19 November 2005
Fatuous Flashback 8
Why buy a house? Tax advantages? Equity-building? Well, yes, but there's this too:
I've lived for fifteen of the past twenty years in essentially the same set of quasi-suburban flats. It's always been what the demographers call a "racially-mixed" neighborhood, though the mix has shifted slightly over the years: in the 80s, it was about 60 percent white, 40 percent black, while today, it's more like 40-60. The impact of that shift is difficult to quantify, but the difference in terms of Quality of Life, whatever that may mean, is probably inconsequential; most people, regardless of racial background, don't go out of their way to be boorish louts. Just the same, it only takes a handful of boorish louts to make life miserable for everyone else, and it is of course unlawful to discriminate against boorish louts. Were I a proper New Urbanist, I presumably would be expected to embrace lowlifes of this sort as part of life's generous cornucopia of diversity. As a normal person who would like to get some sleep once in a while, I'm going to considerable trouble and prodigious expense to get the hell out of here.
(From Vent #365, 17 November 2003 nine days before I closed on Surlywood.)Posted at 1:03 AM to Greatest Hits