“You’re not poor, you’re just broke.”

It’s planting season in these here hills. I’ve not had much time to geek out on anything fun these last couple of weeks. Therefore I must give you guys my unadulterated thoughts on things from real life. (It’s ok. We can still have a good time. I promise.) We’ve been here a year last week. My mind is still a little blown by that. Seems the older I get the quicker a year goes by. That’s normal, right?

I’ve been thinking about that line from the blog a few weeks ago. Something about “nerds off the grid.” We were nerds long before we decided to go off the grid. (That kind of goes without saying, doesn’t it? I said it anyway.) I met The Hubs in high school. At the comic book shop. During a Magic tournament. (Go ahead, you can laugh. I’ll wait.) Yeah, yeah, it’s freaking adorable. He’s freaking adorable, actually. The sort of guy who can drop science about comics and geeky stuff, but can also build a house by himself and looks like an organic farmer in that hat. We won’t talk about him making samurai armor out of old flagpoles (I’m not even kidding, he hammered them flat and cut scales out and sewed them together for six months in the middle of my living room). So when he said he wanted to move to Cali to try to do something different I figured I had nothing to lose because it’s awesome in Cali, right? It’s true. It is awesome.

And we’re not technically off the grid. Compared to some of the places people call suitable human dwellings around here, our house is Babylon. But still. It’s in the middle of nowhere. I guess it’s all relative. (Cue visual aid.)

I live here. Well, down the road from here.

That there is a far flung cry from Asheville. The Ville is a small city, but it’s still a city. With people. And sidewalks (haha). And restaurants. And, well…people. In the county that we moved to, there are literally more bears than people. Have I mentioned this before? Because that’s a pretty astounding statistic, isn’t it? It’s a mindfuck to think that you are more likely to run into a black bear on the trail than a dude just trying to smoke a doobie. It’s the opposite of Asheville. And really, getting off the grid was never our goal (by the way, every time I say that I feel like I’m making a Tron reference – no likey). But living with a whole bunch of middle men between us and the things we needed for basic survival was getting pretty old. This living out here, forever away from anything? This is an exercise in self-sufficiency, self-reliance, existence appreciation. Very Thoreauvian, but without that pesky pond.

So here I am, in homesteader heaven, really enjoying my happy life with my happy husband and our happy dog and our happy garden. Everything is blissful.


I miss nerds. Ok, ok. I won’t pigeonhole. Let me be more expansive. I miss people with whom I can have discussions on things which I think are cool and since I consider myself relatively nerdy those things would, by extension or association, be perceived as nerdy within the contexts of conversation. Yes? Alright. Snarkypants. Making me use all big words and clauses and shit. God. Seriously, I’m not bitching. The people I’ve met here are lovely and I wouldn’t trade their company. It’s a question of math, really. Fewer people equals fewer nerds.

An example: I was feeling lazy last night and I wanted to watch a movie. So I go to the shelf where the DVDs live, and started listing them off, wanting to appease everyone (including the housemate, who is noticeably cooler than me). “So, we’ve got Alien, Batman, Futurama, Matrix, Stargate, Star Trek, Star Wars, X-files…” At this point I trail off (see the ellipses? That means trailing off…) because he’s giving me the face. That Don’t-You-Have-Any-Normal-Movies-You-Tremendous-Nerd? face. The Face.

Don’t give me The Face, goddamnit! I love movies! I have seen a million billion movies! Even ones without spaceships in them. Sit down with me and my sisters and try, just try, to win a game of Six Degrees to Kevin Bacon. I challenge you. But apparently my shelf is populated with only geeky things. Why is that? What do people think when they walk into my house and see the movie shelf? Not that I care. But it’s interesting to think about, isn’t it? Don’t you look at people’s books and movies when you’re in their houses? Do you then form an opinion of them? It’s instinctual. It’s not me being a bitch. Hopefully.

Anyway. Just another one of those moments. Feels a little high school-ish. It’s stupid, really. It’s not like my feelings were hurt or anything. But there are people who get me and people who don’t. And I miss having people around who see the bigger picture, you know? Who, even if they don’t understand the nerd references, let it go and let me talk and let me make my stupid jokes. I live on a farm. I am more than an hour from cell service. I am two hours from Chinese food. That’s just not natural. My conversational opportunities are pretty much limited to “How are your plants looking?” and “Did you hear they’re logging the forest on our road?”. It’s insane. But it’s gorgeous. I really like it here. Maybe I’m just not used to it yet. Maybe I just need to find some hip people (like you guys) to nerd out with about fun stuff online. My freakin’ lifeline, the interwebs. Keep me apprised of the happenings in the real world. Please? Seriously, please? I have email for a reason.

7 thoughts on ““You’re not poor, you’re just broke.”

  1. Oh, man, I totally get this! I’m around a lot more people than you, but so far have found very few with whom I enjoy extended conversations, and no other nerds. Just as I was beginning to truly embrace my nerd identity, I was taken from my people and now it’s like a fantasy novel in my head where I’m the elf princess of the nerds and have been forced into exile in a beautiful but cold place where I can’t really understand the language and–well, that’s enough. I’m focusing my energy into raising chiles and writing my novel. Just know I’m thinking of you and sending sympathetic juju your way.

    1. Likewise, Meg. We still have each other. And you should totally write that novel, by the way. The one about the elf princess. When you’re done with the one you’re working on now. No pressure.

  2. Well, don’t feel bad. I am around a LOT of people day to day and only have about 4-5 I can technically talk openly to. Not just because I to love “nerdy” stuff but because I tend to be a little harsh on religion and politics for most here. No matter where I go in this world that is what I must deal with. So, join the club chick! Let me give you a quote of my own instead of taking for once! 🙂

    It is not WHERE you are but with WHOM you wish to associate. No matter if you reside in a large city or small, if you do not follow the beat of the masses you will surely always be searching for that special group of associates.

    1. It’s true. Especially in that area, particularly on the religion/politics/intellectualism front. They’re out there. You’ve just got to find them.

  3. Yeah, we miss having you guys around for sure! Of course, one good thing the internet and technology has brought us is the ability to still easily communicate with each other. At least we all have that and each other no matter what. Well, no matter what may not really apply here, but you get the point. 🙂

  4. How many times did we watch Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves?

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