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Sunday, March 1, 2015 |  Madison, WI: 20.0° F  Fair
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Let's get small

Do you ever dream of being lord or lady of all you survey? Well, there are two ways to achieve that aspiration: You could become a megalomaniac and seek to conquer a world, the world, or a significant hunk of same; or (much more easily) you could buy a tiny house.

It is that phenomenon - the tiny house - that contributor Ann Grauvogl has investigated for her second Isthmus cover story, "Living Small," in somewhat ironic contrast to her first. In "Madison Originals" (2/2/08), the returned Wisconsin native profiled downtown scold Fred Mohs and the imposing Kennedy Manor. This time she's found those people who embrace the virtue of small, and the tiny houses that they love. Grauvogl may have discovered a message for our age, all ages, or no message at all other than that folks have different needs and wants. She has found an aspect of Madison life that is easy to overlook.

One thing we would like you not to overlook is the Big Eat next Monday, April 14, at 5:30 p.m. in the Monona Terrace exhibition hall. By my count this is the 13th edition of the Big Eat and, once again, it is held for the benefit of the Family Centers, a consortium of family and child-support agencies housed communally on Fordem Avenue. There are 19 food and drink purveyors lined up for the event. Tickets are $50 or $500 for a table of 10 and can be purchased at the Isthmus office, the Family Center, or online at You can find more information in the ad on the back page of this issue.

The Big Eat began as a promotional event for the introduction of Dining, Isthmus' annual eating-out magazine. There will be preview copies at Monday's event, before it is distributed in next week's Isthmus.

Also included in that issue (April 18) will be an Isthmus readers survey. Though we do a market survey every year conducted by a national polling firm, it's been about five years since we've queried our readership directly. This survey is being conducted by Madison's Chamberlain Research and will be available in the paper and online. Some of you may even get a phone call. We would appreciate it if you could help us out and complete a survey.

One more heads-up: Isthmus Green Day rapidly approaches. The eco-celebration begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, April 26, at Monona Terrace. At last count 115 exhibitors have signed up to present you with all aspects of green. There will also be music, speakers and assorted other eco-delights to keep you and/or your family entertained and educated all day long. Again, tickets ($5 in advance) are available at the Isthmus office or online at And whether you live in a tiny house, or a 100-year-old historic manse, we'll be reminding you of Green Day again.

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