Friday, June 24, 2016

If It's Thursday, It's LA

The view from my son's loft in the downtown Los Angeles Art District.
That's where I am. I'm in downtown Los Angeles, the City of Angels here in sunny southern California. I'm visiting with my son, Pete. He lives in the newly (continually being) gentrified Art District, formerly an area of old factories, mills and warehouses. He has a very nice loft in one of the re purposed old buildings.

It's an interesting area. Apparently it is already or is rapidly becoming the most expensive real estate section in LA. Besides the residential renovations of these buildings there is a thriving and growing art, media production, entertainment and retail utilization of these old buildings. This goes along with a trend in many urban parts of the U.S. for people to be moving into these old, re purposed sections of major cities to be closer to work, entertainment and other facets of life.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Summer 2016 Rubber Tramp Rendezvous (RTR)

Audio Version available - see player below

Just left my lofty perch at about 7,500' in the Coconino National Forest outside Flagstaff, Arizona where I was attending the Summer 2016 Rubber Tramp Rendezvous or the RTR as it's known by the vandwelling world. The event is typically held in January outside Quartzsite, Arizona, but there have been two (that I know of) including this current one, held in the warmer months at a high elevation where the temperatures in Arizona are MUCH more moderate. It was probably in the mid to high 70's yesterday at the RTR and it was about 120 degrees in Phoenix, Arizona, perhaps 125 miles south of Flagstaff.

The event was created by a full-time, nomadic, vandwelling fellow by the name of Bob Wells. Bob, has a very interesting background and caught my attention early on. His Web site,, provided a wealth of knowledge and information that I (and likely thousands of others) found very useful. When I began my newly chosen lifestyle of living free without a permanent residence and my “tin tent” on wheels aka, “My McVansion,” much of what I learned from Bob's site helped me implement my adventure.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Moving On!

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It's time to move to my next adventure on my current trek westward. I've been in Edgewood, New Mexico staying at the Rt 66 RV Park. Yes! THAT Rt 66, aka, “The Mother Road.” This is my first time staying at a “commercial,” privately owned (non-governmental, city, state or federally owned) camping area. I'll have a report on my experience here at this RV park in a future article on the blog. Let me just say that that this was my first experience in a commercial RV park and could quite possibly be my last experience. The best part of my two week stay here is coming up tomorrow morning – I'll be leaving. Enough said!

I have been enjoying time with my friend, John Abert, who I met through my blog. John has been baching it for a couple weeks since his delightful wife, Sharon, has left him on his own while she's been on an Alaskan tour with her sister. Her adventure was a primary motivation for John selecting this RV park for a month stay while she was traveling. This RV park is about 25 miles or so from the Albuquerque airport that Sharon needed access to in order to fly to Seattle to meet up with her sister on the way to Alaska. John will leave here on Tuesday, with no love lost either, to meet Sharon at the airport on her return from Alaska. They will continue on their travels heading to Texas to take care of some business.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Worst of Times – Best of Times

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Six words by Charles Dickens from his classic A Tale of Two Cities. I quoted the entire passage in my last article. The words are as apropos today as when he wrote them.

As a proponent of a philosophy of living, a personally free lifestyle encompassing a minimalist mindset and economical financial budgeting, I have to embrace these six words. Truly, there are many issues in our country and world that can be described as the “worst of times.” However, on the flip side of the coin, there are so many positive changes and advances in technology (in all fields of science and industry) that have occurred during my lifetime. My lifetime beginning at the end of World War II. The indicators are that we live in the best of times.

Some of us, of the older Baby Boomer generation, often reflect on how they liked the good old days better when everything was simpler and, perhaps more civil. To be clear, I'm a member of the Boomer generation by association, since I was born the year before the officially recognized Baby Boomer generation began in 1946.

Of course, for every generation there is a good old days. And, certainly for some who experienced the worst of the Great Depression era, World War I, World War II and the Civil War, those good old days may not have been that good.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

On The Road Again . . .

Like a band of gypsies we go down the highway
We're the best of friends
Insisting that the world be runnin' our way
- Willie Nelson

Audio Version available - see player below

Hi Everyone . . .

I know it's been a while since I've posted anything new here. Frankly, I needed a short break. There were just a lot of things going on and my poor little brain was getting fried.

Additionally, I was devoting time to straightening out the space I had been occupying at my friend's place in WV where I was based camped for way too long. And, I was devoting more time to completing some modifications and changes to “My McVansion” before heading out on the road again. I ran it past my mechanic and we found a few minor things that needed some tightening, replacing or refilling. I wanted to make sure it was road worthy before I started wracking up the miles again.

Just about the time I was finally ready to roll out the door, one of my few remaining clients (from my 50+ year career in the recording & voice-over business) called with a new project. Actually, the 3rd or 4th complete update and redo of one of his training programs. I had to record the program at his offices in Fairfax, Virginia (where I have an office at my disposal whenever the need should arise). But, the scripts wouldn't be ready and cleared by his lawyer for another week and a half. So, one more delay, but certainly worth it. Dave and I have been working together on his programs for over 35 years.

Monday, May 2, 2016

52 Weeks to a Simpler Life – Tip #32 – Stop Sending Christmas Cards or All Greeting Cards

Audio Version available - see player below

No! It's not even close to the new Christmas season as I compose this article. But, I did say to stop sending ALL greeting cards. So, what am I the Grinch Who Stole Christmas . . . and Birthdays, Anniversaries, Thanksgiving, Mother's Day, Father's Day, etc.? No! I'm not. I'm simply the guy helping you to simplify your life and, while you're at it, be more frugal and find better uses for your hard earned money.

This IS the 21st Century the last time I checked. The Internet has been in full force for the past 20+ years. Email has all but replaced handwritten and even typed letters not only in our personal lives, but our business lives as well. In most cases, a “digital signature” now holds the same weight as a hand signed document. Schools, much to my dismay, have stopped teaching cursive handwriting in many places with more following suit. Our lives are busier and more complex than they've ever been. Fewer and fewer people have wired phones in their homes and more adopt wireless communication everyday. In case you haven't looked, the “Brave New World” is upon us.

So, why are you, if you haven't already made the switch, still back in the 20th Century?

Monday, April 25, 2016

Photo-of-the-Week #260 - Sunrise On The Atlantic, New Beginnings, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, January 2009

This is IT! For all of you who have tuned in each week for this simple feature I've called my Photo-of-the-Week, this is the 260th photo article. I said this is it, because after 260 consecutive weeks or five years, I'm ending this series. And, NO, it's not because I've run out of photos. Believe me, I have several thousand photos to continue choosing from. I'm simply tired and bored with producing this particular weekly article . . . READ MORE