Update on deck – next blog.
Turns out that living OTG (off the grid) has so many iterations that the term is indistinct and used by so many different lifestyles as to be confusing. Our book category is a melange of quirky titles and authors describing how to live in your car, your boat, your RV or on a surfing couch, live for free, live in a house built from garbage or live in a cabin in the woods – just to name a few. One nut lives on a remote island up the BC coast! And another self published book I saw on Amazon featured a shopping cart on the cover and promised to reveal the secrets of homeless living. (Presumably, those suggestions work best in the city…I can’t see that shopping cart thing workin’ too good in the forest.)
Fair enough. OTG is more of a mindset in my opinion, anyway, but I think Amazon is embracing the fringe rather than the real OTG’ers but why squabble over semantics? Basically, all of the folks living unconventionally are making a statement. They don’t like the ‘burbs, the condos or the lifestyle required to get there. Or else they can’t get in. Doesn’t matter how you cut it – voluntarily or involuntarily – conventional living simply does not work for everyone.
It doesn’t work perfectly for anyone, in my opinion. It works for the system to have a ready-to-hand labour pool and taxpayers willing to hemorrhage money on demand in aid of that system but the lifestyle seems to grind everyone up in the end. No one is happy unless they are on Prozac and have just recently avoided an indictment. Heart attacks, drug overdoses, destroyed families, tension, neurosis, psychoses, failures to launch, chronic fatigue, addictions, divorce, cancer, bankruptcy, all this collateral damage in aid of sustaining a system that just doesn’t strike me as supportive for enough people to warrant it’s continuance.
But how do you change it?
I simply moved away from it. I moved away like a person who objects to an industrial odour or heavy traffic or local drug houses or drive-by shootings. I moved away from what I saw as bad rather than to what I knew was good. That it turned out to BE GOOD surprised me as much as anything ever has. But I lucked into this paradise. I was really just getting out of the kitchen ’cause I couldn’t take the heat anymore. No genius, here. More like a rat leaving a sinking ship.
And, what’s it to me, anyway? If folks wanna meth-amphetamine themselves to death in a highrise condo while avoiding their creditors and lying and cheating those they know, why would I care? Even if they are NOT doing that but just being ground down to a tiny nub like so many others, why do I care? Hell, even if they are living the high-life with only burnout as the price they pay, why would I care?
And, do I care?
I honestly don’t know the answer to that question. I know I care a bit. I care a bit that 7,000 Nepalese were killed in their recent earthquake. I care that hundreds are dying trying to smuggle themselves into better lives from where-ever they came from. I care that ordinary Canadians are being made to feel like failures because of overwhelming debt. I care a bit that people would incite radical Muslims to die defending the imaging of Muhammad at a cartoon contest. I even care a bit that senator Duffy is being tried (rightly so) for simply being the wrong pig in the wrong pigsty at the wrong time. Nasty pigstys offend me at all levels. I am a sensitive guy.
But how do you change it?
I’ve been asked to write an article on a milder version of that question (I haven’t agreed to do so). How can a political party actually make positive changes? I have some ideas, of course. You don’t get to be 67 and having written a few thousand blogs by lacking opinions. I got opinions! But what is the basic one? What is the pure message? What cuts to the chase in 750 words? How do you change the world in a soundbite?
Wanna job? Wanna real job? One that continues? Then vote Green and change the world so that it can be all that it can be!
Old parties think the economy runs by selling our natural resources in bulk to other countries. And the rich guys get richer. The Greens believe the economy starts at the local level and we are awash in the resources we need to do that and do it sustainably.
Real jobs begin at home!
Or should I just go to my old standby?: Get out! Get out NOW!
I believe all that but is it game-changing? I don’t think so.
Having said that, Elon Musk’s pretty conventional battery – nothing simpler, really – will shift the big picture a little. A battery will change the energy grid. Our collective perspective WILL change.
OMG! Maybe there is hope, after all.