4 thoughts on “On Doing It Myself

  1. Matt and I (well honestly probably mostly Matt) tend to have a somewhat do-it-yourself mentality. He is quite capable and usually at least attempts to fix things himself before turning to someone else. I am a little more hesitant in that matter, but I have recently begun knitting and making jewelry so I am making some of my own stuff. I don't remember the last time I purchased jewelry for myself or anyone else.

    As a community, Matt and I and our group of friends rely on each other a lot instead of purchasing things or paying others to do things for us. For example, I cut the hair of four of the guys from Bethany. We also work on each other's vehicles and computers. It has saved us a lot of money in the three years we have lived here, and things that can be time consuming to do alone are a lot more fun with a group of friends.

  2. Great post Chris. So much of what you say resonates with me. I've only paid for a haircut about 3 or 4 times my entire life, with my mom cutting my hair when I lived at home and my wife cutting it now. While there are some days that I might wish I had more of a "style", I simply think about the absurdity of paying someone to do something I've had done for free my entire life and realize that in the grand scheme of things it's not that important.

    Like you, I highly value being able to do things for myself. I feel I inherited this value from my parents. Growing up I was able to dabble in gardening, lots of household repairs and upkeep, car maintenance, building computers, running networks, basic woodworking, and much more. While these experiences may not have taught me everything I hope to eventually know about these things, they helped me to appreciate the value of doing it myself.
    I think you're right that our consumerist society pushes us to be less reliant on our innate abilities as human beings and more reliant on our capacity to make and spend money. This makes for an inherently more unfair social situation, as it ultimately takes the control away from people who aren't as empowered to do things for themselves.
    I'm glad to know that I'm a part of a community that values broadening one's knowledge and skills and sharing those learnings with others. Just let me know when you're ready to learn how to change the oil in your car ...

  3. i am incredibly drawn to diy living, not because i don't want to depend on other people or can't trust them, but because it is an incredibly more interesting way to live! making my own soap is really fun. growing my own herbs to put in my own soap is even more fun! and then creating wrapping paper from the trash can to put the soap in tops it all off.
    and things get really exciting when we all start to figure out which pieces of the puzzle our neighbors and friends have. it would be great to have a simple and elegant online system for local folks to connect over needs and offers, and figure out what we can do for and with each other! hmmm...i seem to remember a timebank blip on the radar screen last year - maybe we could bring it out and dust it off?

  4. Recycle the fridge already! Before you pass another dime - and get anything 08 energy star...

    -----

    Heh, I've cut my hair for decades - for/because catharsis, neurosis, sufficiencies, practicalities...

    But yeah, it'd be much more sensual, ritual, rewarding to have someone in my trusted community groom me...

    -Jim

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