Buy ‘True Stories of an Aging Do-Gooder: How cohousing can bridge cultural divides’

Get a free copy on Cyber Monday. Click through to Amazon.

I’ve lived a life of divergent experiences that converged when I joined the Silver Sage Village (SSV) senior cohousing community in Boulder, Colorado. My story about how to play well with others is a somewhat organized stream of consciousness.

‘True Stories of an Aging Do-Gooder is on sale now.

True Stories provides “nuts-and-bolts” methods about how your community can use cultural competence techniques that better encourage members to understand one another.

The Kindle ebook and paperback are available for purchase on Amazon.

After arguing about whether pets are allowed in the Common House, what if cohousers organized themselves and decided to collectively undertake a mission to save the world?

True Stories explores why I believe cohousing can evolve from a “social movement” into being a “social norm.”

I’ll offer a paradigm shift about how cohousing can bridge socio-economic divides.

The stories are about relations between and among individual people and the personal changes necessary to find commonality with strangers, all with different experiences and lifestyles.

In case you’ve just returned after a year in outer space, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that began in late 2019 circled the globe.

Like everyone else, I’ve had quite a bit of extra time on my hands. I have no idea how my day was occupied before self-isolation.

COVID-19 brought to light glaring cultural inequities. The pandemic closed down the economy, and people lost their jobs.

That exposed the lack of lower-priced housing options when people lost their homes or kicked out of their rental apartments.

If homeowners default on their loans at the same time, as happened in 2009, the market will be flooded with pricey houses that nobody can afford to purchase, except the bottom-feeders.

Racial justice issues quickly floated to the top of the social change pond.

African American and Latino people are at the highest risk of contracting COVID-19, hospitalization, and death than the general population.

One nexus of lower-priced housing and racial justice is rental and owner-occupied cohousing that pool resources.

Residents share the financial risks and collaboratively operate and maintain their communities.

The story is written from my viewpoint as a cohousing community member, as opposed to a cohousing professional or a cohousing professional who lives in a community.

SSV is one of 170 existing cohousing communities in the United States.

If cohousing is such a great idea, why aren’t there thousands of communities popping up in all corners of the country?

After all, if there are 30,000 people residing in existing an existing cohousing community or in the community formation phase.

The book is part memoir and part “how-to” manual about my experiences that seemed unrelated at the time but added to my life gestalt, which eventually led me to believe cohousing can make social change happen by bridging cultural divides.

The only person I have any control over is myself. For me, personal change happens when keeping the amount of time between the past and the present as small as possible.

My experiences aren’t that remarkable, but the intent is to encourage you to remember what happened in your personal history as you figure out the opportunities and challenges you’ll face when choosing to care and share in a cohousing community.

‘Aging Gratefully’ COVID-19 now for sale and rent

coho jim zoom

The interviews were all conducted in a ZOOM room and recorded with web cameras.

How can we reimagine a different “American Way” that emphasizes collaboration and consensus above winning and losing; balancing the needs of the individual with that of the whole?

These are two questions the new documentary memoir by Alan O’Hashi and Boulder Community Media explores.

Buy or rent “Aging Gratefully: COVID-19, Catharsis, and Community.” The movie was shot in a ZOOM room with webcameras and an iPhone 6s.

“Aging Gratefully: COVID-19, Catharsis, and Community” is the sixth in the “Aging Gratefully” documentary memoir series. It’s an update to the 2015 project, “The Power of Community.”

ssv-corona-zoom

Silver Sagers are seasoned ZOOM room users.

The 2020 project includes the same group of interviewees who talked about their experiences at the Silver Sage Village Cohousing Community since 2015 and during the coronavirus pandemic. All Silver Sage meetings and social activities are either conducted in ZOOM rooms or social distanced outdoors in the courtyard.

  • Margaret Porter – retired from the federal government and founding member;
  • Jim Leach – was the Silver Sage Village developer and cohousing pioneer who has built 20 communities;
  • Henry Kroll – has a story arc that was the most life changing;
  • John Huyler – is a retired meeting facilitator;
  • Ann Miles – is the newest member to the community;
  • Angela Bryan – is a neuro-science researcher at the University of Colorado who is studying the link between life longevity, social interaction, and physical activity
  • Chuck Durrett of Durrett Architects and,
  • Katie McCamant of Cohousing Solutions – are considered to be the originators of cohousing in the United States.