Also, some appropriate music to accompany the reading can be found on the video from the Camo Cowboys on the top.
Welcome to Nevada County [or Humboldt County.] Know that your wonderful mix of cultures, languages, alpaca ponchos and accumulated experiences brings great color to the community. We are happy to have you here, helping our local folks get the medicine all ready to alleviate the world’s insomnia, undiagnosed back pain and marginally realistic anxiety. Thank you for that.
But bros, you’re kinda burning some bridges here in the NC. Seriously – even the folks that get it, the totally hippy-rasta-boho, Amma-hugging, naked-at-the-river, big-time- medicine-growing locals, are getting a little ragged due to some of the negative trimmer mojo that’s coming back at us.
So. How do we get back to Happy?
We’ll work on our end, but you all need to step up in the awareness department. How?
Simple really. Just pay attention to stuff like this:
1. The River is not your house. Nobody wants to go for a nice fall hike at Purdon’s and constantly be jammed up by tents and piles of garbage and shit – literal shit – on the beaches. There are plenty of campgrounds up Highway 49. Nice ones. With toilets.
2. Say “please” and “thank you” and “may I.”
3. If someone picks you up hitchhiking at Tyler Foote Crossing and gives you a ride all the way into town, offer to throw down a couple of bucks for gas. They probably won’t take it, but the gesture goes a long way.
4. Stop clogging the aisles in the co-op. Not asking a lot here, just pull over to the side when you’re talking to your buddy from Connecticut about that last time you saw him in Costa Rica.
5. And don’t park in the co-op parking lot all fucking day – even if you are sharing your lovely ukulele skills (BTW – see #15 re this). Spaces are finite. Other people like to use them, too.
6. Don’t call me me “bro,” bro.
7. Big, big rule here: At a yoga or meditation or herbal tincture class, “Suggested Donation” does not – NOT – mean “Free.” In fact, a $5 suggested donation means $5 is the minimum amount you can pay without seriously adding to your Karmic debt. The instructors work hard. Skip out on paying? You are coming back as a cockroach in your next life, and you’re an asshole in this one.
8. If you are one of the Drainbow people, just leave. You guys are the effin’ worst.
9. If you are from Europe, cool. But realize you are taking jobs away from locals, and doing that ain’t so cool. Acknowledge that and give back, or move on.
10. If you are from Connecticut, upstate New York, Salt Lake City, Flagstaff, Houston, Massachusetts, Marin County – wherever – please see above.
11. No one really cares about your experience in Oaxaca. You don’t need to share. Especially on speakerphone.
12. The Food Bank, facilities at the Family Resource Center – stuff like that? It’s pretty limited, and folks here need it. If you are not prepared for life on the road, stay home.
13. If you do need help, okay – take it. But when you get paid, pay back. And juggling for the kids is great, but it does not pay for laundry soap and canned tomatoes. Contribute, bro.
14. And, when you get paid, how about throwing down for one of the local nonprofits – the North Columbia Schoolhouse, maybe the Senior Center, or could be the North San Juan Fire Department. You don’t pay taxes, so how about a small community tithe. Twenty bucks. If it’s a hardship, then skip buying that expensive juggling equipment or gnar slackline kit until the next payday.
15. Don’t play your guitar (or mandolin or ukulele) in public unless you’re really good at it. It isn’t charming if you suck. It’s just loud and screechy. And for god’s sake – please, please, please no juggling. It’s just sad.
16. When you sit at a four-top at Ike’s for three hours, you are being greedy and impacting other’s ability to access desperately needed pancakes. Eat, pay, go.
17. And tip your damn waitress. They are putting up with a lot this time of year. Start at 20% and add 5% for every half hour you sit there after your bill arrives.
18. Seriously. Don’t call me bro.
19. Spend some damn money. You are sucking the cash out of our local economy. That is a pretty hard thing for a small rural area to absorb. Look, trim a pound and a half a day, reap some coin, save some for the annual trip to Kauai, it’s a noble goal. But spend some here.
20. One way to give back? Tip like a Mafia Don. You have the cash, you are capitalizing on our region’s bounty, so fucking tip like a 60 year old millionaire trying to impress a hot 20 year old starlet. You’ll feel good about it. And tip with money for chrissake. Leaving a bud on the bar is insulting for a bartender who probably has five pounds left over from last year.
21. Regarding spending – the following items do not count as currency: bud, massages, a place to stay when I visit wherever it is you’re visiting from, a pound of trim, a pipe you made, anything else you made. Maybe – MAYBE – you could come up to my property and help pull Scotch Broom, can tomatoes or split wood, but you didn’t offer that, did you?
22. The power of community and the joy of each of us supporting your brothers and sisters is not an excuse to take other’s stuff, shit on their land or suck dry the teat of their kindness. Not without reciprocating. It Takes a Village does not mean you just get other folks’ stuff.
23. Last thing: “The World Provides.” Those are the words of the selfishly unaware deluded by some idea of self-awareness. Humans provide. Thank them for it. Small or large, providing something for you was likely a sacrifice. They shared their bounty, so provide a little back. It goes a long way.
Look, here’s the deal. You guys are awesome. You work hard, provide an essential service, and bring some wonderful, beautiful color to our community. You give a lot, and this community gives a lot back.
But there’s a perception that the taking is beginning to outweigh the giving, one that sees the transient trimming community as a parasite, not a contribution. And this perception is becoming pretty global, even among the most accepting of us.
You need to realize that this perception springs from somewhere, and it clearly has truth to it. Is it painting all trimmers with too broad a brush? Maybe. But maybe not. Whatever the case – the perception that exists is created by you. It may be by the few, it may be the many, but it is here and it is real.
We love you, but, I mean, if this relationship is gonna keep working, you all need to put something into it, too. Otherwise we’re all buying Trim Reapers and going automated.
We cool, bros?