Be the Change | Editorial

The American dream propels us to supposed prosperity. We go to college for knowledge. We hopefully fall in love and create life. We buy a house we may or may not be able to afford. We pay our loans. We toil and dog paddle against the waves of housing bubbles and crashing economies and the price of long wars. But we are able to be successful if we work hard enough we can be anyone or do anything. Maybe.

There is another option. You can be a pioneer by shedding the skins of what we should be and forge a new path. Steven Robert teaches us a lesson in the story “Friday Harbor boater houses floating computer lab.”

Roberts describes himself as a “technomad” and has lived in modes of transportation since 1983. For eight years he rolled around the U.S. on a computerized, recumbent bicycle.

It was Roberts’ escape from a 9-to-5 job, 30-year mortgage, and suburbia, which he attributes to a state of mind, not just location. What he wanted was freedom, while maintaining a steady paycheck.

Now he lives in a powerboat equipped with 50,000 pounds of electronics from a piano keyboard to a weather station.

We so often look so hard for solutions, how can we solve the housing crisis and the increasing population. Perhaps we need to take Roberts’ example and turn the model of living on its head. Perhaps a boat or bicycle is not your ideal living situation, but it’s a look at another way of living and should at least get your mind spinning. We can thank Gandhi for his age old saying, “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”