Re: Possessions diffusing throughout community
From: Jean Pfleiderer (pfleiderer_jWIZARD.COLORADO.EDU)
Date: Fri, 3 Jun 94 17:14 CDT
>This discussion of mess in the common house brings a related problem to 
>mind.  We find that common house dishes and cutlery tend to migrate into
>our houses, and conversely that our crocks etc. move over to the common house,
>and then from there into other peoples houses.  There is a process of 
>tending to a state of increased entropy wherein everybody has an equal 
share of 
>everyone elses dishes.  A similar thing happens with tools, books, etc.
>What solutions do people have to this problem?

In what sense is it a problem? Sounds kind of fun. 

>Stuart Staniford-Chen.
>N-Street Cohousing
>stuarts [at]
>PS - Our dish problems might be worse than most folks as our common dishes
>are all from the thrift store (us being keen re-users and re-cyclers).  Hence
>it isn't obvious that they are common dishes (although they do all have an
>orange spot painted on the bottom).

So far as I'm aware, at Nyland this is a non-issue.  Occasionally, a cook 
may prepare something at home in his/her own container, or bring some 
special device for use in the kitchen, but I think they generally remember 
to take these items home again, too.  Occasionally, people take food home on 
community plates,  though I'm under the impression these get returned fairly 
promptly. Our usual method for handling take-out is to put it in a variety 
of plastic containers we keep in the kitchen for the purpose.  These are 
things like cottage cheese containers; when an individual's kitchen has 
accumulated more of these than are useful to the household, they are packed 
off to the common house.  I'd guess probably every household in Nyland has 
someone else's old plastic containers by now, but who cares?

I can't see why this moving of dishes, cutlery and crockery would be 
occurring unless you have a lot of potlucks, or unless you just don't have 
enough dishes in the common house to begin with, so that people have to 
bring their own. If the latter is the case, I think I've suggested the 
solution--go hit up the thrift stores a little harder. If no dishes need be 
brought, and none need to go home, then no confusion can ensue.

Just a few scattered thoughts on a (TGI) Friday.


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