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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Sharing Economy Updates and Free Resources You Can Use

Poor Man Survival

Self Reliance tools for independent minded people…


ISSN 2161-5543

A Digest of Urban Survival Resources

"Governing a large country is like frying a small fish.
You spoil it with too much poking."
-- Lao-Tzu


      A few updates on a topic I’ve previously written about, the Sharing Economy.  We wrote about ride sharing services such as Uber and Lyft and the new accommodation service, Airbnb…all of these services have pissed off regulators and competition as one would expect.


Here are few new ones for the sharing economy…


Postmates-a courier service that is affecting the way goods are moved around a city.  [Amazon might want take a peek].  The firm connects customers with local couriers who purchase and deliver goods via their own transportation from any store or restaurant in a city, in an hour or less.


Lantern – launched in 2012 it aims to deliver treatment programs in one of the most expensive areas of health care, mental health.  It provides customized mental health care delivered by a therapist via a smartphone app.  It is designed to be affordable.


EatWith – has been called the Airbnb of dining.  It matches carefully vetted local hosts who are great cooks [like me] and want to monetize their talent with guests seeking quality home-cooked meals, bright conversation and a taste of local hospitality.


Renting an extra room in your home has long been a means of making some extra cash…I couldn’t do it.  Too many episodes of failed ventures on Judge Judy and my love of privacy prevent any of that for me!




The Weekly Goodies List for You to Share






   Wash Your Fruits & Vegetables

Washing your fruits and vegetable in white vinegar removes waxes, film, dirt, mold and pesticides resulting in attractive produce which will stay fresh longer.  Clean your sink and fill with water.  Add 1 cup of vinegar and let the produce sit for 10-15 minutes…rinse and dry, use or refrigerate.

Handy Cleaning Supplies

If you are like me with limited storage space for cleaning supplies, I found that if I hang a shoe bag on the back of a door, I can put all my bottles, cans, etc. into the pockets. They are easy to get to without rummaging through a bunch of stuff.


I save a lot of cash making my own cleaning products and use roughly four ingredients for everything…bleach, lemon ammonia, vinegar and water.  Over the years we’ve fostered and adopted many pets, ranging from dozens of cats and dogs to horses and donkeys.  Cats are the worst in terms of odor and I keep at the ready a spray bottle with a solution of 60% water, 40% lemon-ammonia and a touch of dishwashing soap.


Spray it on the sofa or carpet, rub in lightly and damp up the excess and then vacuum later.  Sometimes I’ll add sprinkles of baking soda over the area and after it absorbs more odor, I’ll vacuum again.


I don’t waste water and electricity using a dishwasher but here’s a recipe for lemon detergent which cost about $2.50 and does about 24 loads.


1 cup washing soda

1 cup baking soda [cheapest in bulk at Sam’s Club or Costco]

1 cup borax

20 drops of essential lemon oil


Combine ingredients in large bowl and store into a glass container with lid to keep dry.

To Use:  Place a heaping tablespoon per load in your dishwasher soap compartment and run as usual.


Natural Home
Cleaning Products

If the environmental and health risks associated with commercial cleaning products are not enough to convince you to look for alternatives, saving money should be. Anti-bacterial, disinfecting cleaners can be expensive, especially if you purchase different ones for every job. The actual expense might outweigh the benefits and there are many alternatives to expensive commercial products that will effectively and safely clean your home. Read more.


An internet search will yield a bonanza of recipes you can try.  I have a few on the Homemade section of our Poor Man Survival site.


Last Minute Holiday Touches on the Cheap
Last minute details can take a holiday home from ho ho hum to spectacular, and doesn't have to cost a lot of cash! Here are some great quick, easy, and inexpensive ideas to wow your guests and comfort your family.


Most of us give to charities this time of year, but we should do it wisely by both picking a legitimate charity and following IRS donation rules. Look for a charity that spends the vast majority of its money on the cause rather than on administrative expenses and commissions to phone solicitors. You can check out a charity at these organizations: >, >, and

Personally, I have my own private foundation which awards money to my favorite charities dating back to 2001…for years the Salvation Army has been its primary recipient.  Recently, in light of how Goodwill screws its handicapped workers while paying out large salaries to its CEOs and bypassing its retail customers [selling better quality items online instead], I cut off ALL donations and grants to them last year!

FYI-As I indicated last month, I will be closing down the Poor Man Survival website right after Christmas. I’ll also be closing off the Word Press version/host for this blog as well.

Support for the site is dismal and I needn’t waste further time and resources.  I am not certain how much longer I’ll keep blog going either but it probably will not last beyond the middle of January.


I’ll be shutting off the Gmail address associated with the Poor Man also next week…



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Yours for better living…Bruce ‘the Poor Man’

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