My roommate

I’ve had some questions of late as to the potential crazies of the girl I now live with.  Ok, I’ve lived with her almost a month now, and I’m still not quite sure.  There’s the lonely factor.  I’m absolutely certain that the fact that she can’t stop talking to me has something to do with her having basically lived on her own for the past year.  But she also has two cats, and is on her way to three.  Not that I mind cats – still the attention she pays to them in place of actual people could be indicative of a slightly imbalanced state of mind.  However, she’s a perfectly sweet and nice girl.  As a roommate, her expectations are low.  And she certainly doesn’t expect to be a part of my life, though she occasinally talks my ear off.

So are the potential crazies really a bad thing?  True, she’s possibly a little awkward to have around if you’re welcoming a new acquaintance into your home.  But she’s not the type to become physically dangerous.  And even if she does, she’s about half my size, wispy, and not nearly as mean as me on a joyous and stress-free day. What could she possibly do?  Even if she were to attempt to talk me to death, there’s always the possibility of fleeing in outright rudeness to get away.

On the other hand, she might be catching.  Let’s face it, I’m not the most socially balanced person all on my own.  Sure I can laugh at myself and often do, but I also tend to act even more ridiculous when I’m nervous.  So am I simply more worried of myself sinking into catladydom?  Or is there some deeper, less ridiculous fear there?  Or does it not have anything to do with my own fear for myself at all?  Is it more about this girl, who I don’t know or have any intention of knowing outside of living in the same apartment as her for a year, who I’ve already comforted on one of her bad days because there doesn’t seem to be anyone else?  What does it say that my roommate came home from her job crying and i was almost afraid to hug her?  What kind of world is that?

I’ll huff, and I’ll hurricane puff…

As an architect (or at least, a former student of architecture) I have an interest in new ideas people have about building.  Ok, mostly I am interested in residential building.  Corporate and industrial structures have little interest for me – they’re less structured to adapt to people.  I find the robotized warehouses of parts not made for people distinctly claustophobic and wrong, despite the fact that they may be highly useful and space efficient.  So – with my intense people-scale residential interest – I was delighted to see a new hurricane house testing project on a massive level.  Of course, it’s aptly named The Three Little Pigs Project.  Never say they don’t have humor in Canadia.

But what is most interesting with the project – outside of its name – is its process.  They’re taking their time figuring out exactly why a hurricane collapses a building, and how.  The ultimate goal is still prevention and building better houses, but it’s deliberate over the long term, which I kinda like.  Pinpointing stressed areas does have a certain validity for the grand work of making houses stronger.  And the way most roofs attach to houses and the way walls themselves are constructed, ‘balloon framing’ has a whole new meaning.  In addition, after New Orleans and all the legal scutwork of various insurance agencies, even research involving exactly why and how a house fails is extremely important. Go Little Pigs!

Since they seem to have everything pretty well covered and are very technologically sound (way to build your house out of bricks, guys), it almost makes me feel bad to be the hurricane.  I think they might need more of a Big Bad.  How about adding some earthquakes, locusts, diseases, or other ravages to the experiements?  I’d be happy to contribute a bit of huffing and puffing myself, if that could scientifically help.