Friday Open Thread

Clever Manka, · Categories: Open Thread

Beloveds! We made it through the first week of 2018. Only fifty-one more to go (and forty-two weeks until the U.S. mid-term elections if I did my math correctly). Let us celebrate with much happy dancing (gif party in the comments if you like).

The Burgomaster is teaching a writing workshop in Houston and I have the house to myself for four days. I plan on lots of loud music, reading in bed, and several batches of bone-broth-making. Tell me the delightful ways you indulge yourselves when you’re alone in the house.

139 Responses to “Friday Open Thread”

  1. vladazhael says:

    My alone in the house habits are in flux, because I live by myself, but for the first time in my truly adult life, and it's also just a transition period until I live with someone else again. I felt like I got an accurate glimpse of my genuine house-to-myself habits during the one evening dog walk I bowed out of during my stay with Manfriend: my own music on the bluetooth speaker, some mild singing along (which I am too shy to do in front of people 99.9% of the time), more extensive yoga than usual, some reading, some knitting. Not too far from what happens with me living on my own, except that when it's limited like that, I value the alone time more and use it more renewingly, as opposed to just knocking around my apartment. The transitional nature of my stay in my own place and the nature of my relationship lead to a whole lot less of me really being "present" in my own day-to-day time in that space – even my relaxing/renewing time is either interrupted by or wedged in between moving prep schemes and fairly intense smartphone use. Which is terribly unhealthy for my brain workings in the long term, but it's temporary and necessary for the time being and I'm not going to worry about it since it's going to fix itself.

    • CleverManka says:

      my own music on the bluetooth speaker, some mild singing along (which I am too shy to do in front of people 99.9% of the time), more extensive yoga than usual, some reading, some knitting
      Sounds heavenly! And I'm glad the unhealthy parts will work themselves out when you finally transition to the long-term arrangements.

    • pseudonymica says:

      I'm the same with singing along. Once I had the house to myself for several days and I worked my way up to almost whole-heartedly singing along. Ever since then I've only been about 98.75% too shy to sing in front of people. I blame being a musician: I am too aware of how it should sound. That and excess self-viciousness. (Ha ha ha, I meant to write "consciousness" but Dr. Autocorrect was like, "no, you're being an asshole to yourself, not merely aware of yourself.")

      • RoseCamelia says:

        I am not alone! As an instrumentalist, my ear is highly trained. But my voice is not. I can hear excruciatingly well just how badly I sing. I sing, but I keep it quiet and focus on pitch, as an ear training refresher.

      • Fancy_Pants says:

        I went to church for the first time in years on Christmas Eve, and it struck me that it is so nice and so important to have a space where people can sing out loud without any expectation that it is supposed to sound good.

        • RoseCamelia says:

          Congregational hymn singing is what I miss about church. And pipe organs.

        • CleverManka says:

          If you have a reasonably high tolerance for well-meaning hippie-dip types, try attending a kirtan sometime. I love them, but they're shockingly physically taxing (lots of floor-sitting). It helps that we have a charming group of local people who organize them and they're so sweet without being creepy white-people-new-agey if you know what I mean.

        • Räven says:

          I was thinking about that this season – why don't I know anyone who goes caroling, I love singing in a group and I am not a good singer but I know all those songs, I'm a good caroler. I really wish I had an opportunity for singing in a low-expectations environment.

    • CleverManka says:

      I'll add my voice (ahem) to the people who won't sing in public. I used to have a pretty good voice (nearly a four-octave range) but decades of poor habits and no voice coach–now it's embarrassing for me to sing where people can hear because I know what I used to sound like and it wasn't award-winning or whatever, but it…wasn't this.

  2. CleverManka says:

    I should mention that I la-la-la-love living alone and if I was independently wealthy, I would live in a separate house from the Burgomaster. Next door, or perhaps something along the lines of what some people in town that I know did when they got married (although the chances of finding mirror-image houses like they did is slim to none). But definitely in My Own Space. I do have my own bedroom in our current house and that's such a lifesaver. But I would love to have my own bathroom, living area, and kitchen, too. I really loved living alone when I lived alone, even though sometimes the emotional circumstances were fraught. I feel such joy when I lock the door after coming home from work and knowing that I don't have to even feel the presence of someone else until I go to work the next day.

    • Kazoogrrl says:

      Oh, same here. I wish we lived next door to each other, or something like that. This makes me realize I SHOULD have bought a place that was a duplex and J could have had one to himself. I think that would hurt his feelings, living apart, which annoys me.

      • CleverManka says:

        I've often thought a duplex would be perfect but it's a rare neighborhood that has duplexes here that aren't overrun by students and renters and that's….just not an environment I have the energy for these days.

        • Kazoogrrl says:

          My neighborhood has a lot of houses that are split up, and my place (a foursquare) was apartments for most of the 20th century. We also have sets of rowhouses as duplex's a block away, as opposed to the block long rows, some old duplex's that look like traditional houses split in two, and midcentury red brick ones. It's a streetcar suburb with modest incomes that's near to a college, though most of the students live closer to campus.

          • CleverManka says:

            Oh, that sounds nice. All our duplex areas are those blocks full of the exact same structure, all with way too many cars parked on the street because the garage/driveway only holds one vehicle. *shudder*

          • Kazoogrrl says:

            Oh, there are neighborhoods like that near the university I went to, and yes, ugh. I hated the feeling of the entire area and avoided it.

    • Rillquiet says:

      My BFF and I have said for years that one marriage, separate houses would be our ideal. Most sea witches are solitary creatures at heart; it takes a lot to make us compromise that urge to be alone.

    • ru_ri says:

      Yeah after living on my own for the past 10+ years, I am not sure I could cohabitate fully again. I hate having to clean up after other people. But I do miss regular company and having someone else to cook for. Always a trade-off.

      • CleverManka says:

        Yes, my love of cooking for people is why Richard and Jenny's house (the one I linked in my comment above) is so appealing. I wouldn't much mind sharing a kitchen because the Burgomaster doesn't cook and if there were extra storage for his stuff that he keeps in kitchen storage (which eats into my pantry space, ahem), I could deal with that shared space a lot easier.

    • meat_lord says:

      Your posts–and others' posts about domestic life with and without partners–have given me a lot of food for thought!

      I've been thinking a lot about my own future plans WRT the Datefriend and cohabitation. While I want to live with them, I also know that I don't like living with people and am not very good at it. They also really like living alone and have a strong need for their own space. Houses next door–or even apartments in the same complex–would probably be ideal for us. I hope we can make that happen… at the very least, we need our own bedrooms/ workspaces/ cozy caves to retreat to.

      • CleverManka says:

        Yay! So glad we could give you some suggestions for comfortable and rewarding long term domestic life with Datefriend!

      • Fancy_Pants says:

        It's super cool that you are thinking through all the options rather than just defaulting to the conventional "well we're partners, I guess we move in together".

        Maybe someday enough people will do that and we'll have more non-standard housing configuration options!

    • vladazhael says:

      There's a part of me that wishes to be in the camp of deeply preferring solitary living, because I admire the sea witch independence and low-key unconventionality of it, and I've never really experienced an indefinite, fully adult period of it myself (due to happenstance, at least, not incapacity). But alas, this is one of the circumstances in which I blend in with the traditionalists, because I tend toward cohabitation and absolutely flourish when living with a (good) partner. Of course that partner has to be the sort who understands concepts like companionable silence and alone time, but still – I very much prefer having someone to perform the mundane tasks of daily life and riff on TV shows and venture out into the world with. I'm a feral introvert, and we mate for life.

      • CleverManka says:

        Life's Rich Tapestry!

      • littleinfinity says:

        Exactly the same here. I love the *idea* of myself as an independent solitary sea witch who answers to no one… but in reality I am an attachment addict and I love having a (good) partner to snuggle and eat food with. My tendency toward cohabitation was confirmed when I practically moved in with J three months into our relationship, despite the fact that I had recently acquired my Very First Solo Apartment. It just… wasn't appealing to me.

        I rolled my eyes through a lot of Eat Pray Love (the book), but the one quote that stuck with me was Gilbert's description of her attachment style as "somewhere between a golden retriever and a barnacle". IT MEEEE

        • vladazhael says:

          I practically moved in with J three months into our relationship, despite the fact that I had recently acquired my Very First Solo Apartment.

          Things were really getting going with Manfriend just as I was moving into my new place here in April/May, also my first true adult solo venture. If not for the complications of distance, I'm 1000% certain one of us would have bailed on a lease ages ago. Fortunately we are both barnacles, so it's not weird that his place very, very quickly became "home" and mine is "where my stuff is right now".

          • littleinfinity says:

            I think we had a really similar trajectory in terms of romantic transition, we've probably talked about this before?? I started seeing J in September as my relationship with Ex was ending but we still lived together. By the time I got my solo apartment in December, things were getting more serious with J, so there was basically only a month or two (if that) where I truly lived on my own and didn't spend massive amounts of time over at his place. My apartment definitely became "where my stuff is" while his place was "home" (had more amenities, like a hot tub/ pool, and more space). #teambarnacle

          • vladazhael says:

            Now that you mention it, that does sound familiar. And excellent! #teambarnacle high five!

    • pseudonymica says:

      I'd love to have my own bathroom.

      I just saw the Shape of Water, and the villain is introduced in a scene in which the women are cleaning the men's restroom. It's brilliant. (I'm certain that's not a spoiler – there's pretty much melodrama hissing and booing as soon as he comes on screen the first time).

  3. Heathered says:

    When I live with other people (almost never) I try to stay out of their way. Alone I sometimes indulge my clutter tendencies too far, then have the adventure of being unable to find anything ever. But I still like it.

    I have a list that includes seven places I was hoping to go on foot today despite the (yay!) rain, but my rogue toenail seems to want me to sit on my bed and maybe get back into knitting? It's excruciating, and I can't see a way to alleviate the pain. Bummer.

    • CleverManka says:

      UGH stupid toenail. Does the pain come and go, or are you going to eventually need to have it fixed/removed?

      • Heathered says:

        It used to be that I could cut it and buy myself several months of problem free happy-ish feet. But now it feels like it's growing into my foot and up my leg. I'm just reluctant to get a doctor involved. $ and scary both.

        • CleverManka says:

          *shudder* I had to have the toenails of both my big toes cut way down (surgically) when I was in 8th grade. By some stroke of luck they managed to grow back normally (which was the hope) and I haven't had much problem with them since. *knock wood*

          Best wishes to you finding something that brings relief without too much stress and $$.

        • littleinfinity says:

          You could try soaking in hot water and then pulling the corner of the nail (gently) out from under the corner of toe that is covering it? I.e. try to liberate the nail corner from its fleshprison? It may be too far gone for this, in which case 🙁 🙁 🙁 , but this is what I do with my rogue toenails.

          • Heathered says:

            What I ended up doing was putting more Dr. Scholl's gross sulfur goo on it and taking some ibuprofen, then going back to bed for an hour and having a pity party about it, and THEN pulling the edge up with my tiny needle nose pliers. If it stays out and I can cut it off cleanly I will be overjoyed, and probably able to make up some of what I'm blowing off today. But I'm getting a lot of workish stuff done in my pj's, so it's all turning out well!

          • littleinfinity says:

            The pity party is a key element in the treatment of these tiny stupid body issues!  I hope it stays out and you can cut it.  I tend to cut my toenails in rounded corners to try and avoid ingrowns. I have a little pair of nail scissors with curved blades for just this purpose.

    • ru_ri says:

      I am sorry about your toe! It is so frustrating to have such a small thing keep you from Plan Accomplishment.
      Not sure what you have on hand but I have two suggestions if you want them:
      1) soaking in hot water that has a generous dollop of tea tree oil in it, or
      2) Prid drawing salve is one of the few homeopathic remedies I know of that works reliably. I have used it on ingrowns with success.

      Hooray for rain!!!

      • Heathered says:

        Ooh, I'd never heard of Prid salve, thank you! Such a pretty old timey container. May have to hobble out to a drug store after all. I'm okay ditching most of my day, but it's free admission at a museum showing local glass art, and tonight the library has us making tiny mandalas to be turned into a big mandala, and I thought that would be kind of cool. Instead, maybe it will be "milky tea all day" day. (And thank you for the card!)

        • ru_ri says:

          Oh man it sounds like there is a lot of fun stuff going on! Although, I just drank a whole pot of milky tea (with honey, cause it's Afternoon Tea) and that is OK too!

          Glad you got the card! Happy Gnu Year!

  4. phantom says:

    I miss living alone, though I suppose I always had roommates when I did, but in like separate rooms and we didn't interact as much, that was mostly at college.

    • CleverManka says:

      I sometimes had roommates, but they were drop-in situations like "hey I'm getting a divorce can I live with you until I find a more permanent place" or "my boyfriend's lease expired can he crash at your place for a couple months." Oh, for us all to have the financial means to live as we like!

  5. Kazoogrrl says:

    When I am alone? I don't talk to anyone but the animals, and it is BLISS. I'm stuck in a group office, and I have to talk to customers and coworkers all day, so I'm out of words by the weekend. J likes to chat about whatever pops into his hear. I also blast music in the kitchen while I cook.

    I'm making a modest list of what I'd like to do this weekend: knit, cook, take a walk in the freezing ass cold because I'll be the only one on the trails (I'm noticing a theme here), or maybe go see TLJ again, which I'd like to follow up with pho, or fish and chips and a beer.

    Today I busted out some legwarmers for layering up against the "feels like -3F" weather. The 80s are back and they are cozy.

    • CleverManka says:

      Oh god, same on the not speaking (the Burgomaster is A Talker). And the blasting music while I cook (the Burgomaster's anxiety is triggered by loud music). And I am wearing legwarmers today, too!
      <img src="https://ic.pics.livejournal.com/clevermanka/1047329/310278/310278_900.gif"&gt;

      • vladazhael says:

        If either of you knit or know someone who likes to, these legwarmers are THE SHIT: https://www.purlsoho.com/create/2010/01/30/whits-

        • Kazoogrrl says:

          Nice! I haven't knit legwarmers because I might as well knit socks if I'm going that much length. I have a great pair from Sock Dreams that look like spats, a stirrup pair from Discount Dance, and a pair I made from felting a sweater and cutting off the sleeves.

          • vladazhael says:

            I am just now learning how to knit socks, and it has been an adventure. I finished my first one last night, and it was good for educational purposes, but doesn't fit well and I may just not bother with the second and move on to other techniques.

          • Kazoogrrl says:

            I love turning heels. Also, I'm not really fond of handknit socks to wear, they are never cushy enough for my feet.

          • vladazhael says:

            I don't really know yet how much I'll like wearing them, but I'm trying to embrace it for the challenge, and because my wardrobe can bear an endless influx of socks more readily than it can an endless influx of scarves and hats.

          • Lee Thomson says:

            They are FAT – I finally (FINALLY!!!) realized I needed a bigger pair of shoes or boots to get the handmade socks under. Now it works better. Also they are MAD cozy for wearing inside.

          • Lee Thomson says:

            Let your first sock be your First Sock, try it on, take notes, and then start a pair. I cast on both socks simultaneously from each end of the yarn, and then knit them roughly in parallel – when I finish one, the other one is so close to done it is like a gift from myself! No more second sock issues. Some people are crazy clever and do pairs of socks on two circular needles, but I got myself so utterly tangled up it was comical.

          • vladazhael says:

            I studied and tried a whole bunch of new sock skills this weekend! I fiddled with a cunning new cast on for toe-up rather than top-down (and then a revised version of the same cast on), several variations of one vs. two socks at a time and one vs. two circular needles at a time, different yarn sizes, different increases, etc. Eventually I zeroed in on same favorable tactics and some items I was missing and took myself out to the craft store to blow my Xmas gift card on new gadgetry and came back with a new sock yarn and correctly sized needles to try. As of now I've settled on two socks on a single circular needle (magic loop method) as my preferred MO, and I have a legit pair of socks in progress. I probably could have gone for more cast on stitches so they don't taper so much at the toes, but that's such a (k)nitpicky thing that I'm not inclined to start over after already having done so several times.

        • CleverManka says:

          Oh my gosh and that's such an easy pattern even I could stick with it. Thank you! If I ever decide to take up knitting again, I'll keep this in mind.

      • redheadfae says:

        Dammit I miss our cool dad prez. And partners who don't talk, a telly that's never on except for movies, and long, long legwarmers!

    • Lynn says:

      Legwarmers are the best – I have a pair that I have literally owned since I was 5 years old (my grandmother bought jazzercise style outfits for my cousin and me during the actual 80s but for some reason my legwarmers were adult sized) and another pair that go all the way up my thighs that I snagged for 6 bucks from a dancewear company that was going out of business. I'd probably be wearing them today if my office hadn't let us work from home.

      I also got a translated Japanese stitch bible for Christmas and have been salivating over the beautiful cabling while planning many ways of using up my stash yarn — I should probably add legwarmers to the list.

  6. ru_ri says:

    When the housemates are out I like to play my bass–not at eleventy, but at least at an audible volume. When they are home I use headphones and sing under my breath. My current living situation is pretty good, we share a kitchen and common area but I have my own (tiny) bedroom and bathroom. The new upstairs guy (the one who moved in after the asshole) is pretty cool and everyone is quiet after 11 p.m. which is super nice. I wish it were more secure (in more ways than one–our neighborhood is dodgy and all I have is a month-to-month lease) but I think it is all right for as long as it lasts.

    Heading up north for the weekend (hopefully the roads are not too terrible), looking forward to some XC skiing and a good band on Saturday. Happy weekend, dearest Mankanauts!

  7. meat_lord says:

    I live alone, and I like that very much. In fact, I'm not sure how I managed to survive not only sharing a dwelling, but sharing a bedroom for the first 23 years of my life. Am legit shocked I didn't murder anyone.

    That said, some of my very favorite things to do when I had the (shared) house to myself were playing my music very loudly, taking long, long baths without worrying about hogging the bathroom, and generally doing anything that I didn't want others to see me do.

    • CleverManka says:

      Wow, kudos to you for making it that long. Sharing a bedroom as a child would have, I think, created a monster of me. Gold star for kid meat_lord!

      • meat_lord says:

        I wonder how much of my former irritability was a result of being constantly pushed beyond my people-time limits, tbh.

      • littleinfinity says:

        It's funny because I feel like growing up in a small house and sharing a bedroom with my sister actually made me less equipped to live alone as an adult, even though as a kid/ teen I DESPERATELY wished for my own bedroom. It just felt so empty to not have anyone breathing down my neck!

    • redheadfae says:

      generally doing anything that I didn't want others to see me do.

      I just realized that I just don't have any of that to do anymore .. stupid lost libido (and generally lazy grooming habits).

  8. CleverManka says:

    Hey, quick heads-up, I'm off work at noon today and have to run a couple errands before my meeting with AtN at 2pm so I might be scarce for about three hours. I'll be able to approve moderated comments on my phone but won't be responding to anything until I'm back in front of a computer.

  9. LaxMom says:

    Once again the Mankanauts have shown that we have some sort of telepathic connection.
    I look around my house and think about what I have and haven't accomplished in my 5 days without children:
    some knitting
    some cleaning
    as little cooking as possible (can a person live on pumpernickle toast and various soups?)
    cleaning up after sewer flood # 2
    moving 7 bunnies and their hutches into the garage (and still being able to fit one car and possibly still 2).
    mostly avoiding eating cheese (this is a biggie. Cheese makes me snot nosed and snus headachy and I really, really need to not do it, and I have no willpower)
    cleaning out my fridge
    clearing off my desk to work on proposal
    finally getting files off my 2008 macbook
    not crying because children are adults now

    not-so-positive: completely blowing my sleep schedule
    avoiding social activities (but having a 2 week long period isn't helping, and neither is the idea of driving 45 minutes to park somewhere 3 blocks away and then walk in below zero F weather in 'going-out-clothes')
    spending time wasting time on the internet instead of unpacking or organizing
    periodically bursting into tears because eldest doesn't play trumpet anymore and is engaged (hoping to get that out of my system before kids come back)
    feeling old

    Basically though I think it's pretty reasonable to be slothlike and reflective in this kind of weather and I'm trying to not freak out about my body not necessarily agreeing with me about what I expect from it.

    • vladazhael says:

      Basically though I think it's pretty reasonable to be slothlike and reflective in this kind of weather

      YES, I will second this, if it helps. Your slothlike is still pretty hectic.

      • Fancy_Pants says:

        RIGHT!? LaxMom, your slothlike is my high-functioning. If your body wants to cuddle some bunnies and then take a nap, that is more than reasonable.

    • CleverManka says:

      Well I think a person could at least run a lengthy experiment on that soup and pumpernickel question….

      • LaxMom says:

        I have at least three inch-thick servings of toast before I run out, so…

        Also I can't remember if I told you guys about what our dojo does on Jan 1st every year. We do as many techniques as their are years, so 2018 plus a few extra (I think about 400) because you add a move with every pivot. So it did take me a few days on the couch with a heating pad to recover from that. I think it worked out to 32 moves a minute. So I guess being lazy after that makes sense.

    • Heathered says:

      Pumpernickel toast = impossible dream in California. You ride it as far as it will take you!

  10. Absotively says:

    I live alone, so when I'm home alone I mostly procrastinate on chores.

    I started this morning at work by screwing up my work computer, so that's fun. Am working on boring stuff on another computer, because the stuff I need to work on the stuff that's actually my top priority is on my broken computer, and installing it here would probably be more trouble than waiting for my usual computer to be unbroken.

  11. Rillquiet says:

    I've lived alone for years; it's good for my mental health but some hard on the wallet. As time goes by, you start to wonder whether you'd even be able to live with someone else if you wanted to.

    Himself hates the iron-hard trails the polar vortex has produced, and he's an old enough horse that he gets to make that call sometimes, so tomorrow he's just getting turnout and some handwalking. I'm guiltily glad: Not only would the cold take a toll on me, last night my yoga teacher followed through on her offer to let people play around on the lyra, and oh man, the bruising! Saddle time is contraindicated for the immediate future. The hoop work was tremendous fun, though, and a good prompt to recommit to stretching.

    • Fancy_Pants says:

      Whoa, do you get to do aerials work in your yoga class? That is too cool!

      • Rillquiet says:

        I wish! The teacher had brought in her hoop a few weeks ago, planning to get in some practice after class, and a few students expressed an interest, so she agreed to set aside some time for us to try it out. Last night three of us stuck around after yoga for half an hour of calisthenics before another hour of taking turns learning mounts, shapes, and a bit of spinning. You know how sometimes you think you're in decent shape?… <img src="http://78.media.tumblr.com/9628a415a7d14d56bf4d035c69357bce/tumblr_nb8ku0IxuP1tbqxclo1_500.gif"&gt;

        <img src="https://i0.wp.com/media.giphy.com/media/4RdqxoInbY00g/giphy.gif"&gt;

        • Fancy_Pants says:

          I DO, in fact, know that feeling. Specifically from that one time that I accidentally found myself in an aerials class, and just…the ratio of my upper body/core strength to my total body mass is not promising.

          It looks SO COOL though, but my (short-limbed, stocky, barrel-shaped) body type pretty much precludes me from being naturally good at aerials/pole/bouldering sports. *sigh*

        • LaxMom says:

          omg, nothing made me feel like a weakling as much as silks class. I can barely get through three sun salutations at the moment, aerials would kill me.
          Teengirl and I have a fantasy of setting up at least a yoga sling, but it never happens. Money and space.

    • CleverManka says:

      Ouch! Yeah I've always been in awe of the people who can do stuff like aerial hoop and poledancing at all, and so much more that they can do it without grimacing in pain the whole time.

  12. Fancy_Pants says:

    When I was a teenager and my parents would leave me alone in their house, I would always clean EVERYTHING and then play the piano loudly or walk around the house singing operatically at the top of my lungs. The only downside of not living in a single-family house in the suburbs is that I can't do that anymore.

    Currently, I share a one-bedroom apartment with my husband after years of living with roommates together. It works for us because (1) I currently have a weird schedule that leaves me alone in the apartment during the day, while he is out for most of the day and many evenings, (2) he's not chatty, thank god, and (3) we've been living together a LONG time and are in a fantastic groove of respecting each other's space and moods. I don't know how people learn to live together when they are in their 30's or older after spending like a decade independently solidifying their personalities and living preferences. At that point, I think separate apartments would be the only option!

    I used to feel really lonely and un-anchored when I was alone, but I find myself more and more relishing having the luxury of time with my thoughts completely uninterrupted. How do people work in offices???

  13. Lynn says:

    I definitely miss having the occasional evening to myself. I travel more for work than boyfriend does and we have talked about how in this apartment in particular (where I have literally spent one night alone — the night he spent in the hospital after knee surgery) it's really messed with my ability to feel much of an attachment to the space. Boyfriend noted yesterday that we've been here 10 months now, which is 2 months longer than the place we lost in the fire — and somehow this is still "the new place" in my head.

    I don't think we would have survived moving in together if our first place hadn't been abnormally huge for the area– it saved us from having to fight about who was getting rid of what until we'd been living together long enough to know what we actually used, and gave us plenty of space to get away from each other. Our last two places have been much more condensed and there are definitely times one or the other of us will go take a walk just to not feel like we're tripping over each other.

  14. Heathered says:

    Started to feel better today and then I had this godawful pain kind of in both my armpits? First I thought, "Oh God, my lymph nodes I'm dying!" and then, "Wait, those weren't panic attacks it's my heart, I'm dying!" and then finally, "Wait. Didn't I try to do a dozen push-ups yesterday for the first time in over a year?" Maybe I SHOULD be living with someone, I'm not doing very well unsupervised.

    • RoseCamelia says:

      I'm laughing because you're funny and because I'm relieved.

      We all panicked when a friend's father went to the emergency room with chest pain. The staff asked if he'd done anything unusual in the past two days. No. Ran lots of tests. Nothing conclusive.

      His adult daughters gathered in his hospital room. One of them had stopped by Dad's house to bring his eyeglasses and books. She asked who had cleared all the snow at Dad's house.
      "Not me."
      "Not me, and all of our husbands are out of town."
      "Dad! Did you shovel all that snow? Did you tell the doctors?"

      First snow of the season and it slipped his mind. With a Rx for muscle relaxers, and three highly annoyed daughters, he left the hospital.

      • LaxMom says:

        geez, that's awful, he must have been so embarrassed. Around here the minute it could possibly snow they push shovel-safely videos on every news website. Because of those, I end up spending all that quiet snowy time shoveling thinking, "is this going to kill me?"

        • RoseCamelia says:

          Embarrassed? He was and he wasn't. He's well-known in his city, a cop who became a church minister after 20 years on the force. He still walks a beat, but now as a street minister, challenging homeless people to make good choices, fighting drug addiction where it takes place. Stern, loving, but with the highest expectations. He's the kind of person you'd rather die than disappoint.

          So he's confident in public, knows no one will dare to confront him.

          Other than his daughters. I bet they lit into him once they got him home. They are the fierce fire breathers their father raised them to be.

      • Heathered says:

        I identified pretty strongly with ToastDads, and apparently this is why!

    • LaxMom says:

      This is me. This has totally happened to me.

    • redheadfae says:

      OMG, so many times when I was still dancing a lot.. and :looks around: also after rather extended sexy times, lol.

    • Fancy_Pants says:

      Happens to me every single time I throw a football around!

    • Fancy_Pants says:

      Also, pushups! *Windmill high fives* Yeah! *Bro chest bump*

      • Heathered says:

        Haha, I can't believe I used to routinely knock out 4 sets of 12 kneeling push-ups interspersed with some other exercise. Yesterday was a lot of good intentions and face-planting, but my arms sure had a lot to say about it.

  15. Räven says:

    I've always thought I would thrive best living alone, but am actually looking for a roommate in part because living on my own I disintegrate around the edges very fast. I strew things everywhere, spill into all the available space, abandon things on countertops, pile books in the hallway where I know not to trip on them – it takes effort for me to be tidy and it's terrifying how fast I abandon that effort if nobody will see. It's a huge cautionary tale.

    And when I have a roommate to edge around, I always kind of resent sharing the space and imagine the magnificent things I'd get done if I had full dominion – but it turns out if I don't have a roommate around there's nobody to trigger my sense of shame at just wasting a lot of time on the internet. UGH.

    Okay, when I have a roommate and they're away, I like: not putting on proper clothes; singing out loud which I am not good at; caramelizing onions which is quite time consuming; listening to choral evensong on the radio.

    • Heathered says:

      There's something kind of nice about that roommate resentment as long as it's done with love. I think of George Costanza pointing out that if you just look mad at work people think you're busy. And it's always good to not go fully feral.

    • CleverManka says:

      I never thought of that! With the one exception of my craft room (clean and organized artist spaces don't exist–at least not for more than ten minutes), I'm a neat freak. Which DOES NOT HELP my attitude with shared living spaces. *looks around* sigh

      • Räven says:

        Yes, it's interesting. I mean, the place is clean, I mop and vacuum – and I do tidy up… but a stack of books has taken up residence near the armchair, and another on the table, and some painting supplies in the hall, and etc. I'm more aware of the terrain when someone else is going to see it.

        Oh, look, in the light of next-day morning: adhesives on the table; cookbooks on the meditation cushion; a bin of papers to be sorted and dealt with, bang in the middle of the hallway; four pairs of boots in the living room. I mean – I don't worry about dying as a Collyer brother, but I could definitely trip over a stack of books in the dark someday, and break a hip.

  16. faintlymacabre says:

    I lived with the same 2 friends in varying configurations all throughout college and it was great. People were there when I wanted them, but we all really valued privacy and quiet time. I do love living alone, but miss that type of living situation. One friend and I joke that we are going to be hermits in adjacent woods. I can't imagine living with someone else going forward.

    I had an extreme crying jag about ex, as he started texting and just being chatty and I had to tell him I'm not ready to resume contact. I know part of it is sleep deprivation and frustration with the job and sister (I knew it wasn't going to be great going in, but the magnitude of suckitude has taken me by surprise), but I just lost it. Went into work late, had real trouble not breaking down while there. As freeing as it has been to realize that we were never going to have a healthy working relationship, the flip side to that coin is realizing I'd been chasing an illusion for years.

  17. redheadfae says:

    Our alonesies sound about the same; I used to do my hair and nails but I can't do them myself anymore so they are now a trip out of the house.
    Yesterday was a "might as well, I can't do anything at home" because some contractor for the city sewer left us a note THE NIGHT BEFORE that we'd be unable to do anything involving sewer use from .. oh 10:30 AM for 8-10 hours!!!! WTF? Ever heard of advance notice, assbiters?
    My stupid silver grow-in took the purple nicely but refused to take the red highlights, so I had to make a Sally's trip and will redo those bits best I can.
    In the meantime, they had a temporary purple spray so I was able to disguise the white bits in my part today.
    Counting down to the hernia surgery.. reading in bed is going to be my life for probably three weeks after, and shuffling around the house for another three. Next week will also be advance freezing for meals and sides, and stocking up on soups, in case it's going to be more crappy weather.
    If it weren't economically ridiculous in this town, I would never have moved in with the Jbird, and probably delayed marriage for oh, a hundred years, LOL, but eh, maybe next lifetime, when I'll probably be a feral cat instead of the pampered puss of wealthy couple with no desire for children (my ideal life).
    ETA: Had it also been economically feasible, Manka, we could have kept the little cinder block house as a shared escape home, now that I think about it. The rent was the cheapest I've ever seen in this town! And my lovely landlords stopped me at Johnny's the other day to give me hugs, and tell me again how much they missed me living there. So sweet!

  18. Lee Thomson says:

    People! Read this!
    https://www.thecut.com/2018/01/ask-polly-why-am-i

    because I did and now I can't stop crying.

    • CleverManka says:

      What good advice on living one's Best Life! I always thought I was lazy because I loved to take it easy and relax when I didn't have anything planned (like I did maybe once every two weeks). After spending several years having to tolerate decreasing levels of activity, I have learned that I am not lazy, I never was lazy, I just like to rest and recover when I'm tired.

      The things society teaches us about being a human being are deeply, deeply fucked up.

    • Doc_Paradise says:

      That didn't go where I expected it to. That's a very thoughtful article. I'm passing it on.

    • RoseCamelia says:

      I can see reasons for tears. Which are yours? Are you identifying with A Sloth? With Heather? With neither? Kindness, like Heather's makes me cry sometimes, especially when it's a variety that's been denied me at a time of need.

      I can identify with A Sloth. Especially just now. I'm at the most slothlike portion of the Move cycle, past all the deadlines to Unpack-Learn-New-Community-Make-New-Friends-New-Routines-Find-Work-All-At-Once, with no externally imposed structure.

      • Lee Thomson says:

        both? mostly Sloth, I think – the stories she tells about herself, the things she does and doesn't do, and the kindness Heather applies to her

        • RoseCamelia says:

          So you can see where you can apply more kindness to yourself? Please do. You are wonderful just as you are. Tell good stories about yourself. Want help?

    • redheadfae says:

      That was very insightful and gave me lots to think about as well. Thank you so much.

  19. Doc_Paradise says:

    I have never lived on my own (alone). I sometimes regret this.

    • CleverManka says:

      I fucking treasure those memories of solitary living. =D

    • Lee Thomson says:

      It feels useful to be able to do it, but I think I am not good at it – I like having someone else bumping around the house, so long as they (and I) go out every once in a while.

      In thinking about it, I think all kinds of living situations require a certain amount of practice.

    • redheadfae says:

      I took great delight in living alone. As an only child, I easily amuse myself and rarely get "lonely". OTOH, my spouse has never ever lived alone in his 60 years, even when divorced because he had full custody of his teenage son.
      He does not do well when left to his own amusement, lol.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*