Mer and Dani


Living Behind the Curve Accomplishing the bare necessities of life is stressful. Just getting through every day so you can wake up tomorrow and do it again is a lot. Then, you're expected to keep up with the Joneses, stay fit, lose weight, maintain hobbies, advance your career, buy bigger houses, keep up on reality TV and world affairs, have the latest gadgets, have a family, go out on weekends, stay abreast of the local gossip, remember to change the air filter, drink 8 glasses of water a day, save for retirement, keep up the yard, stay hip to the latest fashions, and keep the houseplants alive -- all just so you can say "I have a life". It's no wonder that everyone is stressed out and broke. We used to be like that -- a couple of twenty-something college dropouts with a whole lot of debt, no time, and no real direction in life. Now, less than a year later, our debts are nearly paid off, we're both going back to school, and we've both discovered that, more than anything, what we wanna be when we grow up is retired. By examining our motivations and priorities, we figured out how to simplify our day-to-day, how to hack our budget to live more frugally, and still maintain the fabulous quality of life we'd come to enjoy. We stopped fighting to stay ahead of the curve. is our attempt to document and share our experiences with the world. Maybe we'll help a few people along the way, too, with our unique blend of lowbrow frugality, simple living tips, and radical re-envisioning of what success in this day and age actually means. Dani In addition to my full-time job herding cats (I supervise techies), I am a full-time student pursuing my bachelor's degree in marketing, with a double-major or minor in communications if I can find the time. Writing and editing this blog will hopefully serve as a means of letting go of my control-freak-ness, turning off my internal editor while writing, and learning to write on command. My goal used to be to leave the rat race at 50 and work at WaWa -- I'm now looking at a much simpler future, where I work for enjoyment and not for money (and not waiting until 50 to start). My mom "retired" at 50 from a high-stress 60 hr week job to a customer service position much lower down the ladder, which is where the magic number comes from. I occasionally ramble about non-LBtC things on my personal blog; I can be contacted directly here. Meredith By day, I'm a mild-mannered archivist. By night, I produce the official Living Behind The Curve podcast as well as work on my own series of audio nonsense at I'm all ready to start going back to school in the fall, so I can finish my degree by any means neccesary. Then, off to grad school to stalk the elusive master's degree in library science, thus fulfilling my dream of never being forced to wear uncomfortable shoes to work again, and fulfilling Dani's dream of being married to a librarian (she eats books). I am the household zen master, a fabulous balance to Dani's high-strung, "please hassle me - I thrive on stress" attitude. I love my current job, but I secretly dream of becoming a corporate archiving consultant, overcharging enormous international corporations to tell them how to fix their filing disasters, preferably over the phone from home while wearing my jammies.