The first part of article reflects back to the energy crisis in the mid-70's, and how folks learned how to stretch their dollars and rely on gasoline less. And then, as we all know, things got back to 'normal' just a few years later.
Nowadays you can't go anywhere without hearing about the painful cost of gas and food prices, and how to be more 'frugal' in light of them.
I have been in search of ideas for more frugal living for a while now, out of necessity. My husband isn't working right now because of academic rigors, and my current income puts my two-person family right around 60% AMI (area median income). To put it in perspective, we meet the income qualifications for a Habitat for Humanity home.
This whole frugal living thing isn't new for me, though. It's come somewhat naturally for me. My mom has a degree in economics as well as a very sound understanding of personal finances, and she did her darnedest to teach my brother and me how to have a good outlook on money.
As a result of her training, a lot of today's most-touted suggestions are second nature to me. For example, I keep reading about how a good way to save money is to combine errands. Umm... that's not about frugality, it's about efficiency. Was my family the only one to have an errand day?
I guess I'm more surprised and frustrated than anything else. How can people be so mindless about their income and outgo? Is wastefulness (because really, that's what a big part of the issue is) so second-nature that anything otherwise must be taught? When I read about how many families are doing things like combining errands as a measure to handle the crunch, I am filled with some unidentified emotion - disgust? incredulity? surprise?
How can a nation full of otherwise-capable people be so incompetent
Maybe I'm being too harsh. Or am I?