Free Idea!

Hey Wichita,

I know you’re busy, so I’ll keep it brief.

In going through the million things that I’ve collected during my 3 year layover here, I’ve found a bunch of great ideas that I didn’t have time to get started. I’m going to pass them on to you because you look like you need them.

The Tiny Home movement has been growing in popularity for the last 15 years, and I think you might have missed the memo. No bigs. It’s not too late. Here’s the deal: You so SO ought to build a tiny home village (for any one of a whole bunch of reasons that I’m more than happy to outline in person over a cup of coffee.)

LOCOhillI worked out some of the kinks and just went ahead and chose my most fave slice of real estate that I have watched sit dormant, since my return. I know it’s all tied up in some kinda legal battle and some things happened and some people are involved, but you’re going to have to suspend disbelief and act like you can do anything that matters and you’re all in. You glow when you’re all in.

You know that corner at Rutan and Douglas, just across from the Hillcrest? There are 3 separate lots there that the right team could turn into a dream factory and sweet slice of residency. Magic, math and some sly manipulation might be involved.

Because it’s on the lower end of College Hill, you can call it LoCo Hill. LoCo Hill Something Clever. My friend Karen named this neighborhood for me, and I think it’s on the money right. I’m pretty sure this would be the perfect place for a tiny home community and surely somebody knows somebody who could help make it happen. It’s just sad that those big ol’townhomes are sitting over there gathering dust; It will rock when a developer gives a nod to reality and builds something for the people.

It’s this simple:LOCOblue

  • Build homes that are roughly 200sf each.
  • Source as locally as possible from the R&D through completion. We have amazing workers right here.
  • Work towards community, affordability and sustainability.

You’re smart, you’ll figure out the rest. It’s not like you don’t have a million maps to borrow from here. But, you seriously ought to chop chop, Princess. Daylight’s burning. This project could launch a whole bunch more like it. You could be a national leader in taking care of your homeless and vets and old people and young couples just starting out. You could. I’m sure of it, you just have to agree and wear the right shoes. We’ll see.

Stop dawdling and get on it. You’ve got everything you need.

Hope your week rocks and I look forward to hearing back from you. How are the kids, anyways?

xomoe

If you and/or your company would like to sponsor the next year of incredible ideas and research, click here: MOE SPONSORSHIP!

 

 

 

 

Dear Wichita

WICHITAlogoOLDdOh, dear sweet Wichita – How badly I wished you could see yourself like I see you. I can’t believe we just paid consultants to confirm your astonishing lack of self-esteem. Come over here and curl up, I’ll tickle your back while I tell you this thing…

What all the other towns and cities have been afraid to tell you… the reason they don’t want to hang out so much, is because you are constantly trash-talking yourself and doubting your coolness. It makes it really hard to defend you and build you up, Buttercup. Nobody wants to hang out in a village that is constantly asking if those jeans make their libraries look fat.

It’s time, well…not right now, right now you can rest, but tomorrow (or later on today after you’ve eaten well) you need to remember how cool it is to use your powers for good. You are going to have to make some difficult decisions that will have great impact on the future. And, yes. I’m talking about money even though I know it upsets you. You need to stare deeply into your Magic 8 Ball and drink up the future. It’s all on you now. You are perfectly poised to make a difference and instigate some change. You’re just going to need to be steely and smart – you might not love the process so much but you will totally dig the outcome. And, every dream needs an accountant. Just accept it and plan ahead.

Just.sayin.

I’ve been watching. You really are growing up beautifully. You have shown me a level of tenacity (in the face of a mostly unbelievable Brownbackistan/Machiavellian tragedy) that restored my faith in your ninja-like skill set. You grow more beautiful with the seasons, part by design and part by nature. I see you out and about – you’re more curious and alive than ever before. I’m serious: I think you got this. I think the training portion of this study has ended and now you’re going to be. I expect you to also go and do, with grace and verve.

WICHITAdriver1Y’know what else I love about you? You welcome and cultivate a breed of competent and fiercely independent merchants specific to this place on the globe. Your crazy-low cost of living is the stuff of legend and your willingness to adapt has allowed for a vibrant and unique slice of goodness, right in the middle of the country. You’ve actually built a world where your citizens don’t HAVE to shop at big box stores. You’re super cool that way.

Surely you’ve seen what your Creatives are doing, right? Your artists and architects and engineers and musicians and chefs and writers are sharing parts of you, all over the world. Wichita is not a slightly embarrassing third-cousin anymore. Google yourself, or don’t, but trust me: The sooner you roll up your sleeves and claim your sweet little badass identity as an understated spot of cool on the globe to grow Creatives and promote tech-industry (or something equally attractive,) the quicker this will happen.

You’re going to have to Get Over a lot. You’re not the Air Cap any more. You can still say that because the air here is arguably, among the best in the world, but that ship has sailed. We do build some planes and that will never stop being cool. But, get over it. You’ll never be Lawrence. Yeaaa, you’ll still sleep nights, Lawrence will always be right there, 2 hours and 20 minutes away. It’s a college town, it’s job is to just keep getting cooler. The Airport (I stubbornly refuse to call it by it’s newly minted name) will never be a hub, no matter who you call or how many times you stomp your pretty little feet. Never.going.to.happen. You can’t leave the country from here on commercial aviation, without a stop and I promise it will be okay..

WICHITA airCAP

With all this beauty and brilliance, comes great responsibility and you are so gonna dig this part. Not many places have all the resources and opportunities that you do. Just look at you! You’ve got global bad guys with a lot of local money who need to rebrand themselves as good guys, you’ve got reasonably priced land, solid utilities and willing participants with strong backs and ambitious dreams. You play your cards right, you can weave this into a beautiful little recipe for a thriving community. You could be a leader instead of a follower. Shoooot, baby. You could decriminalize marijuana, get passenger rail, build a globally innovative new library or take care of your homeless population in tiny homes. You are kinda, quite literally, omnipotent.

I promise I’m not trying to be a buzz-kill here, I just gotta go for a bit and I want you to take care of this while I’m gone. It’s not like I’m asking you to make sure my cats and houseplants don’t die.  I’ve heard that it’s empowering to ask for help. This is what it looks like when I ask for your help. It will always taste funny to me, but help me anyway.

It truly is darling how humble you are, and I can’t wait to see you when you’re full of critical thinking piss’n’vinegar.

Now. Go! More soon… I feel like telling you these secrets…

xomoe

In the Interest of Full Disclosure: 3 Things

EARTHcrewMy curiosity has been piqued by this movement of reasonable thought and meaningful lifestyle choices I’ve seen creeping across America on silent little cat paws. I think there is a pretty solid chance that we are at the front end of a revolution. Historically, I suspect it may be called The Digital Revolution, but I don’t want to be so presumptuous as to think that this time is any bigger than what has come before. Still, I believe this could be the third biggie. We had fire, the Guggenheim press and now this. I dunno, I could be wrong but….. I’m not. for real.

One of my favorite components of this revolution is that we the people have access to information and, more importantly, to each other like we have never had before. We are able to gather (smarts AND friends) more efficiently and weed through the never-ending sea of ideas and connections in much shorter order. This magic combined with what appears to be a collective consciousness geared towards big change has made for some unconventional opportunities for a grown-up living a non-traditional life and a mobile skill set.

I’m taking the adventure to Alaska because I am curious, but I also want to document what I find out along the way. So I think it’s only fair at the front-end, before we all book passage, that you get to choose to come along or bail out.

THREE THINGS I HAVE TO CHECK INTO

ONE: Human Connection. How has the Digital Revolution shaped our cultural and personal landscapes? I am willing to go see as many people as I can to thank them for being my friend, basically. If it weren’t for facebook and the other arms of social media, none of this would be possible. I know how my life has changed and I am hungry to hear the similar stories that are growing more frequent and unbelievable all the time.

TWO: I have always been an open advocate for the reform of marijuana laws and legislation in America, and I have wished for a sudden halt to spending more time and money on the War on Drugs. I have 35 years invested in gathering information (and anecdotal evidence) and I research for a living. I have become reasonably well-informed on geographical, cultural, societal, psychological, personal, medical, political and professional considerations as they relate to the marijuana movement. Seems like a shame to waste that education and those stories.

THREE: Taming The beast known as worldly comforts and finding a way to exercise self-resiliency with grace and literal pioneer-ninja strength. I will carry what I own and plot a course to the west. I will travel primarily by train, document it because that’s what I do and not do so in a high-risk way. I have taught myself to be a smart digital traveler and have few needs beyond human connection and the need to sate a badass case of curiosity. I’m choosing a road way WAY less traveled and breaking it down to 100 things that weigh 100 pounds. I will not allow my well-bring to be hinged on stuff that can be lost. I’m on a quest to share moments that can’t ever be recreated.

I’m inviting you to come along. If everybody gave a buck or something there would be all this investment on your part. I know you’re curious but you’re not in a position to head west – I am. Come with. It’ll rock and I’ll show you everything. Please and thank you.

Go here to be all philanthropic and feel like you’ve got a part in this crazy adventure: CLICK HERE PLEASE

xomoe

PS: Some of the places we have been before can be found on youtube or twitter or facebook. Check it.

Let’s Take an Adventure.

Northern Lights (instead of Kansas sunsets)

Northern Lights (instead of Kansas sunsets)

I am heading to Manley Hot Springs, Alaska. I am in no huge rush to get there and I want to leave around the first of March 2015. I have family there and an opportunity to explore with the safety net of a home and something like a tribe. I will continue to take pictures, edit less for others/write more for me and take risks that most people reading this wouldn’t be willing to take BUT would be happy to read about.
I am reducing my Stuff down to 100 items. Even writing these words makes me tremble a smidge. I talked sternly to my pack today and I am still at 72 items. That is just clothing. Some difficult decisions will be made. They get made every day, dammit. Killin’me here, Smalls (I say that to my stuff a lot.) Who really needs 16 pairs of socks?
I plan on traveling primarily by train, (Amtrak not freight) across the western half of America and am doing so 2015adventurespecifically so I can stop in as many places as time and space allow, to hug everyone who has impacted my life. Or, at least have coffee – I can finally concede that hugging isn’t for everybody. I am in a unique position to do this. My kids have moved away, parents have passed, homes bought and sold and now that Stuff has been stared down, I’m not bound by the same societal laws as everybody else.
Almost all of these people I want to hug wouldn’t be in my orbit if it weren’t for facebook. So, technically – I am taking the facebook tour to Alaska to check on some loves, meet some others for the first time and find probably even more brand new ones. Social media has changed my life in dramatic ways that don’t even need hyperbole. It’s nuts. I have reason to believe (a bazillion conversations to support the notion) that there are a LOT of people like me out there. I have to go find out.
Along the way, I need to find out some other stuff and I’m not getting any younger, so I’m weaving this into an immersion course in things that make me curious. It will rock, it did before (this is not my first rodeo on the road.) And, as luck would have it – my numbers are rock solid legit right now, so chop.chop. No time like right this instant.
While I did perform this kind of magic trick before, and just leave my hometown to find happiness anywhere far away, this is not that same dance. I sang on street corners, I caught rides on Craigslist, I couchsurfed way before airbnb, I took some mighty big chances and I still had unresolved Stuff issues in Kansas. That was all about leaving from and not going to.

MOElookSo, I believe I’ve built a way for all of us to get what we want. I get to travel safely and well within reason and hug everybody and gather stories and spin them into laughs and colors; You get to hear stories and see things and have questions answered that you hadn’t even thought to ask yet, all from the comfort of your life right where you sit.
Feels like winner.winner, to me.
Click on over here (here.here.here.) if you’d like to vicariously see the western United States from a train and find out what it’s like to live in a village of 73 people (most of whom are Athabaskan Indians) in the hard serious interior of Alaska, where there is no indoor plumbing and smokin’hot wifi but electricity that comes from generators powered by gasoline. Yes. Gas from a gas pump thing, EVEN when it’s 60 below and there’s only 3 hours of sunshine a day. And, there are bears. I will probably have to learn how to shoot a gun like Daniel Boone, and shit.
Those already sound like some pretty tasty stories, right there.

Jump on. C’mon. It’ll be fun. (or scary, but mostly fun. I promise.)

And, if you can throw down a dollar or two, do that. It makes the stories more funny, less scary.

xomoe