FEBRUARY 4, 1947
NEW YORK, Monday—There must be a great many people who were relieved to hear from the President that he was opposed to any general increase in rents. Most of us would be more sympathetic with the owners of real estate if there were not such a shortage of housing, so that any decently livable apartment or house can be occupied every day in the year, without any loss to the landlord.
The same principle holds good in real estate as in other business. If your product sells in great quantities, you can usually sell the individual item at a little lower price. That is really the case with houses and apartments today everywhere in the country, and I know of few real estate people who could tell you honestly that they are losing money on the properties which they manage at the present time.
If the rent ceilings were taken off, the result would be reckless bidding, in which those who could afford higher rents would have an unfair advantage over those who must live within a limited budget.
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The other evening, I went to the theater. I doubt very much if I would have managed it if my children had not urged me to go, since I had to get home from a Human Rights Commission meeting and give a lecture at the Women's Trade Union League before going to the theater!
The play, "Years Ago," a new comedy by Ruth Gordon in which Fredric March, Florence Eldridge and Patricia Kirkland take the chief parts, was just the right one for a completely relaxed evening. I understand it is the story of Ruth Gordon's early life, and if so, she deserves credit for her courage in pursuing her stage career.
The family in the play is a typical old-fashioned family, reminding one a little of "Life With Father." But the father has fine qualities, and the mother is certainly one of those angelic women who existed apparently in past generations but seem to have disappeared in the present!
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Someone asked me the other day for a prescription as to how to make friends, and I think a good way is to be Fala's owner and walk with him around this neighborhood near my apartment. Sunday morning, we were doing a little exploring in Greenwich Village, and I found myself walking down Minetta Lane towards Minetta Street. A man came around the corner, and he and Fala held a long conversation. Wherever we go, children, other owners of dogs, and lonely people of all kinds talk to Fala and to me. So I think any friendly little dog who wags his tail at strange dogs and strange people alike is "Open Sesame" for making friends.