Welcome to Slow’burbia™ .
The suburbs get a bad rap in the media, in rural feedlots, and at rooftop urban cocktail parties. Why? Because the ‘burbs contribute heavily to sprawl/encroachment, are prone to a sameness in architecture, and are equated with mediocrity when compared to sexy cities and bucolic rural towns.
While we’re not ready to become suburban apologists–those problems above are real issues, we think it’s time we suburbanites explored how to make our lives in the ‘burbs richer, deeper and more meaningful.
As journalists who live in the ‘burbs by choice, we’re interested in examining how ordinary people are committing to more soulful, thoughtful approaches to suburban living. For the next year, we’re going to explore and nurture the “softer, slower side of suburbia” idea by applying our old school journalism skills to newfangled social media–podcasting, blogging, Flickr, Twitter and Facebook.
This site, SlowBurbs.com™, will be the project’s central hub.
As we set off on this journey, we’re inspired by the idea of slow food–which begat several other slow movements. In the wake of the recent recession, there’s also a resurgent interest in “simple living” and “voluntary simplicity.” As parents, we’re interested in human nature and behavior, too. And we can’t forget that we’re fans of creativity, be it in the studio, study, kitchen, workshop, or garden. Where these inspirations and impulses take us… well, we’ll see.
The action plan is that we’ll take a different topic each month–represented simply by a word or phrase–and gradually parse out the relevance for slow’burbia on this blog and via our other social media accounts, both joint and individual. With the podcast, we hope to sum up what we’ve learned with a group chat featuring a selected book, blog, and/or an expert or two. We’ll also invite you, gentle reader, to weigh in with your thoughts via our Connect page.
We’re going into this with lots of self-awareness. One of us is a tortoise and the other is a hare—you’ll quickly figure out which is which–but both of us believe that in slowing down and savoring life is a worthwhile endeavor, even for those of us who dwell in cookie-cutter tract houses. Hopefully, through this project, we’ll find a few more people like us.