Are you changing your behavior in response to current events?

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Sam Posten, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    To answer the original Q: No. Keep calm and carry on.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keep_Calm_and_Carry_On

    http://www.openculture.com/2012/03/keep_calm_and_carry_on_the_story_of_the_iconic_world_war_ii_poster.html
     
  2. Lars Larsen

    Lars Larsen Stunt Coordinator

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    I often wonder how much economic downturn there would be, if you took the media out of the equation.
     
  3. Walter C

    Walter C Cinematographer

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    I've been using my credit card a lot more than ever, but that's mainly to earn award points. It also means I don't have to carry a lot of cash or make constant withdrawals from the ATM.

    I don't bother being in the whole "keeping up with the Joneses" when it comes to having the latest gadget like a Blackberry or I-Pad, or even a flat screen TV, when I still have 3 old TVs still working fine. It sucks that I can't access Facebook whenever I want to, but not really worth the money for that alone.

    In some ways, saving money would be a little more healthy for me, as I had to quit drinking soda, where the costs just added up big-time. One of the hardest things for me to do, with the summer months approaching, and I like relaxing and sipping on a Big Gulp.
     
  4. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    I've been on a massive "budget" spree the last year or so. I have an entire spreadsheet workbook with budget pages for every paycheck, including what bills need to be paid from which paycheck. With the economy doing what it's doing and my intent to buy a house/condo in a few months, it seemed like a good idea at the time and I think it's still a great idea. I created very aggressive money goals before 2012 started for my IRA's, HSA and savings. I know for sure I won't hit the savings goal-I had some car problems last week which are gonna cost a bit. But I have the cash for them.

    Some co-workers make fun of me because I get excited at the end of the month when I check my balances and import them into the workbook to see where my overall assets are compared to last month. May 2012 isn't gonna look too good, I think, but that's expected.

    (I have three credit cards which are paid off in full with every paycheck. One is a gas card, another is a backup to the emergency backup and hardly ever used and the third is strictly for travel-like October's HTF National Meet.)

    Out are daily Starbucks trips, random movie shopping and all that other stuff I used to do. I still get one iced coffee a week and one Slurpee a week (Friday)... So to answer the question: yes, my behavior has changed. It was time for me to grow up (and I'm tired of paying rent on something I don't own).
     
  5. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    Jason:

    All I can say about that post is "atta boy" to every single word.

    Good for you.

    Your co-workers are only making fun of you to cover their own inadequacies. They are probably wondering how they are going to ever pay the minimum payment on their credit card bills this month.
     
  6. Walter C

    Walter C Cinematographer

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    Speaking of Slurpees, 7-Eleven today, gave away free Slurpees, until 7 PM. I did not know until I stopped by one and saw a sign for it. After then, stopped by a couple more, trying the different flavors.

    I need to do that myself, when it comes to getting a Friendly's ice cream, limiting to once a week or every other week, as I love to eat the Peanut Butter Cup Sundae, but oh man, it's very pricey.
     
  7. Adam Gregorich

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    Good for you Jason.

    My wife and I are starting to crack down on the budget here too, identifying where money is going and cutting out things that aren't needed. For several years we have been charging all our expenses to a rewards CC every month and then paying it off monthly to not carry a balance.

    We are also trying to be a bit more prepared for unexpected things: building up savings in case of financial hardship, having some basic emergency supplies on hand in case of a natural disaster since we live in earthquake/volcano country. Its a real eyeopener how much things shutdown here with just a few inches of snow on the ground; God help us if there is a major earthquake. (Note: not a prepper, don't think the world will end in 2012, just taking a common sense approach as recommend by CDC). Verifying we have adequate insurance, getting a will drawn up, and things organized. In short like Jason said, growing up.

    We have over the past year bought and learned how to use firearms for protection at home. Although we are close to civilization, we are hidden off the main path and there have been too many burglaries in our area lately where people high on meth decide to pay homeowners a visit by kicking in doors. I thought it would be a tough sell at home but it really wasn't thanks to the high number of cases where local homeowners have defended themselves with them lately. She seems to feel a bit safer knowing she has access to it if she needs to protect herself or the kids.

    I think the economy has changed our parenting a bit. We are fortunate that we can give our kids pretty much whatever they need or want (its easy when they are six). They aren't spoiled, but we are cutting back on "stuff", staring to try to teach them the value of a buck, and working hard to be able to earn something. Making them get their hands dirty to help out around the house and yard, and giving them small chores. Explaining how things they take for granted around the house cost money: water, electricity, garbage service, etc and learning the importance of non material things.
     
  8. Jason_V

    Jason_V Producer

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    Yay Adam! It is a TOTAL eyeopener to see where the money goes every month/paycheck. My mother raised me to be a smart shopper, but even shopping with coupons and sales adds up very quickly for essentials. I've paid my share of stupid tax-as have we all-and I refuse to do it anymore.

    (A few inches of snow closed our office in Bellevue for two days and made the third a half staff day back in January. I'm right there with ya, Adam.)
     
  9. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    You don't even need to take the media out of the equation, you'd just need to separate media from entertainment. With them mixed together the truth is a casualty.
     
  10. Adam Gregorich

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    Only thing I worry about with a CD is will that 2% keep up with inflation? Most 5 year CDs are returing 1.75% if you are lucky.
     
  11. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Not completely. But inflation has been similarly low, around 2%.
    http://www.usinflationcalculator.com/inflation/current-inflation-rates/
    (Queue the arguments on inflation, gas prices, housing market, CPI, etc. :)

    In response to current events, I've moved to a more expensive area, sold my old house at a loss, and signed a contract on a very expensive house in the new area. Who started this silly thread anyone?

    Oh.. wait..


    Seriously, I've tried to increase my salary and professional options with a job change this year. Regarding CDs, they're so pitiful, I pulled a small chunk of my "safe" money out of a CD and put it into the the stock market. And I'm buying a house in an area with -- i hope -- good potential as a "location" to appreciate in value over the next five to ten years. And my wife has a goal of increasing her personal business a bit.

    However, I've dropped my 401k to the minimum for matching. I have to build up cash reserves for the down payment. And pray to all that might care that mortgage rates stay low until I can close!


    Contra all that, my expenses are going up. I've got cable TV for the first time in 7 years. The move. New home. Audible.com subscription ;) We avoid debt. Pay bills on time. Actively budget every year. Try to save money for retirement and mid-range expenses. But while "inflation" is low, personal cost of living keeps going up.
     
  12. Adam Gregorich

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    I'm not going to touch the "what is inflation debate". I too have put more "safe" money into the market. Even playing conservative, I should be able to long term beat the CD rate.


    One could also say that your standard of living is going up along with that cost of living (by your own choice). Quality of life has improved dramatically over the last few decades. Things that years ago would be considered luxury items are now considered common or even necessities. Of the people below the poverty line 97% have a TV, (65% more than one), most have cable, 54% have cell phones, 78% have A/C.
     
  13. Adam Gregorich

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    Dave-
    Congrats on the new job and new digs BTW!
     
  14. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Thanks. That was a source of much anxiety end of last year, but decided to try a job change and location change. It's fun being able to get to DC for a Saturday afternoon. Or coming up to Baltimore for the long weekend.
    And you're right, my standard of living has gone. In part, being 40, I've chosen to be less frugal and spend more on me and my wife (or, my wife has extracted further concessions from me ;)
    Always trying to find some balance between sensible living and enjoying what I have. I think I've swung farther toward the latter than I've ever been with the move and housing change. And If I've erred, I can course correct in the future.
     
  15. Todd H

    Todd H Go Dawgs!

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    To answer the thread title question...you bet I am now that the zombie apocalypse has started! I've started stocking up on supplies, including lots of ammo.
    http://m.pbpost.com/pbpost/pm_11247/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=t4Rqhi0F
     
  16. David9Hester

    David9Hester Extra

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    I was thinking this forum mods don't like discussions on politics or religion?
    But I guess you can say that this is not really politics but things associated with economy are normally politics involved...
     
  17. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    Politics would be speculating on the causes or political decisions, etc. that caused current events. This thread is solely devoted to how members' behavior has changed (or not changed) in response to those events.
     
  18. Adam Gregorich

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    Agreed and within the rules.
     
  19. Adam Gregorich

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    I have to say that I love reading about the guys who ONLY stockpile ammo as their "survival" plan. Good luck eating, drinking and carrying all that ammo. As to the zombie, as FARK would say....only in Florida
     
  20. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    I hunt that water. I shoot that water. I drink that water. Ain't no Zombie going to tell me otherwise!
     

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