Children, according to “Life at Home,” are disproportionate generators of clutter: “Each new child in a household leads to a 30 percent increase in a family’s inventory of possessions during the preschool years alone.” Many of the kids’ rooms pictured are so crowded with clothes and toys, so many of which have been tossed on the floor, that there is no path to the bed. (One little girl’s room contains, by the authors’ count, two hundred and forty-eight dolls, including a hundred and sixty-five Beanie Babies.) The kids’ possessions, not to mention their dioramas and their T-ball trophies, spill out into other rooms, giving the houses what the authors call “a very child-centered look.”
—Nothing especially new in this Elizabeth Kolbert New Yorker piece on the shitshow that is American parenting, but it’s still totally worth a read for anthropological observations of the phenomenon. We suck so much.