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Old 04-25-2009, 10:32 PM   #21
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I wonder what the list would look like 100 years ago?

Indoor plumbing
Electricity, maybe.
A horse.
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Old 04-25-2009, 11:51 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by waltwill8 View Post
I wonder what the list would look like 100 years ago?

Indoor plumbing
Electricity, maybe.
A horse.
My mom (age 72) lived in rural Texas from 72 to 56 years ago. They did not have a phone, running water, indoor plumbing, or any form of transport except their legs. They got electricity and a truck about a year or two before they moved to California.

Necessities for them were shelter, food, firewood, a work horse to pull the plow, a milkcow, and a water well. They had an outhouse and a bucket full of corncobs for you know what. When they had guests, there was a Sears, Roebuck & Co catalog kept in the outhouse for them. They got a bath once a week in water shared by the whole family (too much work to heat and fill that much water from a well bucket and heated on a wood fired stove).

Grandma grew their food in the garden, milked the cow, had hens for eggs, pigs for pork and for the lard necessary for cooking, grew corn for cornbread, and lots of beans and black-eyed peas for protein. Grandpa worked as a painter and sometimes as a machinist for money for the things they could not grow (salt, wheat flour, etc). I think his last job in Texas was as a park ranger.

That's not even a hundred years ago. Mom says that she never even knew how poor they were, because that's the way all her neighbors lived as well. They all pitched in to help each other when there was a home to be built or a fire to be fought, or a well to be dug (by handd, of course).

Could we live that way today? Well, probably not, because 1) we have become so accustomed to the conveniences we have, and 2) because the skills necessary to live that lifestyle have not been passed down (no need for them anymore, so why pass them down).

Once we leave JP though, I do intend to have a garden and grow some of my own food...but just because I want to. The time to maintain a nice garden will be the luxury with which I reward myself after a long megacorp career.

R
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Old 04-26-2009, 04:41 PM   #23
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I wonder if we will make progress backwards as we all cut back - if more of the necessities will become become luxuries to be discarded over time....

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Old 04-26-2009, 05:26 PM   #24
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My mom (age 72) lived in rural Texas from 72 to 56 years ago. They did not have a phone, running water, indoor plumbing, or any form of transport except their legs. They got electricity and a truck about a year or two before they moved to California.

R
Me, age < 60 grew up in rural Canada. We did have a phone (party line, hand crank, unusable in thunderstorms, carried on wire strung along the fence line). Running water was a hand pump in the kitchen, indoor plumbing was a drain pipe from the kitchen sink to the ground outside. We did have a car (lived 5 miles from the nearest town and 2 from nearest neighbour), a horse and a couple of 2-ton farm trucks. We used the trucks to haul water from our nearest neighbour's well as we didn't have one.

Got running water and electricity in 1959. We were far from the last to get these luxuries.

Maybe that's why I don't have sat TV, cell phone, flat TV or ipod. While we could easily afford these, we just have never wanted them.
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Old 04-26-2009, 05:40 PM   #25
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car - necessity in East Nowhere, NY
landline phone- necessity, part of all-in-one security, Internet, cable, fire/medical/police alert system
clothes dryer - necessity (hate ironing), however used optionally
A/C - luxury, do not have, do not need
TV - luxury, rarely watch
computer - necessity for personal sanity in the cultural void in East Nowhere
cell phone - necessity for car travel and safety and if lose landline in a power out
microwave - necessity
high speed internet - luxury
cable/satellite TV - luxury
dishwasher - necessity for me
flatscreen TV - luxury
iPod - luxury
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Old 04-26-2009, 07:02 PM   #26
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Me, age < 60 grew up in rural Canada. We did have a phone (party line, hand crank, unusable in thunderstorms, carried on wire strung along the fence line). Running water was a hand pump in the kitchen, indoor plumbing was a drain pipe from the kitchen sink to the ground outside. We did have a car (lived 5 miles from the nearest town and 2 from nearest neighbour), a horse and a couple of 2-ton farm trucks. We used the trucks to haul water from our nearest neighbour's well as we didn't have one.

Got running water and electricity in 1959. We were far from the last to get these luxuries.

Maybe that's why I don't have sat TV, cell phone, flat TV or ipod. While we could easily afford these, we just have never wanted them.
I recall when Father's parents got indoor toilet/shower somewhere in late 50s.
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Old 04-26-2009, 10:50 PM   #27
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I recall when Father's parents got indoor toilet/shower somewhere in late 50s.
While I'm sure it was unintended, you make me feel old.
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Old 04-26-2009, 11:36 PM   #28
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If kumquat is less than 60, then Khan is the same age. Was the rural Canada development that much behind the rural US? Perhaps it was just the individual locality.

I am just glad I grew up in the suburbs of big cities and was spared the hardship of no running water and indoor plumbing. Lack of everything else would be a mere inconvenience. We did not have even B&W TV until the mid 60s. Kids now probably think high-speed Internet and wireless phones are inalienable rights written into the Constitution, or at least an amendment.
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Old 04-27-2009, 09:13 AM   #29
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This topic really gets to the core of the financial problem so many people are in today. The inability to make the difficult choices between what is really needed and what they want and or can afford.

Jim
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Old 04-27-2009, 09:17 AM   #30
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Necessity:

1)2 cars
2)Broadband Internet connection
3)Cellphone
4)Microwave
5)Dishwasher
6)Computer (home and work)
7)Washer and dryer
8)Central A/C and furnace

Luxury:

1)Cable/Satellite TV
2)LCD large screen TV
3)Ipod
4)Game system (Wii, XBox PS3)
5)Blackberry or Iphone
6)Fishing boat
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Old 04-27-2009, 09:34 AM   #31
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Virtually everything I have is a luxury.

Having grown up in a three room house ( a luxury back there) with concrete floors, a cookstove that served as a heater. Where the pee bucket would be a solid chunk of ice by morning in wintertime. Yet we had 3 foot thick down bedcover to keep warm overnight while soundly asleep. In the morning I'd drag my clothe in under the the cover to thaw them and put them on still in bed, then crawl our from under the cover.

A properly drafty outhouse. Water carried in buckets from the community well head a few hundred yards up the road, cellar which was living space for my parents during the war, later served as a sort of refrigerator at a convenient constant 50 degrees F.

As a kid I never knew any different thus did not feel deprived.

First introduced to TV at age 15, which we used to watch at the local police snitche's house, who was the only one in the neighborhood rich enough and politically allowed to buy. We did have a one tube radio which I made at about age 8, the marvel of watching that one tube light up come to light and sound coming out of the surplus army headphone is still in my mind. This was a huge improvement over the galena crystal/cat whisker (wire) with never knowing what radio station would be tuned, often in a foreing language, burt the music was truly diverse, depending on what country's station happened to get tuned in.

So running water, indoor plumbing, car, motorcycle, readuliy available fruits and veggies year around to mention a few are true luxuries. Even today.
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Old 04-27-2009, 04:56 PM   #32
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I've got all of 'em except an ipod.
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Old 04-27-2009, 06:46 PM   #33
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Virtually everything I have is a luxury.

Having grown up in a three room house ( a luxury back there) with concrete floors, a cookstove that served as a heater. Where the pee bucket would be a solid chunk of ice by morning in wintertime. Yet we had 3 foot thick down bedcover to keep warm overnight while soundly asleep. In the morning I'd drag my clothe in under the the cover to thaw them and put them on still in bed, then crawl our from under the cover.

A properly drafty outhouse. Water carried in buckets from the community well head a few hundred yards up the road, cellar which was living space for my parents during the war, later served as a sort of refrigerator at a convenient constant 50 degrees F.

As a kid I never knew any different thus did not feel deprived.

...
I think that's it: whatever you grew up with was normal.

I was sent out to dig through the snow drifts to bring firewood into the house, took food and water to chickens/cows/pigs, gathered eggs, gleaned & gathered, on cold nights (upstate NY) I slept with my sister and my brother slept with a cat or two...

Seems primitive, but we had food and shelter and were not abused.

My present existence seems deprived to some, but it's much more luxurious than my childhood.
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