If you follow This Is Not A House on social media* (often referred to as the acronym TINAH, or the more illustrative interpretation Tina!, by industry insiders) you would know I recently had the honor of being included in a report for Al Jazeera America’s “Real Money With Ali Velshi” on the burgeoning trend in housing development called micro-housing; an effort to combat high property costs by offering smaller, more manageable and less expensive apartments ranging from 250 to 350sf for middle to low-income individuals. (So, like, all of us.) Often times these developments integrate the use of common areas, such as kitchens, between the units to maximize each apartment’s living space and as such the movement has garnered the less-than-glamorous qualifier “dorm-style housing”.
Now, at 295sf, I’ve made no bones about my apartment being small. You know this because you read this site and because I love you and I am not a liar. So while my place may be smaller than most but bigger than some I’m not the authority on dorm-style living, which, in my not-so-humble opinion, would be a misnomer if we’re talking about my PALATIAL stabbin’ cabin, OK? Furthermore, on the list of things I am not, certified to speak on the divisive issue of micro-housing would be right up there at the top. Just below Able To Control His Sweats and Night Farting. Those things I have absolutely no right to talk about. At all. Seriously.
This is all to say that my inclusion in Real Money’s package does not mean I consider myself to be a voice of reason about anything other than designing for a small space. (Or How To Look Uneasy At The Camera While Holding Your Arms Outstretched. As you can see from the video above I do that well, my friends.) What Al Jazeera needed, among the dense and valuable socioeconomic dialogue about micro-housing, was just a breath, the journalistic equivalent of a Kardashian–pretty and hollow. Some eye candy for the viewers. That was me, plain and simple, and I was happy to take that on.
This is how the pitch went when I received a call from the segment producer:
Al Jazeera America: Hello, is this Evan?
Me: This is he. And who may I ask has the pleasure of speaking to him?
AJA: Um, this is Al Jazeera Am–
AJA: Excuse me?
AJA: You don’t even know why I’m calling.
Me: You work for a television station, yes?
Me: Then yes.
AJA: Uh, ok, so we’re doing a segment on micro-housing–a really polarizing issue right now–and I understand you live in a small-ish apartment that you’ve designed yourself and I’m wondering if you’d like to talk about designing for a small space.
Me: I’d love to be the moral compass of your timely and controversial piece.
AJA: Uh, no, no we really just–
Me: Your port in the storm!
AJA: Actually I’d just like to film you texting from your bedside and be done with it.
Me: I can cry on command.
AJA: Thank you but–
Me: Will this get me my SAG card?
Me: I’m not Equity but I’ll need you to make me Equity.
AJA: So, like, how’s Tuesday?
Me: Hey, hard-hitting news producer! HEY. You and I both know you need some man bacon in this segment.
AJA: I think you have the wrong idea.
Me: SHH-SH-SH! Don’t speak. Just listen. I get it. I understand the power a little T&A has over an audience. I am willing–NAY–offering to give you all you need and more…
AJA: Well, great, thank you.
Me: ..for a price.
AJA: We can’t pay you.
Me: I never work for free.
AJA: We’re a news show. We don’t do that kind of thing.
Me: Fine. Will there be craft service?
Me: Do I get to keep the clothes?
AJA: You have to wear your own.
Me: So what’s in it for me?
AJA: Some blotting papers.
Me: I. AM. IN. Tell your camera monkeys to only film me from my left side!
Anyway, that’s how it all went down. The day when a credible news source soiled their good name by giving a little air time to some idiot with a blog has come. Check Hell because it hath frozen over. Enjoy!
*This Is Not A House is now on all social media platforms! Give it a follow! Currently things are a little sparse because I just got my mind grapes together and made all the accounts, but I promise in time they will be robust and well worth the effort to read. Also, wouldn’t it be cool to start communicating in real time instead of me writing a blog entry once a month? Now you can tell me instantaneously how obnoxious you find me! Try it. It will make you feel much better, I promise!