Broomfield pair live off Craigslist for 40 days

Two friends post ad offering 'Free Help' for food

DENVER - If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.  Usually.

But Peter Myers and Andrew Varnell, two University of Colorado graduates, really are looking for 'shovel ready' jobs.

"This is hard work," said Varnell as he shoveled gravel onto a driveway that needed repair. "We entered what everyone is calling a jobless economy, but there is plenty of work to be done."

The two Broomfield friends are making an attempt to live solely off Craigslist for 40 days, posting an ad offering 'Free Help,' accepting only food or donations for their service.

"If we can give people the help they desperately need in exchange for things that are lying around and food that's not being eaten, that would be a great way to live," said Myers.

Along the way, they are filming the experiment for a documentary.

Myers was a film student. Varnell was a scientist.

Since they started, they've cleaned out garages -- "There was a lot of mouse poop -- a lot of mouse poop" --  helped flood victims and even met someone with a pet pig.

The most unusual payment received?

"It was a giant stained glass chandelier...that was smuggled from Mexico," said Myers with a smile.

They are already on Day 30.

"Every day, we show up to what looks like an insurmountable task," said Varnell. "But as the day goes on, we always make progress, and the piles get smaller and smaller."

They have a simple life, living in a house with four men, cooking meals from the food people give them.

But they said they have found that helping others can be a sustainable way of life.

"The purpose was to live a fulfilling day," said Varnell. "And... I didn't know it would work."

For the people who have found their Craigslist post, it is more than just help.

"Once in a while, there are people who restore your faith in humanity," said the woman who owns the driveway they are repairing.

She did not want to be identified, but she called them a Godsend: "It's a miracle."

Sometimes, it's nice when too good to be true -- is just really good.

"We want to show people love," said Myers. "Show people, we're willing to do the hard work."

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