Saturday, February 25, 2012

Solo and De-quirked

I've seen a bunch of stories lately about the trend towards living alone both here in the U.S. as well as in Europe. I pick up on these stories because I live alone, I guess that's why.

There's a long feature piece in the New York Times today about how living alone brings out quirkiness. It is among the ten most emailed stories. How weird is that? I believe this must not be a big news week. If there was something truly interesting going on, who would give a rat's ass about emailing a link to a feature such as this one? I wonder about these things.

Living alone has not magnified my quirkiness, in fact, I believe I'm less quirky than I was while living in the house on Tennessee Avenue, re-washing pots and pans because my housemates didn't really get into scrubbing all that much, for instance. Now that I live alone, I do my dishes once. I think I'm more normal here than I was there.

The people interviewed for the story speak of standing naked in their kitchens at 2:00 a.m. eating peanut butter out of a jar, or leaving a bra on the dining room table. Is that quirky? I guess. Imagine me shrugging my shoulders. I think it's quirky that people believe these behaviors to be quirky.

My behavior is fairly boring. I live in a clean apartment (no bras on the table), I cook and eat at mealtime, post to the blogs, play WWF on the ipad, listen to music, read the New Yorker, do laundry, vacuum and dust, hang out on FB. I also work here which is lovely and unremarkable, I think. During NaNoWriMo I got a little quirkier, rising at 5:00 a.m. to write for two hours every day. I guess that's quirky. Is it?

Living alone has made me less quirky. No one from the New York Times called to interview me, hence the unbalanced reporting in that piece, I think. Yes?


Rebecca Clayton said...

I hope none of us get de-quirked. It doesn't sound good.

If leaving her bra on the dining room table when no one is around to see it is the extend of her quirkiness, I think she's pretty conventional. (Or was it a man who left his bra in the dining room? That might be quirky....)

Living alone can give a person more time to reflect, and reflection can encourage independent and original thinking. But I believe you're an original thinker where ever you live. Keep your quirks intact, please!

Reya Mellicker said...

Ha! It was a woman leaving her bra on the table. It isn't where I keep mine but I agree - not so quirky.

Dequirking does sound painful, hey?

May you too cherish your quirks, Rebecca.

Gary said...

I'm not sure that I would categorize those behaviors as quirky either. But, what I have noticed in my friends who live alone is that they are less flexible (I can't really think of a better word at the moment) in how they interact with others in their space.

It appears to me that there is less room for doing things with other people in mind or at least less tolerance of someone coming into their space and doing things that go against their own routine. It becomes harder to negotiate the small stuff because they are so used to having things their way all the time. At least that is my observation and my observations are limited. Thoughts?

Cyndy said...

HaHa! I feel you on the pot scrubbing. There's nothing like a lackadaisical pot scrubber to make a normal person feel like their desire for clean pots is quirky!

That article definitely sounds rather one-sided. I guess it's easier for them to make whatever point they were trying to make that way.

Reya Mellicker said...

Gary, these people are less flexible than whom?

Cyndy oh yeah!

The Cranky Crone, she lives alone! said...

ok Well having lived lone now for 7 years, i have no idea if i am being quirky or not, as there is nobody to judge me......and i like that feeling.
Although, occasionally some one shines a light, i was joining in an on line guided meditation, it had grown dark whilst i was doing this, earlier in the day i had wrapped a scarf around my head, it looked strange but felt nice and comforting, i could not find my normal reading glasses, so i was wearing dark glasses to look at the screen.......when my brother walked in throught the back door, found me sitting in the dark in dark glasses well as described above, and me say 'shush, im listening to a meditation' he looked puzzled a bit worried, he said'i hope you did not pay for it' then i realized it was at a silent part and had been for a while.
We both agreed i had been on my own for too long, he also thought i might have had chemo hence hair bandage on sitting in the dark!!!!! listening to a silent computer. now if he had not entered my domain, i would not have noticed any of that.
not sure this has come across well writing it down............oh well c'est la vie
ps., i love living alone, and yes i do find it difficult now sharing my space.
its luxurious, to be unscrutinised.

Reya Mellicker said...

That is so funny. Context is everything.

Washington Cube said...

I'd say "quirky" if you talk to your acne, or wear five sweaters in August with your head wrapped in tin foil. Mayyyybbbbee that's mental illness. I'll tell you what's quirky. Hearing that Hinckley is tired of being remembered solely for being Reagan's attempted assassin.

I have this lovely book about famed British eccentrics, and how, in some cultures, that "whimsy" is appreciated.

Jo said...

♥ You are definitely NOT quirky. Interesting, yes. Quirky? Not so much.