Human-Scale

No to-do lists

I don’t keep to-do lists. No planner or project management system. I’ve seen some incredible processes that people, likely more effective than me, use to make sure they get things done. Not following daily lists isn’t a personal law — they just haven’t ever really worked for me, and trying to stick to them gave me a bit of anxiety. I do not want to have more to do each day than I can grasp.

  • SkeddyBot — My favorite messaging app is Telegram. I use it all day long for nearly all communication, and thanks to automations and webhooks most of my important notifications. So this elegant chatbot to send reminder messages quickly became a natural habit. When I tell Skeddy tasks to remind me of, they get done. I wrote about it in detail here.
  • Email — With several email inboxes, I have to consciously keep them from overflowing. I reflexively archive, short response, or leave it if it pertains to a task. Then, I batch those tasks around a block of time on the computer, they stay in my inbox until completed.

St Louis is better than Chicago

I know the streets and feel of all the neighborhoods in St. Louis, from far-north to deep-south. If there is someone I need to get in touch with, there’s a good chance I’ve met them, and if not one or two degrees of separation at most will get me there.

Living in the city, over suburbs

The suburbs were from the outset built around a very un-human element: they require an automobile to survive.

Several small businesses in one city, over one big business in many cities

The most beautiful example I know of growing business in this way is Zingerman’s in Ann Arbor, MI. It would be impossible to visit this college town for more than a couple days without being impacted in some way by Ari Weinzweig’s work, whether you knew it or not. While they do not open businesses outside of Ann Arbor, his philosophy has touched people the world over.

I desire to grow all our own food, or at least know where it comes from

It’s a pretty tall order to grow all your own food. And since we love good coffee and will not be moving to the tropics, we technically won’t ever attain this.

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Timothy Kiefer

Timothy Kiefer

bootstrapper, daily blogger, soil farmer, urban agriculture professional, wannabe programmer || perennial.city