be pretty okay.

But 12 hours is a long time to spend sitting in a seat. The power outlets and wifi are spotty at best. And as nice as everyone I’ve encountered on buses are, they’re just… really close to you… all the time.

I now have a visceral reaction to the bus… I get just a little queasy for our time together, and don’t feel quite right until I’m 10 blocks away.

But I keep coming back because simply… it’s the cheapest way to get to New York. (more…)