Re: Borrowing/lending system
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Tue, 27 Jan 2015 10:26:55 -0800 (PST)
> On Jan 27, 2015, at 12:42 PM, Kathryn McCamant <kmccamant [at] 
>> wrote:

> when you need just about anything (a lemon for
> what you are cooking, a thermometer for a sick kid, an extra large cooler
> for a camping trip, tent, bike, car, whatever...)you just send out an
> email to the community. With a few hours you are pretty guaranteed to have
> what you are looking for.

Same at Takoma Village. "A few hours" is much less likely than "a few minutes." 
In our community we have had requests for coffee grinders, crutches, ankle 
supports, apples, garlic, fresh parsley, if you are going to the coop....., 
tents, sleeping bags, air mattresses, Kombucha starter, sourdough starter, hot 
glue guns, irons, a white T-shirt with no logos (a rare item). knee socks in a 
bright color, a copy of [high school required classic] that has to be read by 
tomorrow morning, hoodies for a street demonstration, iPhone chargers, Benjamin 
Franklin glasses, directions for a thermostat, and more.

The workshop has the tools people need though sometimes we get a request for 
someone to return something.

I once asked for a coffee grinder and had offers of 7. 2 appeared at my door 
within 2-3 minutes. I asked for someone to call my phone because i couldn't 
find it. I got phone calls all day. (I won't actually do that again. I don't 
particularly like getting phone calls.) I asked for someone to remove the 
cabinet over my refrigerator before the delivery of a refrigerator. 3 offers.

A list is complicated _although_ it is good to announce that you have something 
people might not think to ask for. I have one of those daycare cots for under 6 
year olds that is about 8 inches from the floor. Something I would be happy to 
lend that no one might think anyone has.

i have tons of crafts things and have become the source for a little bit of 
felt, embroidery thread, knitting needles, etc. Not at a huge rate, just when 
some one is desperate. Once for a darning needle. Once was asked for a bandaid 
without Dora on it. The person had to go to work and that was all she could 

The important thing for sharing is maintaining a universally available internal 
communications system. One that everyone can use. Like email. In olden times it 
was the bulletin board. 

And it is total myth that people are not on email so don't bother. I've had 
three absolute emergencies and people were there within 2 minutes. Not just one 
person but several people. I email first, not second.

Sharon Villines, Washington DC
The story of history is the story organization.

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