Wednesday, February 08, 2012


I FOUND THEM IN THE HILLS OUTSIDE QUARTZSITE, ARIZONA.  Perhaps 50 of them---men and women---single and coupled---mostly young---all were mobile---dwelling in vans, cars, trailers and motor homes.  Assembled here for the "RUBBER TRAMP RENDEZVOUS"---A yearly event.   Like mountain men (and women) of yesteryear, they are extremely independent---wandering solitarily most times---but gathering now for comraderie and inspiration.

Down there--just 4 miles from town they gather---separating themselves as you might expect of mountain men---and women---according to their personal need for space.

Some "VANDWELLERS" are here---a nationwide internet connected group numbering 8000. 
I stayed a few days with them---noted that they rise and slumber by no schedule---that they enjoy themselves without shame--camp without charge---inspire one another to higher adaptiveness--assist whenever asked.

Each morning at 10 a different seminar was presented. This one on the latest in communication equipment.  Others included camping strategies, cooking, temporary work, jewelry making, l.e.d. lighting, batteries/solar power etc.
Nightime found them gathering around a fire.

Dogs were always welcome---added to the fun.

I accepted an invitation to do a seminar---did a tin can discussion---anonymous questions collected in a can are addressed by the group.  I think I established that collectively we are vastly wiser than separately.

A collective soup called Hobo stew---not bad.

Meet Bob Wells--host of this event and founder of a terrific website : (my stealth trailer is still featured there) A bronze plaque may someday celebrate his contribution to rational living.

A remarkable lady--Sue Anne with a big-time yen for adventure---whose life style should inspire many---she lives and travels quite comfortably in this Prius hybrid car---months at a time---boldly spanning the entire US---rarely paying for a camping spot. I asked about sleeping arrangements.
She sleeps here---quite comfortably---and likewise has clever bath and cooking solutions.  When she lies down---she "disappears" from casual sight and so is super stealthy---and never needs to worry up a place to camp.  The world is her oyster---Pay heed Michele and every soul yearning to breathe free and adventure cheaply---here is living proof that it can be done.  Want to know more:

Meet Laurie whose rig Is named the Casbah for its cozy, colorful,seductive, luxuriousness. She invited me for tea---sang me a song--gave me candy (see her selection of sweets attached to the ceiling).
On the road a mere 3 weeks--but wonderously comfortable with herself  and this new adventure.
I don't need to tell you I was thoroughly charmed.

She demonstrates a "metaphysical" device called a Buddha board:  Write or draw on it and slowly it will vanish----reminding one of the impermanence of everything.
RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES:  Oh my heart is light---All these young people embracing Simpliciy, Frugality, Freedom, Mobility----a sufficiency mentality.  PATHFINDERS---WAY-SHOWERS.
Here, sweet people, is the antidote for greed. 


BlackSheep said...

I don't know if we were all "REBELS" or not you consider yourself one? After all, you WERE there.....I consider many of us to be out there by choice, TRYING to live like Thoreau....

Randy said...

Blacksheep: I do consider myself a rebel---seeking change merely by not participating in conventional society---being off the grid---having a small consumption footprint. Thoreau recommended that we bring about change non violently by simply refusing to participate (by the millions)in the wasteful, fitful, overbusy society around us.

Mike said...


Do you ever read the news paper ? Like the new your times ?
PLEASE read this and tell me how it squares with your idea of only working 10-20 years due to Industrialization ?

Looks like the Industrial Revolution in 2012 China is being lead by 18 million unemployed USA workers, many will work ZERO more years. Not willing to work for only $17 per day & sleeping 15 to a 12 x 12 room.

I'm really dying to hear your spin ??

Anonymous said...

here are your exact words !!!

Randy said...
Thank you Anonymous for saying: "Who would feed all those layabouts"?
It give me the oportunity to state my view of unemployment: NO MORE THAN 50% OF US NEEDS TO WORK ----CAREERS, IN MY VIEW, SHOULD BE NO LONGER THAN 10 OR 20 YEARS. THAT IS THE GIFT OF THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION THAT IS BEING HOARDED BY THE GREEDY. It borders on mental illness the way most people grunt and sweat under a weary life.

Looks like no more then 50% of us will ever find jobs, much less work 10-20 years. Is this your dream for the USA ?? LOOKS like its coming TRUE !!

Ash said...

Well now I'm very jealous of those who made it this year!

mike said...

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg Poised for Taxpayer Hall of Fame
By Matt Nesto | Breakout – Wed, Feb 8, 2012 12:01

In the great scheme of problems, a huge tax bill resulting from a financial windfall has to be one of the best headaches to have. Such is the quandary that 27-year old Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is facing, after revealing plans to sell $5 billion worth of stock options, which will result in a $2 billion tax bill.
This will likely be the largest individual tax bill ever paid out to the IRS and it will immediately induct the young billionaire into what Macke and I call the Taxpayer Hall of Fame.
What's even more amazing is that he's choosing to do it. Zuckerberg does not have to exercise his stock options now. By doing so, he is registering major monetary gains that will be taxed as ordinary income at a 35% rate.
Sure, he'll still have many billions left to get by on after writing his checks to the Federal government and California --the State government will rake in a $500 million chunk of change too. But it didn't have to be this way.
"Not to be a cynic, but this is pure P-R," Macke says, arguing that the payout is ultimately designed to make Facebook look better in the eyes of America.
Of course, when the Harvard dropout pays a 35% rate it makes for some clumsy comparisons, most notably, with Warren Buffett, whose self-described under-taxed status not only earned him and his secretary a mention in President Obama's State of the Union address, but has seen his name being affixed to proposed legislation.
The so-called "Buffett tax" would see anyone earning more than $1 million dollars a year paying at least 30%, regardless of how the money was earned. In Buffett's situation, as well as in the case of Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney, that change would effectively double their tax bills, as both paid rates in the mid-teens for 2010.
There are sure to be ripple effects from such an enormous payment on the already contentious tax debate set to be a key topic in the upcoming election. Here's why: It would take 1,000 Mark Zuckerbergs just to balance the Federal budget for one year!
Bottom line is, as big as Mark Zuckerberg's tax bill is and regardless of his intentions, the fiscal crisis this country faces is just that much bigger.

Mark Zuckerburg must be the 1 guy out of 300 million who only needs to work 10 - 20 years because of the Industrial revolution, then he can retire per Randy's plan.....and live cheap in a cargo trailer......

Ash said...

Hey Randy! Just for the record: most of us read your posts because we really enjoy them. Opinions are fine but picking a fight for the sake of being a pain in the butt... Thanks for keeping your sense of humor and continuing the entertain the rest of us:)

Maria Meiners said...

Thanks for the window into how others live their mobile life. I'm on board as soon as I can pull it all together.

Maria Meiners said...

@Mike - not sure about Randy's spin on that NY Times article but I found it interesting.

Times change. The world changes and we gotta keep up. I've never expected employment or security from anyone but myself and my family.

When I look at people I know who are out of work, I often see people who would rather complain about being out of work than doing something about it. And honestly, with the extended unemployment benefits so many are getting (I know people who've been on unemployment over a year) there's little motivation to go out and make a living.

Conversely, the people I know who take responsibility for their lives and finances can not only find work, but are always in demand. It's all in the attitude.

Get in touch with me if you want to talk more on this.

swankiewheels said...

I don't agree with you Randy, that most of the folk at the RTR were young people. In fact, I would say the majority of them were retired folk or those forced out of work due to a disability. The few young folk I met were very interesting, but by far NOT in the majority.

swankiewheels said...

Rebels would not be the word I would use... some of us are living this life by choice and others because they have no other reasonable choice. Most of the people I have met were not bums or lazy people, but very hard working people - some who even refuse to accept any type of social welfare.