Sunday, August 10, 2008

How the other half lives

(Via Freakonomics)

And, depending on how things go economically, how any of us might find ourselves living some day soon. There's a lot to think about in this article, and I expect the series will be worth your time to keep up with.

Michael, Meet Curtis

Curtis is a squatter in Chicago. He moves from place to place, exchanging work for a place to sleep. He doesn't need much to live:

At the end of the day, Michael showed us his creative budget to survive on the Chicago streets for one weekend. “Buy $20 of Yahoo stock. Hope for the best.”

Curtis laughed and we tallied up his expenses for the same time period:

$4.75 chicken wings and canned beans

$2.00 shirt, pair of socks

$2.00 coffee

$1.00 four loose cigarettes

$2.50 polish sandwich and fries

$2.00 rat infestation powder

$2.00 lock

$2.75 medicine, band aids

TOTAL: $19.00 (one dollar in savings)

OK, survivalists and doomers and preparedness folks all--could you do what Curtis is doing?

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