THESE “SPITE HOUSES” ARE MONUMENTS TO THE DEPTHS OF HUMAN PETTINESS

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Whoever came up with the economic law that people always make rational decisions clearly never saw a spite house.  (Someone actually won a Nobel for disproving that law.)  A spite house is a structure that’s built for the sole purpose of annoying someone, usually by blocking a view or access.  As a phenomenon, the spite house dates back to at least the early 18th century, when the youngest of three brothers in Massachusetts, angry about his share of the inheritance, built a tiny wedge-shaped house in front of the family mansion, just to ruin their view.  It didn’t get him into the will, but I bet it made him feel better.  Spite houses have been around for centuries and can be found in every part of the world, thus proving that if there’s a universal sentiment, it’s probably not love – it’s probably spite. THESE “SPITE HOUSES” ARE MONUMENTS TO THE DEPTHS OF HUMAN PETTINESS

“The ground floor features an open floor plan, so you have large living/dining/sitting rooms that are more or less interchangeable. The lavish kitchen sports Brazilian countertops, Italian cabinetry, and European tiles; when you cook, the least classy thing in the entire kitchen will be, well, you.”

“The ground floor features an open floor plan, so you have large living/dining/sitting rooms that are more or less interchangeable. The lavish kitchen sports Brazilian countertops, Italian cabinetry, and European tiles; when you cook, the least classy thing in the entire kitchen will be, well, you.”

IS THERE A SECOND ACT FOR DC’S DYING MALLS?

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If you’ve been to a shopping mall in the past year or two, it should come as no surprise to you that they’re closing at a rapid and accelerating pace.  (The last time I went to a mall, old people with hand weights and fanny packs, speed-walking for exercise, outnumbered actual shoppers by a ratio of about 2-to-1.)  Of the approximately 1200 malls in the U.S., experts estimate that a third of them are dying – and now that the Retail Meltdown of 2017 is underway, that percentage is likely to rise.  As of 2012, there were 31 malls in the DC area, of which almost half were dead or dying. IS THERE A SECOND ACT FOR DC’S DYING MALLS?

“Inside, the all-white family room gets a ton of natural light, and features a beautiful brick fireplace; the space flows into a bright sunroom-slash-den that’s perfect for reading or lounging, or doing what my mother did with our den when I was growing up, which was to set up a flawless layout of antique furniture, ceramic figurines, and fine rugs, and then forbid the family from ever entering the room for any reason, ever, under threat of severe punishment.”

“Inside, the all-white family room gets a ton of natural light, and features a beautiful brick fireplace; the space flows into a bright sunroom-slash-den that’s perfect for reading or lounging, or doing what my mother did with our den when I was growing up, which was to set up a flawless layout of antique furniture, ceramic figurines, and fine rugs, and then forbid the family from ever entering the room for any reason, ever, under threat of severe punishment.”