Thursday, May 29, 2008

Crunch!

The other day my boss asked me and Audio Girl a question.

First you should remember that the gentlemen I work for are rich men. Without getting specific let's just say they're the kind of rich that includes multiple luxury homes and shared ownership of planes. I also want to stress that I like these guys and they're generally good folk, compassionate, intelligent and generous.

On to the question!

"Do you feel like the rising costs of energy are impacting your daily life?"

It seems as though he's just tumbling to the fact that the energy crisis is requiring a change in lifestyle for a lot of people. The ways in which it's going to impact him are sort of funny to me. For instance it's making travel to his other homes prohibitively expensive. And yet, at least he's noticing the impact, right? At least he's acknowledging that things are happening that we can't ever take back. He is, obviously, up on market trends and he said that the cost of fuel isn't going to go down. Not now, not ever. I'd already suspected this to be true but having it confirmed was somehow chilling.

Due to his position in life both financially and physically (he's of retirement age) he's less worried about how this will play out for himself but he's wondering what will happen for his kids and for me and Audio Girl who are only slightly older than his kids. Frankly, I'm worried too. I keep it at bay but when some rich dude starts to worry about it I get a little ramped up. I'm worried about how I'm going to manage this summer's heat or next winter's cold. I'm worried about the prices of other things going up. I'm super selfishly worried about whether I'll feel comfortable traveling next year for my birthday, something I really want to do and something I don't do much of. I'm worried about having trouble visiting New England for family and friend events.

Doesn't really matter what the specifics are, though, does it? If I'm worried it's going to niggle at me and keep me awake and give me nightmares and all the other classics.

Are you guys worried about this? What specifically? How are you handling it? Are you taking concrete measures to save energy and money? Are you sticking your head in the sand and if so do you have any tips for how to avoid having it unceremoniously yanked out by well-meaning inquisitive colleagues?

12 comments:

  1. Steph9:56 AM

    I am scared so so much about the cost of gas. Luckily the house upstate is small and gas is only used to heat it but the price it's going we've already talked about closing it for the cold winter months b/c the cost to fill up the half filled tank is insane and only going to keep going up it seems like. I mean it always goes up in the summer so now, when it's already batshit insane, I feel like in August I will be thinking ahh remember the good old days when we just hit $4 a gallon?
    Driving I now never let the tank get really empty, I fill up where I find cheap prices either from memory and/or GasBuddy. It scares me. My Dad is already planning on not going to Florida this winter.

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  2. Anonymous10:27 AM

    We have been living in a fantasy land for quite awhile. We've done a few things here: convert to CFL lights, use minimal lighting, plan car trips and shopping, adjust the thermostat, recycle, buy products with minimal plastic packaging, reusable shopping bags......

    I believe you are in NY, so I would guess you might work for some big hedge fund tycoon or maybe you work for Trump. I dislike these hedge fund guys for manipulating the economy for everyone else. These guys are contributing to the rise in oil prices. One guy in particular, Soros, is a real slime ball for trying to use his money to buy elections away from us average folk.

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  3. Hell yes it worries me. But at the same time I hope it encourages the use of alternative fuel. This was the only way that would happen, I think.

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  4. Steph, I think I remember someone making a joke in a casual conversation months ago about the remote possibility of gas being $5 a gallon and how would we even imagine that. So not funny now.

    Anon, are you aware of which candidates Soros has been backing in the elections?

    Gypsy, I so hope that, too, though there is a bit of a "too little too late" feeling about it all now. I'm pessimistic, you know?

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  5. I am not terribly anxious about it. It has been a very long time since any significant rise in the overall cost of fuel and basics. I believe it will stabilize. We are a wasteful society and can really get by with less. So we learn to cut back on unecessary daily trips, carpool, etc. Just because I WANT to be able to drive all over, doesn't mean that I should.

    When I was a teenager in 1980 or so, for a while the cost of a gallon of gas was about $1.80. People bought little chuggie cars for fuel economy. I remember having to scrape together gas money with my friends to pool together to go to the movies.

    That $1.80, i researched, would be equivalent to around $3.80 today. So, it doesn't seem so dire to me. I lived through it, cut back, suffered a little, traveled less. But overall we were okay.

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  6. Anonymous11:48 AM

    Soros is the money bags behind MoveOn.org and other affiliated groups that support progressive(liberal, socialistic) causes. I'm not sure if he's endorsed Hillary or Omaba, but I think I saw where he's supporting Obama.

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  7. Anon, it may interest you to know that I worked for Mr. Soros during the last presidential election where he supported Gore. It's my opinion that he's supporting candidates who are declaring their intentions to help out with the environmental impact that causes rising fuel prices among other things. From the inside I can tell you that, while his money may open a few doors, his image certainly doesn't help any candidate he's backed.

    If you poke around this blog a bit you may find from the little I know of you, that my political leanings are a bit closer to his than to yours on social, environmental and public safety issues.

    Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. Seester, thanks for the comparative pricing, I wouldn't have thought of doing that.

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  9. I havenot started clipping coupons yet. But I have started working another job. 80 hours a week last week total for both jobs.
    The food cost. I have noticed that.
    Gas? I drive a Honda. And I drive as little as possible but I do have to drive to and from work... we don't have city to city public transportation. I have gone from 35.00 filling up to 60.00. I usually can make one tank last 2 weeks. But I have to really try hard.
    I have stopped going to the movies unless it Harrison Ford. I bring my own snacks in a big bag.
    I conserve as much water as possible. I recycle currently and its not easy because its not curbside.
    Natual Gas tanks for the car currently cost $1200 to install and .90 cents a gallon and they can install a line in your garage for you to fill up. I have not done too much investigation on this yet... but am going to. I smell natural gas coming kids.
    Over all... I feel the crunch. I do. And its the little stuff like my shoe habit that suffers.

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  10. nhfalcon9:39 PM

    Just last night I stumbled upon an article on CNN.com about how bad prices are in Europe. You think we have it bad here? Try $11.50 a gallon for diesel like the Brits have to deal with!

    I'm not saying our reliance upon fossil fuels isn't insane - it is - but things could be a lot worse...

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  11. Natural gas in your garage? You must have to have a special tank installed, isn't it compressed?

    ***running to look into this**** We have an old car that could be converted.

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  12. It might just be a local thing... the whole garage natural gas. We here in Oklahoma are big on Natural gas. We have wells and wells for miles and days and so much of our economy is dependant on it.
    But I will be finding out and sending details to Kizz.

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