Talk of the Town - Improvisational living April 16 2003

Two-bedroom, Marietta garden-style apartment

At the age of 21,
John Babcock moved out of his parents' house, found a cozy bachelor pad and made it home. He worked different day jobs and spent his evenings on stage doing improv at Dad's Garage Theatre in Inman Park. After seven years of freedom, John came home one day to some unexpected changes. His building was planned for demolition, to be replaced with condos. The news hit Babcock while he was in between jobs. There he was, 28 years old, and back in his room at his parents' house.

Living at home wasn't so bad — free food and housekeeping. When Babcock's comedy troupe held auditions, little did he know he'd be moving again soon. That evening he met an auditioner named Amy. She made the cut, and the two spent lots of time together both off and onstage. Babcock proposed and wedding plans are under way. In the meantime, the couple moved into a two-bedroom apartment in Marietta.

Creative Loafing: A week ago you were living out of a room in your parents' house. Now you're in a spacious two-bedroom apartment. How does it feel?

Babcock: It was really bumpy at first [living with my parents]. But I had my own room. I had privacy. I think this space is perfect for us. We fit right in. Moving in was a little stressful but now it's done and we can just relax.

How much privacy did you really have at home with the parents?

The dinner thing was big. If I called to say I'd be late, she'd try to make sure that I would eat first, or she'd leave me a plate. Occasionally she would come in and make my bed for me and neaten up. That was fun.

I love that giant leopard chair that you're lounging in. Who picked that out?

My fiancee. Most of this is her work, she loves leopard print. Our shower curtain is leopard.

And is that Kennedy over the mantle?

Yeah, I'm really big on that era in presidential history. I went through a lot to get it. It came from the New York Times photo archives. It cost a lot, but it was worth it. I framed it myself.

What else did you pick out?

When I left my parents' house, all I really had was a futon. A lot of things we have here were gifts. The sun-shaped mirror in the living room was given to us by a dear friend.

I've never seen a kitchen arranged like this before. The washer and dryer are right next to the oven.

It's weird to us too, but it's cool. I can cook dinner and wash my pants at the same time.

What's with the giant gorilla on the bed?

Amy loves animals, hence all the leopard stuff, so that's her most recent birthday gift from me.

Two improv comedians in one house. That must be hilarious.

We don't joke so much at home, but we send each other weird faxes at work. It's just enough for our co-workers to laugh at us.