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A Conversation with Mike Howe, Escape the City’s USA Pioneer

Just two weeks before his departure to New York to open up Escape the City’s first USA office, Mikey took some time out of his day to chat with me, Liz the intern, about Escape the City: NYC, his ideal working situation, and Marmite.

Liz:  How did you first hear of Esc?

Mikey: I first heard about it because I lived with Dom, and Dom wouldn’t stop talking about it.

Liz:  What made you decide to join Esc?

Mikey: I joined it for a couple of reasons.  I was supporting Dom, and also my job was boring and miserable.   I could relate to the mission, since I desperately wanted to escape the city myself.

Liz: What have you learned since joining Esc?

Mikey: Too much!  I’ve learned a huge amount about the tech and start-up world and the online media revolution.  There’s a lot to learn when working for a start-up, from setting up the business, to the accounting, to doing the PR, to managing the social media networks.  I’ve also been blogging for the first time ever.  The opportunity I’ve got is great, and I think I’ve also learned that I could never work within the confines of my previous situation, doing banking in the corporate world.

Liz: What is your idea of happiness?

Mikey: At the moment, a lot of my happiness comes from having the flexibility to work in my own time, doing something that I believe in.  And from not having people telling me what hours to work and when I can take my holidays and what work I have to do.  I like having the independence.

Liz: What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Mikey: If Esc. does well in the US then I think that will be my greatest achievement.   If we can get the US to 30k members in a year’s time then I’ll feel that I’ve really done something worthwhile.

Liz: What do you most dislike?

Mikey: I hate Marmite.

Liz: What’s your motto?

Mikey: Don’t be boring!

Liz: Lastly, what is your favorite word?

Mikey: syzygy.

Liz:  What does that mean?

Mikey: I really don’t know.