Suburban Glamour

"You're living someone else's life, aren't you?"

This was said to me at work.  The preface, from the same person, was this: "You live in a house in Danville with a Porsche in the garage.  Is any part of that not true?"

My response was "no."

Most people who read this blog probably know the circumstances of our current living situation.  We've moved from Los Angeles to Danville, California.  We moved from a 2 bedroom apartment to a really big house.  And, you know, we're in the suburbs.  There's more, but I'll spare you from all that (again).

More to the point, we don't (yet) own the house we live in -- the big house in the nice neighborhood with the great schools.  In other words, this is not my beautiful house.

I'm adjusting, though, or at least trying to.  I'm putting forth the effort.  I'm taking interest.  But there's a part of me that wonders if I might not be cut out for the suburbs.  I just might not be built for it.

I lack a lot of knowledge that seems to be important for living in the suburbs.  I don't know how to take care of a yard or how to build anything or how to fix things.  The fact that I know how to use a hammer and nail is something of a minor miracle.

It's more than that, though.  I mean, home improvement, lawn care -- any of these things can be learned.  I just don't know that my brain works the right way.

I don't notice the things I should notice or worry about the things I should worry about.  Fixing, building, improving, these are things I do with my writing, not things I think about doing around the house.  And I feel like at some point those things should become a priority for me, at least to keep from driving my wife insane.

It is also, to a certain extent, a lack of investment.  We don't actually own the house we're living in, and until we do, I feel like I don't really have a leg to stand on.  I don't feel like I really have the right to make any changes.  I also don't feel comfortable making any changes yet, and I have a hard time finding motivation when I'm doing something that makes me uncomfortable.

But perhaps when we're settled in, this will all changed.  Maybe I'll go to Home Depot and not feel like an American walking through the streets of Germany, hoping everyone thinks I'm one of them.  Maybe I'll go to the local Starbucks and not get weirded out that it's filled with blonde cougars.  Maybe I'll actually notice when something in the house is in dire need of fixing and actually take the time to fix it.

I just have to figure out if I want that.

It should be noted that the title of this entry is also the title of an excellent comic that you should buy.