Friday, November 28, 2008

Holiday Friday Night

My wife bought a bag of squirrel food and put some out yesterday. I think these two monster fat squirrels that came to it stayed there all day and were back at the bin again today. They ate all of what she put out there (about 2 cups). Will a squirrel eat until it pops? Just wondering.

Black Friday
Would you like my "on the street" report for "Black Friday"? Ok. I did not leave the house today at all. Aside from the shopper that was trampled at Walmart, the news reports I saw seemed pretty good. We will have to wait for the hard numbers to know for sure. Never fear, the US consumer cannot be stopped!

My Silver Buying Saga
I hold a bunch of gold mining shares, and I was thinking of putting some money into physical silver. My mom gave me a nice 10oz Johnson and Matthney silver bar about 6 years ago for Christmas (My mom and her long term boyfriend spent a long time in the Sacramento area; He is a gold panner enthusiast and loves all the metals!)and I just love the feel of the thing. I wanted to get maybe 60-70 1oz bars. So it begins.

Trying to get around having to have the silver bars shipped, I called 4 shops in the area that sell silver/gold coins and bullion. Here are the 4 responses I got from them:
1-Have not had any coins or bars for 8 months
2-Could make some calls and get back to me
3-Maybe, possibly could have a few in a month or so if I was interested
4-No longer tries to get any; cannot help

Ok, well in truth these shops were pretty small outfits, so I said to myself "Self, I guess we will look online". As I listen to myself as much as possible, I started my search.

What I found was pretty disappointing. Most sites had big banners saying "NOT AVAILABLE". When the silver bullion was available, we are talking crazy premiums! One site I saw had a 10oz JM bar (the one I have) going for $160. Silver is at $10 and ounce, so that is $100 for the metal and another 60% markup from there! Wowza.

On a tip from a comment left at Calculated Risk (I had asked for help) I was pointed towards a very nice site, Northwest Territorial Mint. It seems that they do indeed have silver available, but the disclaimer says at least 30 days until the order can be filled. The pricing was a bit less onerous (10oz bar for $140) and they offer Pan American Silver minted items, which I used to own a bunch of PAAS stock.

I wrote to the site support and asked about the 30-60 delivery delay. If I can be assured that I will get my order I think I will buy 65 1oz bars. Anyone out there know a better way to go? Leave a comment if you have any input.

Here is their site:

Economic Wrap Up
So November reaches a close and only 1 more month left in a wildly exciting 2008. What is going to happen is anyone's guess, but I am sure it will be a wild ride.

My overall take on things as of now is this:
There seems to be a huge sigh of relief and a bunch of cautious pats on the back going on. CNBC was all happy about todays session, capping 5 up days in a row, and visibly were all giddy about the future. The markets have moved way up over the last week and all seems quiet.

I have written a ton about how you cannot have a bottom when half of market players are looking for a move up. I actually saw guys on the TV today giving estimates for UP percentages the markets will return next year. UP! In the face of a recession, higher unemployment, and more credit issues too many are already setting high goals.

Confidence is too high, and risk perception is again going awry (that rhymes!). The FED/Treasury guaranteeing basically everything is seen as the green light. It very well may be. I just think pretty soon that guarantee is not going to mean a whole hell of a lot. The 10 Trillion mark is going to get hit soon as far as bailouts and guarantees. At some point this has to matter. If it does not I fear the US government may see their own green light to really get going on spending.

Friday Night Entertainment
I was a little pressed for material tonight, but then I remembered it is still a Friday, so I can add a bunch of fun stuff to fill out the post!

Funny Pic
Speaking of squirrels and the evils of financial leverage, I give you:
funny pictures of cats with captions
more animals

Film Clips
I have been watching movies over the holiday so I have a buch of scenes on my mind.

A great film is "Patton" starring George C Scott. The intorduction speech scene is an all time classic:

One of the more chilling scenes ever is when the super computer Hal9000 denies David Bowman entry back into the Discovery in the film "2001: A Space Odyssey". What would you do stuck outside a space ship billions of miles away from earth?:

Music, Sweet Music
While one can debate the merits of wearing "Sunglasses at Night", certainly the terrible video buy catchy song is worth a listen:

One of the all time greats is Pat Benatar. One of may favorites is "Shadows of the Night":

Heard this one on the radio and remembered how much I like this song. try out Roy Orbison with "I Drove All Night":

Now for some creepy piano work. Take a listen to "Tubular Bells" for the piano and guess the film it is featured in. NO CHEATING!:

Have a good night.


Anonymous said...



My brother actually went in person to Seattle on a trip to NTM to purchase what your seeking and they didn't have anything a few months ago. (That was the beginning of the year!) Not one thing to show him and he wasn't treated that well either. I am talking ZERO in store/storeroom which is connected to the mint. (And yes the Pan American Bars are slick!)



Moving on...

Here is a place I would really recommend you talk to.

Ask to speak with a Mr. John Fravel and only him. Tell him the man with the silver briefcase sent you. He will understand. You will pay over spot but you will get what you pay for vs the other guy. Last I checked he had 100oz Engelhard bars in stock.

So glad to see your out and about trying to take physical form and are finding out exactly what happening. Scarcity....


Hope you manage to get yours before it's too late!


PS: Turkey day is Saturday for me.

Anonymous said...

Tubular Bells, by Micheal Oldfield. Movie: The Exorcist.


Anonymous said...


Getting short on the equity market, my guess is Tuesday we top, roll, bounce back up lower high into mid December and then down like a ton of crap. Could I be wrong? Hell yes!

Not buying any more silver or gold for that matter here, but I'm not selling any either.


watchtower said...

I'm with Kevin again, I'm not buying anymore PM's and I'm not selling what I do have either.
On the other hand I am on the lookout for a good used woodstove for my garage (could always be hauled up to the house and put to use in a worst case scenario) and a new rototiller.

Anonymous said...


You and I seem to think a lot alike. If the SHTF I'll be moving out to the farm. My SIL just put a large wood stove in his basement and the smaller one he had is heading out to the house I have at the farm. I ain't ever raised no chickens but you do what you have too if it gets nasty. Being prepared and wrong is better then being screwed especially if you see the smoke waffling threw the trees.


getyourselfconnected said...

Correct on the piano piece featured in "The Exorcist". That music creeps me out everytime I hear it. Good stuff.

Thanks for the tips on the physical silver G. I will look into it a bit more.

watchtower said...

@ Kevin

Where I live we had a bad ice storm last year and were out of power for a couple of days and let me tell you I do not like trying to sleep when the temperature falls down into the 30's on the inside of the house.
I just thought I was tough until that happened, the wood stove is at the top of my list just in case TSHF.

watchtower said...

Here is a really cool chart I just ran across, it is comparing the current bailout vs all the big spending we have done in the past i.e. Marshall Plan, The New Deal, Vietnam war, NASA, etc. in adjusted for inflation dollars.
Just looking at this chart I would say that we are in deep $***.

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