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a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation

02.03.2003

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make it a single the perks and drawbacks of living solo by Ashlin Salisbury | 1 2
continued from page 1

Living solo, your messes belong to you alone: you donít have to put up with anyone elseís slobbery.  When I lived with other people, I was always the nagger.  I loathed that the kitchen was always messy or that the bathroom hadnít been cleaned in months.  Granted, I could have taken it upon myself to clean Ė and often did Ė but I resented having to be the one to tidy and vacuum, scrub and dust all the time.  Curiously enough, now that I live alone, none of that seems to matter like it used to.  Somehow, itís perfectly fine when itís my stack of dirty dishes taking up space in the sink.

Living with another person is a form of a relationship: it takes communication and compromise.  All this, of course, means that oftentimes, nothing gets done at all.  When you live with someone, for instance, you must put up with his or her tastes and styles.  This, perhaps, is why the shared house has a tendency to be a clashing mishmash of decorating ideas, or lack any semblance of dťcor altogether.  When you donít have any roommates to contend with, youíre free to decorate and arrange the house in whatever manner you like, and as often as you want.  A case in point: I recently moved some items from the living room into what was my bedroom, and vice versa.  My bed is now ensconced in a much bigger room.  Many roommates would have been opposed to this upheaval Ė not to mention my co-option of the living room for my own personal sleep-space Ė but I didnít hear a peep of disgruntlement.  I live alone. 

Personally, I like that I donít have to turn down my music because my roommate is trying to sleep.  I like that I can watch TV as late as I want.  I love that I can exercise my idiosyncratic habits and my quirky urges Ė whenever I like, however I like, as loudly and boldly and obnoxiously as I like.  I live alone: Iím not bothering anyone.  Then again, I have to live with this constant paranoia of being killed in my own house.

The pros and cons of living with or without someone are many and varied.  Either way, everyone should try a little bit of both to see which they like better.  And if I may say so, do try the naked strut; alone or not, it always proves to be a good time.

o

Ashlin Salisbury is a student at the University of Oregon.  She is a huge fan of both the Food network and the Cartoon network.

check out these related articles: 
a room of my own | after school
the great roommate search
roommates from hell

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