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Waiting to 65 to retire - death risk versus finances

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4 hours ago, Barbaraok said:

Remember that the retirees you see on this forum tend to be a little healthier and have better retirement planning than our age cohort as a whole

I know a lot of people living in vans and cargo trailers that are just barely getting by, bu, they don't tend to be on this forum. They're more like to be on Bob Well's forum because they see that as being their tribe.


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Good one Linda. Tribe. Americans of all tribes used to trade and enjoy each other. I just do the golden rule, love your neighbor - NO EXCEPTIONS! <grin>

If you don't like long posts, don't read this. But you can see that before you start right? ;)

Zulu, I've met many in our age/RV peer group from full timing 1997-2003 and some more since. Just because someone says they did well does not mean they are lying. And in the South we have folks who "Po' mouth" meaning they pretend to be broke and are far from it.

I agree that our age bracket of retirees are usually a good spread. But the generation of my 45 and 42 y/o sons are going to be much less fortunate with exceptions of course. My grandkids, the millenials are really changing goals and standards for their living. That generation will not have a middle class as we have now.

You know Zulu, as an RVr you can travel and visit the folks you think are putting on airs. I have found that a large percentage of folks can't believe what even a less than lucky in money matters career military family has seen and done. It's not my job to worry I don't exceed their capacity to believe. Just being ourselves intimidates a lot of good ol boys. Some try to sharpshoot us and catch us out, and once I see that, it is too tedious to be worthwhile. I'm no better than another, and no worse. But certainly have no need to prove anything. I've found it is just fine to accept others at their word until they ask for money or prove to be toxic. No time for toxic. I have my circle of close friends and we are a very diverse group, from paycheck to paycheck to independent like us. The key is we like each other and are tolerant as a group.

As far as "limited resource thinking" here's a piece I wrote while still active duty:

"Generally, folks measure their success and security in life by "things." Some folks never ever can have enough things and are horrified when another makes the decision that "things" are like a millstone around your neck. You have to pay for them, then find a place for them, then dust them, then fix them when they break, and store them when you realize you aren't using them, and even getting rid of them is a pain whether yard sale, arranging for a goodwill pick up or just hauling them to the dump, involves re-inventorying, moving around and finding a new order to keep the "things" you are saving in. Many folks have beautiful furnishings yet buy all new furnishings every year or two just to validate their feelings of having things!

An illustration. I used to build and restore custom super stock VWs and Porsches. I restored a Porsche 911 Targa that I found for 900.00 rusting away and fortunately discovered it only needed some new vacuum lines and an Air Box to run perfectly along with some minor seals etc. So just couple of thousand later I had what looked and ran like a brand new 911. I enjoyed it for two years and then decided to sell it when I got orders to Germany. My friends and a few family members on finding out I was selling it were horrified Saying the same thing-"How can you sell it!!!???" I knew what they were really saying, that if they had a 911 they'd never be able to part with it because of the prestige, pride, image or whatever. As if a hunk of metal with an engine would make them "different." That's conditioning. Knowing what they were really saying (and with a few it was really disappointing to hear that they were that way) I didn't lecture or try to explain. I'd answer with an innocent look-"How can I sell it? Well, I put an ad in the paper/online and people call me and one of them buys it." (With a straight face) To which every one replied that's not what I mean-I mean you have a Porsche 911! How can you part with it? Then my answer was "If I want another one, I can just buy it, they have after all made millions of them haven't they."

People don't realize what they really tell you about themselves a lot of the time with comments like that. You see, they were "limited resource thinkers." They truly feel that when someone gets something, it has been removed from their possibilities. Like a limited pie with four pieces, they view the world as limited and when you get a piece of the pie that is one less available to them. I'm sure you have sold a car or something at one time or another and had a friend say something after the fact like "You sold it for that?? I would have given you that or more!!" I could never resist, you see they were viewing your good sale price as something they didn't get (limited resource thinking) and so had to try to rain on your parade some with a silly statement like that. They also do the same when you buy something and instead of being as thrilled as you are, have to say Oh man you could have gotten it cheaper at . . .or I could have gotten it for you cheaper from . . .?  I can't resist that scenario! LOL! My response (on a sale) Oh really? Well I told the guy that until he pays the cash, which he said he'd do next week, that it is still on the market and will go to the first person who comes up with the cash! I'm so glad we talked! So when do you want to pick it up?" I almost always can keep a straight face while they start to fumble for a way out of their faux pas. Not once, of hundreds of times I have pulled that on a limited resource thinker, have they been sincere. Every time the car or whatever was actually sold, but those people want everybody to be as unhappy as they are. And speak volumes of their view of the world.
The decision to RV indeed is not for everyone. But for some it is an acquisition of freedom that they lack the courage or desire to make. It invalidates their clinging to "things" or people, neither of which is forever. In life you can't freeze it and stay in a good time or place-there is no neutral, you are either in forward or reverse. Put another way the only difference between a grave and a rut are the dimensions. Some view RVing as a freedom that has somehow been removed from their realm of possibilities. I just tell them that there is no difference if we don't see each other for few months at a time from across town, or for the same time from experiencing this great land and its people in person. We will still be alive and coming for a visit, just like before, and boy will we have stories. See you can always get another house or apartment if you choose to, they have after all made millions of them haven't they. All it takes is a few shiny pieces of gold and silver or their equivalent and that's easy. The horizons, camaraderie, wonder, and adventure of the next real experience cannot be compared to sitting at home watching the Discovery channel. But if that's what floats their boat, it's OK with me. I won't try to impose my choices on them, and expect them to not try to impose theirs on me. On the road we get almost 100% genuine kudos from the folks we meet saying they wish they could be doing the same thing. They have the same dream for someday, we are living the dream now!
Safe travels

On edit:
I cross-trained from Medic and Med Lab technologist to Combat arms, training all our base personnel on pistols, shotguns, rifles, lt squad and heavy Machine guns, Shoulder fired rockets, grenade launchers and grenade machine guns like the Mk 19. And we fixed them when they broke, designed and maintained our indoor and outdoor range complexes.
I came from a college educated family and military and even went to kindergarten and first grade in Spanish, when we lived in Colombia for two years. I speak German OK, Spanish fluently, some French, Arabic (Farsi) and several others. So from knowing the chemistry and blood work, physical symptoms, sewing folks up and doing ER work, my vocabulary was pretty wide and diverse. Well the gun guys were a bit put off and after I'd been in the field for six months one of my guys, (I was a SSgt. In four years) asked me if I went home every night and looked up big words to use. ??
I thought about after I realized he was serious. I didn't play superiority games and explained it to him like this. I told him the way I speak is my natural speech. And if I use a word he didn't know just ask, and soon you'll have folks asking if you go home to look up "big words."
But I told him, if I looked down on him, and thought him less than me, I would be patronizing and shallow. Then I would be looking down. In friendship we're all equals. I got a lot of that once my folks in a new unit got to know I was sincere. I do believe as Flaubert put it, in "Le More just." The perfect word. I don't talk down to, or up to folks. And certainly am not ashamed nor feel the least bit apologetic for my education and experiences to any limited resource thinker. If they have a problem, THEY have the problem, and it isn't my job to fix or teach the world, unless asked like in the vocabulary example above. But it is to be kind, yet live by my honor code, "We will not lie cheat or steal, nor tolerate among us, anyone who does."
I expect folks to be nice, and people always will live up to, or down to, our expectations.

(Just don't tell the asylum you saw me here)



Edited by RV_

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