Tuesday, July 10, 2007

House envy, or, Does size really matter?

Your contractor tells you that size matters. After all, he drives around the biggest pickup truck available. Your wife tells you that she actually likes it smaller. Your friends are somewhere in between. Can you really live your life knowing that yours is in the bottom 25th percentile?

Why big is good:

  • Show off

  • Store a bunch of crap

  • Less grass to mow

Why small is good:

  • Cheaper to own

  • Less maintanence

  • Less crowding

OK, so we're biased. We may not have the biggest one on the block, but we know how to use it. It's comfortable, it fits well, and we're used to it. Oh yeah, sometimes we'd like to be a few sizes bigger, and maybe someday we will, but for now we like what we have.

The average size has increased double from 1950 to 2000, while the number of folks using it has dropped 25%. More to go around? Maybe more greed? And all the while, they know how to use it less and less and so much is wasted. Sometimes parts or even the whole thing goes unused for quite a while. Then one day you'll hear, "What is THIS down here!?", or, "How did THAT get there?". Come on, get a grip. Do you really need to live life like this?

But there is help. First, own up to what you have. Second, learn how to use it properly. Third, maintain it in tip-top condition. Hopefully you will get to a place where you are happy with your lot in life and not try to strive after what others have. At the end of day, it's not about who gets to go home to what, but about how big a mess you have to clean up.

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