I'm really interested in investing my money in some kind of portfolio starting this new year. I want to be smart about it, considering all the disasters of the tail-end of the last century. To start off, I just ordered a U.S. Gold Eagle coin for a little over 400 dollars. I may buy more gold later. That's just to start. I think precious metals - especially gold - is a good investment. It's been called the "bedrock" investment. Tell me if I'm wrong for those in the know. I was looking into cattle futures also. I know that the Mad Cow scare might have rattled the market but I believe that it's just a passing concern. I'm pretty reluctant to get into the regular stock market until I do some serious homework. I'll look into bonds and the like; anything with great compound interest. To put it simply, I'm tired of working hard for my money. I want my money to work for me for a change. Any advice from investing vets out there?