So, I've been thinking about the whole loneliness and commuting thing some more, how people are sealed in their cars by themselves for at least an hour a day, and how that contributes to unhappiness.
Do you think everyone being hermetically sealed in their houses with the A/C on has a similar effect? Maybe I spend too much time at home, but it occurred to me that in the spring when we can have the windows open, I feel more ... well, connected isn't the right word, but maybe in the midst of the community. There's something very woman-in-the-village in being able to hear a neighbor's baby cry, or some kids skateboarding in the parking lot, or the soccer game at the end of the street.
More to the point, it's entertaining. Brandon and I lived for three whole years in a crummy apartment with dark wood panelling throughout and Rice-a-Roni-colored shag carpet. One summer night we came home and listened to the downstairs neighbor, who was outside with a guy and the radio. And apparently some alcohol. She was singing.
"I'M GOING TO TAKE MY CLOTHES OFF, TOOOOOOO."
Oh, my God, we loved it.
My neighbor (different one, different neighborhood) told me last year that, in the middle of the night, a car pulled over in front of his house and a couple got out to argue. (Because you don't want to argue while driving?) "Why won't you let me love you the way I want to love you?" the man kept asking the woman. This seemed like a novel couple's argument to me: permission for method of loving.
I haven't heard anything really entertaining in a while, though. There was a bird last year that kept squawking in an oddly cheery timber at night. He sounded ready to party. It was no drunk-woman-Boyz II Men, but you take what you get.