I was reading the St Johns Main Street page on Facebook and in one of the threads Pat Jewett and someone else wrote about hearing on NPR about Flash Mobbing with cash to boost local community support. I immediately got what it was about and asked if anyone was doing anything about it or should I. One reply was "do it!" so I set up a Facebook Page facebook.com/StJohnsCashMob and set some ground rules/suggestions and it took off! I immediately railroaded another business owner who I consider very intelligent and impartial into an admin position to ensure objectivity and fairness. I'm quite certain she is enjoying it as much as I am. Within a couple days we had our first article in The Oregonian which shed some favorable light on the concept. By the second day the "Likes" were close to 100.
A friend who heads up the Last Friday Art Walk heard we would be Cash Mobbing monthly and asked if we might combine the two events. Because I started the project right after the last Friday of the month I figured the first one could happen the following Friday then last Friday would be the final day thereafter, sure why not?! By now I was completely convinced I was in way over my head, after all this was just theoretical up to now. Luckily my selection for fellow administrator paid off. She has been instrumental in helping keep this idea from imploding on itself. You see I'm not the most diplomatic fellow and have no clue for organizing so it is good for me to have more forward thinking folks around otherwise I would just make art all day long ignoring important obligations.
The next step was an important one, I posted on the St Johns Cash Mob page (SJCM) asking people to vote for the spot we should Mob that Friday. Good ole' democracy in it's wisdom selected a store that would be having it's grand reopening party that Friday night. Perfect! The next day I recieved an odd message asking for a tv interview about our SJCM. They came and interviewed me for more than hour about me and the Mob. The one thing I wanted them to show was that I have been fighting my way through cancer surgeries for nearly three years now and I want to give back to the community so badly that has supported me through this. Instead they showed me flailing my arms saying "Wabba we hoo la la!!" The best part is seeing all the zillions of local shoppers mobbing the new store with CASH! Here's that video.
You can start voting right after the last St Johns Cash Mob and we'll close voting the week before the Mob to let the store owners know they have one week to stock up! Voting can happen on the SJCM Facebook page or on the unaffiliated page right here. You can always come by my store to vote in person HELD Real Vegan Belts right at the end of the beautiful St Johns bridge.
This has already been highly successful and I can only imagine it will grow and grow. Thank you so much for allowing me to give back to the community that supports my family. In service, Micah Perry
Hooray we finally obtained our factory space! The fabulous new space is right next door so I will be able to work hard and keep the store open simultaneously. We begin moving our presses and sewing machines, welding units, anvil, work tables etc. Monday. I can hardly wait! I have revised some of the web work and will do even more, check out the links to the right-> We finally got that projector in the store so movie nights and video games are go.
I want to begin a monthly letter and will be placing "Subscribe" buttons here and there. You can find the first one toward the bottom of the sidebar over there. Please sign up I promise no hassling will occur. After we set up the Factory new products will flood out -Shoes, Bags, Wallets, Noisy Units, Shirts, Toaster Ovens... wait no ovens. Any hoo some of you will be super excited to be informed of fresh new VEGAN goodies. We also want to start offering special discounts to subscribers, locals, and hagglers.
I will be going in for supremely major surgery Nov 16th so expect some closures and delays. I am however lucky enough to be the very person to undergo major head cloning implant. Well that may be news, I don't know. If you want to know more please click "The Situation" above and to the right. Good news- they will Not have to use my other leg like last time so yay! Maybe I will snowboard again some day?
Till the 16th I'm working my ass off to fill web orders and get the Factory up and running. I will be in the store quite often till then and I look forward to social calls so come on by.
My next and final surgery in this three year cancer saga is scheduled for November second. I've been able to not think about it much for the last month and a half but now... can't sleep, can't eat, can't mellow the fuck out. I want to be brave and strong and have dignity like some heroic others I know but I also want to juice this experience for all it's worth and not shirk a single bio-chemical emotional response. I've learned that emotion is what tells me whether I am alive or not and I want to be alive while I'm still inhabiting this bodalicious boday. People who avoid there emotion bore me and I have't experienced boredom in at least two decades not about to start now. I might not be brave and strong, or maybe I'm brave and strong and still like to have a good cry when it's time.
The surgery involves repairing the boo boo made from the first twelve hour procedures using cloning, more leg parts and whatever pixie dust may be laying around. Dr Potter in his wisdom leaned in and said "Now I want to let you know ahead of time this one will be no picnic. Because we have to go a little deeper it will be worse than that first one." Oh thank you mr best guy in the business, I'm very delighted to know you are good at one thing maybe not comforting the lame but put it where it counts! I hate the part where I won't be able to walk or talk and AND look like a beastly monster. This is not an elective or cosmetic surgery. I can not talk, eat, sleep, breathe, kiss, smile, gesticulate, masticate, KISS, engage, live without constant suffering till this is done. Believe me, I'm okay with who I am, anybody think otherwise doesn't know me at all.
I will never forget the way strangers look at "ugly" people. They aren't being mean but it feels like a saber going through the heart again and again. For the fun of it; no matter how many times you say (with rural drawl for comedic value) "Oh wow man gosh you look great!" pause for stupefied look "Really I couldn't even tell." all that does is draw my attention back to how sucky having a fucked up face in our American Idol culture really is. Racism sucks in a similar way like being the only ____skin person in an all -other complexion room ful of peoplel feels crappy. You can't say "hey stop being racist" cause they are just looking at you different that is all but it's enough to tell you you don't belong and you aren't wanted or valued. Our psychology isn't wired for that, we need to feel wanted to have any self-esteem and without that you have hopelessness and depression. Go ahead and flirt just a little with that oddbal- give them a wink or a smiling nod just step into discomfort a tiny bit for no selfish reason. That tiny gesture can save immense heartache.
I am scared. Last time I nearly croaked several times in the ICU and my son isn't even ten yet so I think that would suck. I am not afraid to die- I look forward to it, ah rest, finally! I don't however want to be the cause of any undue suffering. Learning about ethics and compassion and developing empathy has led me to being a vegan even, so this thing about undue suffering you know I mean sincerely. If I don't come home I want Lucien to experience as little trauma as possible so please if you see him remember to lend him any support you can while not getting into any darkness from the past(me). The sooner he moves on the better but while he is grieving just give him ears for venting and safety for longevity. I know I have given him just about all I can and he is well on his way to being a positive force in our sickly society thanks also to his brilliant empathic Mothers.
If by some atheistic miracle I do make it home I will need help. Jeremy Scott Kemp (link in TAGS) will be my voice while I am voiceless so feel free to contact him to see what we need or offer him a well deserved break. Melinda my partner in this mess will need support more than I so please if you have time and compassion don't just ask her if she needs help but give some. Helping animals human or non really does make you feel better. Psychologists call it the "helpers high" right? When you need to get away from your problems for awhile count on me to be there- sucking horrible ass. Ha ha er I mean leg hair- fucking brocoli getting tangled up in that shit no more!
I'm tired and in mega pain and very emotional so yes I am quite likely an idiot right now, that's okay. I'll be sure to balance my shit out later when getting from one second to the next isn't so damn hard. Remember that if I even have a sip of alcohol right now I will be into my morphine meds by the handful within minutes so I don't even have that luxury. The pain keeps telling me I won't make it- this pain is really something else. Every little bump, zit, or dot tells me my body is riddled with cancer(lies) and reminds me how it felt when the tumor was growing fast and I could feel my skull cracking apart -now THAT was pain. My view in the store is so nice, trees and sky and green wooded hill and happy people buzzing about.
Okay so there you go now you know more than you ever wanted-- oh yeah one more thing: These med bills are untenable okay almost. What a joke our system is! Follow this link for more of the story and a donation button if you have the means and when I don't have those darn means I don't give so I don't expect anything different from you. But if you are hoarding wealth here is your chance for some redemption- pour it on brother- amen and hallelujah!
http://m3house.org/Blog/situation/ Forgiveness for my crude self would be welcome as well cause this is me.
I will be having my final surgery soon and the
cancer saga will be on the shelf for a while. Frozen with fear when I ponder the implications so I try not to dilly-dally much just press forward and avoid looking into the ugliness of my reality. It's actually quite difficult when this intense pain is swinging me around the room "...so lucky to be alive...." honestly most of the time I have to work pretty hard to keep optimistic. The pain tells me I'm dying and the reflective glass tells me I'll never make it "Shut the hell up, you weren't invited" that was me just now. Ha ha-ha am I crazy or just neurotic?
I can't hold the business back much longer, this baby really wants to go places. If I let it go any bigger though it will run aground and burst in flames and that doesn't seem "green" at all. What if I roped-in a few more accounts then "Micah yoo-hoo ready to cut you up!" wouldn't be good at all. I'm already late enough with individual orders here and there. I can't stand shipping orders out late no matter the inevitability factor I know people understand but I have standards too.
My life has been very rough and tumble at times, some of the near-misses were rather tragic though simultaneously left me elated. For close to twenty years I figured if I could die while having fun that would be perfect, who wants to live very long really?! So I went for it with zeal totalling 13 cars, ran through flaming buildings, got sexy with perfect strangers- frequently. I am entirely surprised I've lived this long and until the cancer not a scratch; no diseases or broken bones, well my nose a couple times actually right where the cancer showed up. Heck my entire head was engulfed in flames that one time- now that was a fun night! No bullets struck flesh and that was pretty lucky too. Considering all the hurt I brought to the people I loved I'm lucky my pay-back or karma (kamma) comes in such small manageable doses. The fist-sized tumor in my head has been by far my suckiest time ever but when I consider all the people, relationships lost over the years it renders this episode meager. One thing I've learned from all this is that relationships are all we have and nothing else rivals in importance these mysterious treasures and everyone I see matters deeply.
My goal is to open a little workshop for a couple few employees between M3house and HVB. Just north of the bridge is a terrific little building I've been looking at and damn this little company really wants to take off something fierce! I need another press and that's about it. We've been holding on to the other bits and pieces and it would be great to be able to walk on down with ease just a few blocks from work and home. I want to give to the AR community so bad it'd be rad to hire and donate and oh my god the wicked parties! Man I need some sleep. Later.
New Art show hopefully coming soon. The artist is talking about bringing in sepia tones of this wonderful body of work. Here is the first page out of about a zillion online taken w/o permission from: http://spacetrawler.com/2010/01/01/spacetrawler-4/ I really hope this works out these are just incredible.
More info likely to come.
It has been a very wild ride since we first opened the store way back in September of 20?? Such a blur I have no idea someone help me out here. Another opportunity to express my unending gratitude; thank you all for so much help, when we opened the store we also found out I had a giant cancer tumor in my head. You have carried me all the way through this- well almost all the way I have one more surgery to go (so they say) and then we can put the tired episode behind.
So many surgeries means so many scarves! Muscles may atrophy but hey I can knit a thing or two while I can't do anything else. I don't count a single stitch and I don't use a single plan other than 'follow my intuition'
Melinda has been so amazing through all of this and it turns out she is an incredible model.
St Johns has been really incredible and warm to HVB in out fabulous new location. I love being able to walk to work with Fezzy just a few blocks from the house and being a block away from Proper Eats is super delicious!
Our new store is right against my favorite bit of architecture: the St Johns Bridge. Built as a prototype for the Golden Gate Bridge by the same team It is just too fabulous with super high Gothic arches I just love it. You can see pictures all over the web from the tourists who come here from all over the world to see it and the lakes out here. I had no idea!
There you have it. New scarves and HVB is still going strong with our new and informative Brochure that Marci worked so hard on. My windows face the open sunset with no other buildings to obscure every great sunset- I love it, wide open just trees, bushes and sunsets.
The wonderful HVB store was created and opened while I was unable to talk, walk, or even open my eyes I think I was still in the ICU. My struggle to stay alive over the last year sometimes hinged on the store's existence; the overwhelming responsibility, the most amazing people, the sense of duty being called on to save lives of the voiceless. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have made it through the cancer recovery without that store. I look at the space now a year later and am embarrassed by the enormity of it, half of the space I don't even use. It was a very painful year having so much of my leg and skull removed, swapping parts, the pains seems only to have lessened a little. Talking with people in HVB really reduced the pain, discomfort, and sorrow. I hope enough people come into the new location when I need them. Still waiting for that cloned part of my face to be ready for the final surgery but I'm done with the agonizing melancholy bit. This has also been a very rad year with fun- just varieties of fun I didn't know existed. I thought the way of living I was accustomed was the only way and anything else would be dreadful I was half wrong. Having a deformed face is still a very sad thing but only because of how some people react and man I wish others had no eyes sometimes.
As soon as I knew I was moving my creativity flared and I designed a bunch of new things and feel more relaxed. I'm exited cause now I should be able to hire another helper and be able to pay attention to designing new things and improving on others. I'll have less commute time and I look so forward to that. I love riding my bike but I just don't have that capacity yet. Melinda and I have a refuge of a comfy quiet home in 5q Saint Johns where the new location for the store is. Three ideal spaces now it is up to the slum lord, come on ladies be cool now. The new store will be great fun and I hope it stays open longer than a year.
Micah Perry HVB Chief Belt Enforcement Agent
While you're out enjoying the park on this lovely day I'm hiding out from any sort of social life. My wife is treating me to a pedicure but not the everyday type today we're having the "Caribbean" treatment at Dosha which to me means extra rad foot and leg massage. Last time we did this a YouTube video was an added result.
I'm pretty sure the store will survive year one in September so I went ahead and bought the website HELDVeganBelts.com I'm very excited about it. I'm confident combined with the new physical catalog due this fall HVB will not only survive but become a major contribution to Animal Rights funding. I hope and that is my goal anyway. I don't know if we can make money with it but we can show videos with the projector we'll be getting soon. Yay! The same person is donating another flat panel monitor too so we can show videos in daylight. Submit movies and movie ideas and I'll put it to work. Wow that tickles and hurts my foot at the same time! Thank you Melinda.
After this we'll be heading into see my surgeon for an emergency visit and possible bit of surgery on my deformed face. I won't describe it here cause it is not much fun at all. Had to miss work yesterday cause the pain was just too much. The three of us rolled around on the couch-raft all day watching movies and eating vegan junk food. I have missed too much time with my son from the cancer so it was alright to spend the day like that.
We are on a new accounts drive to sell HVB so tell your friends about our fabulous new page where we will take wholesale orders. We also have amazing new belts available on the website so go buy one of those. These are the world's strongest and most sustainable belts ever any other belt is hereby proclaimed to be a fake. If you don't believe me take one for a test spin they are guaranteed forever! Okay time for leg massage see you later.
A really cool guy at the factory where I get materials Dan handed me this tiny roll on my way out saying "That's it man" so I will only be able to make maybe eight more. They have a very good weight and flexibility that just feels really good.
We are very proud to be carrying SAYLAH "V" locally handmade one-of-a-kind treasures made from recycled materials made by the one and only Leslie Saylor. She is so badass we love her work. Saturday is the the best day to see her goodies but soon we'll have more of her stuff all the time.
A whole new batch of other belts and cuffs have been born as well and we have altered the interior space once again. I finally got to work on making rad bracelets from the Stainless Spokes and the are way hot and only five buckeroos. Cool we'll see you at the store....
3033 NE Alberta Street
Portland, OR 97211