The truth is practically most of us have been forced to face frugality. With fewer jobs, less income, homelessness and food insecurity on the rise, most of us have no choice but to be frugal now. So, how can anyone pat themselves on their back and claim they are the King and Queen of frugality? Your old, tried and true Tightwad Gazette tactics aren’t going to work anymore. How can anyone make their own pizzas when they don’t have their own kitchens anymore?
Evictions and foreclosures started today. There’s no more government help anymore. Maybe not for months till the election is over. How is that going to help anyone newly living In tent city? NYC just announced almost 90% of their businesses are going to close. How is touting watering down your milk or using Dawn liquid cleaner for your countertops going to sustain anyone facing this new hardship?
It’s a whole new ballgame out there. We’re going to need new cost saving ideas and figure out how we are going to keep a roof over our head and food on the table. Got any new ideas? Didn’t think so.
First off, you have to move out of the cities and find affordable housing in outlying areas or suburbia. Thanks to the internet you can live and work anywhere. Second you have to find work available in our new society. Waiting tables or flipping hamburgers is going to be done by robots very soon. Kiosks will take the place of humans. You’re also going to have to settle with part time work or gig work. Uber, Lyft or AirBnB is a thing of the past. You also need to start searching out food banks and pantries (and hurry up doing so and stock up) They’re finding it difficult to stay solvent also.
There isn’t much new information yet written about our brave new world yet. I only found one ebook on Amazon written by a newly unemployed fellow who seems to have successfully worked his way around the new Covid realities. It isn’t pretty but he is surviving. And that’s the new keyword: survive.
His name is Peter LeGrove and he just wrote a book entitled: How To Live Cheap In An Uncheap World. (Click here to buy his book on Amazon) Yes, everything is expensive now, so how do you survive it without a suitable income coming in? LeGrove moved his family out of the city and freelanced. He discovered how to own and maintain a car in these brutal times, how to find work, how to master the new technology and how to sell whatever stuff you owned in the before life to help you survive this Brave New World. Amy Dacyczyn can’t help you anymore. She may have been the Queen of Tightwads back in the 1990s but her tactics ain’t gonna work anymore.
And to those who tout they’re frugalistas, your days are over. Me included. 30 to 40 million people who are claiming Unemployment Insurance will have that income end right before December 26th. 6.1 million people are going to lose their homes and apartments starting today. Food prices are soaring and free pantries are running out of supply. Millions of Americans have been displaced and lost their past livelihoods. Homelessness is on the rise. Food insecurity is a common reality for far too many people. Eventually the government will run out of money and everything we have known and loved should collapse.
As more and more people find their path through this new reality, hopefully they’ll be writing books and newsletters and will share their success stories with us. I have absolutely no advice to give out to anyone. I learned the hard way through the Stock Market Crash of 1987, the 1990s recession, the Dot Com disaster of 2001 that we get more hard times than good earning years. When the housing market collapsed in 2008, it dragged along The Great Recession. I already knew that owning a home without a mortgage was our “Get Out Of Hell” card. Ditto for no debt. My husband was out of work for two and a half years. If we didn’t have a substantial savings account, we would have lost everything just like everybody else. But we didn’t. We learned how to survive.
The same holds true for today. Neither my husband nor I are suffering financially during this pandemic. Hard lessons learned years ago taught how to have a roof over our heads, food on the table and keep money in FDIC bank accounts. People laughed and nudged us on to ‘live a little’. We held firm to our beliefs. Now? Well, we’re not living a little. We’re living a lot. Others aren’t.
We all are facing the most brutal, hardest living conditions of all our lifetimes right now. A simple trek into a crowded situation could kill us and our families. Can you imagine? I can’t. No frugal tip is going to save us. Times are hard. Probably the hardest we have ever seen. Having a vegetable and fruit garden, raising chickens, stockpiling and being self sufficient wasn’t on anyone’s radar. Now? It’s most peoples’ central focus.
I have nothing much to say anymore. I used to think I was a financial expert. A know-it-all.
I don’t think that anymore.
We are in unprecedented times and I will be writing unprecedented blog posts.