As many of you know, my pal Chris Guillebeau is crazy. He’s been to 119 countries, and he just keeps on flying. He wants to see them all before he turns 35 (in April 2013).

As you can imagine, Chris has accumulated a hell of a lot of frequent flyer miles over the past few years. He says he currently has 676,583 miles in eight accounts. But not all of these come from flying. Chris has learned all sorts of ways to accumulate miles without taking to the air. Now he’s put together a new e-book called Frequent Flyer Master that describes how you can maximize your miles, too.

I haven’t read Frequent Flyer Master but I’ve read several of Chris’ other books. They’re packed with information. They’re not scams. Plus they come with money-back guarantees. If you’re interested in travel, consider buying this guide.

Meanwhile, from elsewhere on the internet, here are few of my favorite articles from the past week:

First up, Flexo from Consumerism Commentary offers a great rebuttal to my advice to do what what works for you. “Doing what works for you can be a trap,” he warns. This philosophy can:

  • Make you think you have a license to ignore criticism.
  • Make you ignore better options.
  • Make you accept mediocrity as a way of life.

I think Flexo’s points are spot-on, and I like his conclusion. (I like it so much, in fact, that I’ll incorporate the gist into my book!) “What works is just the minimum,” he says. “Do more than that. Do what works and look for something better.”

Next, The New York Times has an interactive graph that shows the jobless rate for people like you. Lowest unemployment? White women ages 25-44 with a college degree (3.6%). Highest? Black men ages 15-24 who didn’t complete high school (48.5%). And people like me? Just 3.9%.

Also from The New York Times, here’s a story about buying into a Christmas without presents. The older I get, the more I dislike Christmas gift-giving. Does that make me a Scrooge? Not according to this article. (For more on this subject, watch for April’s Anti-Stuff Holiday Gift Guide later this week.)

Finally, here’s a round-up of recent money carnivals. These are great sources for more info about personal finance:

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to finish chapter six of Your Money: The Missing Manual.

This article is about Spare Change, Travel