Monday, 21 July 2008


It looks like a lot of people are going to have to give up driving before long. It is already reported that fuel sales have dropped by 20% following a doubling in crude prices in the last year. On the other hand, a budget holiday company reported growth this year, despite the inclement economic weather.

What would you be prepared to give up first when the budget gets too tight? Holidays? Fuel? Luxury food? Smoking? Your house? I was reading about the Darwin family whose 'canoeing' father did a runner to avoid £250k of debt. At what point does it become more favourable to tell your children that their dad is dead than to deal with your debts? I could give up expensive food, try to drive less or fake my own death but these attempts to economise would pale into comparison next to the saving that could be made by abandoning my house and setting up within tent.

Quitting smoking would pay health dividends I am sure but would save me a meagre £50 per month. A holiday habit may cost you as little as £85 per month but a car, with servicing, insurance, fuel and maintenance can cost £400 per month easily. My house currently costs me at least £1300 per month. It should be far more effective to make a massive change and reward myself with a nice holiday and a pack of fags.

I remember as a child hearing a grown up remarking on the number of cheap houses with satellite dishes and the crazy priorities of their inhabitants. I remember being amazed by the statistics that show that the poorest elements (god forbid we actually talk about people!) of society are more likely to smoke and play the lottery, even though they have the least amount of money to waste. Could it be that in the face of the economic hard times, we find ourselves more inclined to flick on the TV and eat crisps rather than sell the TV and start peeling spuds?

I have done so for a long time but no more, I am actually going to sell the TV.

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