(Also see collected vandwelling words of wisdom in the RVwiki)


People who say “What you want is…” don’t know what you want and don’t care what you want.

The loudest voices are often useless or even counterproductive.

People who don’t write clearly typically don’t think clearly.


The more (TM) and (R) symbols on a company’s marketing the more likely they are to be bullshitters.

hierarchy of bullshit

From most helpful to least helpful:

  1. experts - people who understand a subject and discuss it
  2. introverts (tie) - people who understand a subject but don’t discuss it
  3. laymen (tie) - people who don’t understand a subject but don’t discuss it
  4. blowhards - people who don’t understand a subject but bullshit about it

helping people execute a Bad Idea

Often a form of the x/y problem, and rarely ends well.

  1. OP wants help doing something that is technically possible, but usually not done for reasons of practicality, complexity, required expertise, etc (i.e. a Bad Idea).1 Normal solutions are brought up but dismissed by OP.
  2. since they lack understanding, OP requires extensive handholding to get the Bad Idea in place
  3. even if the Bad Idea works to some degree issues of practicality, complexity, and required expertise remain
  4. OP complains to source of help that the Bad Idea it isn’t working the way they expected.2
  5. Repeat steps 2-4 until someone gives up.
  6. time, effort and money are wasted
  7. nobody is happy

as a

Whenever someone starts a sentence with the words “As a…” there is a good chance the rest of the sentence will be some self-serving tribal BS.


As Eisenhower said, beware the engagement-wedding-genderreveal-kids-mortgage-divorce-childsupport-legal-industrial complex. I may be mis-remembering exactly what he said. but I think that was the gist.

off-grid power

Solar-only charging is expensive. Solar augmented with another form of charging can be cheap and effective.

Solar generators are convenience products.


‘Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do, Or Do Without’

Building your own camper means you know where everything is, why it’s there, and how it works.

You don’t need a fancy vehicle or build to get started.

Custom, when used in a pre-owned item, means “the way someone else wanted it”. It doesn’t mean “something you should value or pay more for.”


“Renolgy” is a shibboleth useful for detecting low-information posters. It’s a cognitive error, not a typo: “I can see the two words in front of me and don’t see the difference”. Do not take solar advice from someone who cannot accurately copy down the name of the equipment.

two wheels

Secessus’ scooter axiom: anyone who needs to ask the question “should I buy this Chinese scooter” by definition should not buy one.


“Learn how to fail efficiently” – Devin Townsend

“It was the weakness of a moment with a lifelong penalty attached. – Thomas Hardy, Jude the Obscure.

“Abusers are the angler fish of humanity - they dangle a bright glowing ball of love in front of you so you don’t see the teeth in the dark.” /u/silentgreen85

“When you’re wearing rose colored glasses, red flags just look like flags.” - anon

“A gift is not an apology – it is a reward for accepting shitty behaviour.” /u/particularshadeofblu (I’d say payment rather than reward)

“When narcissists behave in an exhibitionistic manner, they are seeking the same sort of admiration as toddlers, and for the same reasons. They want attention. Some examples include inappropriate dress, talking too loudly, or gesturing in expansive and space-intruding ways.” – Mark Ettensoh n

There are no solutions. There are only trade-offs. ― Thomas Sowell, A Conflict of Visions

The problem isn’t that Johnny can’t read. The problem isn’t even that Johnny can’t think. The problem is that Johnny doesn’t know what thinking is; he confuses it with feeling. ― Thomas Sowell

When people get used to preferential treatment, equal treatment seems like discrimination. ― Thomas Sowell

One of the consequences of such notions as ‘entitlements’ is that people who have contributed nothing to society feel that society owes them something, apparently just for being nice enough to grace us with their presence. ― Thomas Sowell

The fact that so many successful politicians are such shameless liars is not only a reflection on them, it is also a reflection on us. When the people want the impossible, only liars can satisfy. ― Thomas Sowell

Reminds me of the timeless saying “you can lead a horse to water, and then you have to flatter his fragile feelings so he’ll drink, because that’s now your job for some reason.” – @zathripieleg

“Let us speak courteously, deal fairly, and keep ourselves armed and ready.” - President Theodore Roosevelt, San Francisco, California , May 13, 1903

Many are destined to reason wrongly; others, not to reason at all; and others, to persecute those who do reason. — Voltaire

A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject. – Winston Churchill

Go where you want to go, and do what you want to do. The people you’re looking to meet are already there.

Taxes are the price we pay for mass incarceration, trapping kids in failing government schools, war, genocide, systemic racism, blocking people from work, regulations that make everything more expensive, and cronyism that lets government pick winners and losers. - Hannah Cox

“Character — the willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life — is the source from which self-respect springs.” - Joan Didion

“Retreat into yourself, but first of all make yourself ready to receive yourself there… There are ways of failing in solitude as in society.” - Montaigne

“I need privacy, not because my actions are questionable, but because your judgement and intentions are”

“I do not think that the banks of a river suffer because they let the river flow.” - Frida Kahloh

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe.” - John Muir

“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” - Voltaire

Dying makes a great difference to the person chiefly concerned, but has no retroactive effect upon the events of his life, and only sentimentalists allow it to influence their estimate of personal character. – Elliot Coues

We bemoan our visible flaws. Yet, the moon is scarred, and everyone thinks it’s beautiful. – @kimlockhartga@universeodon.com

You have to be epistemically humble. You can’t get bonus points for having accepted the correct theory on faith. That’s not a virtue; it’s more of an accident. – Megan McArdle, interviewed on Econtalk.

Schrodinger’s Douchebag - Someone who is a jerk and decides whether they were joking or not based on how people reacted.

Why do you choose to be poor? Why don’t you just buy more money?

Some people only hear things said a certain way, and expecting an authority figure to do their fucking job is a great way to be disappointed. – zugmeister314

“It is better to be a warrior in a garden, than to be a gardener in a war.” — Miyamoto Musashi

Remember the kinda dumb kid from high school with a rich family and a mean spirit? Congratulations, they’re all of our bosses now. – kichae

Conservatism3 consists of exactly one proposition, to wit: there must be in-groups whom the law protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the law binds but does not protect. – Frank Wilhoit

Like anyone, I hate the trolls and the putzes and the know-nothings and the creeps and the bots… but save some irritation for the folks who ask you to look things up for them, do their reading, do their research, provide footnotes. Not gonna spoon feed ya, folks. – David Rothkopf

I believe the platform you are looking for is Twitter. It will let you complain about Woke Liberal Agenda while patting you on the back that your failings are not your own. – theLurker

“The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread.” ― Anatole France

John Malkovich sounds like he just discovered that he can use words to communicate but doesn’t want to let on how exciting that is. (yt comment)

I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer God than you do. - Stephen F. Roberts

You’re basically killing each other to see who’s got the better imaginary friend. ― Richard Jeni

Enshittification: “they are good to their users; then they abuse their users to make things better for their business customers; finally, they abuse those business customers to claw back all the value for themselves.” - Cory Doctorow

As a PhD student you pretty quickly learn that everyone is barely holding it together. It’s the kind of work where you learn and discover the edges of knowledge and then forget how to eat – TonyTonyChopper

I understand that by US standards El Paso is very poor, but the way I see it is im living in the most exclusive, wealthiest, and safest gated community of Juarez. – formyself22

A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence. - David Hume

“If you have two religions in your land, the two will cut each other’s throats; but if you have thirty religions, they dwell in peace.” — Voltaire

“There are more things to alarm us than to harm us, and we suffer more often in apprehension than reality.” — Seneca

“Religion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by the rulers as useful.” -Seneca the Younger

“Watch your thoughts, they become your words; watch your words, they become your actions; watch your actions, they become your habits; watch your habits, they become your character; watch your character, it becomes your destiny.” ― Lao Tzu

“Man, despite his artistic pretensions, his sophistication and many accomplishments, owes the fact of his existence to a six-inch layer of topsoil and the fact that it rains.” - John Jeavons

“There are more things … likely to frighten us than there are to crush us; we suffer more often in imagination than in reality.” – Seneca

“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” ― Joseph Campbell

“To lose one parent, Mr. Worthing, may be regarded as a misfortune; to lose both looks like carelessness.” ― Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest

When you do things right, people won’t be sure you’ve done anything at all

Any product you buy while high on endorphins is getting marked up - RaphaelBuzzard

“… leave it to the reptile for whom it has been fabricated… “ - Einstein to M. Curie

He was seen by the philosopher Aristippus, who lived comfortably by flattering the king. Said Aristippus, ‘If you would learn to be subservient to the king you would not have to live on lentils. ‘ Said Diogenes, ‘Learn to live on lentils and you will not have to be subservient to the king.’

  1. not a bad idea proper, but A Bad Idea for people who don’t understand the issues. 

  2. Surprise! 

  3. I think this applies to the far left, too, who wish the “marginalized” to be unbound/protected and the “privileged” to be bound/unprotected. It’s true for all extremist tribal cliques.