Sunday, January 9, 2011

Ah, the Joys of "helping" people

Ok so after a little mail exchange today with one of our followers, who apparently is a little upset that we haven't responded to them personally since, oh I dunno mid December (I mean hell 3 weeks is an eternity right...?), here's Gungnir's rules for helping out with advice for those who want to try to follow in our metaphoric footsteps or just want to know how we did something.
  1. We will respond as our schedules will allow, we offer advice for free, we are real people with real lives this isn't a reality show and we're not getting paid for it. That means that sometimes we're not able, willing or even motivated enough to provide you with a timely service (that's timely according you your timeline not ours). If you'd like a timely service them please feel free to contact with a consulting company of which there are many for your questions, often these companies will charge a fee, but as they say you get what you pay for.
  2. Do not whinge, demand, act entitled, or be disrespectful, you asked for our help, we did not ask to help you out. Any of these acts will likely cause me to either delay or completely ignore any subsequent contact. If you respond with some kind of negative mail I will respond with perhaps good advice that may help you adjust to life in Alaska (if you ever get here) you a free to ignore this advice, however we are not so different to most Alaskans, so if you do choose to ignore this advice then you may later find that Alaska is not the place for you. Most important advice I ever give is that in Alaska, unless you set a date, people who agree to help will help when their schedule allows (this means when they feel like it). Don't have a hissy fit if you haven't set a date you want the help by, and you blow past that date, that just makes the person who agreed to help to retract the offer, and flip the bozo bit. Independence is highly respected here, go get some if you don't have some already.
  3. Follow the blog and postings that are made, often you will see hints and tips explaining what we're doing, or our current status, that will give you an idea as to our immediate priorities and any possible delays. Bear in mind there is always fuel and water to haul, and wood to split on top of anything else that you're seeing.
  4. Winter is not the best time to ask for assistance, we currently use about 1/3-1/2 cord of wood a week that needs splitting for heating, not doing this is not an option in less than a day our living space will be at ambient temperature, so even when we're sick, tired, and have no light this is happening (more than once I've had to split a 1/8 cord at 9:00pm and 30 below because something got us home late). It's tedious and a grind, and it can make us a little cranky. It's necessary however, because without doing it, we would at times never get the generator running so we could get the truck running, and that's assuming that the temperature is high enough so that we are not at risk of dying by being at that sustained temperature. Next year may be different, we'll let you know.
  5. If you have a deadline, then let us know. For 10 years prior to this my work environment was based around deadlines, if there is no deadline, then I'll get around to it when it's convenient, which may mean that other priorities are put first, including the less enjoyable priorities of taking the poop buckets to our pile or the more enjoyable such as sighting in a rifle or getting some plinking or just sleeping in may be prioritized far ahead of your current burning issue.
  6. Be prepared to look at your problem from our situation, we are trying to build a house in a place where the road is a mile away, that road leads roughly 135 miles to the nearest real civilization as people in the lower 48 know it. We have done nearly all of what we have by ourselves, everything here was brought in by us, from the lumber for the house to the gas for the generators. There have been no vacations, time off is what we have after we've done the chores, or going to watch a game in the NFL playoffs at a friends in Manley. There are no weekends here, no schedule except chores.
  7. Your emergency is not my priority.
So after all of that, if you still want our help and advice, then please feel free to contact us, either as a comment, or in private. Since this is the first person that we've helped who responded in this way (strangely no one else has complained) I figure that it might be a good idea to post my ground rules. As a by the way, if you offer help to us, those same rules apply to us. At least one of our readers knows this, he offered to come help out this summer, and for one reason or another it didn't come about (you know who you are ;P) no problems at all we appreciate the offer and will accept it wholeheartedly when their situation is such that they can deliver on their offer.


Anonymous said...

This is the last correspondence from "G-man"

"I'm preparing a longer response to your questions, I'll send it in a bit...


This was on the 12th of December. That's 3 days from being a month pal. Don't be an asshat and please stop lying to make someone look bad. You've been on the net on a regular basis..You're full of crap dude.

The ole I'll do it in my own time is typical of an asshole who could care less about someone else's schedule all the while whining when they get called on being as dick.

I know you were on your blog on a regular basis genius.

Your old lady came across as somewhat nice and what I would call hospitable but you sure as fuck don't fit....

If these people buy your everybody else is an asshole gig you got going that's on them. I feel sorry for Pluckety.

Gungnir said...

I'm sorry I'm lying about what exactly...?

Do I owe you money or something...? Oh no, that's right this was entirely voluntary, I'd already spent 3-4 hours on the first mail you received from Plickety with the Visio Diagram, at my previous billing rate that would have been $500+

I'm bemused by this comment in it's entirety, because I'm not entirely sure what the purpose is. It certainly will not in any way improve your chances of us providing you with the additional information explaining what you've already received from us. Since based upon your response to those pieces of information, I need to go back to first principles to explain it (which is what the original delay was caused by anyway).

As far as what you requested you received from us a detailed description of how our off-grid system works, and a schematic, we have not provided you with a pick list of parts but someone with what we provided should be able to create that list with minimal basic knowledge of the equipment. After receiving this you had some comprehension problems with both pieces of information, I have no obligation to explain anything to you in any way. You have information as to what we're using (both current and proposed), if you cannot understand that information that is not our problem. The internet has more than enough information that will help you, just Google off grid power systems.

My blog post does not in any way indicate who the person who was unhappy was. You apparently decided to step forward and admit that you were that party. Bravo. However your follow up comment, does adequately illustrate why I felt the need to post it in the first place since it was the mismatch of expectations between the two of us that made me realize that perhaps some ground rules needed to be set out.

I actually don't believe that I am an asshole, but readily admit to being a prick (for those that know me, yes it's that same old wheeze).

Neither Plickety nor I make any guarantee's of anything, we receive nothing for doing our blog, and we never expected to have any followers except for a few family and friends, somehow we got nearly 90 followers by accident. So I don't know where you get the feeling you were sold a bum bill of goods from we've never claimed to be experts in anything, except our former professions, nor why you seem to think that my wife needs your pity.

I'd like to draw your attention to something, that she has blogged about already, she is a high functioning autistic (Aspergers), she is kind and pleasant, but will freak out when pressured. Obviously this is not something that you considered with your ill advised attempts to subjugate us to your demands.

Now as far as me posting on the Blog, well, so you somehow think that you are more worthy of our time than the other 88 people who frequent us...? All because I Posted 3 times since the 12th of Dec. We try to post at least once a week so that family friends and followers know we're still alive, this is often the only post we'll make since it has the widest reach. I'm sure that if this is not accurate, then others will be more than happy to correct me on this assumption.

It's clear that you don't especially like me, well all I can say is welcome to the vast majority of people I've met. I'm not going to lose sleep over it.

Anonymous said...

You evidently have a problem with accepting responsibility. I asked for information and you both agreed. Now in my book that means actually helping. Not making excuses for not doing what you've agreed to.

You can complain about time..shitting in a bucket and a whole list of other things....

And yes I'll figure the rest out myself...what makes you think after experiencing your idea of helping I'd want anymore of it..

BTW...I'm just fine in the independent department...after numerous businesses and traveling half this country by bicycling it while living off the land doing it. I think I'll do just fine in Alaska.

Thanks but no thanks. Your idea of hospitable isn't at all..

Anonymous said...

One last thing before I leave this mental juke joint...

Maybe I'm wrong here but if you look at the top right-hand corner of your site..You'll notice the contributors section..Every time you log onto this site it pops the most recent to the top..meaning I could see who had been on and what frequency in which they yes you did post 3 times but you were on much more.

I like to know who I can trust and who I can't so I pay attention.

I gave you a month and yes I did consider life and the holidays..I also sent you emails giving you a chance to say "Hey..we have stuff going on..can it wait?" or anything at didn't.

I mean hell..I waited nine days after the holidays and a month total..obviously you think that's not long enough. Seriously..this is your idea of helping or are you just posturing now that someone actually had the balls to say something about the way you procrastinate your word?

As for not liking's not about's about doing what you say you will.

As for me making it there...You surely don't know me from Adam but I do what I say I'm going to and in a timely manner.

Last but not least: I want to thank Plickety for the help she did give. As far as I can tell she is a pleasant person and I enjoyed talking with her. Her style of writing is what made me love the site to begin with.

I wish you both prosperity regardless of what's been said here.

Take care.

Beth of the Rocks said...

Okay, I just have to respond here. G&PC - I don't know you, but I've been reading your blog. So here goes:

Anonymous, you shouldn't post unless you're willing to leave your name.

Your response to this post shows an apparent lack of self-esteem. That, coupled with control issues, manipulation, and an attempt to discredit and coerce someone who was VOLUNTEERING information to you. You have shown complete ignorance of the incredible amounts of work it takes to live their lifestyle. I would have been perfectly happy with detailed info about their off-grid life, however, apparently, I am not as ignorant as you. I can figure out how to crap in a 5 gallon bucket without needing someone to tell me how to do it.

And apparently you grilled them for information. Are you the anal type who questions people until they don't want to talk to you anymore? How do you think it's your right?

Less than a month. Have you ever contacted an attorney's office? Did you expect them to get back to you about every little question right away? I'm assuming if you've had multiple businesses then you've been in contact with attorneys... I wonder if you treated them so crudely. By the way, did any of your businesses succeed?

And bicycling? These people lived in a TENT in ALASKA through the WINTER!! Did you get that? Before you start talking trash and namecalling maybe you should grow a pair and try THAT. But it's not likely you could hack it.

As far as your afflictions I have previously mentioned, it's not likely you admit them. I'm guessing you have a hard time maintaining intimate relationships, and subconsciously have the need to continuously prove yourself because you place little value on your person. Your life is all about image.

Swearing, really? Please can we show a better command of the English language. Are you a hillbilly? Did you originate from the inbred whorehouses in Tennessee?

And please don't try to leave an opening by thanking PC for her help. That is so self-deprecating.

Oh... And one more for you, anonymous, are you a stalker? Because you have admitted to stalking, apparently you didn't think that one through, either. So, you should take your OCD, feel bad for me, whiny, manipulative self back to your crappy little one-bedroom apartment in the run-down section of whatever city you live in, and find some pizza in one of those boxes lying around you have neglected to pick up, eat through your misery, and leave the rest of us alone. (Bring it though, if you think you can. But I don't back down.)

Oh, and why do you think they are in such a hard-to-reach spot in Alaska? Probably because they got tired of people like you.

G & PC - I understand entirely the Asperger's disorder. It's hard to be around too many people, or unplanned change, or pressure. Most people on the autism spectrum don't respond well to pressure.

I hope your cabin is coming along okay, I'm not sure if you are able to continue to work on it or not given the season.

I would move up there if my son would let me! Alaska is gorgeous, and I could be a hermit. :)


Anonymous said...

As usual..Inflammatory comments meant to incense from the peanut gallery.

No..None of my business have been successful. I don't live in a two story home. I've had no survival training that would even come close to what they've been through..Cursing is a sign of Hillbilly-ness (Isn't that right Gungnir)..They were telling me info so I too could learn how to shit in a bucket and so on. Yada Yada

And yes..reading their blog is now considered stalking. Of course by your definition..You're doing it too.

You're a bit of a busy body huh with that armchair psychology.

They know who I am and the "argument" is none of your business. It's between him and I.

Beth of the Rocks said...

Two things:

I hit it dead on, didn't I?

And you took your personal arguments public. No one knew who you were until your response. So if you wanted it to remain private, your best response would have been to not say anything at all.

Anonymous said...

Actually missed it entirely..since you don't know me in the slightest...any thought that you're sure you're right regardless of what the person says to the contrary would be what then Doctor? A little nuts perhaps?

I didn't make it public...The post did.

Anonymous said...

Hello G&P,

I love reading your blog and seeing your adventure unfold.

Take no notice of the rude moron giving you abuse. He or she is just a total dick. Frankly giving them air time on your blog is far more than they deserve.

Best wishes


Anonymous said...

Until he starts paying you for your information , just laugh at his ignorance and write your blog.
I have to say I miss when you dont post but I understand that you have to set priority's.
Hey the hill folks are ok ,

Anonymous said...

Actually I did offer to help them out...Yada Yada. I'm the dick..Of course. Why would I expect anything different with the state of America today.

As you were.

Anonymous said...

Greetings to you both,
Wow! I follow you two as much as I can and respect you so much for what you do and how you are doing it. You responded well to the rude individual who has made his arguement public. Keep being nice even if you don't feel like it. He does not understand what it takes to live the daily life and try to build your dream. Keep on, 88 out of 89 people are behind you!
Wannabe and hope to be there in the area one day,

Marybeth said...

No matter how hard you try you just can't make some people happy. I love reading your blog. Please don;t let this one person ruin it for everyone. I'd put him on ignore. Clearly there is some deeper issue here, and I hate to have to worry for your safety. I hope all is well up there.

BTW how much is a cord of wood?

Anonymous said...

Some of you women are hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Keep up the good work G and PC. Post pics when you get a chance.

Urbancowgrrl said...

Wow. The nasty, crazy people pop up even when you're in the middle of nowhere. Disconcerting. But good to know nonetheless, I guess. By the way, can we borrow your truck and would you help us move next week? (just kidding). I do enjoy reading your blog and I don't quite get why anyone would expect you would even have time to give out advice.

Anonymous said...

Hey mooch. Did you pay any money for said promised advice? No? Then STFU and quit badgering these people. Your armchair adventure planning for an Alaska adventure that will probably never happen can put up with the delay. Better yet, spend some time reading some books. I imagine there is quite a bit of info out there for those not looking to be spoonfed. And yes, you are an asshat. Props to this blog, I enjoy reading it.

crazy neighbor said...

Hey Anonymous,

I hope you don't plan on moving to our neck of the woods, because frankly, you won't be welcomed. Hopefully you stay wherever the hell you are, cause we surely don't need you here. Until you have been there and done that, do your own damn research and leave them the hell alone. If you don't know how, go to the library so they can help you. There are hundreds of books, and websites and you don't have to be a genius to figure it out. And yes, I am a woman, so bite me.

Susan Stevenson said...

I've been reading you for awhile and I'm friends with Sara and Family across the road. I love following your blog and I admire you for doing what you're doing. I know I don't have the courage to move somewhere remote and build my own home.

Anyway, I also understand that there isn't always time to answer emails and questions in a timely fashion - and you shouldn't have to make apologies for that. You've gone above and beyond with providing this person with information and details.

Keep up the good work, and stay warm!

Susan in North Pole

Anonymous said...

Excellent rules; I really enjoy your blog. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Great Day In the Mornin'!!!

I go away for a week and somebody comes in and stomps their muddy boots all over the hard work you two are puttin' up! That's it: I'm -- wait...what does one do in this situation to be supportive?

Aw, shiat, I dunno. Reckon it's more useful to wish the two of you warm fuzzy boots in the 30 below than to make recommendations to folks with a poor sense of perspective.

Don't let anybody get ya'll down. Waste of useful (wood-splittin / bucket-shittin / Ripley-lovin) energy. Hele on! as they say back on Maui...

VIVA! -- Sager

carlos said...

my english is no very good but I think I can tell you something:
-you suck!

PC and G:
great rules
ignore morons
keep safe
we love you


Georganne said...

Anyms, people like you are the main reason people like us moved up here. Stomp your little feet and throw your tantrum all you want but do it in the privacy of your own room in your mamma's basement. We don't want to hear it. You are probably best served by staying the hell out of Alaska. We don't want asshats up here.

Anonymous said...

G&P considering the "new neighbor" morons and the "stalking asshats" I was wondering if I could get some advice:
Scenario: You are a Pulitzer prize winning photographer While taking pictures of the beautiful snow covered river near your cabin one of the a fore mentioned genius' driving a snow machine breaks through the ice. You have a 100 ft of rope and your camera with you.

You have only moments to respond how do you decide what f stop is necessary to get the perfect picture.

As for the in"duh"vidual who seems to have an evident vocabulary challenge... Your observations are clearly induced by an interruption in the administration of those medications that allow you to minimally function in society. Seeing that you are currently out of touch with reality allow me to assure you that my interactions with the host of this blog are clearly contrary to yours. I will gladly state under oath that these are truly fine folk.. And if I am wrong and they are anti-social inconsiderate bushrats I'll gladly provide the ammunition they need to repel the likes of you from disturbing them.

Oh yeah, I am not anonymous

Anonymous said...

All I can say is WOW!! In reading the comments...what the heck!

I have to wonder about the expectations of some people.

Hopefully the building is progressing and things will calm down.


Anonymous said...

Wow, that guy is a piece of work. CJ

Bushrat John said...


owen said...

Five months after the fact and my blood still boils in your defense. Please don't let guys like that get under your skin. I have truly enjoyed your blog. Ups and downs, goods and bads. It's real. Good work.