Bob's Open Road

  • INTERVIEWED BY:

    Team BNE

  • INTERVIEW LOCATION:

    St. Louis, MO

  • AIRED ON:

    Public Television: Season 9

  • ON DVD:

BOB CASSILLY

Founder
City Museum

“I've always wanted to build a fantasy world…I figured, ‘Well, what have I got to lose? I'm going to go forward and shake my fist at all this stuff and do what I want to do.”

INTERESTS:

Art Entrepreneurship

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Hobbies & Pastimes Individualism Risk Self-Reflection Pressure Exploration Failure Societal Pressures

FOUNDATION:

Being Creative Building Things

TAGS:

apprentice, childhood, creativity, depression, draft, fantasy world, freedom, getting around the rules, imagination, insanity, job, jobs, narcolepsy, productivity, sculpting, sculpture, trading, void, war, woodcarving

BIOGRAPHY:

  • As a restless child, his mom got him into sculpting and woodwork so he could channel out his energy.
  • Went to college to avoid the draft during the Vietnam War; also constructed elaborate “backup plan,” pretended to have narcolepsy.
  • Always liked working around the rules, thinking outside of the box.
  • When he was in school, he decided that his goal would be “to never have a job.”
  • Flipped houses until he had enough money to buy the huge empty lot where the museum now stands.
  • Said the empty lot had “endless potential” but he didn’t know what to do with it until he actually started building it.
  • Felt depressed at times, built his “fantasy land” museum as a way to combat that; says his depression actually made him productive.
  • Says “I needed to want what nobody else wanted and live the way nobody else wanted to live, and then I could be free.”

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