Are We Becoming A Nation Of Cat Swingers.

Last week a report on Britain’s housing crisis , highlighting the unfit-for-purposeness of many new build “starter homes” quoted details of an offering from one well known house builder. We will not name and shame them because the rest are as bad and anyway if we’re going to get sued we want it to be for insulting some pseudo – celebrity or accusing a well know politician of taking backhanders from Colonel Gadaffi. The “home” in question featured living room of just 3m x 3m. Assuming there is a door that makes fitting in a sofa, spare chair and a tele impossible.

An investigative reporter from one of the national newspapers decided to put to the test the old phrase “not enough room to swing a cat.” by actually swinging a cat (he said it was a stuffed toy and we believe him don’t we?) in the deceptively spacious living room. Taking a firm grip on his cat’s tail he started to spin, arms outstretched. Long before he reached getting dizzy and falling over speed the cat’s head was bashing against the walls.

So with such restricted living space the dwelling cannot by any stretch of the cat … I mean imagination, be referred to as a starter home for a young family – or a cat lover. Ideal for agoraphobic perhaps…

Someone is bound to remind us the phrase “not enough room to swing a cat” refers not to a furry faced quadruped but a cat o’ nine tails, the knotted whip favoured by Victorian magistrates and their heavies, also by dominatrices who cater to senior judges, top ncivil servants and Tory MPs. So as well as being inadequate for young families or couples and cat lovers the houses are no god for people with an interest in S & M fun either. No wonder the Conservative Party housing spokesman is calling for radical changes in housing policy.

It is not just the living room that is teeny and cramped. Though the dining – kitchen contains a ceramic hob and a combined oven and grill it does not contain enough space for even a small table and four chairs. in fact there is hardly enough room to stand between the hob and work surface on one side and the “breakfast bar” (shelf) and sink on the other. Dinner parties are out then? No worries, the lucky mortgage owners will be so busy working at three jobs to pay the mortgage they will have no time for a social life.

In the starter home offering from different builder the sleeping area has another feature sure to appeal to those lacking a social life. The toilet is in the bedroom. What massive kudos that must gain the houseowner the first time one invites a new lover to sleep over.

What is really puzzling is people are buying these “starter homes” for over £100k. In Accrington you can still get a two up two down terrace with upstairs bathroom and toilet and a downstairs “deceptively spacious guest toilet” (OK, it’s at the end of the yard) for less that £50k. With sex and drugs available on the streetcorner, now that’s what I call gracious living.

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We were all conditioned to “get on the mortgage ladder” of course, instead of choosing accomodation arrangements that suit our individual lifestyle. And so, in response to “triggers” we do as we are programmed to. Pavlov’s Cat

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9 thoughts on “Are We Becoming A Nation Of Cat Swingers.

  1. Not just the space – but the quality of new buildings. Husband is a handyman, and remarks on how the internal walls are only just better than cardboard, so any notion of privacy is out of the question.

    Every generation has its own architectural (or social) folly. Mud huts, back to backs, tower blocks, starter homes…

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    • Nice to see you Lois.
      I agree with your hubby having been, before disability stopped me, the type who would never call a professional tradesman reasoning that if I wanted a botched job I could do it myself while blind drunk and with my eyes closed. So having lived in one of the bigger and beter built stone terraces on the outskirts of town then moving to a new bungalow a few years ago, I wonder how they have the nerve to pass such shoddy work off as modern, hi tech.

      At least our bungalow is a decent size though.

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      • Thanks – I’ve been away far too long but work just gets in the way – unfortunately not the well-paid type to give me leisure after hours for blogging!

        I’m glad you have room for feline whirling, at least – even if the folks passing by can hear the catwauling clearly through the hi-tech walls. (As invented by the Japanese for their tea rooms.)

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  2. Well I’m sure you’ll all be pleased to know that in ourformer mining village in darkest Yorkshire, I could probably swing all three of my cats nose to tail in my sitting room.
    (Before Saturday that would have been four but the cantankerous ginger girl finally succumbed to the tumour that has been growing inside her for the last four months. Aahh.)

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      • Just bragging about the size of my living room, I did say nose to tail. Just put a dab of superglue on No1’s tail then apply No2’s jaws, repeat with 2’s tail and three’s jaws….
        Oh dear I think I just screwed up my chances of adopting a new kitten from one of the charities. Ooops!

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