Thoughts on quitting life?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by macduke, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. macduke Suspended

    macduke

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Location:
    Central U.S.
    #1
    Anyone here just feel like quitting life? No, I'm not talking about suicide. I enjoy living. I love my wife, my three year old daughter, and my one year old son. I just sometimes wonder if the life I'm living needs to change in some significant way.

    I can't quite put my finger on it. I have a nice house that overlooks a beautiful forest. I have most everything I want—which isn't anything crazy because I just like buying things that assist my creativity and don't otherwise care much about possessions. My job doesn't pay very much relative to my field (web design and development), but the market for my field isn't very big in this area of the central U.S. Due to budget constraints and structural changes, I'm now essentially at the top of my area at my work because they fired most everyone above me, so there is no longer any chance of promotion. Upper management has been chaotic with a lot of changes. I've lost incentive to do better because what's the point? There's no money for raises. There's no potential to increase my influence by overseeing larger projects. I'm just kind of stuck, but relative to other people I know in bigger cities, I have it fairly easy and get to see my family more than any of them.

    I'm also getting really sick and tired of "reality" as defined in our current time. There's nothing real. It's all a bunch of people furiously masturbating to their own fantasy self image. They preen their phony online persona so that they can keep up with the similarly phony personas of their "friends." The president isn't real. The news isn't real. Nobody cares about truth any more. To companies we're just these empty vessels into which they pour advertising. Privacy is being constantly eroded. Liberty is slowly slipping down the drain. People expect more and more from you, needing to be always connected or you're deemed a weirdo who doesn't try hard enough. Family time is becoming more of a luxury, and I value my family above all else.

    Lately I just feel like I need to unplug. Like I need to just buy a plot of land somewhere out west like Wyoming and start a small homestead. My wife and I both come from a long line of farmers, and we know a thing or two about living off the land, but even so I feel unprepared since I haven't had to do it full time for long durations or in extreme conditions. I also feel like I would be screwing my kids out of a proper experience growing up. But what is a proper experience? I don't want them to be awkward socially. But I just can't even imagine the levels of fake B.S. they'll have to deal with in 12-15 years with whatever comes next after whatever is after Snapchat that the kids are using to compare themselves.

    I hope I don't come across as a curmudgeonly luddite. I don't post in this section of the forum often, but those on the forums who know me know that I'm an advocate for technology and the good it brings through the advancement of knowledge and understanding. And obviously I love my Apple gear. But I also feel like I'm starting to drown in this constant flow of information that is a part of a wider problem across all platforms and I'm not sure what to do. Maybe it's just a part of the stage I'm at in life with young children, unable to take vacations and relax as often. IDK. I'm only in my early 30s and feel more like I'm an old man who doesn't understand the craziness of the world any more. I'm suddenly a lot more sympathetic when it comes to older people like my grandparents and the huge amount of change they've seen in their life.

    How do you guys cope? Have any of you tried quitting your life to do something radically different? How did it go? Those who have gone through this stage of having a young family, do you think it's just a phase? Sometimes it feels like a coma and every day slips by faster than the one before. I've finally got a real vacation scheduled in a few weeks for the first time in ages (I sometimes take time off of work to work on projects that need to get done at home, which is not a real vacation). We're going out to the Rockies with my wife's family and have a whole plethora of outdoor activities planned. Maybe I'll feel better after that—I hope!
     
  2. casperes1996 macrumors 65816

    casperes1996

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Horsens, Denmark
    #2
    So, I won't reply to all of that, since, well, I'm 21 and I don't feel like I properly could reply to most of it.

    That said, first off - that title really is scary..... Makes it sound way different to what you mean, hehe

    Second - I feel like there's a growing counter-culture, fighting against Snapchat, Facebook, etc. I've never engaged in it, and my close circle of friends never really has either. I also get discouraged when I see the wider use in society, but it's not all bad , and honestly, sometimes there are valid use cases for stuff like that, where it's used as a genuinely creative tool. You talk yourself about creativity, and in things like Snapchat's defence, it's just another form of personal storytelling and creative expression. I'd rather shoot a shortfall myself, but I admire creativity, and some people do actually use things like Snapchat in genuinely creative ways that I have respect for..... It's not the biggest group, but it's a thing.
    If your kids do grow up without all sorts of "always-on" communication tech, I highly doubt they'll be socially awkward or anything of the sort. They'll probably be more likely to belong to a subgroup, rather than "the big and popular" or whatever, but I don't personally think that's a bad thing. People who do extremely well is a subgroup too.

    I think a vacation will probably do you good. Maybe picking up a new hobby? Play an instrument, learn a new language, take flying lessons or whatever.
    And if you and your wife end up deciding to move to the country and live off the land or whatever, more power to ya. If it's what you want and it brings you happiness, I honestly don't really see a downside to it. I highly doubt it'll negatively affect your children in any way. At least not long term. They may be slightly annoyed in the beginning, but they might like it. And it's not like you have to be isolated from technology or society just because you move a bit away and have your own plot of land or whatever.

    If you haven't already, I think you should talk to your wife about this. She knows you better than people on this forum and if you want to move or similar, she probably should be a bit involved in that decision ;).

    I really hope you figure it all out, man.
     
  3. 960design macrumors 68020

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    Location:
    Destin, FL
    #3
    Sure do. Here's my thought list:
    1. Buy a 40ft sailboat and sail the world. Beer is fairly cheap, wind and fish are free. Just need a little cash for port calls and repairs. Many youtube channels of couples just selling everything and sailing away. Earning the repair money with videos of their experiences. Not a bad way to go for a couple or more years.
    2. Buy a tiny house on a lake in the middle of nowhere. Live off the grid for a couple of years.
    3. Buy a school bus or box van and convert it into a very nice little mobile home. Travel the country. Here, gas will be the biggest cost, but you could possible offset with a little income from youtube videos.
    Don't wait, do it now. Says the guy that is waiting...

    My daughter gets out of school in a couple of years. My sexy lady and I just might set sail for the Bahamas, Spain and anywhere else close to the shore.
     
  4. macduke thread starter Suspended

    macduke

    Joined:
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    Central U.S.
    #4
    Thanks for responding. Sorry about the title as I couldn't think of a better way to put it. Maybe quitting society? Quitting life as I know it? Anyway, 21 year olds have a lot of life experience too! It varies person to person, and some people are wise beyond their years. Don't ever feel like you can't contribute because of age. It's all about finding ways to relate and applying what you've learned over the years.

    Yeah, I've spoken with my wife about it quite a bit. She's inclined to agree, but to a lesser extreme. I just haven't gotten much of an outside opinion as I don't think a lot of my other friends or family would understand. I guess it's true that we wouldn't need to completely disconnect and trash our electronics, but it's probably my personality that is a part of the problem with being addicted to information, in a sense. I spend way too much time on here, a couple other forums, and reddit. And even so I spend way less time than other users I know. I sometimes wonder if it's a way that I medicate myself instead of dealing with my problems like my work which seems to be falling apart lately. I love constantly learning new things and chatting with people who have similar interests, or even different opinions which I can debate with them about and sometimes change my own beliefs if they present things that I can dig deeper into and research. But it's probably an addiction that I need to deal with first.

    What it boils down to is that I feel like I'm in this constant struggle to improve myself—not to be some enlightened perfect person, but to NOT be that person. To explain it better, I was raised by narcissists who had their own mental issues and about a year and a half ago I cut off all contact between my family and my parents as they were starting to say hateful things towards my children as well. So I have to work at not being full of myself and constantly fear growing up to be like my dad, who was a workaholic and physically abusive, or my mom, who is extremely lazy and verbally abusive. I like learning a lot of random things, but what drives a lot of that is trying to figure out how to save myself from becoming my parents and how to be a good dad to my own kids. For years I was failing miserably in community college while living at home and I had to make a clean break by moving away to university and basically reprogram how my brain works. Went from a string of failed or nearly failed courses to being on the dean's list. I feel like I internalized that dramatic change as being "you must always keep learning the best way to be a good person because the results speak for themselves" and that seeped into other areas as well.

    I took it hard when my uncle died unexpectedly a few months ago of a heart attack. He was a bigger guy for years until his late 40s, and got into good shape for several years before passing away. In the aftermath of breaking communications with my parents, he became a sort of father figure to me. Since then I've been trying to lose weight. The Apple Watch has helped a lot, and I've lost 20lbs, but I still have another 20-30lbs left to go and feel frustrated that I've hit a wall. I don't want to end up with him and die while my youngest is still in high school. Even went as far as fasting for a week recently, which really bugged me out since I'm on high blood pressure meds. It wasn't the smartest thing to do.

    I have some hobbies that I haven't kept up with, such as painting and storm chasing. I really enjoy photography and part of why work has been bumming me out is that I don't get to do photography as much any more because there is so much to take care of on the web. I've been looking at switching from my old Canon gear to smaller mirrorless Sony cameras that I can keep in my bag with me at all times. Then I can just snap things wherever I am and whenever I have time and edit them in Lightroom on my iPad. I've been saving up for the camera gear for a few years now because it's a lot of money to switch camera systems, and I'm planning on upgrading this autumn when the new model comes out. I just bought a new camera/iPad bag as my old iPad bag doesn't fit my 10.5" model, and it has several padded sections for a small mirrorless camera and a few lenses, so I'm excited to get back into that. I think that will probably help a lot as photography tends to destress me and I used to be really passionate about it.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 19, 2017 ---
    I would definitely consider doing this if my kids weren't so young. We have a good chunk in savings because I'm pretty decent at managing our budget despite our income, but not near enough to buy a boat. Also, don't know how to sail a boat, and I don't care for seafood being a midwesterner, lol. Tiny houses are actually something we've looked into. We could easily buy a decent tiny house. The land to put it on is the expensive part, but some areas in the country aren't too expensive. I'd like to own several acres, if possible. Ideally it would border public lands and I could just traverse the wilderness without trespassing. As for the van idea, I've seen some really cool projects on reddit where people do this, as well as some vlogs on YouTube. It's definitely something I've thought about, as I love road tripping. Another problem is limited vacation. My wife runs a daycare business out of our basement, which we remodeled last year after moving in to add a kitchen and a few other things. And parents aren't too keen on letting you have very much time off. My wife did this because she wanted to stay at home with the kids, so we made it happen. Maybe when the kids are in school she'll go back to work someplace where she can get some decent time off, but that kind of goes back to my original concern with the direction of society and not allowing people to have time off any more. Technology should be liberating us, and in some ways it has, but in other ways it binds us and means we just have to do more work.
     
  5. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #5
    What does your wife want to do?

    What are her interests, dreams, hobbies?
     
  6. casperes1996 macrumors 65816

    casperes1996

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    #6
    Sure. I don't see my age as a negative either or anything. It's just that I won't pretend to knowing all sorts about raising children... Although I have studied developmental psychology in children a fair bit. - it isn't really the same ;). I'll give my thoughts on what I feel I have well developed thoughts on.

    That's good then.
    Regarding this "addiction", I don't know, man. If you enjoy it, then I don't really see it as a problem. Unless you feel it's hindering something more important to you. – Not really the same, but maybe a little bit? – I once played loads of ****** iOS games that had no real gameplay, but just "wait - get coins - buy stuff - wait". It was terrible. Not even fun, but addicting, and productivity killing. Deleted all of that ****. I constantly check MacRumors though, and whilst it also in some ways kills productivity, I feel like there's value and enjoyment in it, and I learn from it and have fun while doing it.

    Man, I'm sorry about that with your parents. That's pretty ****** :/. – What I can say though, is that you sound like the kind of person who will never become what you say your parents were, so I don't think you should worry so much about it. I think that being the best you that you can is a great mentality though. But keep in mind that if the 'hunt for improving yourself' or whatever you wanna call it, gets to a point where it's stressing you or similarly affecting you negatively, then you're doing the opposite of improving yourself. Sometimes improving yourself actually comes down to saying that a specific part of yourself, is good enough as it is. In the acceptance of that lies improvement in itself I think. Not always the case, but you know.

    I'm sorry about that too, man. Sounds quite rough all of it. My girlfriend's family has a history of doing young, with all sorts of ****, from blood cloths to strokes and whatnot, and she's sometimes scared of dying young too. And it would be ****ing terrible, and I'd hate to outlive her. But most of us don't know for sure when we'll die. We can improve our chances by not living too unhealthy lives, but fact of the matter is that an accident could kill any of us tomorrow. Or who knows, maybe, even if we live terribly unhealthily, we could live to be a 100. I definitely recommend the healthy path, but you know, it's possible. With that in mind, I don't think we should worry too much about death. Just do the best we can before we reach that point, and be as happy as we can, and perhaps a bit more important than that, bring as much happiness to others as we can.

    Regarding losing weight, my brother lost about 65kg (According to Spotlight that's 143 pounds) and it was without exercising more than usual at all. – And no fasting or any stuff like that either. Forget all those fancy diets and that. There's one simple metric to keep an eye on - calories. Consume less than you burn, and you'll lose weight, consume more than you burn, and you'll gain weight. It doesn't matter if you eat proteins, fat or carbohydrates, when it comes to your weight, it's only the calories that count. Now, protein, fat and carbohydrates still need to be balanced for it to be healthy and for you to feel like you're not starving constantly, but the basics there are easy too. Fat and proteins are long term energy sources, and carbonhydrates are here and now. Our cells need all of it to some degree, so don't believe any of those "No fat at all" diets or whatever. Fat is actually relatively good to eat for losing weight, since your body uses more energy, i.e. calories, to get the energy from the fat. Anyway, this is getting to be a bit of a rant now ;). Hope it helps though!
    Oh! And remember that weight isn't all. We have different body types all of us, and some people have naturally higher weights than others without it being a health risk - It's the composition of your body that determines that, not weight alone. To figure out your exact ideal weight, you'll need measurements of what percentage of your weight is fat, muscle, bone, etc.

    I know that feeling, man. You can often get too bogged down with work and all sorts to focus enough on what you want. I've been having a script lying around for ages that I want to finish but never feel like I have the time. I want to get to shooting it already!
    And yeah - cameras, senses, all that - it can be an expensive ride!
    I think that destressing factor you get from photography could help a lot. Like, I'm really happy at school and with my girlfriend and all that, but sometimes, I feel like I need those kinda special moments that I get when I'm directing a film, or doing post production or similar. It's not that I'm more happy doing that then other stuff, but it's in a different, indescribable way. A specific mental space I occupy, and I think that if I don't get to go into that space for long enough, I might feel a bit similar to what you describe.
     
  7. macduke thread starter Suspended

    macduke

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    #7
    Maybe a little bit of a hindrance, and only really in the past year or two. I'll find myself needing to get other things done, especially at work, but find myself roaming online. I've got a lot of stuff to get done, and I'm known for delivering projects ahead of schedule, but that's less the case any more. Part of it is that the web has gotten to be so complicated, and my responsibilities have massively increased to the point where it seems overwhelming. I'm in charge of about 35 websites now, and only a few have moved over into my new responsive design in WordPress, which came in a couple months late. There are so many things to account for now, such as all the different display sizes, and all of the legacy crap that has to be retained, all of the accessibility guidelines we're required by law to follow, and all of the security that I have to maintain. I literally have to do design thumbnail sketches, mockups and renders, usability testing, front-end markup and style, icon design, back-end programming, database management and migration, customize the WordPress interface for our writers, and make sure everything is secure. A lot of the photos on the site are also photos I've taken. It's ridiculous how much of the site is stuff that I did. Most of what I haven't done is copy writing, of which there are three people on my team who can help with that. The rest is up to me. Oh wait, make that three, because one left and they couldn't rehire, so now I have to do some of the writer's jobs as well. I'm alone in what I do and some of the few people who I'd bounce ideas off of at the top level are gone and many of them have taken up the few jobs in town that involve the web. I'm so stuck.

    I do need to accept things more. That's true. But I have mixed feelings about whether I'll become my parents. My parents became worse with age. Or at least I think they did? It might be more likely that I grew up and realized that this wasn't normal, so it seemed like it happened over time. Growing up, it seemed like that happened with my grandma on my mom's side, and I see my mom becoming more and more like her every day. My dad's bipolar disorder has only gotten worse. I saw a psychologist at my work, and he assured me that I show no signs of any disorder, but I still get paranoid about it. I also get anxiety sometimes, but I'll come back to that in a minute.

    Yeah, I also worry because I remember my grandpa on my other side had some heart attacks around that age too, maybe a little younger, when I was a kid. Luckily he survived after having a quadruple bypass surgery, and some other surgeries later on. He was able to lose some weight and stopped smoking and drinking. I've never smoked and only have alcohol a couple times per year in small amounts. But I still get anxiety about dying young, which I didn't get before having children, even though I assumed it would probably happen. And the anxiety kind of manifests itself in a way that makes me feel like I'm dying and that something is terribly wrong, which only makes it domino out of control. It only gets really bad a couple times per year, but the rest of the time it's a big distraction in the back of my mind that makes me nervous. I'm not really scared of death itself, but my absence in my family's life and how that might affect them.

    I've never gotten an official measurement, but have a good scale that's supposed to measure percentages and it seems about right. It's why my doctor told me my BMI isn't realistic because I'm built with more muscle, especially in my legs, so I only need to get down between 180-190lbs for him to consider me healthy, so that's my goal. The main problem is that I have back problems that are genetic in my family, made worse by a whitewater kayaking accident in 2007. But I've done a lot this year to strengthen my core and have a lot less problems now. I've been able to do some short runs during my walks, and was able to do a flat out legit sprint last week for the first time since 2009 and actually felt pretty good afterwords. So I'm still making progress, even if my weight has stalled.

    I was originally getting a photography degree when I switched to design because it's so hard to make money doing photography. And I'm kinda glad that I did as many of the people I went to school with in photography never got a job in photography. Design is my second love, but it seems like I do less and less of it every day due to programming taking up all of my time. Someday I hope to work on a real team where people can specialize a bit more in what they do and I would be able to focus more on design. I love being able to do lots of things, but it's becoming too much to handle. I don't know how to say no at work, and I was always trying to impress since this is my first job out of college and started out a bit later due to my community college and home life problems that bogged me down in the mid 2000s and pushed back my graduation by a few years.

    Anyway, I appreciate you taking the time to chat with me. I'm feeling a bit better now being able to talk about it with someone outside of my everyday life and get some more perspective.
     
  8. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #8
    And, I will repeat my question of a few posts aback: What are your wife's dreams, hopes, aspirations, ideals? Or, does she have any at all?

    I'm very struck by all the self-absorption in your posts along with the fact that your wife is hardly mentioned.
     
  9. macduke thread starter Suspended

    macduke

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    #9
    She just wants what is best for our family. She's a really selfless person and better than I deserve. She seems some merit in taking a break from the race, but worries about the affect of more isolation on our children. She used to work with children with autism before opening the daycare in our house because she couldn't stand the thought of someone else taking care of our children. That's why we moved last year to a bigger place so that we could have a big space for it downstairs and expand it. But childcare isn't something she's passionate about long-term. She has mentioned getting her masters/BCBA (board certified behavior analyst) to run her business for in-home training programs to help children with autism. But she seems to be more passionate about helping young mothers cope with raising children and being a resource for them—everything from breastfeeding techniques and help to behavioral training and routine building. She basically wants to help and support mothers. I have to wonder if that comes from a place similar to me because she also had a terrible family life growing up, with her father being in and out of jail and her mother having breakdowns because of it and acting more like the child in the relationship. She's also talked about possibly becoming a doula or nurse. She has discovered that her sociology degree isn't very useful.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 19, 2017 ---
    I didn't see your post until after I replied to the other guy since we had been going back and forth. I was writing to you when you posted this second message. Patience!
     
  10. 960design macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
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    Destin, FL
    #10
    Check this out:


    Sailboats are inexpensive to purchase, but do cost to maintain. Research and luck can get you a very nice 35ft sailboat for under $50k, actually there's a great story about a guy that sailed around the world on a $1000 sailboat with three friends.

    Web design can be done in the boat office and you can meet clients all along the coast, everywhere in the world. Long passages include doldrums and days of quite coding.

    Sailing is easy. The wind blows the boat, even if you do not put the sails up. Sailing faster than everyone else is difficult.

    Good luck in whatever you decide. When you are old and feeble, do you think you will be more proud of an extra few hundred thousand dollars in your account or that trip to Japan, the snow in Colorado, the memories of the warm sun on your skin in the Bahamas?
     
  11. casperes1996 macrumors 65816

    casperes1996

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    Horsens, Denmark
    #11
    Holy ****! Your work responsibilities are bloody crazy! All that you're doing, is not a one man job. Not even a two man job. You're working for an entire team! I know this sounds daunting, especially living in an area with not that many other opportunities in your field, but I'd actually suggest you demanding to get some assistants, or quitting and finding something else. All that sounds terribly stressful.

    I know what you mean, man. It's different, because it's farther away, but I have similar experiences with my aunt. When I was younger, we'd go on trips with her and were rather close, but inexplicably, it was like she just became evil with time - of course evil isn't really something that exists as a pure thing, but she just did ****ed up **** for no apparent reason. Like, when my mum got cancer (she's better now after surgery and treatment), my aunt accused my mum of lying, saying she wasn't sick, even though she was losing her and all sorts. Like that in itself is a really weird thing to do that would suggest maybe there was something wrong with my aunt or whatever, but she kept doing mental ****. Started stealing a lot and ironically told the police that my mum had done all sorts of illegal ****, so the police came and looked around the house and such. Since they didn't find anything (obviously) they fined my aunt for lying about it, and she's fully aware it wasn't true, she just wanted to create an inconvenience for us.
    Anyway, my hole point is that I know how it feels to have family act like **** and it just getting worse and worse. At this point I don't even recognise her as family anymore. Well, mostly not anyway.
    But I don't think you have to fear becoming like your parents, for the pure reason that you're self aware that you don't want to be.

    Well that's the real scary part of death. One of my brothers committed suicide when I was really young (maybe 11?) and when all the "Why?" questions that had no answer died down, I clearly remember my dad calling it selfish. Until then I'd never really thought about it, but he was right. For the person who dies, it's just over. But for all of us who are still here, we're left with the loss. Now of course just dying in itself isn't selfish, because you can't exactly control that, but the ones who have to deal with it are the ones who're still alive.
    Don't assume you're going to die young though. There can always be unfortunate circumstances, and it would be terrible to have to leave your family behind, but you're alive right now, and until that changes, focus on that you're still here. It's all any of us can really do.

    In that case, right on! Weight loss isn't linear, and if you stay in shape that's worth more than weight anyway. And if you keep at it, you'll get there eventually!

    Yeah - someone on another thread who's just finished a photographer's degree just said that after getting an internship at a photographer, his boss or whatever it's called when you're an intern, said that the photography business is slowly dying. I doubt it'll ever go away entirely, but it makes sense that aside from big events like weddings and such, people just shoot their own photos and that's that. It's a bit of a shame, but it's also kinda nice that everyone today has... Well, I won't say good, but a passable camera in their phones and can take their own family photos, baby portraits etc. And of course there's the growth of video. Wedding videos are growing in popularity and in some cases replacing photos and such. Though on a personal level I'm fairly glad about that, being a video guy by trade ;).
    Your work really does sound like something you should be careful about though. Sounds like you're taking too big a bit for what can feasibly be chewed. I understand wanting to impress - I feel the same, and am currently sending out loads of applications for my first real job, and in hoping for replies, I'm making all sorts of dream scenarios up in my head, and I have that want to impress too, but you need to consider that you are also human, and as a single person, juggling what is traditionally an entire team's job, seems a bit excessive.

    Well, I'm glad if it helps. It's nice hearing other people's perspectives too I'd say. Makes you think about things you normally wouldn't have otherwise.

    I don't mean to sound rude or harsh, but frankly, **** off. I know those are rough words, and don't take too much offence, but your message is actually really impolite and very uniting for the situation. This guy is having some serious thoughts on his life that he needs to juggle with. Maybe not to you, but to me it's darn obvious that he loves his family and cares extremely much for them, and suggesting otherwise is rude at best. He's not self-absorbed at all. In fact, I'd argue to the contrary. He took concern for his children above all else, and based on his work situation, wants to please there too. We actually have more to give to others, if we also consider ourselves. If you give all of what you have and never worry about yourself, the pool of energy you have to spend on others rapidly decreases.
    He's reaching out, and instead of blaming him, I think it may be a better strategy to actually listen to what he has to tell, and as he puts it, have "patience".
    Sorry if I come off a bit harsh here, but I really got quite upset with the tone you were using there.
    --- Post Merged, Jun 19, 2017 ---
    Man, I like your attitude. You're pretty cool. I'm not personally into sailing, and would rather do my travelling on land or by air, but I love your "go do it" mentality.
     
  12. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #12
    With respect, you do mean to sound rude, and you have done so.

    Now, I am sure that it is possible to find other words than crude Anglo-Saxon in which to express yourself, but, hey, if words fail you, do please, resort to crude epithets.

    Now, I know perfectly well that the guy is having serious thoughts about his life: I'm just struck by how little he seems to refer to his wife when contemplating stuff such as 'tiny cabin in woods' or 'going off grid'.

    And, yes, I do think the OP self-absorbed, in a way I possibly would not if his wife were not a SAHM (Stay At Home Mother) and had her own income, identity through a job, economic and professional autonomy, and an independent life.

    Right: By all means think through your life choices and preferences, - but two points occur. The first is that the OP is not the only adult in this equation.

    And, the second is to make the obvious point that life "off-grid" is physically punishing, and extraordinarily exhausting and tedious, especially for women who are expected and assumed to want to belabour themselves with endless domestic drudgery, lacking economic independence - after all, there is a reason why electricity is seen as liberating.

    Okay: Red flags always fly in my mind when a male - whose wife is already a SAHM - wants further isolation. This smells of a desire to seek a lot more control to me.

    However, physical isolation is not the only solution; it is possible to police boundaries better - social media does not need to be attended to - or answered - urgently.
     
  13. Altis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    #13
    This seems to be a rapidly growing problem these days.

    People are becoming absolutely overwhelmed with data/information, non-stop, and I don't think the human psyche is really meant to operate in that way. We're bombarded with issues from all over the world that we have no control over, endless "social media" information... obsessions, narcissism, depression, headaches, fatigue, demoralization, poor sleeping.

    People's minds are constantly trying to solve the world's issues rather than just the ones in our own lives -- which is relatively new to humans and non-existant in any other species. That's what happens when it's exposed to information non-stop... and look around you, everyone's so glued to their phones/computers, they rarely look away.

    I don't think it's healthy, personally, but it's what's expected of us these days. I see it change people over time. Of course, if you say anything against it, you're just considered old-fashioned, "scared of change", etc...

    Yet people are overwhelmed. Staring into a screen all day, having a constant flow of demands, information, instant-gratification, always-connected... And we're starting to see the effects on people and society. Families are dwindling, marriage rates plummet, reliance on medication is up, anxiety, depression, nervous tension are all on the rise, social skills and community cohesion rapidly eroding, and lots of people just like you who feel this isn't the way to live (and enjoy life).

    Oh, and I also agree with you on how complicated the web has become... reminds me of this blog post illustrating the issue: https://hackernoon.com/how-it-feels-to-learn-javascript-in-2016-d3a717dd577f
     
  14. casperes1996 macrumors 65816

    casperes1996

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2014
    Location:
    Horsens, Denmark
    #14
    I meant to come off strong, but not to offend. Your message made me a bit emotional...

    Look, I get where you're coming from with this, and I'm a feminist too, but I think you're pulling at strings that aren't there. In fact, if you read through the OP's messages, he has indeed consulted his wife, and this in no way seems like some sort of power play to get more dominance or anything like that.

    Frankly, I think you're doing the opposite of what you're trying to do. Equality is something to strive for, and sexism is ****. But by instinctively assuming sexism, you're not improving things. At that point it feels like you're saying "Let me stand up for you, oppressed woman!". As if you run into a film set, and shoot the actor pretending to be a robber to 'save the day'.
    And at the time of your comment, there was no mention of profession of his wife or anything.

    I will do my best to not let negative emotions overtake me, and be a bit nicer, but you should also have less negative assumptions and give people the curtesy to find out about their situation, before you judge them sexists.

    You want to empower women, well, have you considered that some people want to be "SAHM"? I'm not saying you shouldn't investigate if that's actually the case, because oppression is sadly widespread, but you should also have respect for those who choose it out of their own free will. Know the context.

    PS. It's 2am and I have an exam in the morning. I may have phrased some things pretty wrong, and I will also use this as a semi-excuse for my emotional response earlier. I recognise I was a bit of a prick, and I apologise. Being up late is not an excuse, neither is being stressed, cause it's all self inflicted, but I was a prick, so sorry :).
     
  15. Altis, Jun 19, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017

    Altis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2013
    #15
    You're calling another person rude but look at what you're saying... "smells of a desire to seek a lot more control" -- oooookay there.

    Why are you making this all about his wife? What makes you think his wife doesn't want to be a SAHM? I suppose you think liberation only comes when you're slaving away at a job while someone else raises your kids.

    "My wife runs a daycare business out of our basement, which we remodeled last year after moving in to add a kitchen and a few other things. And parents aren't too keen on letting you have very much time off. My wife did this because she wanted to stay at home with the kids, so we made it happen."

    Given that women far more often initiate divorce, I wonder if you would have brought up the husband had OP been written by a woman... or would it be "you go girl!", "you do whatever makes YOU happy!"... hmm... :rolleyes:

    You haven't said a single thing about OP other than implying (without a shred of evidence) that he's someone oppressing his wife. Not a single thing.

    Then again, feminists have been at it for decades and women self-report being less happy decade after decade since the 1940s.
     
  16. smallcoffee macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    North America
    #16
    Do you use social media? Delete all of your accounts. Period.

    Do you know your neighbors? Get to know them. Do you know the people in your local town, or city, or donyou participate in any of the decision making processes? No? Start doing that and things like that.

    Do you have like 5 TVs in your home and cable? Get rid of all of them but one and cut the cable.

    Do you listen to mainstream news sources? Cut them all out and just listen to something like NPR.

    Do you have a lot of belongings? Multiple suits, some you don't really care for and maybe one or two you really love? Get rid of anything you don't absolutely love.

    Once you start getting rid of things that don't matter, and start focusing on things that do, and once you start getting engaged in your local community, you'll find life is a lot more meaningful.

    Also - ask for a raise.
     
  17. Morpheo macrumors 65816

    Morpheo

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2014
    Location:
    Paris/Montreal
    #17
    wow that's a great story, and that does sound very tempting!!! One of my dreams has always been to get a sailboat one day. Maybe I'll be able to do it before it's "too late"...... I've always thought sailboats were stupidly expensive (never put much thought into it actually, knowing I simply couldn't afford one) but apparently was very mistaken!
     
  18. macduke thread starter Suspended

    macduke

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    Location:
    Central U.S.
    #18
    Ignore my response much? My wife is everything to me. We've spoken about this quite a bit, especially in light of Trump being elected. We don't like the direction the extreme right-wingers, that sound a lot like you trying to control other people's lives, are taking our country.

    Ok, now you're pissing me off, and the truth comes out: You're not extreme right, you're extreme left, which is nearly as bad! My wife is NOT a stay at home mother. Full stop, She would slap you were you stand if you said that about her because she works her ass off in the daycare, which is professionally licensed. We share in the home responsibilities because she just doesn't have time all day to do my bidding or whatever made up narrative you've concocted in your head. She does about 2/3 the laundry (of which part is daycare) and cleans the bathrooms. I pick up the living room, kitchen and dining room and run the Roomba, clean the kitchen, and I do the outside work such as mowing, trimming, bug spraying, landscaping, etc as well as the recycling and trash. We split cooking, as we're both passionate about it and a little bit foodies. She puts the dishes in the machine, I take them out. I manage our budget and investments, she manages our medical claims and insurance. I do our home taxes, she does her business taxes. We have a pretty good split.

    My wife is a very strong, independent woman and it's why I was so attracted to her originally. The sheer amount of utter B.S. she has had to deal with in her life, and yet not only persevered but thrived is a testament to her strong will and fortitude. I won't even get into it here so as to respect her privacy, but you would not want to cross this lady. We're both feminists and my daughter plays with trucks and dirt as much as dolls and strollers, as well as my son with his babies and dinosaurs. and I'm always teaching her about science using the iPad, our backyard telescope, and my extensive knowledge of meteorology from storm chasing when storms are rolling in across the plains, and plan to do the same with my son when he gets old enough to understand such concepts. I work at the premiere university in the state where we have world class animal and plant science research programs. I'm not whatever "bass-ackward" hillbilly you make me out to be, likely because you have an elitist flyover mentality that dismisses people like us in the middle of the country.

    The bottom line is that I never pressured my wife into anything. She went on maternity leave for 12 weeks in early 2014. A month before she was scheduled for return, she told me she wanted to talk. We had visited several daycare centers in our area and were upset at the lack of quality options that had available slots. She said that she felt like she didn't want to do anything else but take care of our daughter, and so I overhauled our budget top to bottom to make it work, and she came up with the idea that we could do an in-home daycare, which I wasn't too keen about because it was taking up all the space in our little house and I'm not as crazy about kids as she is. So she worked on the marketing and licensing so we could expand to the maximum for non-licensed facilities in our state, and we saved up and bought a place that is better suited for the daycare where she could expand it. We're currently in the process of expanding to our new capacity now, and once that is complete my wife will be making more money than me. Yes, really. And not just a little more than me, but a decent amount. And we will be contributing about $900/mo to our retirement fund which is currently getting nothing, $300/mo to our children's college fund which is currently empty, in addition to our standard savings that we do now. We're also thinking about making a vacation fund as my wife spoke with the daycare parents recently, because we've been communicating about feeling a bit overwhelmed because we talk to each other all the freaking time, and is modifying her contract to have one week of unpaid vacation in the summer in addition to the standard two weeks paid she gets divided up throughout the year, and that vacation time will be in the summer months so we can do family trips. My wife actually made a comment recently that she might keep doing this even after our youngest is in school because it's so lucrative compared to her past jobs in mental health, which are currently being systematically defunded by republicans, and she has started developing a curriculum and enjoys preparing children to be successful in school.[/quote]

    Please tell me you're not this dense. Wow, you are? Hey everyone, this person hasn't heard of renewable energy! Wait, so you're not extreme left? What in the world are you, exactly? You seem to want to control people like the far right, but you're really anti-family like the far left, and don't know how renewable energy works. Oh, I know a word for people like you. "Special." That's the nice way of putting it that doesn't violate the forum rules. Just because you live in the middle of nowhere doesn't mean you don't have electricity. Out west there is wind power, hydro power, solar power, and geothermal power. For Wyoming, in particular, I was thinking geothermal, with maybe a few solar panels or a small wind turbine for backup along with a Tesla power wall. I've done a lot of research into partial earth covered homes which are much more energy efficient and retain heat during the winter and stay cooler during the summer. This helps mitigate the extreme conditions. The main problem is isolation during the winter months, as it can be hard to get around. I'm not big into home schooling either, but my wife thinks she could do it. I've just known several home-schooled kids that were really awkward socially. Ideally we would live 10-15 miles outside of a bigger town. We've also looked at Colorado and living near a smaller town in the front range like Estes Park or Manitou Springs so our kids could still go to a decent school but in a quieter community that has a slower pace. We especially liked Manitou Springs and the relaxed atmosphere there, and like the idea that Colorado is less of a red state but not super blue either.

    You're such a white knight! Please, come save my damsel in distress wife that you put on this pedestal like she's some precious flower who can't think for herself!

    Honestly, I feel like you owe my wife and I an apology. You have a lot to learn about making assumptions in life. It doesn't seem like you have a very broad world view or life experience, which makes me think you are quite young and naive. Yet Casperes1996 is only 21 years old and gets it, so it can't just be an age thing. And you've been on this site nearly as long as I have, which would indicate that you're not too young. I used to have more of a single-minded world view, because that's how I was raised. I've expanded on it greatly and have learned about the value of diversity and that people can't be fit into little boxes. You would do well to explore outside of your current world view as well. You'll become a better person for it.

    Yeah, at this point I'm not even sure if you read my posts fully. Too long for you? Then skip it and leave the comments elsewhere. As I clearly said, I do web work. I'm always plugged in. We have to do social media for a job. I have to go take photos for it, although less than I used to. I help route responses that come into the site. I have to fix the site if it blows up. I have to constantly make sure it's patched since there are always vulnerabilities popping up. I have to make backups. Dean suddenly needs some interactive new thing on the site? I have to go learn how to do it, and then do it, and it has to work flawless and securely on every display size and every browser without leaving out people with accessibility issues. It's just too much. Republicans are defunding higher education and we're getting screwed having to do more and more with less resources. And kids expect these fantastic recruiting websites but they fired most of the people making them and wonder why we're doing so poorly at recruiting. It's madness.

    Same. Can you believe this person?

    Glad you get it. True feminism is about equality for both women and men, and promoting the idea that women can be anything they want to be. Want to be quantum physicist studying the Higgs Boson at CERN? Go for it. Want to raise up your beautiful children to be respectful, productive members of society? Equally good. Want to develop the next killer app for iOS? You can do it.

    Feminism that shames women for staying at home with their children is not feminism at all because it runs counter to the feminist belief in equality. Some feminists incorrectly think that feminism means you have to do everything a man does, when really it means you can optionally do everything a man does. And furthermore, there are many great men out there who are excellent caregivers to children, as well as great stay at home dads. But to emphasize my appreciation and admiration for women, the sacrifice of mothers everywhere is, IMO, the only reason the human race still exists. They have an instinct when it comes to raising children that is incredible and should be celebrated. I could not do this parenting thing alone.

    My wife would laugh at the idea that I could force her to do anything she didn't want to do. And you're so right about that person's excuse that they were only saying that because I mentioned she works at home. You really caught them there, I missed that!

    Nailed it again.

    You were critical of someone who was already reacting in that way. It happens. But even so, you didn't come across as blatantly offensive like they did.

    I wrote some of my thoughts on feminism above, but I appreciate your response. People like to be white knights online nowadays because they lack any sort of initiative to do anything in real life. If this person is a man, I'd be willing to bet that they make these sort of comments a lot online, and yet when they're in the locker room hearing men talk about a women like a piece of meat they don't speak up or tell them to knock it off. They don't actually affect any real change, they just cower behind their monitor because it's anonymous. They don't engage in real conversations with their friends and acquaintances about what true feminism really means and why they should have more respect for women. And yet they get so easily triggered by someone talking about personal issues they are dealing with and feeling a call to pull out of the race for higher salaries and impressing people online for a quieter life in the country.

    I haven't used FaceBook since 2010 and that helped a lot. I occasionally use Twitter, and even less Instagram, but I mainly use those to post some of my nature photography or to read about my field as web design and development is fast paced and it's difficult to keep up with it and stay relevant. I'm required to assist with making social media posts at work, however, and there is some real cancer we have to deal with on there sometimes.

    I don't know them too well because we are still new to the neighborhood and a lot of the people tend to keep to themselves. There's an older couple next door who I've spoken with a few times The couple near our age on the other side I barely ever see. But we should try to put in more of an effort. Since licensing my wife is currently trying to expand the daycare, and we recently found out that a lady down the street also has a daycare, so my wife should try networking with that lady and maybe we could do some activities with their family.[/quote]

    We had one TV for the longest time, but recently put up a really old one in the daycare when we remodeled down there. My wife rarely uses it, but sometimes when the kids are rambunctious she'll put on PBS kids on the Apple TV and they'll watch that while she makes lunch. We don't have cable, but we subscribe to some streaming services that are pretty cheap.

    Hah! I've actually started listening to NPR more recently because it's a lot more calming. But I listen to a mix. I'll watch CNN and like more level headed people like Van Jones, but I'll also listen to Sean Hannity on the radio when driving home to get the other side, because apparently I hate myself. I need to cut a lot of that out of my life as it's just noise with little substance. Honestly I feel like it's the constant Trump crap that is probably putting me over the edge. I can't really stand either political party at this point, and that's really frustrating me and probably a lot of other people.[/quote]

    My wife and I do this at least once a year, maybe twice. We call it purging. The only thing I really splurge on is Apple gear and sometimes photography gear because I use those tools to be creative. Sometimes I splurge on some paint and canvas and make a real painting.

    When my wife's grandfather passed away a few years ago I inherited most of his tools, so my workshop is pretty stocked with that stuff, and again that leads into my creativity and I've been trying to learn some carpentry and there's always something to fix around the house. I can't bring myself to get rid of tools because there are so many specific use cases for certain tools and they're so expensive, but I got them for free. That being said I don't have a ton of tools, but there are probably a few that I should part with.

    I built a 12ft by 6ft tall shelving area in a narrow part of our unfinished basement using two by fours and plywood, and that's all we have for storage. It can hold three rows of plastic storage tubs. The top row is mostly filled with various holiday decor. Then we keep stuff like extra dishes we got when married that we can replace as things break, a tub full of emergency supplies as where we live we get bad ice storms and thunderstorms/tornadoes, my wife's sewing stuff, her books that she can't part with, and some sentimental things from her childhood. On the bottom row is mostly my stuff. I keep a lot of old cables around as I'm always needing something. And then I have artwork I've made that isn't hanging up and some sentimental things from my childhood.

    I don't have a lot of clothes and usually cycle through the same things every two weeks. I just bought my first suit recently for my uncle's funeral, but it's nothing fancy and I got it at Kohl's. I'm the oldest out of my siblings and all cousins, so I haven't had to deal with death much until recently and that's the only reason I can see for needing a suit since my work is fairly casual.

    As for cars, we've never had anything fancy. I just donated my 1998 beater last year that I bought in 2003 and bought a used Subaru Outback after my son was born because we needed something safer with the kids sitting at the edges. Our other car is 12 years old. We paid cash for all the cars.

    Yeah, we've been trying to get more engaged with our church. They do a lot of good community service and charity work in town. The problem is that a lot of weekends we travel home, which is about two hours away. We've been doing this even more since my uncle died, and spending time with our grandparents and people in my wife's family who are older because some of them don't have too much time left. I think once we're traveling less on the weekend and the kids are a bit older we will get more involved.

    As for the raise, the republicans in our state massively cut higher education funding. As a result, I manage even more websites now and they've let go higher up people, effectively making me one of the top people but without the salary to back it up. This is a college-focused town, so there aren't a lot of web opportunities. I graduated during a time when there were hardly any jobs as we were coming out of the great recession and was fortunate to find this one and have been here since. Any opportunities that exist have already been filled by the people here who were fired, because it was a big culling and there was a bit of an exodus at that level which led up to it. I had some freelance work lined up with some agencies in town (hadn't made contracts yet, we were in the beginning stages of negotiation) and they've evaporated because more experienced people who will take less money have suddenly flooded the market. I've thought about moving back home, which is a lot bigger city that has some interesting tech startups, but we've finally got the new daycare licensed and established after completing the remodel and we haven't lived here very long. We also like living in a smaller town than where we grew up. With all the layoffs in town we'd lose a lot of money on the house if we tried to sell it now. I think if I can stick it out here another five years then hopefully things will start to turn around and then we can move back home. I've never been in a situation this tricky before and just feel kind of stuck, but I can't complain right now because we're doing well financially which is better than many people. But I also work really hard to tune the budget and we would be practically dirt poor if we lived near the coast. Makes me feel guilty that I even complain. I'm like the epitome of first world problems right now. But I also don't want to become depressed either.

    I'll talk with my wife about her thoughts on how we can get more involved with our current schedule. Maybe we need another purge too, lol. Maybe I'll turn off my Twitter and Instagram for a while, and focus to listening more to podcasts that aren't related to news. I should probably avoid reddit as well, as that tends to get me stirred up about something. I also need to get back into doing more photography, which I find to be really meditative.
     
  19. smallcoffee macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    North America
    #19
    Get rid of Instagram and Twitter. They are worthless. Stop going to reddit. Delete your account and delete your bookmarks. Reddit news/world news is really bad and needs to be ignored. Focus on your local news channel and keep in touch with what is happening in your community. If an event is really important, somebody will let you know. Trump scandal # 654333a and the subsequent "outrage" is beneath you're time.
     
  20. casperes1996 macrumors 65816

    casperes1996

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2014
    Location:
    Horsens, Denmark
    #20
    Hey again! Firstly, thanks for the kind words. It's much appreciated. I just graduated today (WUHU!) so I won't reply to too many things, but there are a few things I'd like to join in on.

    [/QUOTE]

    I feel you on that. Over the past year, an American exchange student has been going to my school, and the day Trump got elected, she cried all day. Whilst some things are local, the political situation feels like hell on a world - or at least western scale too I'd say. Nationalism, idiocy and fascism seems to suddenly be what you have to emulate to get votes. Machiavellianism has returned in a big way it seems. When obviously idiotic **** is being discussed as if It weren't obvious, it can feel like the world is purposefully trying to murder you from the inside...

    Very Buddhist actually. There's a Buddhist saying that if you own more than five things, those things own you. I think it's perhaps a bit extreme, but at its core, it's a nice principle.

    Well, I generally think that tools shouldn't count in 'purges'. purge unnecessary luxuries, but anything that you use creatively or that has 'proper' use, probably should be excluded. I mean, there's a reason you haven't purged your toilet and bath... I assume ;)

    Issues are relative. I don't think there's anything to feel guilty about or any problem in complaining. We can acknowledge that some issues are bigger than others, and that ours may not be the biggest, and still acknowledge that they are problems that have significance to us.
     
  21. Merkava_4 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Location:
    California
    #21
    James Caan used to get a new wife, new house, new job, and new car every 7 years.
     
  22. Huntn, Jun 28, 2017
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2017

    Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #22
    I'd change the name of the thread to Giving Up On the Rat Race. :)

    Some of that stuff requires financial independence. :) The house in the middle of no where reminds me of a show Port Protection, which I caught for the first time on National Geo Channel. It's about a remote location in Alaska. The episode I watched was about collecting firewood for the winter. :) I'm a bit old to live that kind of life, but even if I was younger, I'm not sure I'd find that life style more fulfilling.

    When I really think of a house in the middle of nowhere, this pops in my head:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Not:
    [​IMG]
    :D
     
  23. Morpheo macrumors 65816

    Morpheo

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2014
    Location:
    Paris/Montreal
    #23
    ^^^ LMAO

    Maybe it could be turned into a guest room? For annoying friends only... ;)
     
  24. BarracksSi Suspended

    BarracksSi

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2015
    #24
    If you need a step before quitting social media cold-turkey, I'd suggest "timeboxing" them. Set aside only one hour per day, use an alarm clock or a kitchen timer if you have to, and make yourself log off when the hour is done, no matter what you're reading or typing.

    About most of the other stuff: I feel like if I offer any advice, I'll sound like the occupational hypnotherapist in the movie Office Space.

    As far as getting off-grid, this is where I want to go if I outlive my wife:

    [​IMG]
    --- Post Merged, Jun 29, 2017 ---
    And this nugget:
    Quite correct.

    A couple years back, we spent a few weeks doing regular visits to a senior rehab center where my Grandma was getting treatment. The person in the neighboring bed had their TV tuned to Fox News.

    After a couple visits, I realized that I had begun hating everyone I saw on that screen. I don't think it would have even mattered which point of view I aligned with, either. I'd get upset at the subject of a story because I thought they were doing something outrageous, or I'd get upset at the commentators themselves because I thought they were spouting unfounded BS.

    There's a method of delivering news that keeps the facts clear and doesn't cloud them with "analysis" (let's face it, you and I have just as much right to be called "analysts" as most people on television), and I think the popular news outlets are going for their own shock-n'-awe instead of simple, dry reporting.

    You wouldn't hang out with Sean Hannity at dinner, would you? No need to invite him to carpool with you, then, either.
     
  25. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    The Misty Mountains
    #25
    Where is the image location?
     

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