Yurt of Sprayed Concrete


Just looking at your blog and reminiscing. I’ll include my first house that was inspired by your first book. I built it in the woods outside Chapel Hill NC. I stretched burlap over the frames and sprayed it with watered-down cement. The area was many acres of owner-built alternative architecture. (The book “12 by 12” is about a little house that was on the next street over.) The funny thing about my little house is, years later I was traveling through the area and went by to see what it looked like. Astonishingly (to me), it had been turned into an upscale suburban sea of split-level homes but the one on my old lot had kept the little yurt and was using it for a pool house.

Since those days, I have built 6–8 houses; the most recent was in a community called City of the Sun in southern New Mexico primarily out of papercrete.

Thank you for all you have done to inspire countless dreamers.

–Bob Cook

Back in the ’60s, my architect hero was Bernard Maybeck who, along with architect Julia Morgan, designed a series of wonderful Bay Area buildings. One of Maybeck’s experiments was “Bubblestone,” making a wall by hanging burlap bags that had been “…dipped into a frothy mix of concrete and then hung, shingle-style, onto exterior walls.”

Reference for above quote: patch.com/california/berkeley/bp–architect-bernard-maybeck-and-his-experiments-witac2f59eef0

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California Today: What to Know About California’s New Housing Laws

It’s Monday. Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed two bills aimed at easing the state’s housing crisis. Plus, firefighters are scrambling to protect some of the world’s oldest trees from flames.

No matter where you live, you’re probably familiar with the exorbitant cost of housing in California.

The state’s median home price has crept above $800,000, more than double what it is nationwide. Among the 50 biggest cities in the country, we’re home to the top four most difficult places to afford a mortgage. And half of all Americans experiencing homelessness live in California.

Our housing crisis has a seemingly simple solution, according to the laws of supply and demand: Build more housing.

But for decades, resistance from suburban homeowners has stalled development as the problem has only gotten worse.

On Thursday, the state took a step toward creating higher-density neighborhoods as Gov. Gavin Newsom signed two high-profile housing bills.

Though the bills, Senate Bills 9 and 10, endured intense opposition in recent months, neither is all that revolutionary, said Conor Dougherty, a reporter for The New York Times who writes about economics in California.

But the package of housing reforms passed in California over the past four years, including these two latest measures, “is probably the biggest change in housing in 50 years or more,” Conor told me.
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Tiny Person Reading Tiny Book

Hi, Lloyd and company!

Greetings from New Hampshire, coast to coast!

I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog and find it to be one of the consistent stops I make on the web. Several years ago I wrote and asked for a selection of your tiny books for my first and second graders, a gift which many of them loved. Now I have a 1½-year-old daughter and she has loved the tiny Tiny Homes to pieces!

Just a quick thank you for all of the wonderful publications, blogs, skating, surfing, traveling, coffee, pictures, music, and insights throughout the years!


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On the Pavement Again


Breaking my arm (compound fracture) 2 years ago traumatized me (first broken bone in 84 yrs.). I gave up skating, but in about 2 weeks thought fuck it I’m not giving up.

Started skating after I was healed, but it was if I’d aged 20 years. I felt awkward, tentative. I hoped no one was watching. Once I’m rolling I feel OK, but it’s the pumping then jumping on the board transition where I feel nervous.

But I’m easing back into it, poco a poco. Not pushing it any more. Just gentle slopes where I can carve.

On my way back from Louie’s last week I found a gentle down slope and a couple of guys filmed me from their truck.

What you gain in skating, as opposed to surfing, is the wave to yourself; no crowd problem. What you lose is a soft place to land.

And yes, Mom, I’m wearing safety gear.

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Fisherman’s Houseboat

I’ve admired this little floating building for years, on a local bay.

This design could be adapted to living quarters. Barbecue, beer and tables out on deck. Winch to haul boat out of water. No rent.

Brilliant design often happens in unexpected places. I find a lot of it with farm buildings.

Architecture without architects.

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