Today the New York Times Home & Garden section tells the tale of Ivo Zdarsky, a man who escaped Communist Czechoslovakia nearly three decades ago and who now lives in an airplane hangar smack in a remote part of Utah—so remote, in fact, that the nearest grocery store is 160 miles away. As is expected of someone who designs airplane propellers for a living—and who built his one-room residence himself using $50,000 worth of steel—Zdarsky has some tricks about creating man caves:
· As with anything real estate-related, location is key; bonus points for siting the dwelling within 50 miles of a military testing and training area so the doors show the physical effect of, say, sonic booms.
· Be sure to surround the compound with an electric fence and "a skull-and-crossbones flag at the gate."
· Separate the living space into two 50-by-50-foot areas: one for planes, the other for living space.
Photo by John Burcham/New York Times
· As for electronics, buy "big-box treasures" such as 90-inch flat-screens and four-foot-tall speakers.
· Prominently feature a drum set and "an upside-down inflatable hot tub covered with a sheet and repurposed as a settee"; sleep on "two mattresses in front of the TV."
· Assault weapons sprinkled here and there are a must: two are fine, seven are better (including a .308 sniper rifle, a .223 sniper rifle, a shotgun to kill those pesky badgers, and a Belgium FS2000).
· Keep ammunition in plain sight. (“That’s what our guys are using in Afghanistan. It’s very effective against badgers. And probably terrorists too.”)
· Wear camouflage clothes—they don't get dirty.
· The roof should double as a helicopter pad and should contain "a plastic tub, about three feet high and three feet wide, filled with dirt": in case somebody starts shooting at you, you "can run up here and take cover behind it." Zdarsky explains: there was "a crazy guy” out here shooting at people, and the walls downstairs in his hangar are very thin. If someone came out here and started shooting, the bullets would go right through the walls."
· Lastly, be sure the girlfriend lives 240 miles away.
· The Only Guy Out There [New York Times]