Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Ninteenth: Lil' Houses for Big People II

That last post with a similar title, that was a tangent. I meant to write about something pretty different and the opening paragraph somehow opened it's ass and took over the entire post. Good post though all in all. It's a nice way to devote an entire post to what I really wanted to say now that all the back story and bitching and motivating factors have been typed and published. What will follow is a simple post highlighting a few neat ideas I have warmed to in the past year or so. Enjoy, if you must read at all!

1square = 1square foot

That's 240 square feet! The floor plan you see pictured was made by The person who runs this blog, and this flicker account. I don't have the time right now to decide just who they are or what their about but the floor plan is a wonderful illustration of what I'm here to talk to you about today dear readers. Tiny houses. Small spaces to live in. I love the idea and perhaps all the more so because if you have a tiny house, then you don't have to room to acquire as much crap. It's sort of a neat game to play with the more greedy sides of yourself. Whether it is used with that intended purpose or not (probably a bad idea for that to be any one's sole purpose to do something), it's a great way to live that I'm eager to experiment with and discover.

As it stands, my living situation is sort of unique. I live in an apartment behind my mothers house, what used to be out pool house. It has no running water, no bathroom or sink in it to need running water, or any gas kitchen set up, but it does have electricity and internet access. Basically it's a large bedroom disconnected from the rest of the house. Its about the size of this little floor plan I believe, maybe bigger. I think its about 20 by 15 feet. Not sure about that, could be very wrong. I'm pretty awful when it comes to estimating distances, but it certainly is uh something by something about the size of a living room. This floor plan is so wonderful. I wonder how it stands up to city building codes... In the future I would like to live on my grandfather's old property, that my mother now owns, in south Austin. Well, its only a block from my current house, but miles away in atmosphere. The property is a giant garden that backs up to a creak with a pretty rock wall and two old sheds that are so cute you could see them on a postcard. The largest, most respectable looking one is actually framed out to be a tiny house, though not as smartly planned as the one above. All that remains are to get power, water, insulation, drywall, fixtures and cabinetry, permits ad nauseam. The other building is smaller, and made of tin. It's nearly fifty years old and looks it. To see it on a moon lit night all alone with the wind howling is to truly be scared to the bones. As of this moment both are filled with shit. No doubt that if the shit happened to be liquidated the proceeds could pay for at least one, if not both, to be renovated. If I had my way I'd quit school and get to work building myself a living down there. My mother I think just likes the thought of it but seems scared as shit to work towards anything without being forced. We'll see how it all turns out soon enough. The money we've had saved is starting to run very thin as the months of unemployment rage on. Soon enough the only money to be found will be in the sale of her antiques and paperweights. We had a garage sale once (without putting a dent in the great mass of our property) and sold so many valuable things for pennies on the dollar. We made sever hundred bucks but probably lost much more than that. I remember this one guy got a whole stack of collectible records... I don't even remember what, but things I'm sure a conessour would drool at. We sold it to him for a five! What a shame. Anyway, the clutter and fill will be extracted soon enough and left with be the shell of a tiny building, waiting for me to fix it up and live a simple life. Dreams? Oh now I'm getting melancholy. Not what I intended for this post.

Another idea I enjoy very much is the Underground House. I bought the book last year and was positively obsessed with the idea for a few months. Unfortunately the my grandfather's property is in the floodplain, being so close to the creek and all. I'm afraid the land isn't near high enough to be dug into for anything. As soon as a rain hit the whole side wall could be washed away. I'm not sure but I think it's probably not suitable. Doesn't mean there isn't more land in the world. Do they shoot squatters now a'days? Well who knows. Their book gives some pretty good instructions for acquiring country land... but who wants to live there? I like my little garden because its a bit of country inside, but right on a major bus line with a gas station across the street and a 15 minute drive from down town. Hard to beat. The underground houses are beautiful though. They offer so many advantages I can't see why someone in a less wet situation wouldn't build one. Hah, maybe to avoid being called a quack. If you visit that link you can see that of the benefits listed the sixth is protection from mobs, gunfire, blasts, and similar results of social disintegration. Mhmm. Indeed.

Besides the negligible social stigma you might develop for your underground dwelling, you can enjoy the monetary freedom from air conditioning costs! Ooo it just makes me all tingly inside thinking of hanging out in one of these. I've always been a fervent supporter of building forts, clubhouses, and the like. These mole holes are awesome! Gah look at the pictures, really. How can you pass that up?!

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