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Showing content with the highest reputation since 12/06/2018 in all sections

  1. 13 points
    12oz gets around.....IG stories! (re-upping uncensored versions)
  2. 12 points
    HHere's a teaser photo of my old paint wall.
  3. 11 points
    Hard to describe how crisp this tee looks in real life. But here it is out in the wild. (Shown here in Medium).
  4. 11 points
    pet portrait game like woah
  5. 8 points
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    @misteraven- if you do go with some kind of artist giveaway - the answer is yes, I'll definitely donate some time to that. You don't even need to ask.
  8. 7 points
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    I think the forum is hitting on you too
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    I can smell the hotdogs and regret from here
  15. 6 points
    Signature By Combat Veteran Sure Atm Haa 1986-2010 utilizing the Sharpie chisel tip marker also featured in flip the script by Handselecta
  16. 6 points
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  18. 5 points
    Quick work place sketch. I usually stay away from complex letters, connections and arrows as I prefer simplicity. But thought I’d do something a little different, lost patience by the time I got to the T. Should have made it an M.
  19. 5 points
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    There's some decent and funny stories in this thread, lol. This past weekend, took my girl out to the Keys. We got a hotel room with a balcony overlooking the water on a quiet key. We get in the place, looks nice, but the bed is against the wall. Why not move the bed to right in front of the balcony door so we can look at the water while we lay there, right? We start messing around with the door wide open. No big deal, there's nobody around. Things start getting heavier, I'm kinda kneeling and she's sucking me off while I'm fingering her with her ass facing the door. I'm getting into it and I decide to look out the door, a boat has appeared and there's like 6 people just standing on it looking right at us. It made getting up to close the blinds a little awkward.
  21. 5 points
    Who wants me to ruin that shoe??? Too late. Shoe looks like.....
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    Had one of his 12oz posters on my wall as a teen for many years. These new jacks dont get just how much a personal course with@Jokeris worth, especially at that early a stage. Probably saving the guy years of trial and error E: This one
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    I have a true love of handwriting. Not just cursive or script, but all of it. As a kid I would practice, and practice, and practice, trying to get my handwriting to mimic an Architect's handwriting because I figured that's what I wanted to do when I grew up (I'm not an architect... ). I've spent a lot of time teaching myself good penmanship... in script, straight letters, then Graffiti handstyles trying to teach myself different regions local styles (still can't figure out Philly). One thing I've never tried but love is calligraphy, and I absolutely love when Graffiti writers bring a little of their style into it. One guy who does a beautiful job at it is Luca Barcellona. I wish I had the time to dedicate to teaching myself this craft. Maybe once I retire and have nothing but time...
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  33. 5 points
    I don't really understand why he gets a huge pass from the "real graff scene" while the other anti-style shit (and I mean shit) catches the hate it does. I really don't see the difference. While "crackhead chicken scratch" is an insanely apt description of his work, why is that good? I don't get it. I thought it was neat at first, but it's been like 15 fucking years, maybe more, since I first saw his work and it has not changed or done anything innovative in that time frame. haters gonna hate I guess...
  34. 5 points
    $20.00 is fuck all in Australia - a 15 year old working at Mcdonalds makes $9.00 an hour so $20.00 and a load of fun isn't going to work when a coke is 2.50 -4.50 and a beer at a pub costs $7.00 upwards sheesh for me it's going to involve a lot of walking to the beach. swim two longnecks of beer $15.00 hot chips -5.00 Bunk on the tram home but possibly https://bws.com.au/product/904283/golden-oak-fruity-white-cask-4l OR wrap this around you and run the streets. eventually the coppers will give you a free feed plus you'll have $10.00 left over
  35. 5 points
    Jesus, straight up masterclass in here, @misteravenalmost should be charging an entry fee!
  36. 5 points
    Never finished highschool, floated around doing construction, retail, gym instructor, dairy hand (I shit you not) telecoms, sales, etc. Spent years in the army as a paratrooper and gained some focus, since then earned a degree with a double major in Govt/international relations and sociology with a minor in psychology. Did an honours thesis on China's foreign and defence policy. Have worked a lot throughout East and Southeast Asia and the US. Learned some languages, did postgrad studies in policy making with a focus on international and national security, worked a lot in strategic forecasting and analysis. Now work in a university in a cell that assists with policy making. Will do a PhD one day comparing China's Cold War policies and strategies to what they do today. I still paint, only legally though as I'm nearly 50 and have more important things in life to focus on.
  37. 5 points
    my wife was just like "I dont give a shit stop talking" when I tried to explain to her... tough day.....
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    My goal is to help those who truly want help. It's like anything when it comes to learning... you get out of it what you put into it. I hope more writers with knowledge like@Hua Guofangcontinue to offer their thoughts as well.
  41. 5 points
    Not at all, kind of hard for the ladies to talk with their mouth full
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  47. 5 points
    Quality ingredients... Here's what the daily raid on the coop looks like. For those that have never had a farm fresh egg, they’re wildly different than even quality eggs from the supermarket. They don’t need to be refrigerated and can last up to 3 months. If you coat them in a very light film of vegetable oil, they’ll last almost twice that. Anyhow, think something along the lines of a McDonald’s burger versus a steak burger from a nice restaurant. My kids won’t even touch store eggs anymore.
  48. 5 points
    Its honestly a pretty in depth story and almost all of it happened as a result of a long series of events as well as a whole bunch of stuff falling into place. Unsure I could have done it if much of any of it didn't happen the way it did. Since you asked (basically twice now), I'll try and fill in the back story as best as I can... Hopefully I don't bore anyone to death. This is a sort of personal story, but I'll go ahead and paint the full picture as best as I can. Kinda cathartic for me to put it all out there and maybe it'll inspire more of you guys to evaluate your own circumstances and see if something like living rural or off grid is right for you. (the entire point of this thread) For those that don't know... I'm originally from Miami. As such, I lived through Hurricane Andrew back in the 1990's, where South Florida got tore up pretty bad. We lived under Marshall Law for a week or so and saw dan to dusk curfews even longer. It was probably two weeks before we saw real support mobilize and I can recall seeing moms with kids standing in line for hours, as well as several of them get into fist fights over bags fo ice. I was living with my parents at that time and we had no electricity for almost two months. We were actually fairly lucky in that me and a bunch of friends stayed at my girlfriends house to have a sort of hurricane party sleep over. Her dad built her house so we knew it was good. One of my friends staying there lived in an apartment and the next day we say the entire building caved in. Likewise, another friend there worked at a gun range and his boss said it was okay to raid supplies so we got like a pallet of water and another of soda, where everyone else was getting desperate cause the city water was contaminated and there was a run on stores. Likewise, we got up early the next day and discovered a frozen storage locker from Wendys had blown across a parking lot and came to rest pushed up against a building about a half mile away. We were all on bikes, but not far from home and managed to ferry maybe two dozen boxes of frozen breaded chicken breast and pre cooked bacon to my girlfriends house, where we then managed to store them in various coolers and freezers we pulled together because her dad was kinda of an old redneck type dude and lived his life camping and hunting and just being more prepared than most. Anyhow, that experience lasted months and left a deep mark on my consciousness. Many years later, I was living in Jersey City working at the main HQ for Ecko. I got to work on the morning of 9/11 to see everyone standing around a TV set at the office. The first plane had already hit the Twin Tower and I just managed to catch the second one hit live. The kid I'd car pool with had a wife working at the Barnes & Noble in the Twin Towers and he obviously freaked. We jumped in my girlfriends car (who I was living with and a car I drove since she'd commute by train into Manhattan) and we hauled ass from South River, NJ back to Jersey City which sits opposite the Hudson from the Twin Towers. I remember edging her Honda Accord up past 100mph down the Jersey Turnpike heading to Manhattan and every on ramp we passed was being shut down by cops. Towards the end we had to jump a curb to go onto the oncoming lane to get close enough to Jersey City cause everything was shut down. Contrary to what you might imagine, the highway was empty up until we just into Manhattan. Anyhow, his wife made it out, but I'll never forget that morning of the weeks that followed. For weeks being evacuated off trains due to bomb threats. Being evacuated out of buildings due to anthrax threats. Seeing photos of missing people plastered on every surface. Seeing families wandering around begging for help in locating someone. Police and military everywhere. And two jets (f16's I think), circling the city in a massive arc for a solid week to guard the city from any other attacks. I lived in a building almost on the river and right next to a Sam's Club just near the entrance to the Holland. I watched the ferries get commandeered to bring bodies from ground zero across the Hudson and line them up on the shore in bodybags. I then saw them take shopping carts from Sam's Club bacause there wasn't enough stretchers and bring them into dozens of waiting ambulances. I used to travel for work sometimes and was on a flight the first week flights were allowed again. When I got back from that trip I was sick as fuck, something that is exceedingly rare for me, and went to see a doctor for it. They prescribed me Cipro as a precaution against anthrax because if I had picked it up, I'd be dead before the lab results returned. In the end it was standing pneumonia, but those were some long days waiting to hear I wasn't dying of anthrax. A few years later, I'm living in Brooklyn. We'd just had our first kid and my daughter is about 3 months old. The power goes out and does't come back on after the usual 15 minutes or so. A few hours later, we see that things are definitely different. I have maybe $35 in my wallet, which is about enough for a partially filled single plastic bag worth of groceries in that place. The ATMs don't work without power and neither do credit card terminals so every store and restaurant still open, is all cash only. By the middle of the second day, those same businesses are giving away whats left because its starting to go bad from lack of refrigeration. By the evening of the second night, the water pressure is starting to drop and water is coming out at a trickle. At least my wife is breastfeeding, but I'm starting to get panicky because NYC is the type of place that you buy that evenings dinner on your way home. You might have a few snacks, but with 24 hr bodegas, its rare for anyone to have more than a day or two worth of food. By day 3 of no power, you can literally feel the tension in the streets. Everyone is antsy and a lot of people have gotten in cars and left. The people left seem to be getting desperate and you can pick up on the feeling that the predators out there are getting ready to capitalize on the total lack of police presence and fact that after sunset, its literally pitch black out. Then suddenly the power comes back on. Then many more years go by and I'm doing my thing, living in downtown NYC and running our agency. Maybe 2008 or so and 12oz is booming. It was Christmas break (as much fo a break as we could take) and a friend / employee at the studio (@thankscamera) send me a link to a house on eBay that was like $6,000. Then I see a few others that are a couple grand more or less. All of them are in Detroit, which I assume is still barely more than the war zone it was then. Anyhow, I'm blown away that I can buy a house outright anywhere for less than a months rent in NYC. We keep texting each other more and more interesting properties that are all dumb cheap and then eventually start looking at stuff driving distance from the city. A few days later, its Christmas and my wife's mother gives me a copy of The Road by Cormac McCarthy which starts to really plant the seed in my head. I start fantasizing about having a small hobby farm in Pennsylvania or Upstate New York and start talking to the guys in the studio about how awesome it would be to get out of the city when we get big projects. How we could have more room to work, barbecue and have a sort of retreat once a month. It would feel like a vacation, but we'd actually still be making money. And once cabin fever started setting in, we'd just drive the couple hours back to downtown NYC. I'd spend more time going to local farmer markets (mostly Union Square) and obsessing over the quality fo farm fresh vegetables and meat in shops like Dean & Deluca, Chelsea Market and a spot next to my kids' school. When I had a good week, I'd spend the $28 per pound they'd sell their steak at and the $7 or so a head for the purple cauliflower. I tried to grow tomatoes and a few herbs on my fire escape (and failed miserably) and started looking into roof top gardening and urban chickens coops. I started listening to podcasts on the subject, which lead down a rabbit hole of subjects from permaculture to aquaponics. This led to deeper subjects such as self reliance and preparedness that all brought back strong memories of Hurricane Andrew, 9/11 and the East Coast Blackout. It also started to touch on related subjects such as the state of government, politics and economics and became harder and harder to ignore, especially since I was seeing protests on almost a daily basis in NYC. People camped out on Wall Street, thousands of people marching down Broadway and the usual picket lines and protesters around Union Square. I started noticing things that were always there, but my perspective had changed. The hour long wait to just get into Trader Joes on your average Saturday went from being annoying to concerning. Meanwhile, in NYC you're frequently waiting for trains or walking places, so I had a lot fo time to listen to stuff. Likewise with countless hours in the studio, I also had lots of time to listen to stuff. Between that and the crazy shit that was happening in the City around me, it was impossible to ignore how I was literally seeing the evidence of what a lot of the podcasts were speculating about. About this time our agency, got hired to do a job down in Miami for Art Basel. I don't exactly recall how I stumbled into it, but somehow I'd found out about an intro to carbines class in Sarasota, which was maybe an hour and a half from where I was staying and started a couple days after Basel was ending. I grew up shooting and regularly hit the range when visiting my folks, who live in SW Miami. The guy that largely taught me graffiti (Style FA / VO5) worked at an outdoor gun range back when we were in High School so we'd all gotten into shooting since we were kids. I owned most of what I needed for the class and needed a break from NYC and all the stuff I was doing. This was a 3 day course out in the middle of the Everglades and seemed like the perfect escape. I was among the very few non-military / non-LEO there and pretty share the only one that had never taken any similar classes or training before. Early on day one as everyone is introducing themselves, saying I lived in NYC and ran an agency got a lot of double looks and maybe some chuckles. The next 3 days had a huge impact on me that sort of tipped over a bunch of other stuff, so I'll wander a little off topic and explain... You're literally bunking with dudes for a 4 - 5 days. You show up the day before and sometimes stay an extra day. The facility was actually a repurposed prison out in the middle of the Everglades, run by a former Delta dude as a firearms and tactics training facility. You're bunking with maybe 15 - 18 dudes, eating 3 meals a day, training and hanging out. Because of the training and setup, you get to know people pretty fast and people let their guards down soon after. Most of the guys there were from various Sheriffs offices, which was obviously a bit awkward considering my own background. A lot of others were active or recently retired military. There was a very clear pecking order based upon experience and ability and was interesting to me that the cops were pretty much at the bottom of it. At dinner, there were a few tables to eat at and the dynamic was pretty close to what lunch was like in Junior High School, where you had the "cool" table and the "outcast" table. I literally saw a guy tell a cop to go sit at another table because he hadn't earned the right to sit with them. He said it somewhat joking around, but I sort of picked up on it not entirely being a joke and the cop did go sit at another table where most of the cops sat together. After dinner, we'd go out to a big living room setup with a bunch of couches and the main instructor, a very charismatic class clown type personality, would start telling stories and calling people out for that days fuckups or cool shit and in general just entertaining everyone as most these dudes drank whiskey or beers or whatever. I pretty much kept a low profile and was just the fly on the wall, being the least qualified person there. Ironically, since I wasn't military or LEO and being a marketing guy from NYC, meant these guys sort of didn't know what to make of me. I didn't fit into the typical dynamic and sort of mainly was ignored until I started proving myself. I can shoot okay, but at the time didn't get much range time living in NYC, but I did give 200% because I paid a grip to take the class, went well out of my way and mostly was just thrilled to be there. So I listened to everything the instructors said and gave it all my very best effort. Because I didn't fit into the pecking order and because I would put out when it was it was time, I got on decent terms with everyone. Likewise, I'd joke around when appropriate and when people started asking more about what I did, they recognized that I was doing cool stuff of my own working on hype releases for Nike and stuff for Supreme. Anyhow, at one of those evening after dinner hangouts, the subject turns to politics (naturally) and the cops especially start really getting heated amongst themselves. Most people had a sort of attitude like both sides suck and fuck 'em, but the cops literally had to be separated from each other because they were about to throw blows as they clashed on one argument after another. Being the "fly on the wall", all of this fascinated me as I'd always seen cops as this united force. Beyond that, they were throwing out facts about shit that you don't get to know about unless you're a cop. Stuff that got touched on a bit with the Snowden leaks, but some really crazy shit that I never verified when I tried searching online, but which I also do not doubt. Anyhow, this experience was a bit of a tipping point. Because I passed the training, I qualified for a more advanced course, where it was pretty similar, except that I had invested in better kit and had put more effort into preparing. I'd go see my parents and hit the range (same one my friend worked at) from the time it opened to the time it closed for a week straight before going back to NYC. I'd watch videos, read books and visualize the movements we'd practiced because in NYC is virtually impossible to have any sort of gun, let alone the hardware we were training with. After a few courses, I'd distinguished myself enough that I somehow got invited to a very advanced private course. To this day I have no idea why I got invited to that as once again, I was the by far the least qualified to be there. But again, I put out when asked and despite it all, was able to usually rank somewhere in the top half since cops in general are almost always the worst shooters. I became friends with a few people in the tactical industry and tried to keep up with training when I could. A lot of those courses were in Wyoming, so I'd jet from NYC to WY to train with these dudes before going back to my grind in NYC. After a while it really became a bit of a mind fuck for me. I was living in Soho, getting invited to private parties and dinners and living that cool guy life. Sliding into Supreme for whatever drop, getting handed boxes of sneakers regularly, attending art shows and industry events...etc. Meanwhile, I was trying to slide out to Wyoming as often as I was able, which was nowhere near what I wanted. I was seeing the same conversations from two entirely different points of view and couldn't help but notice the increasingly large hypocrisy from one side of it. In NYC, it was always whatever hot topic was on the news... Politics, guns, the income gap, etc... When it comes to politics, my view is that both sides are scumbags and all the protesting and arguing wont make a damned bit of difference in the end. A couple times, because I wouldn't acknowledge supporting the left, I'd get called out as an obvious support of the right. Sometimes that would lead to also calling me out for being a white, privileged male. Eventually, racist gets lumped onto it along with homophobic, despite me being crystal clear that I could care less what people do, what they look like or who they decide to worship or not, so long as they keep it to themselves and don't come bug me with it. When it comes to guns, I obviously have an entirely different viewpoint since I have a lot of experience with not just firearms, but in tactics as well. Having to sit through a fancy $100+ plate dinner where someone who literally has never held a gun, much less shot one, rant about guns and gun control just makes me cringe. Usually, most the table joins in and the ignorance of firearms and disconnect with reality gets put on full display. Always seemed ludicrously ironic that the people that tend to pride themselves on tolerance often demonstrate the most intolerance out of anyone. Meanwhile back in Wyoming, running and gunning and bunking with a bunch of dudes those guys talk about all the same stuff mostly. The difference being that they actually discuss and joke for the most part and at the end of it, most seem to take my own attitude of being more concerned with the stuff right in front of them rather than get riled up about whatever nonsense the news is talking about that is almost always outside their sphere of influence, let alone control. Also, through the dudes I was hanging with in some of this training stuff I was doing, I ended up privy to details on some stuff that would be described as being somewhere between concerning and terrifying. Some of it being stuff we all saw on the news, that was in fact entirely different than the narrative that gets fed to the public. Like I said, it all became a bit of a mind fuck. I struggled with reconciling the two sides of all this. The more money I made in NYC, the more it cost me to make it. I was so focused on that dream of a loft in Soho, that I failed to realize that the Soho I dreamt about was long gone. I found myself fantasizing about winning the Mega Millions so I could buy that dream cabin I kept seeing in my Tumblr and Instagram feeds. Every day I'd go to work and then come home and every little detail irked me. I used to love walking out my door into the middle of Soho, but found myself irritated by all the crowds. I used to love walking my dog and window shopping, but then started seeing it all as a side reminder of the endless pursuit of products most people don't need and nearly all can't afford. Just started sort of eating me up. My downstairs neighbor at the time was a hedge fund guy. I found out over dinner with the guys best friend (who lived another floor down), that he made $14 million in salary and that his bonus that year was more than his salary. He bought a McLaren GT on his way home from work (a $1+ million car) that never ended up driving much because it was a pain in the ass to pull it from the garage and drive it through the cobblestone streets of Soho. He had a mansion in the Hamptons that he barely went to because he was too busy with work and when he had time, didn't feel up to fighting traffic to go out to it. Meanwhile, his best friend paid himself $4 million a year from a company his son was now running. He enjoys life and lives lavishly, yet he rents his apartment, which was basically the same exact as mine, but several floors lower. So that sort of fucked my head up even more. I was killing myself to inch my way up. I was making progress, but couldn't begin to see when I might see something like $4 million a year, if ever. When I realized that even with millions of dollars, those guys were living the same basic life I was, I knew it was time to pull the plug. I really wanted to move to Wyoming, but was concerned about taking my kids from NYC to the middle of the mountains. Both my wife and I have family in California so I thought that would be a smart move. I knew by then I wanted to return my focus to 12ozProphet and that I also wanted to return to putting out product. I had (have) tons of ideas inspired by my experiences with the kit we run and gun with, as well as conversations with those dudes I bunked with that aren't just training for fun like I was. Plus I feel NYC has been on steady decline since 9/11. My daughter was at an age that she was taking the public bus / subway to school and asking if she could walk around Soho with her friends, so I knew it was that time. I figured LA was going to be a nice compromise between NYC and Wyoming, but I ended up hating it almost completely. I wound up renting a house next door to the founder of TOMS, Blake Mycoskie. At first I thought it was a cool thing and maybe it would lead to some business since I'd just walked away from my NYC agency where we mostly worked on creative and strategy for Nike. Then as soon as we move in, dude is traveling with his family (he has many homes around the USA, including Wyoming) and has a contractor team building a stone wall just under my living room window. I'm paying out the ass to live up in the mountains just above Malibu and these guys are literally jack hammering stones 15ft from my window, 10 hours a day for a weeks. Few houses in SoCal have AC so I can't close the window so I'm hearing that noise all fuckin day long. There's literally a film of dust on everything in the house no matter how many times we clean it up. But I don't want to be a dickhead neighbor from jump street so we try to talk to the construction team to maybe not start so early and bide time until the shit is over. I have a 1 year lease, with a 1 year option to renew and at about 9 months in, I get an email from Blake. He's in Costa Rica surfing with some friends, but wanted to tell me that he bought my house so I need to move in 3 months because he outgrew his house and really wanted a gym. So he bought my house to turn into a gym and if I can be so kind as to let the architect and designers into my house so they can start measuring shit. I let him know I have a 1 year option and to hit me up when he's back from surfing sop we can discuss, which never happens. A month or so later, a dozen construction guys show up to jack hammer down the wall they'd built when we fist moved in because now that he owns both properties, he wants to move the wall a few feet over and build it up higher in one spot. They drop off like two dozen massive palettes of stone and all kinds of other equipment and set off jackhammering. Blake and his wife havent been around in weeks, so my wife and I track down his personal assistant since her and a support crew of maybe 5 or so people are there every day along with his infant kid and personal nanny. We complain about the noise and dust and this dumb little bitch tells us with a straight face, "that the work needs to be done before Blank and his wife are back so they aren't disturbed by the activity". A day or two later, I shit you not, we find out he's at Cannes winning a humanitarian award. So I call my landlord and tell her we aren't paying a penny more in rent for the rest of the lease term and that in fact, she owes me money for the months of disruption we dealt with. That if she wanted to argue it, I'd exercise my option for a 1 year renewal and fuck up the sale as well as take her and Blake to court. The landlord was actually fairly cool about it and so I got like 4 or 5 months free rent and my entire deposit back. Daily life still sucked, but at least it was free. Since we were forced out of our spot, I used this as the catalyst to convince my wife to do something drastic. I had closed a couple of pretty huge deals and had money stashed. I was also helping my father in law a ton with his business and earned a lot of good will from it. We started looking at listings in Wyoming and everything was outrageously expensive. When I started reaching out to some of my friends from out there, they said Wyoming is over... That the billionaires in California are moving in and starting to push out the Millionaires in California that had scooped up swaths of the best land in and and around Jackson Hole and that I might do better pushing into Montana or Idaho. So I start talking to more people, doing my own research online and some key books on the subject and we started looking into Idaho and then Montana. I was desperate to get the hell out of California and finally get my life back on track, but still had a pretty ambitious wish list for what I wanted... Wanted enough land to never sweat a douche bag neighbor again. I wanted mountain views. I wanted water frontage of some sort. And I wanted a house / property that had the ability to meet my demands for the foreseeable future and nothing we'd quickly grow out of. My wife on the other hand was excited, but still skeptical about the whole idea. We started home schooling the kids when we moved to California and she was warming up to some of the gardening / homesteading stuff I was bringing up. She was still pretty staunchly opposed to guns, but we left that mostly as a "don't ask, don't tell" sort of stalemate. So while I'm burning it at both ends with work and trying to not burn my asshole neighbors house to the ground out of spite, she starts googling best "old west towns" and then googling each town on the list. The name of the town we're in came up on a lot of lists. For each of them, she'd get on Zillow or whatever and check out what the options were and send me links and photos. The place we got was literally the first property she came across that caught her eye for this town. I was making good money and living free, plus the kids were being homeschooled, so we decided to drive out here (18 hour drive) and check it out. Based on the pictures, it seemed too good to be true, but the clock was ticking on us being homeless and we were all up for the adventure. I'd been to Montana once ages ago and remember it being super scenic. Reality is it's considered one of the crown jewels of North America, being home to both Yellowstone and Glacier National Park. It's June of a couple years back and we drive down a private dirt road leading up to the house and it feels like some sort of enchanted forest. There's literally deer grazing everywhere and flocks of wild turkey on the side of the road; feels like something that would be animated in some old Disney classic from the 1950s. At this point, we're thinking the house is going to be a disaster of some sort. That there's no way we stumbled on our dream house right from jump street. When we get to the place, its even better than the photos. We walk in and the place feels like our home. Since we drove 18 hours to get here, the broker had a dozen plus houses lined up for us to view, but we weren't interested (though we saw them anyways). So we make our way back to California, excited and nervous and I'm feeling the pressure now that its all becoming real. I have zero experience with this sort of thing and have no clue if the place is priced properly or what the context is of where its located or any of that. We're totally flying blind on one of the biggest decisions we'll ever make. So we start negotiating and the owner is massively difficult to deal with. Since we're so excited we manage another trip or two where we look at more places since everyone, including our in laws, think we're retarded in believing we'd find a place so quick. I'm getting into full negotiator mode with dude, partially because I'm so fuckin nervous about the whole thing and just want to turn it into deal of the century to fully convince myself to do it, and the owner is pushing back and arguing from a purely emotional stand point. Meanwhile I'm scrambling to get my end in order and quickly realizing that I'm simply not prepared and its becoming clear that I can't pull this off on my own. A few months into this and the election has everyone going nuts. The markets are in turmoil, interest rates are suddenly starting to go up, nobody seems to want to make any big decisions until we know who the next president is going to be and I'm hedging my bets buying a couple guns I'd wanted, hoping it won't be the last opportunity to do so. Then we get a call that the house fell into escrow with another party and our chance is over. Likewise, I'm talking to the broker like I have my end in the bag, while trying to figure out what the hell I can do. Now, if you made this far into the story, this is where shit gets a little strange, if not unbelievable... My wife is depressed, literally crying daily. We're living out of suitcases at her parents place and quickly wearing out our welcome. Some big business deal I'm working is stalling and then collapses. But I'm also having these recurring dreams about living in the place we lost. I also have this weird sense of calm about the whole thing half the time, and soul crushing anxiety the rest of the time. Every time we talk to the broker I bring up "the house" to the pint that my wife is bitching at me to move on and the broker is awkwardly trying to suggest some other place. We drive up to visit one more time and its far less exciting. Long hours in the car to see some other place that I'm not even sure we can pull off without a miracle of some sort. One of the mornings, I tell my wife I'm going to swing by "the house" and she berates me for even considering it (I do it anyways). I'm still having those weird dreams, even though its been off the market for over a month. We visit another property that's twice as big with a house half the size. Its in another town that is probably even more picturesque, but this one truly feels off the grid. Besides unbelievable land, it has an organic garden that's been turned into a cooperative yielding 40,000 pounds of organic produce a year and we start trying to convince ourselves that this is going to have to be the one. Slowly I start working something out with some family to help fill in the gaps I'm missing, but its a tenuous situation. The election is ramping up and our talks with the bank are getting more complicated since its clear that they want to sit for a couple weeks until the elections are over. Then I get a call from the broker... She's laughing and crying too hard to get the words out, but finally manages to say that "the house" dropped out of escrow and the owner wants to talk to me. He's sort of jammed up because he wasted two months with another buyer and is leveraged pretty badly having expected the deal to complete. He doesn't quite accept my deal, but isn't too far off from it with his offer. The banks have changed interest rates on us a couple times and I'm just trying to get this whole mess boxed up and fixed. Some very uncomfortable conversations later, I manage to get my end sorted out and we're faxing and emailing papers back and forth. We have a closing date that is literally in the middle of the worst winter in like two decades, but we're beyond ecstatic. We pack a trailer with the stuff that wasn't already in storage with the movers for the last few months we were staying with my wife's parents and drive up as soon as we can. So my wife, my two kids, dog and I are planning to stay at a local hotel for a couple days until our closing. Weather screws up our closing date, which resets the process but after just past a week of all of us living in the hotel, we finally get our keys and drive to our new home. ----------------------- So that's the long version. Still doesn't necessarily cover all of it and despite being as long as it is, I only skimmed the details mentioned. It was far from easy and full of ups and downs. So many things could have derailed how it turned out or pushed it in another direction. One way or another, I knew I had to get out of the environment I was in and fix what path I was on. There's been many times I questioned what I was doing or if I was doing the right thing. I'm used to putting all my chips on the table and betting all or nothing, but this was the biggest by far, with the most on the line. Being honest, I wasn't ready to just walk away from it all the way I did. Maybe mentally, but certainly not financially. I'm over confident in my abilities and have a talent for under estimating how hard some efforts are and how long things take. I climbed way the fuck out on a limb and still scrambling to do the best I can and make all of this work. Walking away from the agency I spent 15+ years building to return my focus to 12ozProphet has been far more challenging than I anticipated. I still hear regularly from people that I'm crazy and that some of these ideas for 12oz are impossible... That forum, as a thing, is dead. That running a cool brand from Montana isn't possible. But I keep the faith and I'm still here trying to make it happen.
  49. 5 points
  50. 5 points
    Someone sent me this link the other day and LOL'ed... https://keepandbear.com/products/build-the-wall
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