It all started with red shag rug and tomato garden comments. I'm referring to the suggestions, thoughts, and notably, to some of the interesting ideas that people so graciously and enthusiastically have offered after reading about the house, or while visiting it.
"What you need on these concrete floors are some red shag rugs to add a little color." "You ought to put your carport/storage container right there so you'll have room for a nice little tomato garden." "How are you gonna get your kayak down that hill to put it in the river?" "If I were you, I'd use that crawl space down there for a storm shelter....but it's too late to put a trap door in your floor." "You'll have to get a dog." "You'd better get yourself an Audubon Society Bird Book....not just a bird book." "I'd cut that tree right there, for sure....and wire that other one so it leans the other way." "You could take some of those scrap container slabs, fill 'em up with concrete, scatter 'em down the slope like pods, and have a nice place for lawn chairs and such." "You're not tall enough to see out of that window." "If I were you, I'd just put some more containers on top of these and make yourself a whole lot more room." "Why not sink one of those containers in the ground and make it into a lap pool?" "You'll have to get a dog." "All you really need here is a zip line....that'll take you right down to the river." "You're probably going to see some critters out of those windows." "Why not make your deck a triangle instead of just a rectangle?" "If you welded a ladder to the side of that little container, you could sit up there and get a suntan or watch the stars." "Do you have a church home?" "You need a windmill out here." "You could make a miniature replica of a crane hooked onto a shipping container dangling in the air, like the one we saw in Mexico, and use that for your mailbox." "You're gonna want another door in this place." "With the river on one side, it seems like you would want a water feature of some kind....maybe a fountain.....on the other side." "You'll have to get a dog."
Could it be possible.......now, here's a question for you......that it's not a matter of folks simply offering their ideas and suggestions as they visit and experience this project.........but could it be the shipping container house, ITSELF, which evokes some latent, inventive, imaginative impulse in ALL WHO WALK THROUGH THOSE DOORS (of which there are none yet) to envision....to concoct....to manufacture....or to merely ruminate? A sort of Stephen King phenomenon? Or some mutant cerebral/vocal fallout from those reported UFO lights seen at the Northview Exit on I-44 a few years ago? You're standing there, surrounded by the brute force of corrugated metal.....a faint essence of salt water lingering at the seams....and you just can't help yourself. Lap pool...ladders....mailboxes...concrete...crawl spaces...water features. And when you think about it, it really does make sense.......not worthy of a Christine novel...no, no, no, no, no... nor an urban legend like the Joplin spook lights......but simply a collection of four shipping containers that have been who-knows-where, stowing who-knows-what, for who-knows-whom......a definite "Oh, if these walls could talk" attitude....and with both the innate and acquired characteristics that go with it. It's no wonder that the vibes are there. And......the vibes ARE there.
One innovative and imaginative project begets another....and another....and who knows where this will all end? A nice little tomato garden, perhaps. But NOT a red shag rug.