Thursday, June 02, 2005

Silly as Geography

PS, I'm Rich!!!!!!!

Drinks on the house and HUZZAH.

I am of an age where real estate is kind of a hot topic (like the clothes store! Quick sidetrack: I am so sad I was never goth in high school, like truly, COMMITTED, cape-sportin’-goth. I would have been great at it. I’m really not joking, I was (am)a nutty-as-hell Cure fan, and I look good in black, but I would have dug theatre so much, and dragon teeshirts.)

Anyways. I sure do admire people my age with energy and focus. Narrow, narrow focus. These people can talk only about very particular, very specific subjects. In DC my 1st favorite question is "What do you do?" (My usual answer is that I’m in moonshine distribution); but besides career paths, my next 2 favorite topics seem to be money and/or real estate. And interest fees. And taxes. And books on real estate. And investments. And O.A.R. And the hosuing market some more.

I’m glad you have hobbies, but you're barely-if-yet 30, so cram it. Yes, you- I don’t care that you’re buying and flipping properties with great abandon and renting your first NoVA purchase to your fraternity bros while you deal with another condo payment and you are so smart and wise and Mr. TRUMP! and I have granite countertop envy and SNNNNNnnn..nnnnnnn.... oooooo.. .. zzzzz...zz..z....z... ... .. .

See my face? Sleepy. EVERYONE KNOWS you are a consultant and make some decent bank, and that you really love to haggle on your signing bonuses and milk your piggy boss for all he’s worth on your annual salary increases, big guy, and yes, someone at the keg already told me you are going to Telluride for a ski retreat with your client’s team and we rolled our eyes and made jack-off gestures and SHUT UP SHUT UP SHUT UP.

(I'm not questioning your work ethic. I'm questioning why I came to this party in the first place. If you have so much goddamn money from all your suburban home-buying ventures, why I am not having man-servants siphon a mixture of Cristal and crushed diamonds straight down my gullet? WHY, I ask you.)

So, I pay my bills, and then I bitch about how no one I like can find affordable housing; and yet the people I don’t like keep making money and buying the houses I want my adorable, charming, perfect friends to live in and raise babies and golden retrievers in, and that’s about it. I’m really good at bitching.

Despite previous whining and piling hatey piles of hate all over the place about people obsessed with real estate: every time I leave the DC area, I am such a sadomasochist, I pick up the local houses-for-sale guide. Tuesday, I spent most of the day curled up in the backseat of my rental Gallant, driving through cotton fields, wanting to throw myself onto the road every time I flipped the page. For example:

If we were to sell our tiny, TINY, narrow, 60-year-old yardless townhouse and move back to my dad’s hometown (a town in the south, and not, like, uh, Atlanta), the Nabob and I could buy this:

as God as my witness, I will never go pool-less again

And make a handsome profit. That’s right. Profit.

Oh yes, hello 2.5 acres.

Pool? Don’t mind if I do. A pool means a pool boy, maybe named Scooter, and we all know what a huge flirt I am.

Again, an example only. I'm way more likely to go buy some 200-year-old Victorian with no heating and delusions of bed-and-breakfast ownership (or a mobile home and then leave all my trillions of dollars of wealthery to my cats or something) than I am likely to buy new construction, despite it's state-of-the-art security system and gated entry and CRUNK DANCE HALL and shit. All this just shows of how insanely deluded the East and West coasts are- especially in DC, money is absolutely meaningless. It’s like everyone's playing one giant game of Monopoly. (Please note, I’d like my piece to be the fire-breathing Godzilla. Or, a Barbie head. Or the top hat, I guess. I’m not picky. There's a Barbie head in Monopoly, right? I mean, there always was in my family.)

Or, instead of the house I’ve dubbed "The Great White PopeHope", we could move to somewhere else in said town and buy a slightly smaller place and pay cash. I, myself, would get no greater joy than paying for a home in small bills, stacked in my grandmother’s Samsonite from the '50s. Because I’m eccentric! And, apparently, wealthy! I did not know this! Thank you for letting me know, Real Estate Guide from This Particular Town! If I moved to you, I would wear white 3-piece suits with string ties, and talk about my plantation. Oh, and the pool boy. Scooter.

So, let us brainstorm, kittens. What to do with our imaginary handsome profit on the imaginary sale of our DC-area home, and consequent imaginary move to the Southlands? Right now, I'm pretty sure zoning would allow me to add an imaginary go-go establishment on to the back end of the property. Discuss.


Ethan Wiggum said...

As an original denizen of a town that is also for sure not, uh, Atlanta, I can tell you that I engage in the same game with the real estate guide every time I go home.

I then slap my friends (the ones who still live back there) upside the head with the pages and tell them that, for my rent in DC, they could be making a mortgage payment on a 2,500 sq. ft house.

i hate them.

But, as to your question, G, one word: Waterpark.

The Governess said...

two words: Roller. Rink.

Elvis said...

Governess, I thought being the Governess meant you were already "titled." But, I guess that was mere form. Yah, real estate is one of those loopy things. Thing is, people with real estate usually don't talk about it. Other thing is, it's all relative. An average $650K house in Fairfax gets you nothing in Manhattan. Or Brooklyn. Or Miami. Maybe a garage in Leguna Beach. But if you move to, say, Jackson MS, $650K buys you a 5800 sq foot monstrosity with Versailles style reflecting pool lined with Gov Barbour statues. The troubling thing are the stats -- in San Diego, last year, 2/3 of all home loans were interest only loans (essentially renting from the Bank). In the District last year, over 1/2 of all new home loans were interest only types (or some form of ARM). All this creative structuring has concerned more than a few real estate atty's. Anyway, if I did move to that Southland town, buy the Spruce Goose, I'd put in a Ferris Wheel. Ride it every night and watch the sunset (kidding).

Underused said...

Excellent post. I tell people I am an out of work rodeo clown.

I dream of selling my 500 sq ft condo and buying several acres outside of Dothan, Alabama. Instead of a house, I would definitely opt for a mobile home and an 8 car detached garage. In 7 of the 8 garage stalls I would meticulously recreate civil war battles using tens of thousands of gummi bears. Of course, there would also be a stable where I kept my pet zebra, Spot.

The Governess said...

I briefly lived in Idaho. I didn't even TOUCH on the fact that I could quit my job and buy an honest-to-god RANCH there. Not in Sun Valley or anything, but still.

Michelle said...

I do the same thing when I go to visit my mother in a town that is definitely not, um, Lancaster PA (where I am not from -- I grew up here).

I'm thinking big Victorian farm. With hookers. Amish hookers. People are into that Amish Disneyland shit.