Saturday, December 10, 2011

Get back to work! (you goldbrick!)

This week i decided I had better get back to work. My pto was running low and I am feeling pretty good. I started out with a couple of 10 to 5 days and then jumped back into the old 8 to 5 routine. I survived intact and wasn't too tired so I am going to start doing some of the horse feeding and watering chores this weekend. I did give myself a precautionary warning yesterday morning however. I was lying on the sofa (a favorite position) when I reached down to pick up Orange Ruffy, an 8 pound cat. As I put him on my chest for a little pet and purr time, I felt a muscle tighten up in my neck. It was fine by the end of the day, but I take it as a sign not to be too anxious to get back to my normal routine. It's amazing how much physical ability you can lose in six weeks. Let that be a lesson to me!

Yesterday morning it was -4F (-20C) when I went to work. At least it wasn't windy. It hasn't been very cold up to this point and doesn't look like it will be until closer to Christmas. I didn't get to see the eclipse of the moon this morning because it clouded up overnight. Drat!

With the holidays coming I started to look into selling my hordes of gold. One class ring from 1969 (Brandywine Senior High School - go Bulldogs!) and a couple of miscellaneous pieces of yellow metal that I don't know what they are. For a fun research project (I am very curiosity driven. Have I mentioned that?) I thought I would figure out how much my pile is worth and see what all those hundreds, maybe thousands, of gold buyers would give me for it. Most of this week the market price has stayed up in the $1700 per troy ounce (31.1grams) region which makes me want to get out my gold pan when the creeks thaw out. HOWEVER, the gold boys, cash for your precious heirloom company, and their ilk (guaranteed best prices paid! yes-sirree!) tend to pay about HALF of the actual value of the metal. The brick and mortar stores say "don't mail to the other guys", and the mail guys say "don't go to those rip-off brick and mortar guys". They try and confuse people with words like "pennyweight" (1/20 of a Troy ounce or 24 grains, Troy ounce= 480 grains) and Troy weight. However, a gram is a gram is a gram, always, and it takes 31.1 grams for a Troy ounce. The purity of gold is measured in karats, 24k being pure gold, 18k being 75%, and 12k being 50% for example. The other purities are proportional So, a little arithmetic can go a long way when the rip-off artists gold buyers make you an offer. Most of the jewelers will give you a little more and if there are any stones involved they will give you something for them or you can have them back. The gold refiners will usually pay considerably more, as well, but they rarely deal with non-commercial interests like you and me. Also, most web information is self-promoting, not reliable, and it is very difficult to find a disinterested third party review. There you have it.

Time to go out and give the horses a snack and fill their tanks. Here is Draugen and his grand niece Beezer (I'll tell you the story of her name some other time) 
Here is a shot of a couple of Icelandic horses I met while in Iceland (a likely place to meet Icelandic horses).


  1. Thank you for the breakdown on gold purchasing. The only things I have are of such sentimental value, I've never been tempted, but who knows what 2013 will bring! If America dumps what's left of its sanity and elects a Republican, we may be looking at European levels of austerity, in which case I'll be searching out the best deal on gold I can get.

    Lovely horses.

  2. You have horses??
    You must have some Texan blood SOMEWHERE in your lineage!

  3. Nance, politics in general is getting appalling. As a hedge against the future, I think we'll have a bigger garden this spring.

    Kelli, I suppose it's possible that my viking ancestors could have been looking for a nicer climate and traveled to the Texas coast. They may have been intimidated by how BIG everything is in Texas and went back home;)