Monday, May 3, 2010

Warning: This post acknowledges the reality of middle-aged adults getting frisky

So really, this is a continuation of the money/Christmas tree post. Because there's so much more to the story, so much more that the Christmas trees represent to me: lovely long hair that takes a long time to preen vs. short, spunky, low-maintenance hair that my husband loves; stressful-yet-elaborate holidays vs. relaxed-yet-simpler holidays; driving a nice shiny Suburban vs. cruising in a minivan; elegance vs. spontaneity; raising two well-dressed and well-lessoned children vs. begetting a swarm of kids in hand-me-downs, and so on.

Two more concrete illustrations of the concept:

I invited a friend to a swimming/waterski party at a lake. She wanted to go, and she did, but she didn't do anything. Because she didn't want to get "lake hair."

I once saw most of American Beauty on tv while getting ready for cleaning checks. I did not love the movie, but one part struck me as perfectly realistic while also a perfect symbol. So the couple - Kevin Spacey and his wife - have been having troubles. Though outwardly successful, the warmth and affection in their marriage has been replaced with distaste and detachment. One afternoon, after Kevin Spacey does something that is probably naughty (I don't remember what it was), he feels refreshed and liberated. His wife comes home. They pour glasses of wine for some reason...maybe to celebrate a real estate deal she closed?...and start to laugh and act playful. They end up on the couch, smooching and sloshing their wine as they go. It's implied that this is the first time in a long time they've initiated any sort of intimacy, and it clearly could be a marriage-saving move. Then the wife gets stiff - she says she just had the couches steam-cleaned or something, and she doesn't want to mess them up.

I desperately don't want to be that woman.

I think I've decided to go color Christmas tree whole-hog. Because really, how could I not?

But that being said...

I do firmly believe that you should create a home you love, that a good space can do wonders for your mood and your creativity and your social interactions...and that requires a certain level of non-trashiness. Tidiness could help me out a lot right there, and it's a big weakness of mine. I once read about the "broken-window effect," so named after a study that was done on crime-rates in certain neighborhoods. Crime-rates were higher in places that had visible signs of crime - things like graffiti and broken windows - than in places that were well-kept. The article I read said that this could also apply to homes, and that we should get rid of the "broken windows" in our homes that lend themselves to more slovenly habits. I'm not saying that if I had nice things I would magically become a more organized person, but I do think that loving my space would be a good motivation to maintain it.

So I'm not going to nitpick over a budget. I'm going to shop as cheaply as I can - starting at the thrift stores/craigslist - then, if we don't find anything we love, we'll go to the next cheapest option (IKEA, maybe Target or Walmart), and so on, until we find stuff we love. All while realizing that we may need to compromise for a while, as it takes time for a good space to evolve.

Really what I want is a bit of the Glass/Tenenbaum families (lose the mental disorders and suicidal tendencies) mixed with Danny the Champion of the World's dad, with a bit of the Weasleys thrown in and some Dan in Real Life/that Canadian family in Away We Go thrown on top. All thrown together in the combined houses of Phoebe in Wonderland, Synecdoche New York, and my old singles' branch president. His house has a stoplight, a giant buddha, and a drinking fountain.

How does that sound, Andy? Can we always have adventures with a family we love in a place that we love?

3 reason(s) to click here:

Anonymous said...

Dear krebscout,

Please stop mixing the classes together. You may be either one or the other.

Love,

Queen Victoria

(http://i44.tinypic.com/2u886m1.jpg)

bekki said...

Dear krebscout,

Please keep mixing the classes together and come decorate my house.

Love,

Me

Whistler said...

:-)