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27,194 Fuggin Awesome

About PhillyB

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  • Gender Male
  • Location third spur east of the sun
  • Interests 19th century nautical literature


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  • Twitter Handle pablattenberger

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  1. designing and building your own house

    actually it's funny you bring the church thing up. as i began a gradual pull away from organized religion and then a sudden, bandaid-style ripping away from the church as a whole, i began pondering how on earth to recreate the amazing, wonderful things inspired by church communities without the things that make church ...well, church. how do you get a massive community of people in one place, with some sort of consensus-defined mission, and using that as your pole around which to gather and also have a constant, tight-knit social and economic group that's in continual communion with one another? for secularists it's bars, panthers games, maybe country clubs if you're rich, frats if you're in college, etc. but trying to sustain that is incredibly difficult and if you look at the state of modern suburban america it's socially disaffected, disconnected, and disparately scattered. how do you take the obvious advantage that belonging to a church offers and divorce it from the religious precepts that make it a thing to begin with? in that sense this whole idea is deeply experimental. i want to see how well i can use it as a platform to cull something similar community-wise, and having a multifunctional property is probably the best way to make it happen. from having a bar in the basement to watch panthers games to having educational material for other people to bring their kids to access if they want to being able to host events i think it's generally going to be an awesome and positive thing for greensboro, guilford county, and the state if this thing can produce enough good poo that keeps on producing good poo. i'm very, very hesitant to take any kind of grants or donations. gofundme type stuff grosses me out... i can work my ass off and pay for it myself, and i'd rather edit: oh and it'll be green as hell. i want it to be as self-sustainable as possible, which will mean solar and wind technology integrated into the grid as efficiently as possible, and a water collection tank as well, and gardens and poo
  2. designing and building your own house

    this house is meant to be the central structure of a multifunctional property. before building it i will purchase a piece of land and develop a section of it experimentally, with 5-8 small cabin-style houses, or A-frames, which we'll move into immediately as i begin developing the rest of the property. at that point we'll be able to also begin inviting people onto the property to stay for free if they like; i've got a couple people in mind who've been on board with this thing the whole way, as well as, we're hoping, political refugees so we can contribute to a solution. the large house has a very specific purpose. i've been deeply inspired by experiences at a boys' home in cambodia where young orphans were drawn off the street and then housed, clothed, given an education, etc. and by the time they hit their 20s they're all quadrilingual, high school honors students, studying at universities overseas, and generally emerging as social leaders in an area that desperately needs them. this has been a fundamental cog of the commune idea from the very start: build a network and start bringing in young kids who are probably destined for a life of dragging down society, and not only subtract from that problem but contribute to the solution by molding highly-educated, motivated, creative, intelligent, empathetic young men and women who will then turn around and add to the solution. much of my conceptual inspiration has come from reading about mary leakey's kickass upbringing of her children in the paleoarchaeological fields in remote tanzania. for a long time i have dreamed about developing a structure that can basically function as a massive extracurricular facility filled with every manner of educational/creative outlet, and the model of the house includes, among other things, an observatory, libraries, an art studio, a music room, computer room, photography studio, art gallery, miniature museum in the antiquarian tradition, martial arts studio, gymnasium, rough sports facilities, and a number of experimental interactive learning elements to be incorporated through various spaces of the house. it's a large house, yes, but it's a house without luxury. it's functional and nothing more. the master bedroom will be about the size of the one i've got now. no fancy anything (though i admit i'm going from broke on the library/salon, which is for inspiration more than anything, and still uses the space quite well.) in short, it's a multipurpose property meant to empower, enrich, and employ the lives of a burgeoning number of other people and serve as an economic and educational platform from which aspiring contributors to society can realize their dreams and collaborate to fix this fuged up world.
  3. Too good not to share--Norman tweet

    to the dupont car, josh!
  4. designing and building your own house

    oh right. yeah that's an advantage, especially with how much of it'll be open space (half of it's just residential with no-frills bedrooms and a few bathrooms.) 
  5. designing and building your own house

    what do you mean by this
  6. designing and building your own house

    by the time i go to apply for the loan i'll have the entire loan value matched in assets, which can be liquidized at any point. i'll be professoring at a college by then (knock on wood) and my wife will be a practicing NP. i'm not as much worried about getting the loan itself as i am about a bank being willing to bankroll an unorthodox, effectively half-completed project. i don't know if it works that way.
  7. designing and building your own house

    playing with it now. i've debated buying a sophisticated piece of design software and learning it to see if i can draw up my own blueprints. it'd be an unbelievable amount of work but i've seen plans like mine go for 30-40k for someone to actually sit down and design, soooo
  8. designing and building your own house

    i'll be living in it... hopefully for the rest of my life. if it's a 10k floorplan about 5k will be caught up between the two wings, which are all residential and part of my commune plan (as well as to house foster kids when we start adopting.) because of its function it should cost far less than most 10ksqft houses (though the featured salon, library, staircase, and interior dome could get a little pricey, at least on the design side.) it'll be renaissance as fug though. my main concern is figuring out loans. i've calculated saving myself about $200,000 by doing the interior work myself (mainly by avoiding material markups, and some on labor.) i'm estimating ~900k as the total cost, but that includes a 20% indirect cost calculation. i'm guessing i'd need about 500k to get it where i need it to be for me to start working on it: prepping the lot, laying the foundation, building the walls, roof, windows, doors, plumbing, and electric. the question would obviously be whether a bank will give me a half mil loan for effectively half a house.
  9. designing and building your own house

    i have a contractor that's offered to manage the project and sub out jobs, but obviously i'm not tying myself down. the property is significant... i'm looking at 7-10ksqft total, spread over a three-story center and two two-story wings. i've been flipping properties for a while now and i have a lot of experience doing reno, so i can do a bunch of the work myself. that's not realistic though for a project this size, in the structural phase certainly, so if possible i'd like to get contractors to come in, lay a foundation (definitely not slab) and put up the walls, a roof, plumbing and electricity and pretty much leave me an unfinished box to come in and do myself, or hire out guys to finish it at my own pace. if it's possible to coordinate several units in the same property i'm going with ductless mini-splits. i ran a new system through my first house and it was incredible... low bills, changed temperature on a dime. four splits per unit was the max though and i imagine i'll need a minimum of 16, probably more than that. i'd have to talk to architect about that though, with several floors to potentially run ducts through it might be worth it to just save the wall space.
  10. Saints week Part Deaux

    maybe it's just my seething hatred of the saints but i think this is your best work of all time
  11. So I am roughly a year away from being able to buy a piece of property and about two away from having the funds to put a downpayment on a sizeable house, which I'll be custom designing. I'm not an architect, so I'll need to hire one. I have some very specific thoughts in mind, as well as general design frameworks and styles. I understand architects are not cheap, particularly when you're coming up with lots of details, and if you've got high square footage. I'll skip all the details about the house, but I'm curious if anyone here has ever had a home custom built, or works as a contractor that does these sorts of things. How'd you go about getting everything done? Was your architect cheap? Any thoughts in general?
  12. Coming to Theaters next month..."The Big Short"

    hell of a cast, i'll probably check it out