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4 Lessons I Learned When I Quit My Job, Sold All My Belongings, and Moved Into a Tiny House in The Haunted Woods

Last winter, my family of three sold our 6,000 square foot home in Milpitas and bought a tiny house of 230 square feet with the dream of living a simpler life in the woods outside of Milpitas. I was burnt out from my $300,000-a-year data science job where I was spending 12 hours a day figuring whether self-driving cars should kill two or three elderly people before they kill one young person. Turns out the optimal solution is three. I had hit a wall, just like those self-driving cars are going to hit people. It was time for a change.

My wife’s boyfriend introduced us to The Minimalists documentary and my wife’s girlfriend was into Tiny Home, Big Living. We fell in love with the idea of downsizing faster than my wife had fallen in love with the polyamorous neighbors.

We finally found the perfect little home and we got a steal on the land, mostly due to the fact that no one is willing to live in The Haunted Woods. Think of it as the San Mateo of the South Bay, which will probably help you figure out how this story ends.

Take this as a warning, friends: don’t get swept up in the minimalist movement and give up your $300,000-a-year data scientist job that includes six-figure bonuses, unlimited free food, and three weeks of vacation per year in order to live in a tiny house in The Haunted Woods. Your teeth will chatter in terror and you won’t have dental insurance.

1. You will save up to 80% on energy bills, but those savings are largely outweighed by the cost of cleaning up the blood that drips from the walls at midnight

I still remember our first heating bill after downsizing; wow, no more wasted dollars spent heating a home that no one occupies during the day. However, our realtor failed to mention that an Irish boy from County Galway fell into a hunter’s bear trap and starved in the dead of winter in the very spot our tiny home now occupies, his soul ceaselessly wandering for peace.

Pro tip: None of the sponges on Amazon are designed to soak up spectral blood. Also, Amazon Prime doesn’t even deliver to the Haunted Woods. Instead, go to Costco and ask an employee where the “murder scene sponges” are.

2. You will get a much needed break from the rat race of urban life, but occasionally the trees scream out in hunger for flesh

There’s a reason Amazon doesn’t deliver to The Haunted Woods: the trees love nothing more than devouring the meaty flesh of UPS drivers.

Also, if you’re curious where Fluffy is and why his collar is somehow hanging from an elm branch, know this: he is currently being digested by an evil redwood.

Pro tip: You’re not going crazy; the oak trees that were forty feet from your house last week are, indeed, now twenty feet away. Oh, do they ache with hunger. They are ever listening, ever present, and always watching.

3. Downsizing can be hard on the kids, but it’s even harder when a curse is cast upon their souls by the witch that lives across the Enchanted Bog

While it’s great to get the kids off the iPad and out into the fresh air, you’re likely to run into the evil witch who lives across an Enchanted Bog and steals their souls.

Pro tip: Neosporin will help remove redness and oozing from rashes that spell out “666” on your little one’s skin. However, Neosporin does nothing if their heads begin spinning counter-clockwise. For a less chemical alternative, try jamming hemlock dipped in holy water directly into any gaping, oozing wounds while saying five Hail Marys.

4. You have to crap outside, but you already knew that

Your tiny home has space for a fridge or a toilet, but not both.