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70 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I JANUARY 2020 The history of the old West is full of sto- ries about people who lived their lives mostly alone. There were immigrants from the East, looking to build a new life in the West, who would travel along primitive trails with all of their earthly belongings packed in a wag- on. There were also mountain men who spent months exploring remote wilderness territo- ries; soldiers who were stationed at small, iso- lated outposts; and lonely homesteads on the prairies. And then there was the cowboy. By day, cowboys were saddled on their horse, herding cattle through millions of acres of ma- jestic countryside untouched by man, and by night, they slept under the stars alone, except for their horse and a pot of coffee brewing over a campfire. For some, this would be the most ideal setting imaginable: peace, quiet, and soli- tude. Not for me, though. I'm very happy that I was born and raised amongst the background noise of the suburbs. I like that my life is filled with people. Yes, I do understand the romance and intrigue of making it on your own in a pioneering life- style. There aren't any interruptions, after all, and there's no one to bother you; you aren't accountable to anyone. On the other hand, there also isn't any help nearby if you need it, there's no one to talk to, and your only com- panion is loneliness. I have always been hap- py to leave the Wild West to Marshal Dillon, Curly, and the good folks of the Ponderosa while I stayed where there was plenty of fam- ily, friends, and a healthy professional network of co-workers and industry peers. Unfortunately, life sometimes does imitate art, and for a while, I found myself in a period of isolation, not unlike the solitude of a lone- some cowboy. No, I didn't suddenly decide to head out West in search of the meaning of life. For one thing, I already live out West, and if I were to go much further, I would find myself treading water in the Pacific Ocean. Instead, my career path abruptly changed, and for a short time, I lost contact with many of my peers in the industry. And not only was Rounding Up a Posse Tim's Takeaways by Tim Haag, FIRST PAGE SAGE

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