As We See It

Let’s get minimal: A blogging duo preaches the gospel of less to Las Vegas

Imagine no possessions: Joshua Millburn, left, and Ryan Nicodemus.

Between the buffet lines and megaclubs, the massive marquees and showgirls trolling for photo ops, the three-story chandeliers and the $400 bottles of vodka, Las Vegas doesn’t exactly evoke the word “minimalist.” In fact, the city—as an emblem and an experience—is positively maximal, the highest heights of luxury, consumption and indulgence. So, maybe it’s especially fitting that The Minimalists—bloggers, authors and lifestyle experimenters Ryan Nicodemus and Joshua Millburn—are coming here to spread the gospel of less.

In 2010, the childhood friends ditched corporate careers with all the trappings for a big, daring leap into the void. They purged belongings, homes and lifestyles and adopted existences more focused on the people, passions and moments that really made them happy. And they documented their entire journey in blog posts, essays and books, the newest of which, Everything That Remains, they’ll be discussing March 22 at the Arts Factory.

“We’re not out telling people to dress in white robes and shave their heads and live like monks. What our message is really about is living deliberately and making choices in your life that add value,” says Nicodemus, who started his dive into minimalism by packing up everything he owned, then unpacking just the things he needed for 21 days. At the end of three weeks, he sold or donated whatever was still boxed—80 percent of his possessions.

He describes the experience as “life-changing,” and says that most of us aren’t living according to the common-sense wisdom on what really matters. “Deep down, we all know what the important things are in life; we all know what our priorities should be. But the way we spend our time, the way we spend our money, the relationships we focus on, those are our true priorities. Everything else is just lip service.”

The Minimalists March 22, 7 p.m., free. The Arts Factory, 383-3133.

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