Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I wish we could find another word for "McMansion"

Because, like its new sibling term "swankienda," it's 100% pejorative. But if these new large homes are so distasteful—so plainly tacky—why is the demand so high? People don't seem to be ashamed to buy them. In fact, they appear to be downright proud.

So it's commendable, I think, that the Morning News does not use the term—its only appearance is part of a direct quote—in their story about neighborhood overlays: "The fights, quite simply, boil down to what's more important, an individual's right to build as he pleases or a neighborhood's ability to preserve its character."

If you read it, you can't help wondering how otherwise smart adults are so totally bereft of the ability to persuade, negotiate or endure opposition of any kind.

But at a time when it looks like there's no end to the fallout from declining home prices, who would willingly and purposely limit their own property values? "Some overlays, such as the one for the Cedar Oaks neighborhood south of downtown, have passed without opposition. 'I think people were ready for it,' Cedar Oaks resident Angela Marshall said. 'A lot of people are on fixed incomes, so it's a tax thing. A lot of them just wanted to preserve the character of the neighborhood.'"

"'It's a tax thing'" explains so much. Re-sale activity would probably explain more.

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