Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Archive for October 2012

Test Your Financial IQ

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By Cecil Scaglione

Mature Life Features

A fun question posed not too long ago by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance is a quick test of your economics erudition.

It asked how big a check you think you would get if you chose the cash option after winning a lottery jackpot of $100 million but had to split it with another person who also had the winning lottery number.

After cutting the winnings in half and choosing a one-time cash payment, you would get a check
of about $20 million, according to the magazine.

By taking the one-time payout instead of payments over 30 years, the prize amount is whittled
down by the principle known as the ‘time value of money” using a formula comparing the worth of today’s dollar against $1 three decades from now.

This cuts your half-share ($50 million) of the lottery winnings to about $27 million. The Internal
Revenue Service claims about a quarter of that right off the top. And then there are layers of other state and federal taxes to cut through before being able to tote your final take to the bank. However, investing a $20 million windfall into tax-free investments isn’t such a terrible financial fate.

Another question dealt with this quandary: should a woman remarry after her husband of several decades has died and give up  his Social Security survivor’s benefits based on his hefty earnings history?

It depends how old you are. If you’re 60 years or older, you can remarry and collect benefits based on your  deceased spouse’s record.

Mature Life Features, Copyright February 2004

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 29, 2012 at 12:05 am

Old Habits …

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…  do not die hard. They lurk forever.




— Cecil Scaglione, Mature Life Features

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 15, 2012 at 12:05 am

Posted in A Musing

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Molly Maguire Country

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Whizzing along the pavement winding through the hills of northeastern Pennsylvania is like sailing through the treetops, which are trying mightily to change colors right now. This is hard-coal country and site of vicious battles fought by railroad barons and mine owners and workers. The scars no longer show — although  small strip-mining operations here and there recall the era — but trauma was caused by such vicious conflicts as that between Irish coal miners known as Molly Maguires and strike-breaker Pinkertons imported by the mine owners. A more pleasant operation in these parts is the Yuengling Brewery, where you can stop for a tour and sudsy sip before heading back home.


Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 8, 2012 at 6:05 am

Lewd Lightens Up

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Snickers and snorts have always greeted our mentions of Intercourse, Pennsylvania, a comfortable and well manicured community nestled in the arms of Pennsylvania-Dutch/Amish Mennonite country that we re-visited today. (We started off with a scoop of home-made raspberry ice cream.) It takes its name from the intercourse — intersection — of two main roads where neighbors would meet and greet — have intercourse — during the early years of the settlement. A magnet for craft and food lovers, its no-nonsense air is visible on the main-street sign of the Village Harness Shop that suggests flatly “No Tourist,” unless you have some horse needs. Several of its tourist-welcoming shops do take advantage of the smirking by offering such items as T-shirts proclaiming “I Love Intercourse … Pa.”

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 4, 2012 at 5:45 pm

We Made it…

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Flight was easier and less stressful than anticipated. Drive from Philadelphia airport was different — rain and dense fog doubled the drive time to our relatives’ home.

But it’s wonderfully peaceful here. The backyard  of Bev’s uncle — her late mom’s brother — is a quiet church cemetery that covers an area equal to about three city blocks on a rolling slope behind the row of houses on this block.

Slept deep and late overnight and then EZd, picked up rental car about mid-day. Then planned tomorrow’s activities, which include visit to a couple of local factories and a pig out at Yoder’s, a renowned Pennsylvania-food smorgasbord near here.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm

Posted in OnTheRoad, Travel

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We’re Packed!!!

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It’s R & R time — relatives and reminiscing — again. And it’s our favorite month for travel. October weather usually is more  amiable and amenable than the rest of the years, especially when you head where we’re going — Back East. We’re going to visit Bev’s folks in Pennsylvania for a bit and then freeload off my family in Toronto for a bit more.

We also plan to pick up some travel-story material by visiting a handful of factories in Pennsylvania, which is the factory-tour capital of the galaxy. And we might take a jaunt to Ottawa — Canada’s capital — when we’re Up North.

Not even worried about bills because house sitter will alert us when they slip over the transom.

Stay tuned


Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 1, 2012 at 12:05 am