When a food item is in short supply or not available at all, we turn to substitutes.
Margarine for butter is a well-known substitute in baking.
Artificial sweeteners are used when people need to cut down on sugar content. Pepsi and Coke can substitute for each other depending on the drinker’s preference. Cost is another factor that drives people to alternatives. If beef is too expensive then we opt for pork or chicken or whatever is on sale Some people even become vegans. In sports, some athletes have found fame and fortune being labeled as a substitute. John Havlicek (1940-2019) is in the NBA Hall of Fame having played the role of 6th man for the Boston Celtics in the 1960s and 1970s. In our homes, if the electricity goes out, then we can substitute a gas-powered generator for a while to keep our refrigerator and freezer running. A loss of electricity also means a loss of internet signal so we use the laptop DVD player to substitute for YouTube if the computer’s battery is charged. There are other things in our homes like antiques and heirlooms that have no substitutes. Another thing with no substitute is the cool and refreshing air that our central HVAC systems supply. There are alternate ways of cooling and heating small areas such as a window AC unit to replace a central AC system. There are also portable AC systems that are pricey and eat up a lot of energy. An old-fashioned fan will also provide some relief from the heat, but it can’t compete with the HVAC system that keeps the entire house cool. On a higher plane of thought, there is no substitute for love, but that will be sorely tested during any lengthy HVAC outage.