5 Intriguing Portraits Of People Who Stepped Out Of The Rat Race

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Getting off the treadmill. It’s a popular topic on birthday parties, in expanding corners of the interwebs, and at the watercooler. The fact that books like A Street Cat Named Bob sell like crazy are emblematic of our penchant to simplicity and freedom.

And while most of us are still dipping their toes in the waters of the outer capitalist society some have taken the leap. They went all out by going to the extreme.

So in order to satisfy your inner, still latent, hunger to salvation, here are six intriguing profiles of people living on the edge of our consumer concentrated culture.

These people stepped out of the rat race in favor of leading a simple life doing what they want.Their lifestyles may be perceived as peculiar or bizarre even but mark my words, these men are the pioneers of the new era of living.


COFFER refers to the man who was once a Floridian fashion photographer, John Coffer. A man who left a life of luxury (at least what is usually seen as luxury) with sports cars and a swimming pool in Florida to live on a 19th century style farm and enjoy his hobby of wet plate photography. Here’s John Coffer talking about tintype photography.





SLOMO, THE MAN WHO SKATED RIGHT OFF THE GRID – Slomo a.k.a. Dr. John Kitchin quit a medical career to pursue his passion: skating along the boardwalk of San Diego’s Pacific Beach (PB). Slomo is a familiar sight and loved and well-known for his signature slow motion in-line skating technique that makes him look like a yogi.



JACK – A touching story of Jack English, a 93-year-old legend who lives in a cabin isolated deep in the Ventana Wilderness. When his wife passed away, Jack effectively left “society” and moved to the cabin full time making artisan violin bows in his little shop.

While on a hunting trip he learned that an old homestead in the Ventana Wilderness was being put up for auction by the estate of a childless heiress. He put a bid on the property and won. On the land he built a small cabin using materials from the land and milling trees by hand.




HILL –  Ever considered living in the Fight Club house at Paper Street? Well maybe you haven’t since that may be a tad bit too extreme. Just a little less harsh is and actually pretty cool is this short story of a man who did something similar. Allan Hill is the sole resident of the Packard Plant in Detroit, the largest abandoned building in the world. Actually a lot less primitive than the illustrious movie house considering that Hill has power, internet access, a welding setup, and a small kitchen. He even maintains a webcam.




JAMES BOWEN AND A STREET CAT NAMED BOB – Technically it’s not the mainstream rat race but James Bowen also managed to escape his ‘rat race’ of being homeless and addicted. With the help of the ginger tom his life took a drastic turn.



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