Last couple of days I reached out to the booksellers on the Bibliophile Mailing List and asked for advice on a couple of fronts…we all know the whole asking for advice thing? A. people who ask for it never take it, and B. you never get the advice you WANT to get, and C. you just end up doing what you were going to do anyway, why did you bother asking in the first place? As emails went back and forth, some booksellers who actually care about the decisions I have to make had some good advice, some I which hadn’t even occured to me…advertising..i hadn’t thought of advertising money.
In the middle of my self justification performance art piece, one of my friends – just straight up asked me “what do you WANT from this transaction.” Unlike myself, I didn’t parse that sentence down to its bare atoms as i would normally do, “was she being funny? was she being serious?, annoyed? what transaction? the puchase of the house? the solicitation of advice?” -see that rabbit hole gets deep fast once you start digging…. Basically I just took it as read...what are you looking for?
Like everyone…i want to be happy…but unlike anyone…i have to live with me…and the furry circus..but mostly with me.. and i am not asking anyone else to live with me, trust me, i wouldn’t do it if i didn’t have to. So, I have had a long time to dwell on what it would take to MAKE me happy. After all if we don’t know what makes us happy – how can we expect anyone else to know?
Obviously i NEVER want to move again…for all my fantasy about traveling, I am the living ‘anthropomorphic personification’ (thanks Terry Pratchett) of George Carlin’s skit about a place for my stuff. I need a place for my stuff, granted, i am not as attached to my stuff as i once was, and some of my stuff are just throw pillows with heartbeats, but i like having a nest, my bolt hole – perhaps as a result of the insecurity of having a terrible parent, and losing the house I had with my exhusband, but I want a home of my own, where I can stay in until I am in my dotage.
I can’t not buy INTO the barbie dreamhouse, it is in the DNA of practically every Baby Boomer, we were sold a bill of goods, you can have your house, and your Reverewear whistling tea kettle. The more money you have dictates how elaborate your Barbie house is. I envy the younger generations, (christ did i just say that!?!) the thirty somethings and the twenty somethings, who can live out of a backpack and move into a micro house when they get back from hiking the Himalayas – but i’m a fifty something, with a lot of mental baggage and i need someplace to park it.
A lot of the advice I was getting from my friends, was intensely practical, “get an inspection, what about the appliances, and the roof, and the floors, check the flood insurance rates, yatta yatta yatta”…all the stuff i planned on doing anyway. Gee, it’s not like i haven’t thought this through for the last eight months. But all of the thinking about what’s wrong with it, is just short term thinking. EVERY house in my price range has all those things wrong with it, that’s just part of the process. There’s a level of broken I can live with, it exists on a sliding scale with the amount of money I can spend. The less broke, the higher the cost. I can’t afford perfect, I wouldn’t know what to do with it if i had it. Basically ...did i use basically more than once in those post? i’m trying not to…essentially…how’s that word? I am looking for a something I can fiddle with, something that is FAR from perfect but completely within my skillset. I am looking for ME…in house form, a work in progress.