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Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Guy Who Turns A Red Paperclip Into A House

Who could have thought that a single red paperclip could become the beginning of a great big adventure? During my bloghopping, I came across this blog by Kyle MacDonald called One Red Paperclip. Maybe you already know about him but I think his inspiring take-action-have-fun story is worth repeating.

This Canadian guy Kyle Macdonald was meant to be looking for a job. He was at that point in his life where he wanted his own house. But how could he get a house if he didn’t even have a job?

Thinking back his childhood he remembered the game he loved to play – Bigger and Better, which is a way of trading old stuff to get bigger and better new stuff. And then he saw it. One red paperclip, sitting on his desk, holding the pages of his CV together.

He then bartered his way from a single red paperclip to a house in a series of online trades over the course of a year.

His Trading Adventure

Kyle made his first trade, a red paper clip for a fish-shaped pen, on July 14, 2005. He reached his goal of trading up to a house with the fourteenth transaction, trading a movie role for a house. This is the list of all transactions MacDonald made:

On July 14, 2005, he went to Vancouver and traded the paperclip for a fish-shaped pen.

 
He then traded the pen the same day for a hand-sculpted doorknob from Seattle, Washington, which he nicknamed "Knob-T".

On July 25, 2005, he traveled to Amherst, Massachusetts, with a friend to trade the Knob-T for a Coleman camp stove (with fuel).
 
On September 24, 2005, he went to San Clemente, California, and traded the camp stove for a Honda generator.

On November 16, 2005, he made a second (and successful) attempt (after having the generator confiscated by the New York City Fire Department) in Maspeth, Queens, to trade the generator for an "instant party": an empty keg, an IOU for filling the keg with the beer of the holder's choice, and a neon Budweiser sign.

On December 8, 2005, he traded the "instant party" to Quebec comedian and radio personality Michel Barrette for a Ski-doo snowmobile.

Within a week of that, he traded the snowmobile for a two-person trip to Yahk, British Columbia, in February 2006.

 

On or about January 7, 2006, the second person on the trip to Yahk traded Kyle a cube van for the privilege.

 
On or about February 22, 2006, he traded the cube van for a recording contract with Metal Works in Toronto.

 
 On or about April 11, 2006, he traded the recording contract to Jody Gnant for a year's rent in Phoenix, Arizona.

On or about April 26, 2006, he traded the one year's rent in Phoenix, Arizona, for one afternoon with Alice Cooper.

 

On or about May 26, 2006, he traded the one afternoon with Alice Cooper for a KISS motorized snow globe.

 
On or about June 2, 2006, he traded the KISS motorized snow globe to Corbin Bernsen for a role in the film Donna on Demand.

On or about July 5, 2006, he traded the movie role for a two-story farmhouse in Kipling, Saskatchewan


"I knew it was possible," he said on the BBC's Today programme. "You can do anything if you put your mind to it."






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About the Blogger

Yodi Insigne
Yodi de Veas Insigne is one of those delusional sorts who imagines himself a useful contributor to the greater blogosphere (Well, that's what he's trying to accomplish).

He started blogging for three reasons:

1. He always felt he has something important to say,
2. Books can make him cry,
3. He want to sleep at night.

He is a certified bookworm, travel junkie, shutterbug, movie freak, Mangyan freethinker who sleeps a lot and think a lot. He got a little vice, which is black coffee and cashew nuts. He got colorblindness on yellow and green - and he freaking loves it!

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