Monday, September 12, 2011

The Instrument

I received this very official notice in the mail. What does it mean?

State: CA
County of: I can’t read it, but must say Contra Costa

On May12, 2011 before me Lily Huynh, a Notary Public personally appeared D__L_____,(again, I can’t read the scrawl) who proved to me on the basis of satisfactory evidence to be the person(s) whose name (s) is/are subscribed to the within instrument and acknowledged to me that he/she/they executed the same in his/her/their authorized capacity (ies), and that by his/her/their signature (s) on the instrument the person (s), or the entity upon behalf of which the person (s) acted, executed the instrument.

I certify under PENALTY OF PERJURY under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing paragraph is true and correct.

WITNESS my hand and official seal.

Signature__________ (scrawled curly cue)
Name Lily Huynh

For weeks now, since I’ve moved in to the new house, I’ve been receiving many documents and proclamations. I am now approved for many offers of life insurance and accidental death insurance and unemployment insurance and bi monthly mortgage opportunities and now, I have an Execution of the Instrument that is true and correct.

Well, that is certainly very good to know. Cuz I was worried about the trueness of my instrument. I mean it sounds pretty good since it’s been moved, but I still have to get the piano turner in here sooner rather than later.

Thankfully, Lily has staked her hand on the correctness of the truth.

I am so relived.

Now I just need to figure out what the hell this really means.

Though maybe if I read it again, in tandem with the first page of the document and the important information on the envelope itself.
Why the hell is the important information on the outside of the envelope?

Wouldn’t you think that such vital ‘WARNINGS’ should be inside? They are, after all, confidential and certified along with the declaration that

‘the property in City of Richmond, Contra Costa County, State of California, described as Lot 15 and 16, Block 11, Map of Richmond Center, filed February 14 (how romantic!), 1911(how OLD!) Map Book 4, Contra County Records, is hereby grant (s) to Carol L. Jameson, a single woman.

I love all of this! The numbers of the Lot—15 & 16! The Block itself has its own number too—11—is this a lucky number? And the fact that it’s in the Map Book and filed on Valentine’s Day 90 years ago.

Well, how cool is this?

Now if I could only figure out what the Warning on the outside of the envelope means.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Cats Move


“He peed on my Senior picture?” Thea’s delighted giggle fills the still empty living room of The Mansion.
“You think it’s funny?” I ask.
“Yeah.....” She laughs again, this time shaking her head. “Don’t you?”
“No, I fail to see the Amusement Factor. I don’t want him peeing in my new house. Goddamn stupid cat!”
She grins, then shrugs.
“Of all the things he coulda chosen to pee on though, it does make you wonder....” I muse.
“Well, it’s like he’s letting me know that you’re not welcome. Interloper. Who are you to come here to his new home only 4 days after he’s moved in?"
“Yeah, it is a little weird,” she agrees, then shrugs again, “Well, at least he didn’t pee on me!”
Now I laugh, “Yeah, at least he didn’t do That!”


“Oh My God!” My soon to be ex-landlady exclaims, “She scratched you!”
I let loose the struggling tortoiseshell who bolts out of the yard and over the fence. “Damn,” I mutter to myself, feeling the blood on my cheek.
“Are you okay?” E is staring at my cheek, real concern all over her face.
“Yeah,” I mutter, eying the blood on the back of my hand. “It was entirely my fault. I shouldn’t have tried to pick her up just now. There was too much going on.” (I’d had my hands full of cleaning supplies for the cottage; E’s husband was watering next to us) “It’s just that I wanted to get her in the box so I could take her over to the new place, but guess I’ll have to wait.”
E stares at me for a moment, then nods, “Yes, I guess she didn’t want to leave yet.”


“I waited till after you’d had your coffee to tell you this,” Ian eyes me, tentative.
“What?” I demand, instantly stressed out.
“Well...” He takes a deep breath before continuing, “I didn’t want to tell you this but.....”
“Tell me what for Chrissakes?!”
“You know that box you had to the side of your desk....”
“Yeah,” I nod. “I was saving it for you thinking you might want it back.”
Ian shakes his head, “Not anymore.”
“Why not?”
“Pablo peed on it and.....”
“Shit!” I exclaim, immediately beyond pissed off. Pun intended. “I can’t believe it. That goddamn cat! I hate that cat! I’m gonna take him to the pound. I can’t have him peeing all over my new place!”
Ian shakes his head, eying me sympathetically, “I know. It’s bad. But he’s an Old Man. He doesn’t have much longer and.....”
”I don’t care!” I cry, stomping into the kitchen to retrieve the pee clean-up substances. “Where was it? Can you show me?”
And he does. And I spray it with anti pee pheromones that don’t work for shit.

Goddamn Cat.

What the hell am I gonna do? Here I’ve spent all this time and money getting into this new place only to have the stupid cat start peeing all over it.

I am so sick of it. But yet, I know that Ian’s right. Pablo is an Old Man, and yeah, probably doesn’t have that much time left. Though I recall mentioning to Thea how I couldn’t believe Pablo has survived all these years and her answer was “Of course. He’s such a Bad Cat. He’ll probably live forever.”

And to be honest, isn’t that what I really want? For him to live forever? Of course he won’t. But when he does go, I know I’ll be devastated. Don’t ask me why.

He is the bane of my existence.

But I guess we all need some cross to bear, right? I just wish mine didn’t involve so much goddamn cat pee.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Scratch & Dent Decision

“Do you have any cats?”
Fred, our Scratch and Dent Clerk Extraordinaire, gives us a little grin. “Yes, I do.”
This delights me, of course. I’ve been dreading my trip to the Sears Outlet Scratch and Dent for weeks. My Agent Extraordinaire,Daphne, was supposed to escort me, but a Kid Situation arose, so she had to cancel.


Fortunately, Dashingly Handsome Boyfriend could come with me instead.

Daphne voiced much disappointment (“I love that place! I really wish I could come! Lemme know how it goes). But I couldn’t wait till later. It was getting down to the wire; the moving date was looming and I needed, at the very least, a fridge. Though being a homeowner and all (and the hook ups were there), I’ve decided to get a washer and dryer too.

Which is luxury beyond all luxuries. To have my own washer and dryer! Wow! No more trips to the Laundromat. No more sharing with Anal Landlords. No more Laundry Schedule Worry.

This mustsa been how the subject of cats had even come up with Fred. We were looking at dryers. Rows and rows and rows of them. All of them were white and square. Well, yeah, duh. But when you behold rows and rows of white square appliances, well, I was suitably awestruck and overwhelmed.

Thanks goodness for Fred!

And he has a cat. Who of course loved to snuggle in the just dried clothes.

“What’s your cat's name?” I ask.
Fred continues his little grin, “Felix.”
“Oh, cute!” I exclaim. “Is he a black and white kitty?”
”’s like that famous cat....” Fred struggles for the description? Or the English? Which is very good, but again, he’s Latino. Which Famous Gatto could Felix be like?

DHBF immediately starts listing Famous Cats. None of whom I’ve heard of.
Fred keeps shaking his head, “No...not that”
“What’s he look like?” I interrupt.
“He is striped and ....”
“Like Morris?” I offer. “Is he an orange tabby?”
Fred looks at me; then away. Orange Tabby does not register.
DHBF tries again, “Is he like Garfield?”
Fred lights up. “YES! That’s the Cat. He is like Garfield. He is like a dog though more than a cat.”

I nod. Having a dog-like cat in Pablo myself, I offer some dog-like characteristics. “Does he come when you whistle?”
“Yes yes. He comes. And when I say come here to the window.....” Fred stands to one side and pretends like there’s a window next to the row of dryers, “....he goes there. And when I say ‘Stay’, he stay.”
“Wow,” I marvel. No way would Pablo do such involved tricks. “How’d you get him to do all that?”
“I train him!” Fred announces proudly as he marches us over to the cash register to ring up my hundreds of dollars of appliances. “From when he was a baby kitten. I hold him. I train him.”
“That’s so cool,” I nod, nervous now as we approach the register.

What the hell have I done? Talking about Felix has been cute, but has it distracted me from my purpose here? Have I forgotten anything?

But no, Fred picks up all the necessary cords and hoods and other essential attachments that I trust are correct before heading up to the register where I apply for my Sears Credit Card to get 5% off.

“Do you want to sign up for the Kmart Rewards? It comes with your Sears Card,” Fred asks as he rings in the monumental amounts.
“No, I don’t shop,” I announce.
Fred stops for a moment and stares at me.
“She means it. She doesn’t shop. Really,” DHBF chuckles, backing me up.
Fred smiles his salesman smile, “Okay. You want the 5-year warranty? It’s only $150 a year and....”
“I don’t want it,” I interrupt, trying to stop him before he gets started.

I’ve always thought these warranties they sell when you buy something are a rip-off. And also a strange sort of undermining of their own merchandise. It’s like they’re saying, hey, we’re selling you something today that’s brand new (with the exception of a few scratches and dents that Fred marked on the little picture), and it does come with the 1 year warranty from Sears, but it’s gonna break so you better buy this other warranty on top of it.

It’s like they don’t believe in their own products. Or they're just scamming consumers; praying on their fears. And making a LOT of money!

Hell, I used a washer that was 40 years old at my place on 63rd street for 16 years; and granted, everytime I ran it, it sounded like it was gonna take off, but it limped along the entire time I lived there.

Now I’m buying brand new appliances and they need another warranty on top of the one that already comes with it?

“It might be a good idea,” DHBF interjects.

I turn and glare at him. What the hell? I don’t want it and I don’t need him undermining my decision here. Of course, I’m sure this isn’t his intention. He’s just weighing both sides as is his want, but it feels like he’s contradicting me in front of the salesman and while I like Fred cuz of Felix, I know that he’s sensing a Couple Power Struggle and is gonna go in for the kill.

“It costs $149 to have a repairman come in and even look at it,” Fred asserts.
“That’s right,” DHBF nods, “you have to hire a special guy to....”
“I DO NOT WANT IT!” I try not to shout, but it’s hard. What part of “No,” aren’t they getting?

Is it cuz I’m a woman and don’t know about repairs and machines and therefore better buy this extra warranty? Or is it cuz they really think it’s a good idea or deal?
Am I being a stupid Blond to not buy it?

Fred backs off. He wants me to email him the 10 rating so he gets his bonus points.

And later, out in the parking lot, DHBF agrees with me when I say I think these warranties are Bullshit.
“Yeah, I think you're right,” he nods as he opens the car door for me.
“Then why did you contradict me when we were in the store? I felt like you were undermining my decision.”
”I wasn’t undermining you,” he answers. “I was just trying to help.”
And I know this is true. And I also know that I’ll probably get in trouble for writing this, but....

Sometimes I don’t want help. Sometimes I just want to make the decision and right or wrong, it’s mine.

I just hope I don’t regret this one.

I’ll let you know in a year when the warranty runs out.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Painters X Three

“Hi!” I call out to the spry little man at the front door. “Come on in.” I hold the screen door of the Mansion open for Stanley Kim. He nods slightly at me before stepping into the front room and surveying the scene.

I follow him around from room to room. He mumbles some painter talk at me that I don’t understand, so I can’t write it down. But it’s evident.

He is NOT pleased.

He shakes his head. Strokes his chin. Clucks his tongue.

“I do it for $2700,” he announces.

What the hell?

My shock musta registered loud and clear. Why was my Mansion so much more expensive than CC’s house? She'd referred him to me since she liked his work and he only charged her $1200 for her little house. Granted the Mansion, unlike CC's abode, hadn’t been painted in awhile and as I was to learn later, needed much prep and prime but at this moment....???

I’m in shock.

“Uh....” I shake my head. “That’s a lot more than I was thinking.....” I manage.
He nods, “It take many coat. It is big color.”
“But I just want it all white.”
He nods. “I give you deal. $2500.”

Shit. There goes my trip to Italy.
Is this really how much it costs to paint a house? Maybe so. Like I said, I have no idea. It’s just that when I was expecting $1200 and it’s now down to $2500, well.....needless to say, I’m a bit confused.

What to do?

I certainly can’t afford that, I think to myself as Stanley fills out a form with his ‘quote’ on it. Shoves it over at me to sign.

I watch him walk back down the steps and climb into his maroon truck.

What to do now?

The only thing that I can—go for a swim.


“Blah blah blah blah cinco cinco cinco nuevo ....”
The next painter’s phone message is all in Spanish. I don’t know Spanish though do decipher the number 5 a few times in what must be another phone number to contact him. Do I leave my name and number and request for his availability in English even though his message is in Spanish?

Will he understand?

I do. Cuz what other choice do I have? I don’t speak Spanish, regrets galore about this, but I don’t, and so English will have to do and hope that he understands and calls me back.

“Hi. My name is Carol and I got your name from Nina and she recommended you as a great painter and I’m wondering if you can come take a look at my place and give me an estimate about how much it’ll cost and my number is....” here I pause, thinking I could maybe possibly leave my number in Spanish. I think I do remember how to count to 10 in Spanish...let’s see it’d be, cinco uno damn, how do you say zero? Damn! We never learned that.

I go ahead and leave my number in English and hope for the best.


“Hi, Carol, this is John David returning your call.”
“Oh, great, hi! Thanks for calling me back,” I try to gather my painter questions for this third possibility.
“I can try to help you over the phone if that works for you?”
“That’d be wonderful,” I exclaim, relieved that I won’t have to try to set up another appointment around my work schedule.
“So, if you can, just walk me through the place. How many rooms?”
“It’s two bedrooms, a bathroom, a living room, kitchen and little breakfast nook area.”
“Great. Okay, and if you don’t mind, can you recall the status of the windows?”
I pause. The status of the windows? What the hell was he talking about? The windows are there and they open and close and.... “I’m not sure I know what you mean,” I answer.
“How many are there per room and what kinda shape are they in.” John is patient in that Woo Woo way that only a reco from JFKrazy can be.
“Okay, well, I think there’s two windows in each bedroom that seem pretty new and solid and then there’s a big window in the front room that looks like it’s from a 60’s track home.”
He chuckles. “Yeah, I know what you mean, you’re doing great. Any French doors or...”
“Yes, there’s French Doors when you walk in at the end of the living room and then another half a French door offa the laundry room....”
I continue to ‘talk’ him thru the house this way, answer that the place looks like it hasn’t been painted in a long time though I don’t know how long since it was vacant when I bought it, and that there are numerous spots where the paint has been scraped off and......
“Have you gotten any other quotes?” he asks. “I mean I wonder if you’d be willing to share those with me? I’m not usually the cheapest guy, and I’m not usually the most expensive but if you don’t mind sharing with me.”
I pause. What’s the protocol around this? It seems like a reasonable request, but then if he decides that he can’t match the quotes without even looking at the place?

Well, maybe that will be a sign, I think, trying to get into the woo woo spirit of this particular painter. I tell him the other two bids. I can feel him shaking his head over the phone
“Those sound pretty low to me. But listen, tell you what I’m gonna do. I’ll go and crunch some numbers and get back to you okay?”
“Sure, thanks.”
“No problem. You’re a part of the JFKrzy family and as such I wanna take good care of you, but I’m just not sure I can match that.”


“Beautiful tree....Avocado tree,” Fernando nods as we stand together in the living room. I’ve just hired him to paint the Mansion and feel both excited and nervous.
“I am from El Salvador,” he continues. “And we have lots and lots of avocado trees. But the avocados. The fruit. It is different than here. The .....”
He loses the English and cups his hand to show the base of the fruit and then makes a long sweeping up gesture to show how the neck of he fruit is much longer in El Salvador than here.
I laugh.



I think I’ve found my painter. Whew.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

A Homeowner's First Day

“I can’t believe it!” Daphne exclaims, running down the steps of the front porch. “They took the lockbox!”

Parked in front of The Mansion I turn off the Geo. After all the rigmarole of the last week with the waiting for the KEYS, now what? I sigh to myself. Today was supposed to be THE DAY, finally!

And now it seems the Keys weren’t here?


And the plumber was due imminently. What the hell was I gonna do if I couldn’t get into the house.

Shit again. Pun intended.

I climb out of the car and follow Daphne round to the back of the house where she’s frantically running around peering at the ground (looking for stray keys?) with her cell phone glued to her ear.

“Does this mean we can’t get in?” I ask, defeated.
“Oh, no!” she cries, shaking her head. “We’ll get in. Don’t worry. I’m calling them right now. They said to wait till 5 and it’s 5:15 and so’ll get ‘em.”
“Is it the REOgirls again?” I try to joke but it’s not funny. These goddamn REOgirls know how to make a new homeowner’s blood boil.

“Yup, but wait a minute.... Yes, hello? This is Daphne Stevens-Traverson..... Yes, and we’re at 6969 33rdst Street and the lockbox is gone. You told me I could give her the keys today at 5 and she’s here and.....okay...yes....okay.....”
Daphne strides quickly to the front of the house, and bends down to pick up a brick under the big cactus trees, “Okay, yup, they’re here. Thanks!”

Grabbing the keys from under the brick, she dangles them in front of me, grinning triumphantly as she hangs up the phone. Marching up the front steps she places the key in the lock and turns it and....

It works!

Giggling, she hands them to me, “I wanted to try it first since I had to rework all the locks yesterday but seems like no problem today. Here you try it. It’s a little tricky. It actually turns the opposite way that you’d think....”

She demonstrates for me with the deadbolt and then I give it a try. It is a little tricky, but I’ve got it. We wander into the living room and gaze in wonder at the shadows playing on the pale green walls. I give her a big hug. Damn. It feels good to finally turn the key in the lock and have the place be mine?

Can it be?

But it does feel surreal. I never thought I’d own a home and now I do and now what?

A large amiable Latino clomps up the front steps and pushes at the screen door, “HELLLO?” he calls again.

Daphne and I turn around to behold, Pepe. He grins over at us, “You order plumber?”
“Yes, oh thanks for coming,” I walk over to shake hands with him. “I need the bathroom fixed and....”

I start to explain all the bathroom issues, the main one being a leaking toilet and then a very slow drain from in the tub. Pepe nods. He knows what he’s about. “Sure, no problem. But you want replace the toilet really?” He shakes his head, examining the culprit. “I fix it for you right now if you no want to replace it.” He eyes me seriously. Daphne backs away, “It’s your call,” she smiles.

And it is. “You can fix it right now?” I ask to confirm.
“Yes. It is no problem.”

Beaming, I nod. How fantastic. It’ll be one less workman to deal with in the next 3 weeks if he can fix it now. “That would be so great if you can fix it now," I exclaim. "And snake the tub too?”
Pepe nods, heading back out to his truck to gather his tools.

Daphne and I head into the kitchen where she narrates to me her Lock Story. It’s a tedious saga, but again, I’m just so thankful she’s around. Evidently when the Reogirls sent their lock guy to change all the locks, he fucked them all up and they didn’t work. Daphne, my Security Angel, spent her Sunday at Home Depot buying new locks and a Strike board, whatever the hell that is, and.....

“HEY LADIES!!!!” Pepe hollers from the bathroom, “You want to see what I find?”
“Sure!” Daphne sprints to the bathroom.

I’m a little more reticent. I honesty don’t want to see what he’s found. Especially, if he’s talking about the tub and what he’s snaked out. It can only be something truly disgusting; my inherent squeamishness won’t take such a finding well.

Nevertheless, it’s my house now, so guess I better see what I bought.

As I peer around Daphne, we behold Pepe squatting in the tub holding a huge wet black mass of .......

It looks like several dead tarantulas strung together into a mass of disgusting.....

“It is the hairs!” Pepe grins. “Lot and lot of Hairs!”

He holds the disgusting Black Gunk Ball aloft for us to examine.
“Wow!” Daphne exclaims, suitably impressed. “No wonder the drain was slow.”
I nod, trying to quell my nausea. I can’t take my eyes off the dangling Black Mass no matter how much I’d like to.

Oh the joys of being a homeowner, I think, shuddering. “Uh....yeah....that would explain it,” I agree with Daphne.

Shrugging, Pepe jams the snake back into the drain, “Let see what else I find. This one it is The Hairs and Q-tips and .....”
“That’s great,” I nod, backing away.

I honestly don’t need an inventory of the make-up of the Black Gunk Ball. That’s why I hired Pepe to do the dirty work, as it were.

And it is Dirty Work. Something that I’m happy not to do or witness. Yet, now that I’m a Homeowner, there will, no doubt, be plenty of ‘Dirty Work’ to be done.

I don’t relish it. This is the part of the Process that I’m dreading. All of the work that needs to be done before I move in.

So, Pepe saves me today. And it feels good to have The Hairs out of my tub and into the garbage.


The painter.

Why oh why didn’t I buy a place that was ‘move in ready’?

Like that little condo in the Marina Bay that I looked at a year ago. With the pure white walls that might have needed one quick coat of paint. A kitchen complete with appliances and garbage disposal. (I still remember gleefully clapping my hands over this mechanism and Daphne’s perplexed look---she’s excited about a garbage disposal? Okay, I’ll make a note of that)

The little balcony had a view of the green belt and pond and fountain. A sleek black cat stalked unsuccessfully a Canada goose.

It had been quite idyllic, but had been the very first place I had looked at. The asking price had been $109,000 which I knew was a good price for the Bay Area, but the place lacked what?

Its own four walls?
A Black Gunk Ball?

This is what led me to where I am today. But so much has transpired in the last year.

I wonder if I could list all of the places I’ve looked at?

That’s another blog for sure.

For today, it’s Hallelujah for the Keys and Praise the Lord for Pepe the Plumber!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Knob and Tube--Huh?

Hi Carol,
I went over the report this morning. It appears from the photo's that your attic is not insulated, the reason I'm bringing this up is because should you choose to insulate in the future you will first need to remove any knob and tube wiring. Knob and tube wire is only rated for 30 degrees Celsius (about 86 degrees Fahrenheit) wire rated for such low temperatures is can barely handle attic heat and when you insulate over it, knob and tube is not longer able to dissipate heat.

Glen (The Electrician)

Oh no! Knob and Tube is not longer able to dissipate heat! (I will only comment briefly on the use of the possessive instead of the plural; comma splice; typo; lack of caps—I still have my grammar standards, even in email)

What the hell am I going to do? What the hell is Knob and Tube wiring anyway? It sounds so poetic in a homeowner hell sort of way. Like if you turn the knob then the tube will be there to capture the electricity and then voila, you will have light.

Or not.

Sounds like I’ll have a goddamn fire in the attic if I don’t do something about the knob and tubes.

And so, The Electrician speaks and I’m completely confused. I don’t remember the Inspector saying anything about the Knobs and Tubes. So, I call my trusty agent, Daphne, who is as confused as I am.

“The reason you’re confused, Carol, is because Sam (the inspector) never said anything about the knob and tube....”
“What is the knob and tube anyway?” I interrupt. I just can’t stand it anymore. It sounds like I’m going to open a door and find a vial for collecting blood. I don’t tell Daphne this though, but instead joke about how it sounds so ‘Poetic.”
She laughs, or as far as I can tell she’s laughing over the in and out bad cell phone connection. “Yes, you’re right!” she exclaims, “It is poetic. But actually what it is an old fashioned kind of electrical wiring that in fact is quite adequate but isn’t as up to the state of the art as the....”

I lose what she’s saying cuz of the bad cell connection. Once again, Communication Devices fail me.

But I can’t have the Knobs and Tubes failing me! I need the attic insulated, I think. But maybe not? Maybe it’ll be OK and the Mansion won’t be too cold and the Knobs and Tubes can hang out in the attic without any interruption to their perfectly adequate routine?

“I would ask Sam (The Inspector) if I were you,” Daphne continues. “I’d be curious as to what he’d say about this issue.”

Okay, then, I of course, being the ever-curious new homeowner that I am, email the Inspector and this is the response I get back from him about the Knobs and Tubes:

Hi Carol,
I think this is sort of an issue. Not a bad idea but not an enormous issue. It's easy to do many safety upgrades and I try to parse this as best as I can. This means not recommending everything under the sun.
If you can afford to upgrade the wiring in the attic, it's a good thing but I wouldn't consider this a first priority.

So, what does this mean? Not an‘enormous issue’? That I don’t need to disrupt the Knob and Tubes? Even though they don’t like above 30 degrees Celsius? That it’s a ‘safety upgrade’ and as such is not a first priority?

If a safety upgrade isn’t a first priority, then what is? I am so confused. I suppose what I’m learning is that every ‘expert’ has his opinion

And why is it always men? Would a Woman Expert give me a different opinion? What’s gender got to do with it anyway, Carol? The Knobs and Tubes are certainly neutral aren’t they? Though come to think of it they do sound decidedly masculine. All that opening of doors –so manly; all that filling of vials, so sciencey—again, manly. (Yes, I know there are women scientists in the 21st century but I still would guess that a majority of scientists are still male.)

Damn. I got off the track.

But Knobs and Tubes can do that to a girl.

I guess I’ll just concentrate on getting a new toilet before I worry about upgrading the attic wiring. This after all, is without question, an Enormous Issue and the First Priority.

Why, my friend CC even told me how there are ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ toilets.

Did you know?

See what I’m learning as a new homeowner?

Gender does matter.

Especially if it’s a First Priority.

But I’m sure the Knobs and Tubes would tell me that. As long as I keep them under 30 degrees Celsius, that is.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Closing?

Today is The Day! The Day I sign the ‘docs’ for the ‘closing’....
Of course, I thought this 5 days ago, too.

Everyone had assured me that the ‘docs’ were ready to sign. Or ready to go. Or on their way.

Hell no. The ‘docs’ never made an appearance. They were waylaid somewhere enroute.

Who knows where.

My Mortgage Guy didn’t know: “I sent them all the information they need. They should have it. But sometimes these things are out of our control. I do my part. You do your part. They do....”
“They don’t do their part?” I interrupt, joking but not. Who the hell is ‘they’ anyway? What the hell are the ‘docs’?

Was it all confusing and vague enough?

No, not yet.

I call Daphne. She’s in Tahoe at a family reunion watching babies while the men folk are out golfing. “The docs should be there. We’ll just have to wait and see. But in the meantime, I’ll keep you posted. You should be able to sign today. I told Armani to call you. Did he get a hold of you?”
“Uh, no, but I haven’t checked my email,” I shout into the cell phone.
“Okay, well, he should be calling you. Meanwhile, wish me luck with all these babies.”
I don’t want to ask how many. Or why she got stuck with them. She’s a saint. I already know that cuz of the rails among other things.
“I tell you, I don’t know how I ever did it,” she jokes.
I laugh, “Yeah, I don’t either. Never did it myself and never will.”
She giggles. “Yeah, I don’t miss it. So....”
I hear a squealing baby in the background. “Whoopsy! Okay, gotta go, but I’ll keep you posted, Carol. Don’t worry.”

Worry? Me? Never.

I call Armani.

“Hello, Carol?” he answers on the first ring.
“Yes, Carol?”
“Yes,” I pause, hating the cell phone. I can’t hear a damn thing. So many communication devices, so little communication.
“I tried to call you on your other numbers, but I’m glad you called.”
“Am I going to be able to sign the papers to close today?”
“Well, I’m not sure. It’s hard to tell right now. The docs should be at Escrow, but they’re not there yet so I’ll keep you posted. Sometimes with these underwriters they have to dot every i and cross every t.”
I nod into the phone. Goddamn Underwriters. Perfectionism is to blame for the delay now?

They didn’t seem to demand perfection with the rails, thank god.

“I guess I’ll just wait to hear from you?” I ask instead of voicing my Underwriter Distaste Syndrome.
“Yes, I will keep in contact. I will send you a text message now with my cell so you can call me at that number too.”
“Okay, thanks.”

I hang up the phone. I wait for the text.

It never arrives.

I sigh.

It is all so stupid.

Where are the goddamn ‘docs’?

They never showed up on this day.

But today?

They are there. Where? At Daphne’s.
They are Traveling Docs and the Mobile Notary will be there.

It’s all set. Even if the Mobile Notary does sound like she’s driving a Blood Bank.

Well, I do feel like I’m giving blood.
A lot of it.

Just hope I don’t faint like I did last time I gave blood.

That would be a bad thing, don’t you think?

I will eat lots of preventative fainting foodstuffs in preparation for the Event of the Signing of the Docs, for Today is the Day. It’s gotta be, right?