Category Archives: Housing

The Garret ~ where I call home.

I don’t let women into my apartment; the garret is too private for that

A little while ago I posted a picture of Marmaduke in the apartment I call ‘the garret’ ~ it’s about 100 yards from the sea, and it’s where I call home.  Some people were kind enough to say that my place looks nice, so I thought I’d show you some more of where Marmaduke and I hang out.  We have a rule; Rule #2 nobody is allowed in the garret ~ I would never bring a woman back here.

Quite often we turn off everything electronic, switch off the TV, turn out the lights, and relax in the silence of flickering candlelight. There may be little silence within me right now, but I have discovered a calmness and quiet peace in the garret, a safe haven from both the outside world and mine own demons.  All I need to do is sit in my favourite chair, light a few scented candles, and turn everything off.  I turn out the lights, switch off the TV, turn off my computers, and shut down my raging thoughts and extreme emotions ~ and what I have left is silence.  Almost darkness relieved by the flickering candlelight.  And then there is some measure of quiet in my mind.  For that time I can feel calm, happy, warm, friendly and loving towards others, and at peace with myself.

In those moments of inner silence there is no stress, no lust, anger, jealousy, paranoia, resentment, no anxieties or depression.  I can allow myself, my being, my heart and my soul to drift whither it will.

When I bought the garret, the kitchen was dark and dingy, with black marble counter-tops and dark wood cupboards.  So, I ripped that out and installed / built what you see here.  I never use plumbers, electricians, or any other kind of contractor.  I think that 99.9% of contractors are crap, they do a shoddy job and charge a fortune for doing it.  I do everything myself, I even built a lot of the furniture in here.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

computer and record player

Marmaduke and I listen to some cool music

Nostalgia ain’t What it Used to Be

out with the old, and in with the new

~

There is something satisfying and real about people, places, and things that properly belong in a bygone era.  Somehow the old and familiar can give one a lot of pleasure just by being there.

I like classic cars, classic motorcycles, old Hollywood movies, ancient buildings, and old towns.  I also prefer the classical style of dress, good manners that many think outdated and pointless, and more mature women.

In some ways this Turkish Holiday destination belongs in a bygone era;  the people, the junk cars and busses, the antedeluvian attitude of the men towards women,  the snail slow wi-Fi connection in this hotel, seem more 20th rather than 21st century.

Some older, classical things are worth preserving ~ misogynistic men and painfully slow internet connections should be consigned to the junk pile where they belong.

 Jack Collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

steam trains are alive,

electric locomotives are just technology

No Time to Write

Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage.

I need a new plan.  The one I’ve been using this past week doesn’t work.

On the other hand, I’ve been driven by events, rather than choosing my own path.

Having your home broken into kind of does that to you.  In some ways it’s not the invasion, nor the fact that my stuff was taken, it’s all the fucking damned paperwork and admin that follows a burglary that has really been depressing me.  And, I’ll give you one very important piece of advice, never throw away any bill, or receipt, or piece of correspondence.  Keep every fucking piece of paper in organised files for at least 6 years.  If you don’t then you’ll spend forever sorting out the paperwork when some unforeseen event or disaster happens.

I just have, and mine was only a little robbery, not some huge fucking disaster.

Hopefully, things will be better for me in the next few days.

Keep safe.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Burgled

Lying, cheating, and stealing are next door neighbours.

Sometime earlier this week someone got into the garret and stole some of my stuff.

There was no damage to my door, so at first I thought I’d just lost my wallet and cash.  That prompted me to spend a whole day searching for wallet / cash…..

But, I’d been robbed of my wallet with a couple of credit cards, my drivers licence, some other identity cards, and about £100 in cash.  I also lost my cell phone, a couple of hundred US Dollars, about 5,000 Turkish Lire, a watch, and some other bits and pieces

I’ve spent all morning on the ‘phone sorting out my banks and reporting the theft to the police.

Even then I’m not finished restoring my life ~ for example I need a new cell phone.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

I feel sorry for Marmaduke, who was alone in the garret at the time of the robbery

Planter

The glory of gardening is having your hands in the dirt and your head in the sun.

I built a planter for my friend in California.

I hope that it gives her many years of pleasure.

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

there’s a handful of dirt from Red Rock country in there

I hope it gives her many years of pleasure

How to Build a Patio Planter ~ Video

There are no gardening mistakes, only experiments.  ~  Janet K. Phillips

For me, building a patio planter, or raised bed, out of any materials you like, is a fairly straightforward project.  However, I know that isn’t so for everyone.

Therefore, in a spirit of helpfulness, here are a trio of videos showing how to make a few examples of planters you could use a prototypes for whatever you would like in your yard.  As you can see, it’s a pretty straightforward project.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

this easy wall planter

is one of my favourite ideas

Scenes on Sunday ~ Patio

Sitting beneath the moon and stars, with a glass of wine and thou.
To kiss you, and remember what love is.

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

drink wine

smell the roses

feel the fire’s warmth

and talk so softly with thou

Your House Is Worth Nothing

Land is the far greatest of fraudulent perpetual monopolies.  ~  Winston Churchill

As it goes, and speaking as a guy with 30 odd years of banking under his belt, in the long term, financially, your beach home / house / apartment is worth less than nothing.

You may say that it’s been valued at $1,350,000 but what does that actually mean?

It means that if you sell the place, then that’s what you’ll get.  Less all the bloodsucking bankers, lawyers, and realtors fees.

Then what?

You’ll probably plough the $1,350,000 into a bigger place that’s notionally worth $1,450,000.  And, in human terms that new place is worth even less than nothing.  You will work much harder to keep it.

All you are doing is paying rent, and working harder to keep the place…..  And, then you’ll die.

The only way your $1,500,000 place is worth anything at all to you is if you sell up and live in a van.

Real Estate is all about cost.  Look at your monthly / annual bills and you will see that your house is costing you a fucking fortune.  Any bum can have 80% of what you have for nothing.  Trust me, I know, I’ve been there.

Any First Nations elder will tell you that property is expensive theft.

Banking and the real estate industry is built on the notion that your property is intrinsically worth something, and it isn’t.  You can’t take it with you, and when the next Big One comes it won’t even be there.

But, even though I know that the Wizard is a fraud, I will never persuade you.

For the truth means you have too much to lose.

~

jack collier

jackcollier@talktalk.net

I thought about a school bus once,

but then I’d want a woman to share it with me,

 

How to have more spending money

There is scarcely anything that will drag you down like debt.

Basically there are two ways we can have more cash to spend on the things we really like, want, and desire ~ one is to go out and get more money, earn it, marry it, inherit it, steal it….

The other way to have more cash to spend on the things we really like is to spend less on ‘essentials’ ~ the things we have to buy to survive.

For if we remember our Dickens and what Mr. Micawber said in David Copperfield, happiness lies in spending less than we earn, and unhappiness lies in spending more than we actually have.

There are some tried and tested ways to spend less on the boring essentials.  In my quest for minimalistic living, I have personal, (sometimes very bitter), experience of all of these following ideas:

  1. Live in a smaller place.  Smaller homes cost less to buy, attract lower property taxes, and use less utilities; water, gas, electricity.
  2. If you can, switch your utilities provider to a better and cheaper company.  All utilities companies are money-grabbing vultures, but try to choose the best of a bad lot.
  3. Drive a smaller car.  Smaller cars are less expensive to buy and insure, and in general use much less gas than a bigger car with more weight and a bigger engine.  If you buy a classic smaller car, as opposed to the latest model, then you won’t even suffer from depreciation.
  4. Switch your car insurance to a better and cheaper company.
  5. Learn some DIY skills.  You don’t have to use expensive and useless contractors, car mechanics, cleaners, or gardeners.  It’s cheaper and better if you do as much as you can for yourself.
  6. Cut out impulse purchases.  On impulse, too many of us buy too much stuff that we don’t actually need, want, or really like.  All that stuff clutters up our home and convinces us that we need to move to a bigger place.
  7. Don’t marry a sexy trophy wife, (or toy boy), who will also want you to move into a bigger place.  A trophy wife, (or toy boy), will end up costing you most of your treasure, and you’ll end up with a broken heart.
  8. Don’t try to buy love.  It doesn’t work, it will cost you a fortune, and you’ll end up with a broken heart.
  9. Control your addictions….. booze, drugs, gambling, pornography, casual sex, smoking….. All of these will all cost you just about everything you have, including your self-respect.
  10. Resist the urge to have the latest and most expensive technologies.  You don’t need a huge TV, costly cable, the newest computer, the best tablet, the most expensive iPhone with the most expensive contract.
  11. Buy whole foods rather than processed, heavily packaged, and generally bad for you costly crap.
  12. Buy generic brands.  Trust me, I’ve been into factories where the expensive labels and generic brands are actually made on the same production line with exactly the same content.  Only the packaging is different.
  13. If you can, then buy in bulk.
  14. Stop going out to lunch at work, instead take a packed lunch.  Those people you go to lunch with are probably boring and certainly aren’t your real friends anyway.  And, if you’re an average guy the women you take to lunch are never going to have sex with you, so you’re wasting your time and money.
  15. Don’t join a gym.  Most of the people who have gym membership never go there.  For great exercise take a long walk in the sunshine instead.
  16. Visit thrift stores, and if you find clothes you like, then save money and buy ‘pre-loved’ stuff.
  17. Don’t give to a big charity.  (Have you any idea how much the bosses of the big charities pay themselves?  The average pay across the top 100 charities is more than £250,000 a year, plus huge bonuses.)
  18. Don’t spend all your time drinking in pubs and bars ~ the booze is expensive there, and nobody in your favourite pub is your real friend anyway.

And finally, don’t spend on borrowed money, especially credit cards which all charge usury rates of interest.  Credit cards are NOT money.  Really, really, really NEVER use a payday lender, which all charge eye-watering criminal rates of interest.

You can probably think of some other money-saving tips of your own.  For a month try making a note of what you actually spend your hard-earned on ~ I guarantee that you will be surprised and shocked.  Learn what you actually spend your money on, and then you can start to control your finances.

Some say that money can’t buy happiness.  And that a fool and his money are soon parted.  All I know is that having money makes misery more bearable.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

you can take the idea of living in a tiny home to the extreme…..

They Cut Down All The Trees

Life without trees is life without Love.

The street where I live is under serious redevelopment, which involves making a tremendous amount of mess.  It also means that the contractors have cut down all the mature trees which used to line both sides of the street, and surround the old church, (which is now actually an art gallery).

Perhaps the redevelopment is a good idea, and the place will look much better when it’s all finished, but cutting down all the trees is just urban vandalism.

Where I live now looks as though urban riots / a small war has just been through there.

And, the old church / art gallery now looks utterly bereft.  All such a shame.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

As you can tell,

it’s still raining cats and dogs here.

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