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I read one of those fluffy top 5 articles, but it actually it made me really sad.

It's called the Best 5 Southern Cities to Retire on a Budget of $1,500 a Month. I feel the same way I did after I watched Bridge to Terabithia, thinking it would be a fun movie to watch with kids. Spoiler: it's not very fun at all.

If I had read the headline with any critical thinking turned on, I would have realized it was going to be tough to begin with for obvious reasons. $1,500 is an abysmally low monthly budget for anyone. But according to the article, it's the average Social Security benefit allotted to retirees. The average rent alone in the US is nearly $2,000. Oof.

Lubbock came in at number 5 on the list, with Texas in general dominating the list. $1,500 is such a minuscule amount that the only factors really considered are rent, groceries, health expenses and, to a lesser degree, how many other seniors there are to hang out with.

As a millennial, I should be planning for retirement, but my budget is taxed like most other people's are. Contributing to a retirement account, especially at the level I'd need to, seems like the height of luxury -- like lighting a cigar with a hundred dollar bill.

This isn't a very can-do attitude, but my generation lived through the dot com bubble (late 1990s), a once-a-century economic downtown (2008) and a worldwide pandemic that's still wrecking havoc on world economies. My retirement plan is a shopping cart full of shoes and potable water.

I guess if there's anything of value to take from this, it would be that we should be kind and as helpful as possible to our senior friends. Meals on Wheels and The South Plains Food Bank could certainly use our help.

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