Readers’ Letters: 14 January 2015

Introducing the Culticycle, brilliantly combining the small tractor with the bicycle. Plough Monday was never such good fun!

CULTIVATE THE LAND THE EASY WAY
Sir: I found this little gem whilst browsing through the internet and thought it might of interest to you: 
“A pedal powered tractor for cultivation and seeding, built from lawn tractor, ATV, and bicycle parts. Speed is 3 – 4 mph depending on choice of gearing and pedaling speed. Better for operator’s body, less soil compaction, no fuel use, cheaper than a tractor; easily adaptable to specific needs.”
http://farmhack.net/tools/culticycle
This is the first time I’ve mailed The Idler, but have been following your works for years. How to be Idle was a welcome comrade to the younger me that actually led me to the path of writing and homesteading that I am currently having a wander down, so thanks for that! 
Hope this finds you well. Look forward to your future offerings!
Sion Lidster
www.sionlidster.com

 

IN PRAISE OF THE FOUR DAY WEEK
Sir: I am very much pro the 4 day week. This summer I returned from travelling and was offered my own full time job back. I declined, saying that I needed flexibility. They offered me flexible freelance work, and a better rate. I was sub-letting a small room off of friends for £150 a month, earning £300 pounds a week for three days work (sometimes four). On my extra days off in the week I had time to go to the market, buy cheap fresh food, cook large batches which would sustain me all week for lunch and dinner. I realised that the money I was saving on food alone probably amounted to days work (pre-payrise). I also learnt meditation, mushroom foraging and started painting. Life has been very good! Thanks for the great articles, just found your site today.
John Hammond

 

IDLE THOUGHTS FROM THE FROZEN WASTES
Sir: I just thought I’d extemporise something at this early hour. It’s -14 degrees outside, here in northern Sweden, and The Idler is in my thoughts as I watch the snowy wastes. Your influence has reached far – my architecture MA is (I hope) to be based on trying to apply the theories of the ol’ Winstanley and the Diggers and Kropotkin to create a new, sustainable economy in the north. At the moment, food stocks will last perhaps four days if a disaster occurred. Formerly of course, peas, beans, vetches and all the rest were common currency up here – now it seems a ‘fresh’ avocado is more à la mode. Anyway, you have much to answer for. A shared delight in medieval music is also pleasing, as I hadn’t twigged that from the Idler books I have. This Christmas was television free, despite the Grandparents’ usual desire to watch Downton Abbey and instead a night of carousing followed with many a D’Urfey tune. And ‘black stripes’ – rum, treacle and hot water. Fantastic. Gott nytt år!
Joshua Taylor, Sweden

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