Andrew has lived in tents and lean-tos since he was a troubled teen in California. Moving into an apartment does not have the effect his brother anticipates

A few days after Christmas, my older brother moved into a new apartment in downtown Corvallis, a bucolic college town in Oregon’s Willamette Valley. Even after living there for half a year, Andrew was a little reluctant to have me visit. He was falling behind in a role-playing computer game he commits to for months at a time, he said. He didn’t think be able to tidy the place up. I didn’t care, I assured him.

The intercom system didn’t work, so I slipped in as someone else left his building and texted him to come get me. In the hallway, he passed the woman who lives in the next apartment over. “How’s it going, neighbor?” he said with a friendly lilt. It’s nice having neighbors, Andrew said. You see them in the hallways.

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