This is gonna be soooo much fun, k? Yes. Alright, here's the deal. When I was working on my master's degree in sociology, I had a stratification course which dealt with amongst other things, the SES or socio-economic-status of groups, families, regions, countries, counties, and individuals. Generally SES is based on education (level obtained), income, and occupation.
Now, my prof was a very groovy guy indeed. He liked hands-on stuff.
So we found out what the current poverty level for 1 person household
according to the government's definitions. Then we took that and made
a budget, complete with housing, rent, water, sewage, garbage, power,
gas, insurance, mode of transportation, household items, personal
hygene items, clothing, health insurance, oh! and let's not forget food
and medications and non-essentials like entertainment. Build this
imaginary person's life with realistic limitations.
Ya know what? Out of a class of about 25, I was the ONLY person who
could do the exercise completely and feasibly. Ya wanna know why?
Because I lived it.
When I was 18, getting ready to apply for financial aid for
undergraduate school, I reported my family's income. It was a family
of four. Our household income was less at that time than it would be
some 7 years later for ONE person.
So having said that, whip out your pads and pens, boys and girls, cuz we goin do us some rithematicin.
The goal is to come up with ONE month's budget (including rent, water,
sewage, garbage, power, gas, clothing, personal hygene items, household
items, food, medications, transportation, etc.) for ONE person with an
income of $600.
(and by the way, that's generous, very very generous, i receive less than that)