Living Out Loud

Not a Minimalist


I don't consider myself materialistic. I drive 2005 Toyota Camry. I've lived in the same house for 30 years. I wear one kind of pants and just about all my shirts are the same color. In the past six months I've upgraded all my tech except my Apple Watch, but before that I had an iPhone 11, an Intel MacBook and a five-year old iPad. Having said all that, I am not a minimalist anywhere in my life except in my backpacking setup because carrying heavy shit up and down mountains gets real old real fast.

My current software girlfriend is Obsidian, a note taking app with 1,671 available plugins. I'm active on Reddit in the sub pertaining to the app where there is an ongoing war between two factions. There is the crowd I'm with who are very much about seeing what they can configure the program to do using scripts and plugins and ingenuity. Then there is the other side who eschew anything more than the vanilla version and accuse the rest of us of not being productive enough because we spend too much time fiddling with things. What? That's where the fun is. It's a note taking app, perhaps the least sexy kind of software this side of scientific calculators. To just install it and start taking notes without trying to automate or quantify things is just weird to me.

The same goes with phones. I buy the biggest amount of storage space I can afford and I do my level best to use it all. I install all the apps and download all the videos, Kindle books, Audible books, PDFs . I think I have six Mastodon clients installed right now and that's OK. It's my phone. I enjoy software evaluation a lot and I manage to have a busy ass phone as well as a wife, a job and good relations with my offspring. I know that a lot of the default apps people are just normies who get zero enjoyment out of seeing what cool things third party apps can do and don't want to spend the money anyway. That's cool. It's just not me.

When I was at the height of my cycling passion, unlike some more well off folks, I only had one bike because those damn things are crazy expensive. But, I had dozens of water bottles, an entire closet of cycling clothes, multiple pumps, bottles of chain lube, extra helmets and so forth until I finally had to dedicate an entire room of the house to my cycling hobby. To be fair, by that point I'd married another cyclist and we put her bike stuff in that room too. Not a minimalist. Like I said.

Other things I probably have too much of include books, coffee cups, clothes that I'm sure will fit again one day and computer cables because I think there is a law that says nerds like me are obligated to have Firewire 400 connectors at the ready in case Apple brings back the standard. I just want to be prepared. 

Things you won't find at my house include jewelry, extra watches, a boat, a fancy riding lawn mower dishes I don't eat off of regularly and televisions scattered around everywhere.