>Feminism & Gender
My friend Sara showed me her apartment this afternoon. When she bought it in December (January?), I saw it then, and when the renovations began a few weeks later, I saw it then, too, but there was no kitchen any more. Today, it was gorgeous, complete with a kitchen full of appliances and cabinets, a built-in entertainment system in the living room, and nicely painted bedrooms. She even has new, matching furniture. My very brown eyes turned green.

My apartment, on the other hand, is filled with junk. We've owned it for over five years now, and still only managed to paint the living room and bathroom. Husband and I furnished the space through a combination of Ikea, secondhand shops, and cast off items rescued from trash piles on the street. (I swear we recently contemplated bringing from a broken piano thrown out by a synagogue.) Our bedroom TV stand is a computer desk that broke 7 years ago when we moved it into our previous apartment. Husband's nightstand is a microwave cart that became obsolete after friends' gave us a hutch they no longer needed in their dining room. My writing desk is our former dining table. (Our new dining table is actually very nice, and we got it for a great price at Macy's.) We have two worn out couches in the living room, and two used purple leather armchairs that the prior owner's cats clawed. Need I go on?

Generally, I love our eclectic style. Today, though, I thought about how nice it would be to live somewhere that a normal 32 year old woman married to a man with a promising finance career might find acceptable. Then I remembered that although I may be a 32 year old woman married to a man with a promising finance career, I am not normal, nor is Husband. I also recalled that I am too cheap to pay for nice things. (Not that they cannot be acquired through sales), and how much I would miss the turquoise armchair stashed in a corner of our oddly-shaped dining room. My desire to acquire matching furnishings diminished, and I felt better about living in a hovel.

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