Cool and clear, damp, and maybe a chance of rain… so mostly just Houston. It was another great day at the BOL following the rain. A bit on the humid side, rapidly warming in the sun, but nice.
Met with the tree cutting guy. Got a bid for the needed work. Need to find time in the coming weeks to execute… not cheap, but seems reasonable for a crew of 7 and the work done.
Got a couple more small tasks knocked off the list. Things like “change 2 of the outlet covers on the dock, to keep from electrocuting someone…” Not high priority, but needed doing. Poisoned some more fire ants. Planted most of the blueberry and dewberry bushes.
When I used the hose to water in the bushes, I decided that I will have to add mechanical fasteners to the hose bibs, foam isn’t enough by itself. I really don’t understand how they are meant to be fastened, the holes that look like screw holes are too small for any real hardware. I’ll have to do some googling. Details. They’ll kill you.
Today I’ve got pickups, groceries, one drop off, and getting some dinner cooked. I’ll be frying up the fillets my fishing buddy gave me. Should make some other fried food to go with them. Hope they’re delicious…
Got the annual bill from XM radio. We have three subs, one for each vehicle. The bill was over $1000. Yeah it’s less than a dollar a day for each vehicle, and we both listen to XM by preference, but times are tight and getting tighter. Wife called to cancel or downgrade plans… and they offered 70% off for a year, if she switched packages. Ok. There was still a big savings and we still don’t have to listen to commercial radio. Win win, for now.
I mention it because of the belt tightening aspect. We’ve got some big expenditures coming, so we are looking to save what we can where we can. I work pretty hard at it in fact. We’ve been coasting on things like subscription services though. I bet a lot of people have, and I bet a lot of them will be cutting back soon if they haven’t already.
Jerry Pournelle always said storytellers would do ok in bad times, so “entertainment” will continue to get money. I’d bet that (smart people) will be looking at the value they’re getting and reduce spending. I get pretty good value out of a used book, it costs far less than $1/hour of use. Some people get good value from a streaming service, watching more than enough shows to get under $1/hour. Full price video games give outstanding value per hour, if you start with a used copy the cost is even lower.
Used DVDs are double that $1/hour, and movies and dinner out are WAY more. Concert tickets, travel, and “experiences” are about to become the province of the well off. Shopping as entertainment (“retail therapy”) is going to run up the credit card debt, or run up the return rate, but is likely to be cut back dramatically. Doordash and similar services are convenient, but at some point even the innumerate will see that $15 on top of a fast food order isn’t doable.
Personal services, and “pampering” are almost sure to be cut back. Fewer haircuts, massages, spa days. Longer between nails and then less expensive procedures when you do get out… except a certain parasite class that already overdoes these things on the tax payer’s dime. When the tax revenues drop, even social programs should be cut. Don’t know if they will, because of the rioting that would ensue, but I’d expect cuts in all the programs, even if they are just passive cuts, by not keeping up with inflation.
The result of all those spending cuts is job losses, which lead to more cuts, which lead to more jobs lost. And then suddenly you are in a Depression with high unemployment. Add the social unrest and the political upsets coming, and the malaise and hopelessness of unemployment, to the sudden appearance of obvious foreigners (as the lily pads covering the pond double seemingly overnight) and you’ve got a dangerous toxic mess.
I can’t be sure what’s coming, but for this summer, I’ll quote Ralph Wiggum from The Simpson’s – “It tastes like burning…”
Stack it up.