Growing up I found having my bedroom in the basement very convenient because I was able to keep track of where everyone in the house was at all times. I recognized the gait of each family member as they walked around upstairs, and I’d keep a mental note of where they were. Downstairs, my brothers’ rooms were right next to mine, so I always knew who was there as well.
There are many reasons it’s useful to know where everyone is; let’s just say, sometimes I’d like to avoid any parental entanglements. So, if my dad was in the office just down the hall from the top of the stairs, I’d have to be extra quiet or he might hear me. But if he’s in his bedroom, I’m quite safe to just stroll on up to the kitchen to grab a snack really quick.
Having a basement room also made sneaking out of the house, or sneaking friends in, so much easier. You don’t have to climb down from a window or sneak across multiple squeaky rooms. That’s dangerous work. My window was ground-level and you could just step into the room from outside. Beautiful. In the summer I’d have to be aware of whether a parent was in the office upstairs since that window was right above mine and would usually be open. In that case I’d use a window on the other end of the basement. Inconvenient, but safe.
This would also allow me to do some stealth room raids on my siblings when necessary. Having two older siblings, I had to find alternative methods for revenge than just attacking them because I’d always lose. I found the best way to mess with them was to accomplish something in a window of time where their guard was down because they didn’t plan to be gone long. When going to the bathroom for example. If it was a particularly important mission, like if both of them needed a little lesson, I could frame one of them for my crimes.
Here’s how that might go down. They both have to be home and in their rooms. I leave in a way that makes sure they both know I’ve left, and then I’d quickly sneak right back into my room through my window. It’d take a lot of patience sometimes, and I’d occasionally give up, but I could wait a long time with a gameboy in my closet. I’d wait for one of them to go upstairs to the bathroom and the other one to still be in his room. Then I’d dash out of my room into theirs and accomplish whatever my task was. It might be knocking something over, or stealing something, but it had to be noticeable right away so that my lack of culpability couldn’t be questioned later.
I’d only allow myself about 30 seconds for the stealthy round-trip from my hiding spot; I didn’t want to know what would happen if the scapegoat caught me. You can guess what’d happen next. The victim would come back from the bathroom and discover the dirty deed. Since they knew I wasn’t home, and had only been out of their room for a couple minutes, the only one who could have done it was the other brother who had never left his room. They’d fight and unknowingly punish each other for their slights against my honor.