Happy and Unhappy Renters
Samantha, like many renters, is tired of renting. One reason is that her annual rent goes up like clockwork. Every year her landlord raises the rent five percent. Another reason is her neighbors. “New neighbors always seem to be more inconsiderate than the ones who moved out,” she said. “My first neighbor was a door-slammer; I always knew when he came home or left home. After he moved out, a saxophonist moved in. A saxophonist! He practiced two hours a day. On Saturday his friends would come over and I’d get to listen to a whole band. I called the police, but they said saxophone playing is permitted in apartments for up to four hours a day, because saxophone playing is job-related. They told me I was lucky that the guy was only playing two hours a day!”
There are many unhappy renters, but there are also happy renters. “I’ve been lucky my whole life,” said Howard, a middle-aged man. “My neighbors couldn’t have been any better if I had picked them myself. One neighbor was a chef. He’d bring me the best leftovers in the world. Another neighbor was a pianist. She played the most delightful music. Another neighbor was a mechanic who did my tune-ups and changed the oil in my car. My latest neighbor is a birder; we go birding every weekend with our binoculars.”
Different persons have different attitudes. Samantha saw the saxophone player as irritating, yet Howard saw the piano player as delightful. Millions of people would be happy just to have a roof over their head. Yet there are millions who would complain that their roof is the wrong color.