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Sunday, March 2, 2014

Play Nice

After a year of failed attempts in marketing a room-for-rent, I decided to give it one more try. “Self,” I said. “when should you place an ad for a renter on Craigslist?” I have attempted many options before as well as ads in churches, senior centers, and www.roomateexpress.com. So I sat in my office and thunk. “Valentine’s Day! That’s it. A day when single people looking for a home would have nothing better to do than read a Craigslist classified.”
Sure thing, I received four emails the next day—a better response than the entire year. Two of the applicants looked suitable but this was the best.
Hello! My name is Molly. I am a twelve-year-old chocolate lab who is active and loves to play fetch. My master and I are looking for a room to rent. Please…
Of course Poindexter had to answer and then the two met. They had some discussions about doggie doors and cat chasing. I met Mark, Molly’s owner. After a few meetings, I rented the space to Molly and her owner. March 1st, they moved in.
Of all the changes in my life in the last three years, I think this is in the top one or two as the most difficult. I realized that I have had more conversations with my letter carrier than with a man that will sleep fifteen feet from my bedroom door, use my kitchen, and hang out on my couch. Please note I am using the possessive pronoun—my. It explains my mindset and misgivings.
Molly and Dex played nice when the potential renter stopped in but since the furniture has arrived, Dex has realized the permanence of the situation he growls and snaps his territorial lines. I am afraid I am doing the same. With the change in cable to include sports channels, addition of a daily newspaper, someone else’s stuff on the counter, beer in the refrigerator, the remote moved, and noise, I am nervous.
This man moved his life into my home and trusted we could get along well enough to make it an equitable relationship. I hoped for the same.
It must be that he is anxious also. That seems to be a fair assumption.
My buddy, Beca welcomed Paul and me into her home several years ago. She made us immediately feel like part of the family. We had so many happy memories in that home including a smashing forty-fifth birthday party for my man.

If I could make Mark feel just a bit of that greeting, I know we could have a good roommate arrangement for some time. Dex and I need to play nice with our new friends.