shelf life

2014-07-19 10.22.25You know how you are supposed to have 4 boxes when you clean? keep, save, donate and throw? how come i end up with like 9?…  Nearly all the books in the house have been boxed…the last batch will be the expensive ones, that will take longer as i need to bubble wrap them…and i actually just ordered two more..investment grade..i won’t be able to spend that kind of money after i buy the house..i shouldn’t be spending it now..but i got a good deal on them a couple of nice modern firsts Ready Player One and RedShirts, that will only go up in value- i should have bought them years ago when they were cheaper…i really need to start looking for more investment grade books…

hemnes-glass-door-cabinet__0177354_PE330330_S4I have packed about 4 boxes to sell off… and that’s without opening any of the boxes i packed up last fall.   If i can get the bulk of the kitchen packed pack up this week..and the food pantry…then i will go back and revisit those boxes one at a time.   It doesn’t matter really but it gives me something to do…I also need to break down all the bookcases, but i will wait on that… most of the wood will be repurposed in the new house…..mostly in the basement… right now i am toying with a couple of ikea pieces for the nicer books in the living room.  Glass fronted is pretty mandatory, and the only USED options i have are barristers bookcases…their problem is that they are usually for bigger houses so just getting them in place will be problematic and they take up a certain amount of real estate.    The least amount of real estate would be taken up by built in bookshelves..but i can’t use every flat wall in the place for shelves..there aren’t that many of them… and investiment grade books deserve need glass doors.

I am going to TRY to get exact measurements of the ceiling and walls Tuesday.. so far i just haven’t had the time. I’m not exactly sure if these Ikea Cabinets will give me the most volume – but they are inexpensive enough to make a mistake with. I will be making a big drive down there anyway to collect a platform bed, it’s the ony way i can GET a bed up to the second floor. in a flat pack box assembled in place and with a mattress rolled and tied. Second floor shelving, on the other hand, will be built out of 1″ x 6″ as much as I can. Under the eaves and around the door frames etc.. I can get pieces up the stairs and then cut and assemble them in place. The built in bookcases i have now I cut and built out of 1 x 8″ and then attached to the walls – the last house I built them with 1 x 12s…my libraries are getting progressively smaller. But nothing goes to waste…the shelves i have now will be reconstructed as a pantry in the basement and i have an eye to hanging them from the rafters against the walls, so that the condensation about the floor will never be an issue… well that and the $200 dehumidifier should do the trick.

Pine board isn’t the kind of shelving i want in my living room, not even in the office..for the office i am really leaning towards white laminate that should make the room feel a smidgen bigger, and if i get some white laminate cabinets from the big box stores, i can hopefully hide the clutter and try to keep the shelves neat. I had hoped to find a house with a lot more walls… i hadn’t planned on covering the entire living room with shelving, and i still can’t get away with it – there’s not much ROOM in the ROOM. I need to find a balance perhaps hanging SOME shelving on half of one wall, and then on the opposite wall using the far side of the room. I’m just moving all the pieces around in my head trying to get a feeling that’s only half bookcases….it saves moving bookcases around the room when they are filled with meat.

2014-07-20 12.44.00 I thought the solution i had in THIS office was clever, i just mounted boxes on the walls…boxes are getting pretty damn pricey these days… i’d love to get away with it in the new place…they can be moved around odd shaped areas. Dear god, am i just planning to fill my house with nicely organized clutter? what if i DON”T put shelves everwhere? will that just mean the clutter is on the floor or things stay in boxes a lot longer? Wasn’t i supposed to be getting RID of the stuff that needs to be shelved? at last count i had about 40 boxes of books…if i cull from the closed boxes I probably can get it down to 35 boxes…and if i leave some boxes of research materials boxed in the basement…i will still need to properly store at least 30 boxes of books in a house that is smaller than most people’s rec rooms. oy vey.

I haven’t even BEGUN to think about the kitchen…it DOES have a little more cabinet space than the one i have now…well it has more space period..but nearly no wall space that would be appropriate for 3 boxes of cookbooks. The only place i have for those is off the kitchen in the stair well..perhaps if i line the skinny staircase with bookshelves, when i take my inevitable tumble down in the dead of night…my fall will be cushioned by some fat James Beards.


last hurrah

2014-07-11 12.22.15 The home inspection went sort of as planned…the very nice old guy doing the inspection itemized a hundred things that made want to wet myself and then turned around and said it was a very nice house. On the whole everyone thinks it’s a very nice house…even i think its a very nice house…it’s just a bit…WEE…. I need a house to contain myself, my business and the roommates….as it stands it can only handle two of the three. I have spent the last two days calling contractors of every stripe trying to find one who can squeeze me in after the closing yet before i have to be out of here. I need at LEAST the back door installed, and hopefully the screenporch…and after this inspection report…there are some issues in the basement to sort out. It’s not that I can’t live in the house as is, or even move in…but i know my reading chair won’t make it into the living room past the kitchen without the backdoor, that’s when I got the bright idea to send it out to get recovered and pick it up AFTER the door has arrived.

A back door would make hauling all the boxes into the house much easier with a small ramp instead of steps. Without the screen porch in place, the cats would have to be contained in the basement for a week or so, which means i need to construct a sort of a wine cellar section, but then I have a contractor coming to look at the waterproofing for the cellar, which would have to precede that. Basically it’s like trying to unwind a big messy yarn knot, trying to find the end to start rolling up the ball….and yes my brain is very busy and content trying to solve all the puzzles at once.

I have almost accepted that i won’t have the big screen porch to dump all my crap – all to be sorted at my liesure. Which means I have to find room INSIDE the house for everything that can’t be left in the yard..which is everything. If the living room is filled to the brim and the office nearly so….that leaves me no room to work or build shelves and so forth. Don’t even mention the upstairs, the only things going up there are clothes and bedding, until i get shelves built under the eaves.

All those lovely boxes of books I packed in September and October will need to be revisited..again… today I unpacked, culled and repacked a number of plastic bins, and made up four boxes of books to sell to a dealer in Maine, the other boxes are sorted into unpack immediately, or unpack whenever and doesn’t need to be unpacked. Yesterday I presented a box of local ephemera to the Lawrence Public Library special collections, they were tickled pink with all my bits and bobs. I had to explain to a friend of mine, keeping things just cause they are cool is now a luxury, I have to be ruthless. I have already culled thesse boxes a couple of times and here i am again trying to decide what I can give house room too and why. A lot of books i have collected for research can stay in boxes, I am loathe to get rid of something if i had to hunt it down in the 1st place.

The glass fronted bookcases will be missed, I have my eye on a couple of Ikea cabinets which have glass fronts… the traditional barristers bookcases would be ideal, but i think they would dominate the tiny room. Just some open shelves would work, but i never dust and the cats love to sleep ontop of books when you aren’t watching them. In fact I think my home may be an Ikea subsection…at least with that stuff you can bring it in flat and assemble it in place, very appealing.

As a knee jerk reaction to learning that my house has a lot of crap to fix that will cost money…and I have to surrender half of your belongings yet again, I ended up buying myself somethings to make me feel better…what else…books, but REALLY GOOD books..collectible editions of some of my favorite titles, that i have had my eye on. WHy not really? that’s my answer..If i HAVE to have fewer books, than the ones i have left are gonna be really GREAT books. THat’s really the new rule i am implementing. If i can only fit in ONE CHAIR…it’s gonnna be MY chair with a new skin, if i can only fit ONE of anything in the house, it will be the best of the thing I can afford. No sense cluttering up the place with junk..when I die, they are gonna find me with all my fingers and eyes eaten off…not buried under a pile of newspapers.

don’t be a pussy

2014-07-11 13.36.25 I’ve gotten past the fear of spending the lions share of my money…or even the blue whale portion of my money…basically unless things pick up in September as they usually do…knock wood…i will go straightback to living hand to mouth again…but i will have a house and a car i both love…so hey..i should feel like i just won a game show. I have to get out of here in a few minutes…the home inspection is scheduled in two hours….i saw the house Friday, we made our 1st offer friday night and our second on Saturday and we settled on saturday night.

We are secretly hoping the inspecion will go badly…so that we can negotiate it down a little bit more…as you can see the place HAS NO BACK DOOR, which is the 1st thing i have to add..but then if they stand firm and say as is, i am not backing away. I bought the cheapest house in one of the nicest..neighborhoods, which is on the edge of one of the countries most livable cities. If i can’t parlay that into a comfortable life, than that’s on me. If i need a little more money, there’s a hundred low paying jobs i could take. If the house throws a shoe, i can ALWAYS get a loan on it, which is something someone with no credit could do if i had house with a mortgage. So i am JUST NOW absorbing the idea that i haven’t SPENT the money on the truck or the house, i just transmuted it into an slightly less cashy substance.

exampleporchThe SECOND thing That i have to do to the house to move in, is find SOMEONE, ANYONE to add a screen porch to it, before September 1st. Both the contain the roommates, AND as a temporary storage unit for everything i own. With a house this small, built in shelving and storage will be important and i need to be able to bring things into the place slowly and thoughtfully, which means i just want to drag all my shit up there and dump it on a porch for now.   This is basically what i want, except i need the bottom section solid plywood and i will slap some t-11 siding on it.  It the bottom is solid, the snow wont build up inside as much – and a shorter top screen will be easy for me to replace with pet screening.

I found a handyman who was willing to meet with me this morning,  I did explain my time crunch and he was willing to come anyway. I am hoping he’s hungry….Besides the porch, i have a lot of other little things that need doing.   Now I AM handy – my struggle will be to balance out what i have time to do and screw up and do over, and what needs to be done correctly the 1st time.  I’m also short…and there are some two person jobs… and i need some plumbing and electrical stuff which is out of my wheelhouse.   I figure i can hire him once a month to do something i can’t do…or finish something I started.  I know I can make a stab and insulating the cellar ceiling (upstairs floor)…but I’m gonna get sick of it before it gets finished.

2014-07-11 12.24.47I supposed to be packing these last two days…but all i did was sit and thinking and make a little stream of consciousness list…i didn’t pack ONE book, in fact i bought two more over the weekend…but i went through nearly every book i own INSIDE my head…yeah..i can do that..that’s my superpower…. and decide it there is room for it in the new house..and if so which room and what sort of shelving.   Working WITH a house this small instead of against it, is figuring out what sort of shelving works with each room..a book case or a built in? hooks, hangers, closed cabinets, etc… without a bedroom closet, I will split up my clothes into seasons and rotate them from storage containers and hang what i am wearing from the back of a door and so forth… same with books, certain books, certain rooms. I don’t want to cover every flat surface with a bookcase, it will make the rooms feel like a cave…speaking of caves, I think i found the spot in the basement for my workbench…it hadn’t even occured to me when i 1st looked at it.  I found a company that waterproofs basements, i toss in a kick ass dehumidifier and an electric heater if i need it in the winter.  I can’t afford to look any part of that house as unusable. waste not want not.





we don’t need no stinking badges

8562197071_4a63089a44_zOkay race fans i JUST signed a purchase and sale on 82 devon st in portland maine for a little more than i am comfortable with.   Shall I remind you it is a VERY small house
smaller than my apartment really, the house is so small, i went on a diet after seeing it.

There’s a slim chance in hell, I can get the price down a little, the home inspection is next week and I swear to go there’s a lot in that place that is NOT to code.  the Sleeping loft and the back stairs are just one problem.

And it looks like I WILL have to cut my belongings in half AGAIN, including books, clothes, furniture, dvds (weep), etc… anything to lighten the load is going overboard.
I wish i could cut the cats in half, as it is three of them are FINALLY going to the wildlife sanctuary, as soon as I can get those kittens out of their cage.

But with a house that small, I can’t sell BOOKS with a capital B, but I can probably get away with selling a few books of significant value…if i get my shit together about my job.  I can certainly get all the book repair products into ONE closet…but this house doesn’t have any. OOPS..i have my eye on the basement after i dry line it.

But driving ghe other day I had another idea….i love it when i have an idea to make money and i actually REMEMBER IT, this time i sent myself a text.

medieval-manuscript-cat-paw-prints-closeup_65680_200x150It’s an idea for biblio merit badges…now wait and hear me out…

ADAFRUIT is an electronics supply company that has done very very well relying on hackers and they have a line of SKILL badges   There seems to be a new one every week.      And lets not forget the folks at Nerd Merit Badges. who seem to have run out of steam..or ideas for more badges. 

Why are we letting tech guys have all the fun?

I still have a wee bit left in the bank to invest in business,  and i have a company that made badges for me before. Best Part is the entire inventory will fit in a fastener cabinet!    and all they have to do is sell slow and steady along with all my other crap at Book Repair

What do you folks think of the idea?   and I will need some more ideas for merit badges besides mine, i have a lot of ideas, i don’t know how many are good ideas.
i want ideas that appeal to kids, adults, booksellers – i think a nice little proprietary gift item is what is called for.

catbadgeI started designing them with the BIBLIOCAT badge NOT ACTUAL SIZE…I’m shooting for regular Merit Badge size of  1.5 inches.  I got the idea from the medieval manuscript cat.

Inky Cat paw, rampant on a field of Loren Ipsum….what do you think?

Other Ideas so far:
100   -  which would be a book with a 100 over it.     a merit badge for
having read all 100 books on ANY list of 100 greatest books

Bookstore cat badge…
doesn’t have to be for anything specific, basically for having a
bookstore cat….or dog
Road show badge
I want one for doing bookfairs
either something that applauds exaggerated mileage or quantity in a year.
I’m trying think of one for getting bonked on the head
perhaps a head with a book on it, like in deportment class.
and  you get if for getting hit on the head with a book at least 5 times
a year or something.
books by the pound badge
Books being weighed on a balance scale
which you get when pound for pound you own more books than anything else.
the after hours badge
not the traditional martini glass but a rocks glass
for spending more time at a book show talking to more booksellers than
definitely need a badge for actually writing a book yourself
not sure of the design
perhaps a couple of crates of unsold books rampant on a page

please let me know what you think

Here goes nothing. 

ISdwdkiqsvklij1000000000 I need to lose some weight… a LOT of weight…and i don’t mean just what i am carrying around with me. Friday was look at houses day…. the first one was a make-us-an-offer-any-offer tear down in Biddeford and the other…well the other lured me in because they took the time to post a picture of a frog on a lily pad in the water feature in the garden…a very small lovingly cared for garden…in a very small house…i want to emphasize the ‘very small’ here. This little cottage is in Portland, someplace I hadn’t even considered, but i had cast my net wide and was now looking at everything in my ballpark in southern coastal Maine, regardless. It is smaller than the one in Saco that I dream about at night, it’s actually smaller than my apartment if you measure it correctly. I can tell a lot about a house living area from the listing even the parts they don’t show, I can dope out. But basically i bother to go look, to see the NON living space, to see where there is room for storage, and for work areas and for the damn cats. So I said, sure lets see it, what have i got to lose?

Long story short I have signed an offer on this one. What I am seeing in houses that have been empty for a while, is a lot of moisture and mold that has to be addressed before you can even live in it while you make changes. Putting aside the costs of any sort of improvements or fixes, moisture is the enemy of the book. Fighting the rising damp can take a life time and sometimes can’t be beaten, ask nearly anyone in England or Florida. This house is occupied, and the owner like me has her eye fixed on another house, a bigger house elsewhere and is in a hurry to sell. So there is a very good chance she will take my cash offer for lower than asking price. In my opinion and that of my broker, holding out won’t bring her asking price, it will just delay her move and force her to keep reducing the price. WHY? because of the ‘very small’ part of the description. The second floor isn’t really a floor, it’s basically a sleeping loft..there’s head clearance down the center but not for anyone taller than me, and even i bump my head at the top of the stairs. 2014-07-11 12.58.57

But that can be fixed which is what anyone else looking at the house is thinking, that they are going to have to tear the top off and add a second floor, but not so I.  Though I will start saving for a dormer for the bedroom. The cellar isn’t much taller and isn’t as damp as it could least right now in summer, with the itty bitty windows open. But that too can be addressed. The only thing i MUST do to it before Day One is replace a window with a back door and add a full screen porch/catio – that will get the furries out of my face and actually open up the charming back garden, it is a shame the house doesn’t actually have a back porch to begin with. It also doesn’t have a closet in the place, cept an improvised one in the 1st floor bedroom/office.  The gardens are to die for because the woman who lives there also works at home and has time to garden. It already has the insulation and heating system improvements I would have made, cept without the solar aspect. I literally don’t HAVE to do anything to it unless i want to. And that has a SIGNIFICANT dollar value attached to it.  Instead of buying a big hungry baby, i’m buying a little old lady with some peculiarities.

2014-07-12 16_40_48-82 Devon Street, Portland ME For Sale - TruliaThe tininess of this house puts it within my reach monetarily.  I had to let go of a lot of decisions I had made; some as long as a year or many years ago….. no small town,  no view, no guest room, no garage,  and very few walls  bookcases.  All those books I packed last September have to be gone through and culled down once again, even the few pieces of furniture I retained have to be reconsidered.  Things have to be built in place, and be svelte and minimalist.  Being neither svelte not miniscule in all but height myself, i need to start with me. If I can reduce MY size, the house will seem bigger,  if I bring in less stuff the house will seem bigger, if what i bring in solves many problems and isn’t being one, then the house will seem bigger.   I still have no idea what to do with my clothes should I buy this house..I spent years getting it down to ONE closet full and now I am considering a house with no closets at all.

Why not keeping looking for a bigger house? why bother?  why shouldn’t i scale all my crap down to fit inside the house?   How much of it do i really need?  I have been fascinated by the tiny house movement for years, it’s time to put my clutter where my mouth is.   I’ve been saying large houses have large problems, small ones have smaller ones. But this is all rhetorical unless she accepts the offer one of the hooks is that the closing would be very quick, sooner rather than later, which is scary on its own face.  Am I still as prepared as I was?  Unlike the little red house, I know nothing about this one, and only a smidgen about the neighborhood, and what I know abour Portland is its a great place for me to spend my money.



creeping sloth

sloths_fun_bizzare_oddities_weird_cool_200907301641424508I got drunk and joined a gym last night and it’s Robert Louis Stevenson’s fault.

I guess that deserves an explaination…I’ve spent the last few days glued to the computer trying to finish all the content on the new website, ..sitting in front of the computer is pretty much how i have spent the last 18 months…NOT on my bike, NOT out in my boat..just sitting and typing with the added bonus of getting up now and then to recycle some tea and cleaning litter boxes. My usual accompaniment is a good audio book – the most recent being J Martin Troost’s Headhunters on my Doorstep, in which he weaves his personal story of getting sober with revisiting a string of South Pacific Islands in the paddle prints of Robert Louis Stevenson. Headhunter,s like Troosts earlier works, is thoroughly enjoyable and will easily be something I revisit. As many reformed addicts sometimes do, Troost took up an addiction to running to replace his addition to drink, so the tales of beautiful island scenery are punctuated by descriptions of Troost running up or down atolls.

All well and good, but as I struggled and fussed with the really bad refresh rate on the beta test ISP, I indulged in some homemade guacamole and a take away quesadilla and a very tall daiquiri. So I wasn’t exactly DRUNK per se…i probably have one drink a week and I am of a substantive size that it almost amounts of a waste of good rum, but we can agree that my judgement was a little impaired. Among my adventures last night I spent about 30 minutes pulling great bags of garbage OUT of the dumpster and down to the curbside, including all the recycling from around the property. Creating a void IN the dumpster, allowed me to finally empty two barrels of my household trash and spent litter INTO the dumpster. The theory being it will all get taken away this morning. (YES, I know i SOLD the place, but I hate an overloaded dumpster. so I tend to keep the place clean.)

Thirty minutes of me huffing and puffing myself up and down the hillside reminded me that I can’t exactly WAIT until I relocate to get my shit together. One of the reasons I WANT a house that is near enough to walk to places, is so that i will WALK TO PLACES, Here I can walk but it’s all fucking hills which sucks on my arches and there’s not PLACE to walk to. I logged into the website for the gym down the block and found they were having a $10 a month sale, and were open 24/7. Lucky me, I don’t sleep at night anyway. Of course by then I had sweated out all the very nice rum, I pulled out shoes with arch supports, some ear buds, and made sure my kindle had at least 3 audiobooks to choose from. I joined the gym at about 9:30 and then walked two miles on a treadmill…i would have walked further and longer, but i felt that I should stop before I overheated, passed out and someone would try to drag me back to the ocean.

Big surprise, I am heavy and out of shape, I wasn’t always this way, the weight has crept up on me…though as long as it was just tagging along behind and my clothes still fit, I didn’t worry about it too much. When I had outside money coming in, I felt free enough to throw my bike in the truck and go for a ride in the country, at least every other day or so. Same with the boat, as long as I got all my work done and kept the bills paid, taking a couple of hours to row myself fit, wasn’t much of a chore, it was fun. Once things got VERY hard, I mean harder than ever before…every minute i spent NOT working had a big guilty weight attached to it. I worried more and more, and i rode and rowed less and less, figuring once I moved I would make a reason to stop being such a sloth.

There I was fussing with the pokey little computer, trying to WILL it to work faster, so i could be DONE sooner…and hearing Troost’s words about the highs of running..realizing I have never actually RUN anywhere not unless someone was dying, which has happened. Even as a gift, I would never visit the south seas, I abhor beaches and all the things that accompany it: sunlight, surf, sand, sweat. I have become a fat little hobbit in my hobbity hole, with a packed larder and all the comforts of home. Why would I leave? But then i glimpse the person and a half who is walking around in my clothes and realize that of all the things I am not happy about, THAT is at least something I can fix.

Gyms as a whole have no appeal for me, i can’t think of ANY place more boring to spend hours of your life. I would rather BE ON MY BIKE, or on the river or even walking with a camera in my hand…. but right now i would be more of a road hazard than anything. I need to treadmill past the huffing and puffing stage so I can enjoy going outdoors, instead of planning to go into cardiac arrest in public. But the 24/7 thing appeals to me…I really don’t want to run into anyone I know…but I needn’t have worried.. fat folk are basically invisible in such places, and for the most part everyone keeps to themselves with focuses on their personal task at hand..kinda like a men’s room.

Joining is one thing, going is something else…another day spent fighting with the computer and I am just bored enough to get off my ass and walk about couple of miles. I have some Carl Hiaasen on the kindle.

raining kittens

2014-07-01 18.42.27There have been discussions going on inside my head about whether i should spend nearly all my money on a house..isn’t it nice to be able to buy something when i need it? why go back to BEING poor voluntarily? Usually its the spending of money that triggers the conversation – buying cat food and litter or filling a tank of gas, or paying a utility bill…things that used to cripple me financially.

Over the weekend I pickedup another kitten that had been squished by a car…after i had the MSPCA euthanized it, I took over the trapping of the rest of that family of cats. I did manage to catch mama and one more baby, then a tomcat. After dropping the Tom at the vet on Monday morning, I found a lovely hand delivered note from the new building owners, that they were refinancing the building and would be inspecting the apartments Tuesday. yeah….and me with 2 cages in the living room and a mud covered bathroom because i had stupidly switched from chicken feed  back to Tidy Cat. I launched into attack to make my aparment respectable again…all the while REMEMBERING WHY I NEED A HOUSE OF MY OWN AT ALL COSTS. I brought mama cat to the vet to join the Tom overnight, and dumped the kitten on another foster who already HAS the three kittens that were here 2 months ago, and later in the day I manage to trap the other two kittens who went to the same home. I stashed the cages in the garage, and the traps in the truck, scrubbed every floor and litter box, and washed every piece of exposed fabric….my trick to living with a few more cats than normal is to cover everything with sheets and wash them every week….but alas the sonofbitches still haven’t replaced MY LAUNDRYROOM with their own coin op yet!! So i had to truck everything to the laundromat where i immediately doused myself with concentrated bleach, ruining a perfectly wearable pair of Cankle pants, shirt and shoes.
2014-07-02 08.55.52
I set my photography equipment back up in place of the cages and you would never know there had been a methlab in the place the day before. They DO know I have cats…they think i have 9…which isn’t all that far from the truth, not really….but i certainly don’t want them knowing that i am still rescuing those that need rescuing. And as I expected most of the cats were hiding under the bed for entire 60 seconds that anyone was in the house.  The Property Manager did ask how my search was going and I related last week’s tale of the pocket listing that cramped my shopping…i need to keep up the appearance of someone who IS MOVING, eventually. I really can’t take the chance of getting evicted…even WITH money in the bank, I can’t sign a lease anywhere since it is my intention to BUY a damn house, not remain as anyone’s tenant.

I can’t keep pretending i don’t have my entire life squished into THREE GODDAMN ROOMS. I had to surrender my workspace in the basement which pushed a lot of storage into the living room..and the porch is still NOT REPAIRED well enough for the cats to have their own room. I already asked- the new owners didn’t give a shit, and I doubt i will get permission to do renovations of my own even if i am paying for them. So basically i need to get the fuck out of dodge. ANd no, there’s no movement on any front. Another small house came on the market in Portland over the weekend..but it’s smaller than my apartment which does me no damn good. What i am seeing is that no one wants a large fixer upper, in any market. and the investors buy up the small fixer uppers and make hideous changes to them and turn them into overpriced houses. It’s a feeding frenzy for those who have enouh money to pay cash, and then flip the house or in the case of this one…refinance it within the 1st month and put the money back to work. Sheesh…it must be good to be rich.

Going to battlestations pushed me way behind on working on the new website…the poor guy building it is tapping his foot waiting for me to contribute my part. Which is what i actually sat down here to do. I need to write content for all the pages, to go with the photos I shot. I still need to shoot video intructionals..but that’s fallen behind because i don’t really have a workbench anymore and until i move i am not likely to have one. fuckity fuck fuck fuck.

Of course the clean living didn’t last…I had two MORE KITTENS dropped on me last night by someone else who is still trying to trap a family of five 12 week olds. at that age you simply can’t socialize all 5 evenly, you have to break them up to have half a chance. If you can’t socialize them in a month, they will soon grow into large juveniles which people don’t think are that cute..and god help you trying to place an actual CAT…no one wants cats…they all want fucking kittens – and they want them friendly…they won’t take the time to socialize them themselves. lasy bastards. So there is a lot of forced cuddling that needs doing..i just can’t DO it while I type…trust me i’ve tried. Work Work Work, we’ve got to protect our phoney baloney jobs gentlemen.

twice nothing is

2014-06-28 09.55.46The red truck came back to me the other day, the folks who bought it changed their mind…after 12 months of waiting to buy the truck as an agricultural vehicle, they changed their mind AFTER i had filled out the back of the title.   This week I already had to spend another 2 hours at the Registry trying to get the NEW truck registered…the dealership had once again messed up the paperwork, and it was also now listed as a NEW registration…causing me to surrender my old plates…so now i don’t have the old plates to put back on the old truck which is sitting in the back of the yard…and i can’t sell it again until i get the replacement title from the Registry ($25) If the knew owners give me shit about having an unregistered vehicle I will just push it into the garage..lots of space in there now that i took everything of mine out.

2014-06-27 14.24.05I’m going through another spate of divesting. I don’t know why it helps…i guess it’s either this or angry cleaning. Took a truck load of crap up to the wildlife sanctuary… I just missed the wolves swimming in the river. I finally got the heavy dresser out of my bedroom and up to them. It was great to store cameras in but now it was empty..and it broke my rules..never own anything you can’t lift. The dresser and the divesting are a knee jerk reaction to taking a peek inside the little red house..the rooms were way bigger in my imagination..i had to calculate the square feet in my apartment to buy a new air conditioner..(yes the money is just FLYING through my fingers..but i couldn’t rationalize keeping the one the cat sanctuary gave me last year, when the woman who keeps the cat sanctuary clean Needs it herself. so i am donating it back) Turns out the house is really not all that much bigger than my apartment. and the bedrooms have those slanted walls i hate. My theory is that even if i DON’T get THAT house, the odds are good any house i will buy will be dinky as all hell, so downsizing even further isn’t a BAD thing overall. Especially since i have so much crap laying around now. I have been downsizing since my mother died..5 years ago – how come i still have SO MUCH CRAP???

2014-06-28 09.33.36 I kept shuffling this box of us navy corning dishes around from storage to storage..i like them least i did for my last house, but they proved enormous even to store in my present kitchen. They finally went on Craigslist when I realize i don’t want to drag them to another house. over the last 6 months, I bought a few loose pieces of a nice white Bavarian porcelain for whatever new house I move into. It is as light and strong as the corningware I eat off now but it’s a smidgen classier. Funny once the house sold, i didn’t have the urge to even LOOK at anything else to buy for the new house. Now if I have to buy something…like the A/C unit..or the camera, or the new hot plate…it is because i need to use it NOW. It breaks my heart to spend the money, no really it nags me at night…but i can keep thinking like a peasant – i still shop at thrift stores and family dollar but i can’t live like one. I am the one who buys lunch now, and makes the donation, i’m can’t justify being on the receiving end…at least not until I buy a house and then cinderella will transform again into a scullery maid.

2014-06-28 08.15.05-1 As for being depressed about possibly losing the house to a pocket listing..or even an overbid by someone who will knock it down to build something unsightly on the spot…I asked myself ‘what do rich folks do when they want something?’ and i called a lawyer. the fella I spoke to is another Masshole expat living up in Maine turns out he lived one town over from me here, and he’s one town over from the little red house. He didn’t seem to think there would be a mad rush of buyers for that spot near the train tracks and the waste treatment plant in a house wraped in asbestos..but then HE didn’t see the view. In fact when i went to see it, I didn’t see the view either…the damn shrubbery had grown up like topsy all over all the fences. But he said he’d look into it over the weekend and get back to me if he thought sending a letter to the powers that be would help. I don’t expect it will, but i would at least like them to admit they are processing the house for sale, that would be twice as much information as the nothing that i have now.

I know it all may be wasted effort, but that’s really all i can do on that front. So far this week I have worked on 4 different books for publication and processed only 3 orders. Throwing things against the wall is really my main activity.



Apparently the wrong person caught me on the wrong day and i decided to kick over the game board and go to my room.
Better now..i had a couple of people smack me upside the head and remind me i don’t care what other people think.
I forgot that for a moment.

more later

the take away

garden1 The irony is that it doesn’t matter if i buy a few extra used dvds or get a few more take out dinners than i really need to buy… even with the money i have in the bank, it is highly doubtful I will be able to buy a least one someplace i want to live. It hadn’t occured to me that the entire market is rigged against the average homebuyer in favor of the investor. I did spent a nice hour sitting in the garden of the house I went to see, the Maine broker and I were chatting away about my projects and what i am looking for in a house. And then some guy swaggered up the driveway to tell us there were already three overbids on a house that had been on the market 4 days. Apparently brokers who get bank owned houses sell them to their investor friends well before they list them on the Multiple Listing Service making them available to the average joe. I am quite disheartened now…i took one last trip to the little red house and stuck my nose in all the windows…it is a bit of a fixer upper now, and a little smaller than it is in my imagination…but if the bank ever hands it off to a broker, it will be a pretty sure thing that it will be sold before it ever gets listed for sale, to someone who may even tear it down and rebuild something ugly and modern on the spot. It is highly doubtful I can outbid an investor who just wants to flip the property and is perfectly happy tearing it down or stripping it out. I can’t spend all my money buying the house, if i have to keep some in reserve to make it basically livable. Like I said…even having the money that i do have will never be enough, it is a feeding frenzy out there with investors scooping up the affordable houses and turning them into unaffordable houses. Not only can i not get a mortgage on a more expensive house, I don’t want one. Right now I could only really buy a mobile home someplace…and the ceilings are never high to hang yourself from the rafters of those things.

This little chapter did tell me one thing…the brokers who told me to be patient are absolutely wrong. Being patient isn’t going to get me anywhere, and I am sick to my ass of living here. I really truly thought i would be able to buy a house when i put this one up for sale. If i had known I may not have sold. Truly I don’t want to die here, i don’t want to be here another day…but i don’t think I have much hope of finding someplace to live that can accomodate my business and my roommates – and if i don’t have those? why bother moving? Sure if it was just me and some personal belongings..i could probably be someone else’s tenant for the rest of my life. But where the fun is that? That’s no life for me… I want a garden, i want to grill a steak, i want to play my movies loud cause i’m going deaf, i don’t want to live in fear that any moment someone else will decided if i have to move. this is all bad, no matter which way i turn.

The only bright side i have is that i can afford Nate to build me more websites. After he finishes i have him tasked to work on and right now i am highly doubtful i will ever be able to move to Maine. I have the website formed inside my head, it is part of my overall plan for increased income, so that’s worth doing. It may take years to make back the cost of having the websites built but if I wasn’t putting my money there, i’d just be pissing it away on used dvds and chinese take away.

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