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Old 04-03-2009, 01:45 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Well, if it's any consolation i've been out of work for six months and counting-and while i'm too poor to finish any projects I haven't starved to death or had my power cut off just yet, so i'm good...

If you've got the extra time, why not raid some salvage yards and Eco-mod your house? I just insulated all my windows with clear heat-applied film(about $3 a window) pulled an old water heater from the dump to create a woodstove (it's Galvanized, so build your first few fires in it outdoors to 'fume' it, then sand down and re-coat with Oven paint) and if the weather permits tomorrow i'm tilling half my back lawn and feeding it compost-my first garden this year!

If you rent though, forget I said anything.

If you have a nest egg and rent though, this would be good time to purchase an acre of land and build a DIY cottage, the cozier the better! Build small enough and you can power the whole thing with a few PV panels and a half-dozen Deep-cycle batteries...and if you have a wife and kids, forget I mentioned the cottage too...

As the grandson of two Great Depression kids, i've learned the following:

Eggs are cheaper than meat.
Beans and peas are cheaper than eggs.
Rice, barley, millet are cheaper than bread-even if you buy it at a Dollar Store or a Day-old shop like I do.
Farmers Markets Rock-produce is local, cheap and tasty.
Molasses is all-natural, cheap, and it Rocks as a sweetener. I'm a Southern boy though, so YMMV.
Coats, jeans, khakis and shirts of all kinds may be found for under $5 at flea markets, as can used power tools, regular tools, etc etc-flea markets Rock.
A Bicycle is the most efficient vehicle on the planet. Sadly i'm rural (and nothing else is) but the truism still holds.
Two tires, an old windowpane, a black pot and the proper angle=hot cooked meal, three seasons out of four-and can keep hot meals warm in the fourth.
Cattails are edible. The root is tasty, the seed pods make a flour and the stalks are a decent toothbrush substitute and great animal fodder.
A junked mailbox turned on its side, with a piece of rebar welded to the bottom and an old U-bend welded to the back=Ultimate Free camp stove.
Old newspapers=firestarters for the woodstove, emergency tire patches for a bike tire, and help the compost balance out properly.
Broken tobacco stick+old leather belt+one mismatched earring+knowledge of a basic mortis&tenon joint=heat-cured walking stick I can sell for $25-$30 apiece!
Never throw out a piece of broken furniture-disassemble it for spare parts-one day inspiration will strike and you will be the proud owner of a unique new piece of furniture...
DIY > $. Always. Making a thing is to own it in a way that buying it never will.
1-liter Coke bottle +old ripped T-shirt=automatic soil moisturizer.
Ripped pantyhose your GF threw in the trash=Emergency Alternator belt.
Canning food is easier than it looks. So is dehydrating. So is smoking and curing.
And finally-Grandparents are the greatest beings you will ever know. They have been tempered and forged by the fires of life.They love you with a passion that only God can equal.They will tell you true things and show you how to see clearly.They will give you all the tools you need for this life if you will only listen and remember. And whatever troubles you go through-they've been through greater, and emerged the stronger for it. And there will be days that you are selfish enough to wish them back from Eternity despite the fact that they are happy and at peace.

BTW, i've got literally hundreds of DIY projects on the Hard Drive-many beyond my current skills, all found free on the Net. The files are a bit massive, so if anybody wants copies just PM me with a Real World address and i'll stuff some CDs into some envelopes-I can still afford stamps. And cheer up guys, it's not the end of the world-if I can laugh at the $20,000 student loan hanging over my head while i'm clutching my apparently useless A+, Network+ and MSCE certificates in my hands, well...things will get better, eventually. For all of us.

I'll see you later-I just discovered a way to turn sulfated Lead-Acid batteries into highly-efficient Alkaline batteries with a 10% solution of Durkee's Pickling Alum. I'm going to head off to New Horizons and hand my so-called Placement Councilor a set of jumper cables and run a Voltage test...don't wait up.

Last edited by order99; 04-03-2009 at 01:50 AM..
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Old 04-03-2009, 01:09 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I know what you mean. Every other factory around here has closed up, and those that are still open have slowed down. I consider myself very fortunate to still have a job, especially in Michigan. Not sure what I would do if I was laid off, I had a hard enough time getting a job in Michigan even back in the booming 90s.

Winter daily driver, parked most days right now

Summer daily driver
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Old 04-03-2009, 05:06 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Wow order99, you are full of ideas. I am pretty frugal and have enough money to fall back on if I can't find a job for a while.
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:11 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Blame my Grandparents.
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Old 04-04-2009, 08:23 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I know the economy is really bad, but I must have picked the right profession. Our shop is so busy, we have been booked for weeks upon weeks with new customers, new accounts and all kinds of work. It seems the average person cannot trade in their vehicles or get loans to buy a new one and are forced to repair what they are driving. We have been seeing newer, low mileage vehicles (poorly maintained also) from people saving on dealers costs and also some expensive cars like Volvo, Lotus, BMW, Mercedes, etc.

Getting dirty all these years has been paying off in the long run.


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