This woman named Fatima contacted me about a possible apartment share. I’m not sure how she found me. Oh yes, it was probably Craigslist. The apartment was in In Arlington. Everything is in Arlington. So I left the forest and drove to Arlington to meet her and her room-mate Paul who actually was the first occupant of this apartment… of which he modeled on an “intentional community.” When I first arrived, Paul was not there and I was chatting with Fatima, who seemed nice enough, as they say. But then Paul arrived and he was chatting with Fatima and his daughter Yuni or Yooni. And I was listening and after about 10 minutes wondered if Paul would ever speak to me. Finally, out of nowhere, he asked me to describe my “eating style.” I pretended like I knew what he was talking about before I eventually realized he was asking me about my diet. And I guess he was asking because he is a vegan and Yuni or Yooni has only eaten macrobiotic foods since she was in the womb, and was highly sensitive. So they use separate plates and silverware and pots and pans, which makes sense. I said I did not really have a style, but if I did, I would probably be a pescatarian. I think that may have been the wrong answer.
Then Paul asked me what I could only label as a trick question. He said, if I were to get up in the middle of the night to walk from my room to the bathroom, would I wear slippers or go barefoot. I thought about this very carefully because I knew there was a correct answer. I just needed to find it. But then I said, “neither.” and he gave me one of those quizzical looks, the kind of look that founders of an intentional communities might give you. So I explained that I would probably be wearing socks because my feet get cold at night. But this was the wrong answer because socks are more likely to spread dust around than slippers, or something like that. And I don’t think he understood why I would have cold feet. even in the summer. It’s something I’ve never understood either.
At that moment it occurred to me that maybe I was not an ideal fit for an intentional community. I mean, I can’t think of one thing I’ve ever done in my life that was actually intentional. I live in a world of happenstance. Perhaps I should found a happenstancial community. I bet there would be a lot of interest.