OK, the topic doesn’t have the allure of Fifty Shades of Grey (why didn’t I write that book?), but the MarketWatch article purports to show us how we can live better in retirement. Pic is from the cover of this runaway best-seller….
Oh, pul…ease…Is this article serious?
But, with my usual flair for answering the absurd, Biddy Bytes responds to Market Watch’s:
15 Ways to Live Well in a Cheapskate Retirement:
#1—Move to smaller home—We did…in North Carolina. The problem? We kept the larger home, too. Now, we have two homes in two states that are each expensive (high taxes, etc)…You get the drift.
#2—Buy a reliable car, preferably 2nd. hand. We’ve got this covered. In fact, with hubby’s motorcycle, antique Ford Ranger truck (housed interminably in the garage lest it be harmed by weather,) Cabrio toy car we picked up “for fun,” and Lexus I bought for my real estate business years ago (then I quit), we have two older cars, a truck, the afore-mentioned motorcycle… 2 pedal bikes… 1 canoe.
#3—Move to less expensive state. We did—to North Carolina. Problem? We still live in the more expensive state 7 months of the year, so now we support two state economies and pay state income tax to one. We’re obviously not those clever “Move-to-Florida- People who avoid a state income tax.”
#4– Plan major purchases in advance…Who does that? You buy a new furnace when the old one dies…You get a new roof when yours leaks. But, as stated, we have the car purchase part covered….
#5—Buy only with cash (Cuz you get breaks for buying this way?) This is perhaps the dumbest of the “15 Ways to Live Well in a Cheapskate Retirement.” I don’t know anyone who carries pocketfuls of cash…If you do, you’re a target for felons.
#6—Get discounts with cash…Embedded in #5….Still stupid, in my estimation.
#7 Use all available discounts…Yep, we piggy-back them. I have no problem saying, when getting a hotel room: “We are AARP, AAA, AA, PTA, PTSD, and any others that might qualify us for discount. Just tell us what you offer and we’ll see if they apply…I carry a suitcase of “free this and that,” “half-off if you do this,” etc.
#8—Go for free entertainment…This one’s too damn cheap. Article advises going to parades (how often does that happen?), fairs (OK, that’s reasonable.) I draw the line at waiting for current movies to get to the libraries (that could take years!). Some of these suggestions are just “too cheap”…even for me.
#9—Maximize communication…Agree, to a degree. As the cable companies say: “Bundle, by combining services.” What do I disagree with? Article suggests getting rid of cable and watching shows on phone. What? Diminutive Downton Abbey? Is this person crazy? Or is the writer just young (with better vision)?…In either case, I didn’t get to this age to watch scrunched-up versions of my favorite shows.
#10—Stay healthy…Obvious…If you don’t, you won’t ‘enjoy’ anything.
#11—Travel by bike or walk…Stupid. Supposed “bike lanes” on roads are notoriously dangerous. We’re not Europe with wide bike causeways safely tucked away from speeding cars. If you do #11, you sabotage #10. Walking’s OK but you’re not going for long excursions…not at retirement age.
#12—Practice frugal gifting. This one’s hysterical, endorsing Scrooge-like behavior. “Make items?” (Yeah…younger folks love getting our first edition, hand-made articles.)
#13.—Cut out smoking, alcohol, and sweets. What’s left? Oh, yes, 50 Shades of Grey…This one just might be do-able, if you don’t suffer age-related minimizers like arthritis, etc.
#14.—Maintain your stuff…Self-explanatory. No. 10’s in there, too.
#15.—Make more money…Really stupid. Because to do that, you’ll have to forego time spent walking to places… knitting up gifts… maintaining your cars, grills, and other items…watching movies on your phone… clipping coupons…downsizing.
Finally, too, to make more money, you’ll have to get a job, so you’ll no longer be “retired.” Isn’t the title of this article: 15 Ways to Live Well in a Cheapskate Retirement?
***Who writes these articles? (It’s rhetorical)…And by the way, here’s the article I unabashedly mock…
***Just curious: If you’re retired, do you do these things? How’s that working for ya? (To borrow a phrase from that famous former half-term Alaskan Governor?) Better yet…Got your own suggestion that wasn’t covered (and mocked) in the article above? I promise: I’ll be nice.