Timberframe

Ecovillagers Say The Darndest Things: A Dancing Rabbit Invitation

People at Dancing Rabbit like to talk. A LOT. Every once in a while, you get to hear a real gem; the sort of thing that people remember for years to come, and bring up once in a while for a laugh. Below are just a few that have been recorded for posterity, submitted for your amusement.

Your last chance to visit in 2019 is coming up in October. Don’t miss out!

We tend to be curious folks, and you’ll often overhear people asking questions of one another; after all, humans learn from other humans. Sometimes, though, the questions don’t make much sense, and neither do the answers.

  • “Why is it bluetooth and not blueteeth?”
  • “Why don’t we pronounce Kansas like Arkansas, or Arkansas like Kansas?”
  • “Is soup heavier when it’s frozen? It is, isn’t it…”
  • Person 1: “How many legs does a caterpillar have?” Person 2: “A creepy-crawly amount.”

Sometimes, we just want to help each other out with a little advice, or we have a piece of trivia we can’t wait to share.

  • Person 1: “Hey, I think your dress is on backwards.” Person 2: “It is, and I’d wear it upside down too, if I could.”
  • “Light is so fast you can’t even see it.”
  • “People are waterproof.”
  • “Once you get 80% of the way, the last 10% is easy.”

Of course, food is a big deal in our community, and sharing meals together is one of the main venues where we connect. Inevitably, a lot of our talk is about the noms. First, there are the obligatory questions.

  • “Does it have soy?”
  • “Is it non-GMO?”
  • “Is it vegan? OK… HOW vegan?”
  • Person 1: “Why all the junk food?” Person 2: “My sugar hormones are bleeding.”
  • “Mama, can I have the other side? This breast is not working.”

Then there’s the unavoidable response commentary. (Cooking for other people can be hard work.)

  • “Most of your food smells like something that should be in the compost.”
  • “I’m detecting the faint aftertaste of rat.”
  • “Stop eating other people’s art projects.”
  • “Bacon in whiskey? That sounds like alcohol abuse.”
  • “Tell her I’m sorry. I ate her butterflies.”

As you know, eating and drinking come with consequences, some of which we’d rather not deal with. We talk a lot about that too.

  • “Who farted? It smells like baby powder and apples.”
  • “Did you just pee in my boot?”
  • “I can’t tell if this is my cry hanky or my pee hanky.”

One of the main ways we save water, and reduce our villagewide ecological impact, is that we compost our effluvia using a method called the humanure system. In a nutshell, we do our business in buckets, and compost it with straw and sawdust. This fact of life in our village changes our perspective.

  • “Happiness is an empty humey bucket.”
  • “Other people’s poop isn’t as bad as you think it is.”
  • “Some days you’re the pigeon, some days you’re the statue.”
  • “I love taking a shower, so I can’t smell myself anymore.”
  • “If you expect your clothes to stay clean, maybe you shouldn’t wear them around here.”
  • “Guilty pleasure: guest poop.” (In other words, visiting a neighbor’s house and making a deposit someone else has to take to the bank.)
  • “We’re number one in the number two business.”

Another major arena of village life is community politics. We can yak about that stuff all day. (We can, and we do.)

  • “Did you read the email about ___ ?” 
  • “It’s going to be a trash-talk explosion.”
  • “Consensus: you don’t always lose!”
  • “Check with so-and-so; I’ll do whatever they say.”
  • “This will be a classic game of mustache vs. beard.”
  • “We have a long tradition of talking about that.” (And when we say long, we mean LONG.)
  • “I hate arguing with myself. I always win, but I always lose.”

We also use reflective listening, where we allow the person speaking to finish, and then ask a follow-up question or two to ensure that we have properly understood them, before making a reply. This process has led to a handful of common phrases you’ll hear a lot:

  • “I’m hearing that __ .”
  • “It sounds like __ .”
  • “I have a story that __.”

We try to be considerate of one another, and ask for permission from someone before we drop an unsolicited opinion on them.

  • “I’d like to give you some feedback.”
  • “Can I give your hair some feedback?” (Good use of misdirection to insulate a person from something that’s really about them.)
  • “Are you open to some appreciation?”

We’re not always in the mood for it, though, so we might reply:

  • “I can’t hear you right now.”
  • “You’re framing that like a request, but it sounds like a demand.”
  • “I’m curious why you think __ . Can you say more about that?” (Unfortunately, in the heat of the moment, questions like this occasionally come out something like: “I’m curious why you’re such an idiot. Can you tell me why you would think something so ridiculous?”)

We also practice reflecting questioning, when we’re left wondering if others know what mean.

  • “Can you reflect what you heard me say?”
  • “Does that make sense?” (This is a tricky one. Sometimes, people actually aren’t sure if what they said would be clear to other people. Other times, what people really mean is: “Do you agree with me now?”)

Affirmation and expressions of sympathy, for one another as well as ourselves, are common features of conversation at Dancing Rabbit. We all care deeply about each other. One of my favorite things is occasionally happening upon a little note left by someone for someone else, usually festooned with hearts and smiley faces. Here’s a few more random gems.

  • “I feel bad he took your goat head.”
  • “I ain’t no chicken.”
  • “Mom, I’m worried about you chopping that wood without nunchucks.”
  • Person 1: “Are you bored?” Person 2: “No, I don’t have any allergies.”
  • “You can’t creep me out, honey. You came out of my uterus.”
  • “Conditional love still feels good.”

We make lots of important decisions as well, often involving other people in our deliberations.

  • “Would you prefer to live with the vegetables or the poop buckets?”
  • “I was thinking about putting my name tag back on my shoe, but I think I like it on my hat better.”
  • “I use that pillow because it’s probably the one with the least farts on it.”
  • “I’m not drinking, so I’ll just have one.”

Naturally, we like to talk about our goals with one another.

  • “I’m thinking about becoming a man of action.”
  • “When I get put in the grave, I want to have all my fingers on me.”
  • “I’m going to the same place your socks are hanging out.”
  • “If we were a safety-first team instead of a safety-third team, we’d have a switch you could turn off without moving your hands around; but we’re safety-third, and that works well for us.”
  • “I think the rut that I’m stuck in is that I haven’t made the choice to get out of the rut that I’m stuck in.”

We talk about our projects too.

  • “Let’s make mobiles out of teabags and forks. It could be a collage.”
  • “I’m going to buy a pet. Then I’m going to buy a makeup kit. Then I’m going to put makeup on my pet.”
  • “I’m at the peak of my creativity; everything is downhill from here.”
  • “If I’m going to fail spectacularly, I’d rather fail spectacularly at something difficult than at something easy.”
  • “DR is kind of like a post-apocalyptic Williamsburg.”

And we all hope to leave a positive legacy.

  • “I want my tombstone to read: she led a good life, and died choking on some sauerkraut after a fart joke.”
  • “I want to do A SINGLE THING that makes a difference.”
  • “We don’t have to predict the future, we just have to not mess it up.”

Are you interested in chopping it up with Rabbits and hearing more of the hilarious anecdotes that fly from mouth to ear in our village? You can very soon, starting October 6th, where you’ll visit for one or two weeks and enjoy some much-needed down time, some stimulating workshops on a wide variety of topics, and have a chance to make some new lifelong friends. This session will be your last chance to visit until 2020, so if you know you want to come, don’t wait to confirm your spot. We can’t wait to meet you. 

In community,
Vick
CSCC Correspondent

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