Denver's done a fantastic job of making itself one of the most desirable places to live in the country--but that doesn't mean it's all bluebird skies, puppies playing in the park, and powder days. Scratch beneath the shiny, happy surface of the Mile High City, and you might be surprised what you find.
Just Don't Do It
The joys of an unambitious life.
By Katherine Doan
Archie Ofenstein is 33. He works as a raft guide on the Arkansas River. Until two years ago, he camped out in a tent or a trailer all summer, but now he rents a room in the home of an old friend. He spends the off-season in a remote Texas town near the Mexico border, where, for $50 a month, he rents a room in an old building that has no running water or electricity, giving him plenty of time to hone his unique—or maybe not so unique—brand of slacker wisdom.
I try to not work as much as possible. I’d rather be on my bike or hanging out, playing guitar or ukulele, playing Frisbee golf, or playing with my dog.
My parents, my brothers are all like, “We will help you get a mortgage.” But I don’t want that—I don’t want to be that tied down.
People might have a fancy car, a fancy house, but then they’re a slave to it.
I think it’s more important to live today, to maybe have a little bit of money saved up for emergencies, but my consciousness needs to be here now for me to feel fulfilled. I’d rather live in the present than think about the future.
There was only one girl I ever really loved. We were together for seven years. We made each other who we are today. Then she said, “I don’t want you to go to Colorado this year.” But I did, so we split up. She wanted a lot of attention, to have a family. I just couldn’t give it to her.
A lot of people think I should just buckle down, start swinging a hammer. But working eight hours a day, five days a week....
I don’t see any reason to save up a bunch of money. I don’t have any plan to ever retire.