THE GREAT DEPRESSION of the 2000s thread

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THE GREAT DEPRESSION of the 2000s thread

Postby Futura Girl » Thu Sep 03, 2009 3:22 am

Okay - so we are officially in a Depression folks. And I have been thinking about starting a thread to discuss what we are all experiencing, but in a positive light. It does affect our homes, our lives and our desires to live in a Mid Century Modern way... I don't know a single person that is not being affected in some small way by what's going on. So we need a place to chat in a positive way.

RULE #1 Please keep ALL politics out of it. I know that's difficult, because politics are soooo wrapped up in both this depression and all other former depressions. But - I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT!!! I NEED a place where I don't have to think about the Federal Reserve and how Woodrow Wilson sold out our country and the constitution... bla bla bla... Look it up on Wikipedia and discuss it all in some Political forum someplace else... (you are free to post links to other forums if you like - just keep the discussion here specifially a-political)

What I'd love to see is this!

Let's talk about the last Great Depression and all the wierd, good, nostalgic, strange things that came out of that. Share fond memories that you have or fond memories of what your parents or grandparents have told you... Write about how the Post War period benefitted from the imposed creative and budgetary restrictions. Like how cool it was that Shindler made kitchen cabinets out of plywood!!!

And let's speculate on the wierd, good, future nostalgic, strange things that are coming about now due to our new 'depressed' economy. Or that you speculate might happen in terms of design and architecture and lifestyle... For instance, think of how crafty you have to get to save a buck these days. I wonder if Popular Mechanics will have a boost in subscriptions? I know that we have been thinking about how to grow more plants that will produce food for us... And we have also talked about living in a van like gypsies (yes. seriously. a hybrid biodiesel one of course - outfitted in the most Modern way... but still. the depression gets us thinking outside the box!) So what do you speculate the up and coming industries might be that will be born out of these times?

And.... discuss:

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Postby Perks » Thu Sep 03, 2009 7:02 am

I've always been a big-time fan of WPA arts and architecture. I'd love to see something as cool as the post office mural project come out of this downturn.

Personally, I feel that it's a shame there has been so little public emphasis on the arts...and while I agree there are more immediate fiscal needs (being state university employees, both my wife and I have had to take hefty pay cuts), it would be great if something similar to the WPA projects could rise from the ashes of our battered economy to inspire future generations.

More to come once I've had further time to mull...
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So far

Postby modfan » Thu Sep 03, 2009 8:17 am

I've been lucky, got a fixed rate mortgage still employed. I've already gone thru the unemployment and food stamp thingy back in the 70's and 80's (still have the food stamp documentation for it tho-get this it's PRE EBT card).

As for memories, my parents telling my of their childhoods, mom in Kansans, they had a milk cow almost everyone in town did. Granpa hunting game for food-squirrel (they were told it was chicken). Dad remembering being a small child in LA when the LB earthquake hit and remembering an upright piano bouncing around the living room.
I experienced the tail end of it at the grandparents house-outhouses, chicken coop, hand pump for water in the visit mid 50's before they had to move as they were building a dam.

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Postby HappyBunny » Thu Sep 03, 2009 10:27 pm

I think a plus to this depression is that the wholesale razing of cool old buildings for more stupid condos is at least slowed, if not stopped. Perhaps people will now learn to live a little more sensibly and not *need* so many expensive things in their homes, which makes them unaffordable for most of us. Hopefully, it will kill off all the stupid McMansions and their granite counters and boring biege interiors. People used to be content with a nice home, we didnt need a freaking palace. So I think there will be some adjustment of values and living a little less on the edge. Or maybe not, for some people.

My dad (a member of the Greatest Generation) talks about the Great Depression--he lived through it. He remembers his father losing his job but going to work for the WPA as a civil engineer (he ended up designing highways). My dad said they didnt have a lot but he doesn't remember it being a horrid time, strangely. People relied more on one another and made do with what they had and didnt waste a lot of time wishing they had more. What they did have, they really enjoyed. Just a different way of looking at life, I think.

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Postby Skylark » Fri Sep 04, 2009 3:29 pm

Great thread!

My parents are also of The Greatest Generation. A couple of years ago, I videotaped them recollecting the Depression and WWII. They both lived on farms, and their childhood stories were wonderful. They knew how to have fun with very little. Children today should have such imagination! Having parents who lived through such tough times has given me some perspective on saving money.

Though I'm still employed (for now), my hours have been cut since the beginning of the year. These days, I approach stretching every dollar as some kind of sport. You can imagine my glee when I hit 25% savings (between coupons and specials) on my grocery bill one week. I'm working towards 50% someday.

Last year, we got ourselves a can crusher and make the accumulation of cans a case of "found money." The recycler isn't paying as much as last year, but it is creeping back up.

Entertainment-wise, it's a constant "stay-cation." Instead of going out to the movies, we take advantage of our basement cinema. Maybe invite over a couple of friends, cook up a little something, and watch a film on 16mm. Dinner Cinema, "Dinnerma." I still entertain the idea of putting together a full show and inviting the whole crowd to a "Great Depression Movie Show," with movies like "Three Little Pigs" and ""42nd Street." Maybe have a five cent apple stand on the porch as people enter.

I always thought that the adversity my parents experienced built character. I can only hope to maintain the same perspective, and also build some character, instead of just being one. :P

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