Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Homeland Security

Robert and I have been looking at trading our suburban house for a condo in mid-town. Like a lot of modern folks we're re-thinking our lifestyle and wanting mobility, low maintenance, and no yard work. Every other high rise is being converted to condos lately. But if we're to live in a big tall box at least let's have a great view, says Robert. And that means a higher floor. I prefer nothing higher than three floors so in emergency it's possible to jump for it. We've found a unit (occupied for years by an elderly woman) we can maybe afford since it has not been remodeled and still has blue carpet (in her bedroom). It's on the 18th floor. Robert goes window to window examining the views, while I follow checking the stability of the aging window latches. "A person could fall out if this was open," I mutter uneasily. I'm imagining escape routes and ropes, calculating how many bed sheets it would take to descend 18 stories. This particular unit has two entrances and I praise this not for convenience, but for something else entirely--in case some bad guy comes in the one door I can run out the other since there's no jumping out the window and scampering away.

With friends we toured another building which had incredible views from the 19th floor, but it was the unit on the second floor that had the favor of the women that day. Lindsey and I echoed each other's observation that the entrance overlooked the lobby--good in case you need to yell for help in case a bad guy gets in. We amused the guys with our silly attention to homeland security. Guys don't pre-think escape-and-run strategies. A baseball bat by the bed is the extent of Robert's personal security plan.

But like many of my observations about male behavior, I am wrong. Men do have strategy other than "take-it-on-when-it-happens." I got a little glimpse of it today from Robert while pricing cabinetry for Beau's sales office. At Home Depot he tells the salesperson he wants the service counter to be extra high. "Why?" I ask. And I learn it is better to have a high counter to make it harder for some bad guy to jump over and fight you. I smile a crooked smile and feel vindicated.

No comments: