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One is the Quirkiest Number

Lauren sent this article along for us with the comment: “Alone and weird, Lexi in ten years?”

An excerpt:

One Is the Quirkiest Number: The Freedom, and Perils, of Living Alone

…In a sense, living alone represents the self let loose. In the absence of what Mr. Klinenberg calls “surveilling eyes,” the solo dweller is free to indulge his or her odder habits — what is sometimes referred to as Secret Single Behavior. Feel like standing naked in your kitchen at 2 a.m., eating peanut butter from the jar? Who’s to know?

Amy Kennedy, 28, a schoolteacher who has a two-bedroom apartment in High Point, N.C., all to herself, calls it living without “social checks and balances.”

The effects are noticeable, she said: “I’ve been living alone for six years, and I’ve gotten quirkier and quirkier.”

Among her domestic oddities: running in place during TV commercials; speaking conversational French to herself while making breakfast (she listens to a language CD); singing Journey songs in the shower; and removing only the clothes she needs from her dryer, thus turning it into a makeshift dresser.

“The entire apartment is your room,” Ms. Kennedy said, by way of explanation. “If I leave a bra on the kitchen table, I don’t think much about it….”

…What emerges over time, for those who live alone, is an at-home self that is markedly different — in ways big and small — from the self they present to the world. We all have private selves, of course, but people who live alone spend a good deal more time exploring them.

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About ilanaturgy

Ilana Brownstein is a dramaturg and director specializing in new play development, based in Boston. She is the Founding Dramaturg at Playwrights' Commons and the Director of New Work at Company One.

One response to “One is the Quirkiest Number

  1. Cara

    I’ll admit to doing some quirky things about the house. Luckily so do my two very quirky roommates! We are all so alike in our penchant for leaving strange items in strange places that I worry sometimes that I actually DO live alone and they are both mere figments of my imagination….

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