Cooperative Living: Week 2

Ongoing journey of living in an anarchist collective

Annie Windholz
3 min readAug 14, 2017


Last weekend I was still settling into the cooperative by sneaking in plastic bags full of processed chocolate donuts that I drove in my car to purchase across town.

This weekend I enjoyed a nice potluck with the collective: homemade tamales, mole verde, a three sisters piece from Central America, guacamole, salsa, jicama salad, Japanese rice treats and Dos Equis. We discussed recent national events, and shared ideas. Carp and Z cooked, and the rest of us cleaned up.

Last weekend we joined a good portion of our cooperative at the local Peace Procession. Carp and I drove downtown and stopped at a stop light just as one of our housemates pulled up next to us on a bike. We stared straight ahead and waited for the light to turn green, hoping our housemate didn’t notice us with our gas guzzling choice for the day.

This weekend I drove with my housemate, Jay, to a solidarity rally put on by the local

Black Lives Matter group. Jay is super plugged into the activist community, particularly immigrant rights and prison abolition, and I think we are going to get along well.

Things have been moving quickly, and we’ve been learning a lot.

On Wednesday night I learned stone wall building in the garden- it was like a big, heavy 1,000 piece puzzle that has no promised solutions. On Thursday night we stained trim to line the floorboards of our new house. On Friday a lot of opportunities happened, including two potential jobs offers and an internship.

Friday night we walked down the street to the local bar with one of our housemates, Z, and were served fresh popcorn in place of peanuts. Z grew up in Syracuse, and when I asked her what the city is known for she answered: “Most polluted lake in the world and the orangemen. Also salted potatoes. “ I made dahl later that night with red lentils and fresh tomatoes and jalepenos from the garden. Very rarely do people label food as theirs in the fridge, so when people eat your leftovers you’re not upset, you’re pleased that they enjoyed your cooking. Z did taro card readings for us late into the night.

Saturday we went hiking through the gorges in Watkins Glen- a little ways past Ithaca, NY.

On Sunday morning we had our monthly house meeting, which lasted about three hours. There were talks of arbitration court, inviting an elderly family member to live with us, and we as new members each signed up for a few house chores and committees.

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Annie Windholz

midwestern librarian, writer, activist