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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Free Steak for Mom+Guy Stuff Too

Bruce’s Poor Man Survival Bulletin
A Disgest of urban survival resources

In This Issue:
1. Mother’s Day Free Stuff
2. Two unusual ways to make money
3. Seed swaps, quick mower tune-up guide, stop tools from rusting
4. What are you willing to pay for?
5. US Inflation-Perspective from Coin World
6. How to catch a snapping turtle-funny stuff

"It was self-serving politicians who convinced recent generations of Americans that we could all stand in a circle with our hands in each other’s pockets and somehow get rich."
-- Paul Harvey

Lots of Mother’s Day Freebies-and some for guys too!

Spring may finally be here…an unusual way of making money

Spring weather so far for much of the country has been awful. Thankfully, we missed last week’s tornado warnings but we sure are getting a lot of rain.

In another week, our community is holding its annual summer city-wide garage sale days. We had a lot of fun setting up last year and actually made some money. We live in a large compound of sorts and this allows us to have others set up here too. Very useful for those who live in apartments or don’t want the traffic at home.

Since it is a three day event, we rent a port-a-potty and offer hot dogs and drinks each day…donuts and coffee in the morning.

Spring is also the time the Poor Man plans to become the ‘thin n fit’ man again. Too much winter and Frito Lay’s have packed on the pounds. A few weeks ago I picked up a mountain bike in like new condition which I plan to begin riding soon. I’ve never had a mountain bike, only a 10-speed which was fine by me. Once or twice a week I used to ride it to my office to keep in shape - 19 miles each way will do that!

Finally, topping the list for unusual and controversial ways to make money. A recent story told about a 91-year-old CA woman who sells suicide kits. The kit consists of helium, a plastic bag and other materials. Of course, some government officials are racing to make this a Class C felony because as we all know, YOU do not own your life, the government does. The woman sells the kits online for $60 and reportedly sold more than 1800 of them, yet hadn’t cashed a check in three months!

Here’s another, little known way to earn some bucks. Become an Amazon Turk. Ask workers to complete HITs - Human Intelligence Tasks - and get results using Mechanical Turk.

Any young tree that you’re going to plant will need all the help it can get. Start by lining the hole that’s been dug for the tree with baking potatoes. They will help provide moisture for the young plant. As the potatoes decompose, the tree will benefit from their nutrients.

Weekly Free Resources…Stuff for guys and gals!

Comprehensive sewing guide and a listing of free projects…Free Stuff for all!

Get free patterns under the heading Free Projects.
Each link is to a category of free patterns. The categories are: Baby & Toddler, Bridal, Charitable, Doll & Toys & Games, Fashion, Fun, Home D├ęcor, Jewelry, Kids, Men, Pets, Pillow, Purses & Bags & Totes, Quilt, and Teen. Clicking into any of the categories will give you a plethora of free patterns to choose from.

Mother’s Day Gifts that won’t break your bank account…

It's that time of year to pay homage to that magnificent woman, you know, the one who wipes snotty noses, patches up skinned knees and often, still, sets dinner on the table - aka your mother and the mother of your children. With little more than a week to go before Mother's Day on May 8, here's a sample of some top gift ideas and how to get there without breaking the bank. More at:

Suggestions for gifts under $10 children can buy for Mother’s Day

More free stuff for Mother’s Day

On May 8th TCBY is giving Mom’s a free cone or cup of fat-free yoghurt. Go to:

Get a free steak dinner at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse - go to:

Michael’s Craft Store - May 3 thru 7; get free lessons for mom’s & families

On May 7th, kids get a free comic book at participating stores. Find one at:

Myth: Microwaving Your Food Decreases Nutrients
If the choice is to eat something raw or microwave it, then you might lose some vitamins with the microwave. But vs. other cooking methods, the microwave may be the best for preserving nutrients.

Tune-up your mower-Quick Start Guide
The Poor Man changed the oil, battery, drive belt & plug on his lawn tractor already…

Years ago, I had a Cub Cadet which spent more time in the shop than it did on the acreage so follow these tips to save some cash in the long run.

>>Before beginning, disconnect the spark plug wire.
>>Clean the underside of grass and other debris with a putty knife.
>>Unplug any vents and channels.
>>Remove the spark plug and replace with a new one. Tighten gently.
>>Remove the engine cover and brush away debris.
>>Drain & replace the old oil. Check your manual to get the right oil.
>>Remove and replace the air filter. Clean filter area with brush.

Find parts for your mower at local hardware and yard stores and eliminate a repair shop’s high markup replacement parts.

Keep your tools from rusting…

I forgot what its like to have a “Michigan basement,” prone to water seepage or flooding and with the boatloads of rain we’ve had recently, well, you guessed it…thank goodness we have a wet ‘n dry vac!

That moist air will get into your tool box and corrode your tools. Keep the air dry in your tool drawer or box by dropping a few of those silica gel packets (sold at hardware and crafts stores or they’re often free inside the packing material of items that have been shipped to you).
Once the packets become saturated, renew them by placing them near a 60-watt light bulb for about 15 minutes. You can also use mothballs to achieve the same effect.

Fuel saving tip. Fill up in early morning hours or later in the evening. Gasoline becomes denser when temps are coop. Fuel pumps only measure the volume of gas.

Making Use of Seed Swaps
One great way to save and find seeds is through formally organized seed libraries. But, there’s another way to save hard-to-find heirloom seeds that has been around forever -- seed swapping.

Traditionally, a seed swap is an informal event where a group of gardeners/community members meet, usually in late winter or early spring to prepare for the upcoming growing season. Gardeners bring seeds saved from the previous season or even several seasons and any extra seeds that they can’t use for the upcoming season to trade with other gardeners.

Like seed libraries, seed swapping is a way to preserve the genetic and cultural diversity of heritage seeds and introduces us to new vegetables or flowers.
For many people, it’s an important way to pass down their cultural food traditions and to continue to grow food that comes from their home culture and that often have great significance to them. It is also a way to share heirloom food that has been grown in families for generations and is a way to preserve that family heritage. Get the full story at:

Another useful site for small space gardening - many how-to videos

Save on produce by hitting farmers markets late in the day. Faced with the prospect of having to haul their goods home, they’ll wheel and deal more.

The Nanny State Update…
U.S. Economy — The Big Picture…from Coin News, no surprises here!

There are few signs of any significant lane changing ahead. We have seen a serious slide in the American standard of living over the past.

Summarizing The Big Picture
The U.S. and European standard of living will fall in the coming years, and perhaps for two decades. We are only three years into the decline. Government officials will try to slow the decline by depreciating their currencies to improve exports. This is already causing oil, gold, and foreign investments to rise in U.S. dollar terms and these trends will continue.

Here and in Europe, government bonds will be harder to sell. The search for revenues and a desire to shrink deficits will prod governments into cutting defense and social expenditures, as well as raise taxes. In the U.S., earners in the top 10 percent (those with incomes of about $113,000 and up) will bear the brunt of the increases. The top 3 percent of U.S. earners currently pays more than half of U.S. individual income taxes. This situation will eventually cause many high-income earners to leave the U.S. and seek to earn or invest their money abroad, thereby further decreasing the tax base of the country.
The wealth of the nation will fall. Investors should protect themselves. It is not too late.

With So Much Economic “Slack,” Where is Inflation Coming From?
It’s a combination of key factors:
● U.S. money supply growth
● Money supply and credit growth in Europe, Japan, Russia, China, India, Brazil, and
When roasting or baking a whole chicken, bake with the breast side down. Most cookbooks instruct you to bake breast up, but the bird will remain moister when done this way.

What are you willing to pay for? The Parting Question…

Each issue of our newsletter brings a variety of useful tips and resources to either make money, save money or get something free. So that brings me to the question what would you pay for?

Aside from your normal overhead, things such as food and fuel, mortgage and daycare, clothing, etc., what kinds of specialized information would you be willing to pay for? Admittedly, the internet offers a tremendous range of free information and entertainment venues. Of course, we all know there are many illicit things some will pay for too…

Specialized knowledge is considered a key to financial success (read any of the Think & Grow Rich books). You already pay for specialized knowledge in the areas of medicine and dentistry. I pay for web related knowledge and some plumbing related matters. Over the years, many have paid me for my specialized knowledge in the area of publishing.

Most successful entrepreneurs had specialized knowledge they either acquired personally over the years or they ‘hired’ it. There is a famous story about Henry Ford once sued a fellow for accusing him of not being very smart. The prosecutor asked him a question to which Ford didn’t know the answer. However, he was quick to reply he didn’t need to know the answer personally, he surrounded himself with top graduates in every area of business who did know the answer!

There’s a young man in the Philippines who is making a fortune and he’s only 32 and his company will soon be on the stock exchange. What does he sell? All kinds of supplies related to farming…livestock feed, rural supplies, gardening related goods and the like.

What does this tell you? People always need food and there has been a worldwide spurt in gardening, community gardening and smaller urban farms. Like those who sold picks, shovels and whiskey to the California gold miners, they were the only ones who got rich.

Frankly, it makes wonder why I didn’t get into such a business. Stores like Cumberland Gap and Lehman’s in Ohio are doing quite well not only selling to locals, but online and through catalog sales.

--If you have an idea for developing some product or service using these concepts, let me know!

I leave you with a little fun stuff! Bruce ‘the Poor Man’

How to catch snapping turtles with your bare hands-cute!

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