It Doesn’t Take Much for a Man to Live On

SimpleDollar

Wise financial words come from Realtalkers like my best friend’s dad

Genius might be defined as the ability to put a complex idea into simple terms, according to Charles Bukowski. Sage and simple words of wisdom echoed to me back in 2010 from my best friend’s father have stayed with me ever since.

At that time, I was facing bankruptcy after following the system’s advice: Go to college, get a good edumacation, get a J-O-B with an employer who supposedly gave a fuck about me, wife up someone, have a kid, and put your nose to the grindstone for 30-40 years hoping you come out alive, sane, and solvent as you prepare to die.

As luck would have it, things didn’t quite work out that way. It was relatively smooth sailing up until 2008 when the financial crisis hit. After the crash, our gentlemanly old general manager was escorted out the door and a hard ass bean counter was put in his place.

Also around this time, I had a wife and 2-year old kid, after having done the “right” thing, waiting until after college when I had the fabled “good” job to start a family. But, cracks were beginning to appear in this façade.

First of all, as I now realize years later, American women have been stewed and basted in an environment that makes them unfit for marriage. After leaving the U.S. and living abroad, I can safely say that’s not just an assumption, it’s a reality. I still cringe when I hear the cackle of an entitled, “empowered” American woman passing by. More on that another time.

To put a long story short, this fairy tale all came crashing to a halt around the time of the Great Recession.

By 2010, I was happily divorced, woefully financially insolvent, and frighteningly jobless. I challenged authority one too many times and demanded to be paid what a colleague of mine was making for a lower position (yes – I was being paid less than someone underneath me in the hierarchy who was roughly the same age and experience as me.) That was enough to get me sacked.

But none of this is the moral of the story, it’s just background.

Returning home 1,500 miles away from my former employer to lick my wounds, I was having a good, long conversation with my best friend’s dad, who has also been through the divorce and child support meat-grinder, when out came those sage words that are the title of this article.

It doesn’t take much for a man to live on.

Those words stuck with me, and they’re still helping me to this day.

Minimalism

“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” -Confucius

Minimalism

That simple statement helped lead me to a much happier life of minimalism, rather than living the life consumerism I had been chasing my entire life. I began to realize that the more things I had, the more worries I had and the more bills I had.

I also began to realize that as a species of hunter-gatherers, women have a tendency to gather things they do not need, which is what powers the waste machine of consumerism in the Western world. In essence, I had been conditioned to be another gatherer of things rather than living off only what I needed as men have done since the dawn of time.

I’ve gone from having lived the so-called American Dream, to now having an apartment abroad that runs me $200 a month. I eat on $5 a day or less. I get around on a motorcycle that cost me $1,200 and costs $10 for a fill-up. Bus trips cost me about $7-15 even on long-haul destinations. I almost never go shopping and I don’t miss Walmart, the mall, or any of the other churches of consumerism that are ubiquitous in Anglo-America. This all adds up to a cost of living abroad that’s less than a child support payment back in The Matrix even though it offers a comparable material quality of life, and a superior quality of life when it comes to intangibles (women, culture, pace of life, atmosphere, climate, etc.)

I have MAYBE $2,000 of furniture in my apartment. There is no television as I don’t want the mind-rot and consumerism compulsion it sells. I have a laptop, banged up tablet, and a 2012 model cell phone to keep in touch with the outside world. A MiFi runs me about $27 a month.

I’ve gotten used to living without air conditioning. I have a nice fan to keep cool on the hottest of days, but more importantly it blows mosquitoes away when I’m working on my balcony.

And you know what? All this simplicity means I’m happier than I’ve ever been. I would never go back to my old life as a debt slave, running around with my ass on fire all the time trying to find some way to pay for a McMansion in a neighborhood I couldn’t afford.

Which leads me to this conclusion, on which my series of articles on Minimalism will be based: The answer, I believe, for most men, is less, not more.

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5 comments

  • Angela Michelle Thibert

    Less stress for all! gotta love the simple life

    Like

  • Oh the ‘cackle’ of an American woman abroad; sharp, commanding and LOUD. It also drips with anger and hostility too, even when she’s telling her friend that she needs to pick up some toothpaste for the apartment. The rage leaks out no matter what the topic is. You have to check your ear to see if someone rammed a broken bottle into it…nope, it was just McKayla’s voice, echoing over the subway station as she recounted some boring details about her afternoon.

    Like

  • Are you in Brazil or Hispanophone America? Just curious, was wondering about life in the Southern cone vs Bolivia. Nice article by the way.

    Like

  • A man can be happy with anything which interests him whether that be reading, sports, video games etc. A man only needs all the useless expensive shit in order to attract a woman. This was effective in creating the modern society; men became engineers, builders and all the job roles which help advancement – all to marry and fuck.

    But now, this deal is absolute pillage and asinine. The sacrifice is not worth it, but as men we will always desire that wet hole. The desire to be wealthy without any practical purpose always holds the desire for the hole.

    Like

    • relampagofurioso

      As soon as I reliazed everything you just pointed out about buying useless expensive shit to attract a woman and had literally run myself into bankruptcy just to keep her running on the hedonic treadmill, I made drastic lifestyle changes. Minimalism has freed me and made me happier than I ever was when I had two fancy cars and a fancy apartment. The desire for the wet hole is destructive if a man turns himself into a Beta provider. Best to be the aloof asshole who lives on nothing. IMHO.

      Like

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