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Weekend Reading: Board Games, the Spirit of the Holidays, and Perfection

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As I found myself flipping through the high-definition television channels earlier today, I came across a special that originally aired a few years ago, Happy Days: 30th Anniversary Reunion. I never really watched Happy Days, but I am a fan of Garry Marshall, Ron Howard, and Henry Winkler. I enjoy hearing about what goes on behind the scenes in television, and Happy Days is television-turned-cultural icon.

Ron Howard has become an incredibly successful and talented producer and director, and I was interested to hear about his influences. Keep looking for a post, some time before Consumerism Commentary jumps the shark, about the advice Ron Howard received from Garry Marshall, how it can be applied to personal finance, and how I plan to apply it to my life.

Although I’m a little late in posting this for the weekend, these are some recent articles worth reading.

Personal Finance Lessons From Board Games. On the topic of pulling financial advice from unexpected places, My Life ROI uses Monopoly, Careers, and The Game of Life to extract money-related lessons. I’ve never heard of the game Careers. I’m wondering what financial lessons could be gained by looking deeply into Chutes and Ladders, Sorry, and Clue. Perhaps this should be a focus of a future article here at Consumerism Commentary.

5 Ways to Teach Kids True Spirit of the Holidays. As I mentioned while I played the role of Santa Claus for last Monday’s Personal Finance Hour, commercialism and secularism has always been a part of the holiday season, as has the tension between secularism and religion. Even when Christmas was established, at a time when birthday celebrations were considered sins, it had more in common with non-Christian festivals of winter than a holy day. Nevertheless, it is a good goal to steer those over which we have authority, like children, away from commercial influence.

The Perfect is the Enemy of the Good. Depending on the situation, I often fall victim to this concept. A desire to be perfect, to tackle a task in the most efficient or result-oriented manner without costly mistakes, can be so strong that it can stop someone from even starting while still in doubt. For example, you might want to start a business but given all the paperwork and opportunity for making mistakes, you delay the process indefinitely. Well, although perfection can be powerful enough to stop someone from taking action, I like to look at perfection as an ideal, knowing that it can never be attainable but that there is value in striving for it anyway.

The Consumerism Commentary Podcast is branching out. Tom Dziubek and I are producing a podcast series for TurboTax. The first episode of The TaxCast from TurboTax and Consumerism Commentary is now available on TurboTax.com. In this short show (only eight minutes) Tom and I speak with Rafael Tulino from the IRS about e-filing.

Don’t miss these articles:

P.S. The Carnival of Personal Finance is looking for bloggers who would like to host the weekly event in January, February, and March 2010. If you are interested, fill out the short hosting request.

Published or updated December 20, 2009. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Patrick

I often struggle with perfectionsism as well. Many time I would be better off by calling something good enough and working on something else.

Just volunteered to host to CoPF. It’s been awhile since I’ve done it. :)

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,475 (Platinum)

Someone introduced me to the concept of GEMO for business decisions the other day… “Good Enough, Move On.”

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avatar MLR

Thanks for the link.

I look forward to your post. I’d love to see people do this for all sorts of childhood games/toys/etc!

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