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Old 06-05-2007, 02:48 PM   #21
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I've occasionally seen free sex become rather costly in a variety of ways.

California state annual park pass. About a hundred bucks. Lets you into a brazillion lakes, rivers, mountain bike and paved bike trails, etc.
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Old 06-05-2007, 02:50 PM   #22
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our zoo/museum passes have a restriction so it doesn't apply to zoos on the list that are within 90 miles or so of your member zoo - they're no dummies! so i only get to use the cross membership when we travel, far! but luckily we do that at least a few times a year...
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Old 06-05-2007, 03:26 PM   #23
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Hiking in free local/county/state/federal parks.

Attending concerts in coffee houses for the price of a drink.

Reading!

Watching DVDs through Netflix
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Old 06-05-2007, 03:57 PM   #24
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Working in the garden on a nice day

Playing with my cats

Reading a good book

Knitting

Driving around the countryside
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Old 06-05-2007, 04:53 PM   #25
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The zoo thing reminded me: annual family pass for the local rescue-zoo: $50

Gabe loves going there. Not so much interested in the animals yet, although he does enjoy chasing the chickens and peacocks. But its all wire fenced in, so he ran run, climb and jump around to his hearts content...thats the big plus.
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Old 06-05-2007, 05:38 PM   #26
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Birdwatching

Hiking

[Digital] Photography is pretty low cost too, after you've paid for the computer and camera gear

Audrey
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Old 06-05-2007, 05:46 PM   #27
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Reading. I like to browse at the library or at Barnes and Noble. Also, my gym membership for the two of us is $40/month. I go 6 days/week. Not too pricey.
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Old 06-05-2007, 06:16 PM   #28
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Hanging out in my gardens and watching the birds, butterflies, and bumble bees! Bumble bees are cooool!!! And messing around with all of the plants and garden decor.

Hiking around our local state parks.

Sitting in the city park by the river, watching the boats, ducks, geese, and barges.

Bicycling around town and on the bike trails.

Fishing in the rivers.

Watching the clouds float by......and the planes on their way to/from Chicago.

Reading....in the gardens...in the parks...in the house....anywhere!

And FREE concerts in the city park, the local library, or the local Cajun restaurant!

Cost for all of the above.....FREE! (bikes, fishing poles & tackle, and most of the books were paid for YEARS ago!)
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Old 06-05-2007, 07:33 PM   #29
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people watching: i once spent an afternoon outside the port authority in new york city watching rush hour. they come through in waves. first the 3-piece suits, then the jackets, then the shirt & ties and finally the blue collars. i also like to people watch at malls when i'm stuck going there usually due to others, supermarkets (ever watch people select vegetables?) or at the beach. though at the beach i'm more cruising than actual people watching.

other cheap local things:

national park system $5/entry or $12/year for my local refuge which gets me right out into the everglades.

state parks $40/year for almost all state parks.

gym about $1/day

local swimming pools (hall of fame & high school) $2/swim

beach (swim, walk, bike) free

all day bar hopping by water taxi $11 plus drinks & gratuities (interesting how the worst (worse?)something is for you the more expensive it is.)

local museum of art (damn, may was free & i missed it)

heading out into rush hour traffic & screwing with commuters: priceless.
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Old 06-05-2007, 08:42 PM   #30
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A jazz concert at one of the city parks in our area ...
Ball games or musical performances at one of the high schools or colleges here.
Or one of the art fairs or festivals in the area. Unfortunately, free art fairs are getting difficult to find. Seems like more organizers not only want booth fees, they want $10 or more in admission, too.
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Old 06-06-2007, 01:13 AM   #31
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Oooo, hiking is popular! One of my favorites as well. Fitness and fun at the same time. $35 per year for a Northwest Forest Pass. Favorite local hiking area: Columbia River Gorge, absolutely beautiful!

I also enjoy walks at our local city park. It's free all winter, and small parking fee during summer (unless you know where the free parking is located <wink>). Paved park trail provides regular sightings of wildlife. On our last walk we saw two deer. The time before that, a turtle laying eggs besides the pond. Other past sightings have included beavers, bald eagles, herons, and osprey. Only 5 minutes from my house.

Also...
... free summer concerts at the park
... free First Thursday Art Night in the city
... free or nearly free biking events on a regular basis
... self-guided public art walking tour
... free and low-cost seminars by REI (learn new outdoors skills!)
and lots more.
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Old 06-06-2007, 05:56 AM   #32
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Hiking for me too!
Running is inexpensive and very interesting.. If you can get to some good mileage (10 miles or so) you can see some really great stuff... Last week I ran almost every day on the Seine (I think I got that right .. In Paris). I have run in China / Malaysia / Brazil / Colombia /Bordeaux / Several of the islands in Hawaii... etc .. etc... Next week I will be in Barcelona that should be fun !! and free too...
We also like to go to the library and read ... Our library also has a great DVD collection (free) and music CD's (free)...
We also bicycle we sometimes bring a picnic lunch and make a day of the ride.

Gee maybe I can retire it seems all the things I like to do are free....
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Old 06-06-2007, 08:58 AM   #33
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We have a summer music and art festival in the parks by the Ocean. We will go to our favorite artists and take a picnic basket for lunch. We also play Bocce. Hikes along the rivers and up the mountains. Walks along the many seawalls. Biking around Coal Harbor and False Creek. Having a coffee or beer and people-watching at the town center main square.
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:44 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by lazygood4nothinbum View Post
people watching: i once spent an afternoon outside the port authority in new york city watching rush hour. they come through in waves. first the 3-piece suits, then the jackets, then the shirt & ties and finally the blue collars.......

........heading out into rush hour traffic & screwing with commuters: priceless.
Yeah, the Port Authority is always a great place to people watch! I used to go out to NYC a few times a year for several years, and would go there during the rush hours, stand next to one of the big pillars (so as not to be trampled during the stampede), and people watch. Really a place to see the sights!

Another fave was the Staten Island ferry, after the evening rush hour. You could almost always find someone playing music and singing......great inexpensive entertainment for about 50 cents (to ride) and another 50 cents to the musician! Plus it was another place to see some real weirdos interesting folks!

Oh, and the "screwing with commuters"....now that I'm retired, I'm very seldom ever in any hurry to get anywhere. So when I venture out, I can actually do the posted speed limit (or less).....and those 'no-nonsense' w*rking-type folks really get steamed! Do they really like their j*bs that well, that they speed and drive like maniacs to get there quickly?! It just makes no sense to me! ;-)
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Old 06-06-2007, 02:53 PM   #35
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Uh...sex.
At $500 a night it's not what I consider low cost

Larry
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free things to do in retirement
Old 06-07-2007, 09:18 AM   #36
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free things to do in retirement

We live in a big city so here are a few of our favorite freebies:

going to free art gallery opening nights (free wine, cheese, other goodies and either good art/pottery/photography or we get a good laugh at how bad it is)

Free ferry ride

Museum of Fine Arts - free on Thursdays, perfect for retirees who have no place else to go!

library
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Old 06-07-2007, 10:07 AM   #37
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Concerts at any local college (and even high school). Our local community college has an excellent wind ensemble and jazz band. Most of the members are not students but professionals in the area (private music teachers), faculty, or former/part time pros that just want to stay active. Excellent *free* concerts plus they bring in a guest or two each year (Grammy winner level - always excellent) for a very LBYM $5 ticket price.

If your local college has a good music program, you might even attend the student performances that they give for class credit. They usually are not promoted but anyone can attend.

-ERD50
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Old 06-07-2007, 10:55 AM   #38
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ERD50, yes, I forget about the college and HS bands. My ear is not that discriminating that I can really hear a difference between union professionals, like in a symphony orchestra, vs. supposedly lesser musicians. And last Saturday, we went to a coffee house where HS kids played excellent jazz---stuff like from Miles Davis and John Coltrane (couldn't believe young kids like that "get" straight ahead jazz, but they did!).

Definitely some common elements on this thread---hiking/walking, enjoying nature and parks, taking advantage of free or low-cost cultural stuff. So---it leads me to wonder whether it's the chicken or the egg. Do these activities appeal to FIRE types because they're free/low cost? Or did these activities always appeal, this saving money and leading to FIRE?
Inquiring minds want to know!
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Old 06-07-2007, 11:18 AM   #39
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For me:

Latest is biking. I used to run a lot more but I think the constant pounding on the cement will do something to my knees eventually. So I got a high performance commuter bike - Trek - for rides around town/city. It was about $420 but it should last quite a while. Should save a lot in gas and it is a great way to avoid parking fees/meters around downtown.

If I REALLY want to see a movie in the theater which isn't often, I will go see the first showing on a weekend which is the best deal - about $4-5.

Hiking as many others have mentioned. NY has A LOT to offer in this category and I have been pleasantly surprised.

In KY, I like to be part of the Derby celebration. Thunder Over Louisville kicks off the week long celelbration and it is quite an impressive fireworks display - better than the 4th. I just need to find a place to sit and watch.

Going to the gym - the gym back home hasn't raised its rates in years. Only $199 for the year and I usually go about 5x a week so about .76 a visit.

Fishing for sure. I have slowly accumulated some tackle over the years and unlike my friends, I only need a few tried and true lures/plastics to catch fish. Cost = a fishing license $15-20 back home.

Going to state parks, being outside.

Library DVD rentals for $1.
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Old 06-07-2007, 11:27 AM   #40
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.... Do these activities appeal to FIRE types because they're free/low cost? Or did these activities always appeal, this saving money and leading to FIRE?
Inquiring minds want to know!
A liitle of both IMO. 'Not keeping up with the Jones' usually goes along with the LBYM lifestyle. And I find that many people would never attend a small, local concert, even though the talent may be top-notch, just because they never heard them on TV/radio. It's not 'cool' or impressive as saying you paid $xxx for Rolling Stones tickets.

I've always searched out the small venues for great talent, and yes, it generally costs less. Win-Win.

I'm hearing that line from Joni Mitchell now:

And he played real good
On his clarinet, for free
...

But the one man band
By the quick lunch stand
He was playing real good, for free

Nobody stopped to hear him
Though he played so sweet and high
They knew he had never
Been on their t.v.
So they passed his music by



-ERD50
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