February 1st, 2007

Yo Maniacal Tang

Hitting the Concrete Redux

I know, I haven't been able to keep up the journal over these past couple of weeks. In the past, this was because I was depressed, overwhelmed, or busy.

This time it's because life has been, as the commercial goes, coming at me faster than a congressional investigation. First, we were looking for a new place, but I figured that the winter market would be so tight that we'd be finding a place in March. So of course we signed the papers for a new place last Saturday -- we're moving the 21st of February to a house in Alameda (with what we currently have in red):

  • 3 bedrooms
    (vs. 2, with a "bonus room" of limited utility. due to the sloping eaves on two sides of the room and the lack of a closet. )

  • 2 baths, one off a master bedroom
    (vs. 1)

  • A working fireplace
    (vs... well, no fireplace at all. Even the one available on the first floor is "decorative only".)

  • A two car garage with door opener -- side by side with two car driveway.
    (vs. the endless joy of street parking and all the randomness that implies. Being within a block or two of SIX churches means if you leave Sunday, you might as well stay out until mid-afternoon.)

  • 3 entrances
    (vs. One via a "common" area.)

  • Washer Dryer hookup
    (vs. A "free" washer drier in the basement. Sounds great, but considering that we're on the top floor and the first set of stairs to our front door and the ones to the basement are scary to negotiate with a basket in your arms, and we're sharing it with 6 other people, it made it more practical to take the clothes out to the car and to a laundrymat. At least it all gets done faster that way.)

  • Dishwasher
    (vs. my own two hands. Which I would probably continue doing, because I think dishwashers are obnoxious, poorly designed, and a waste of water and energy. There even a disposal there as well, which there isn't here..)

  • Redwood Deck
    (vs. Thin air. To be fair, we have a "common" area in the side yard, but we rarely if ever took advantage of it.)

  • Storage Shed
    (vs. the "option" to rent a storage room in the basement that might flood during heavy rains. Our second floor neighbors lost a lot of stuff that way.)

    (vs. four flights of steps. Alright, so there are two steps on the side entrance... I can live with that.)

  • Brick BBQ
    (Like there would be anything comparable here. But it's still hella cool!)
The Kicker? It's $200.00 less.

(pause as the first prospective new tenants walk through)

Yes, there showing the place before we move out. That strikes me as kinda weird, because I know that when we were looking at places it was always freaky to see someone else's stuff there. I know real estate agents will insist places "show better" that way, but that makes me think of those "serving suggestions" on the sides of frozen entrées -- artificial and not likely in your real life. Yes, they are entitled (under California Civil Code 1940-1954.1) to do so. They are NOT allowed to force me to stay away from my home (which it is until 2/28/07), which one of the landlords was trying to "encourage" us to do. I really hate it when people are passive aggressive with me -- I just want to look them and the eyes and call "bullshit!"

I can't wait until I do the security deposit thing by the book -- I expect that money back, with interest.


My next post will cover the Perforce train trip and why I'm currently on crutches. Yes, really.

EDITED TO ADD: Well, on a whim I took a look at Craig's List, and what do I see?

$1950 / 3br - Huge, very cool flat in a gorgeous historic home (alameda)

Reply to: hous-270854425@craigslist.org
Date: 2007-01-30, 12:54PM PST

This fabulous unit is for someone who wants a special, loft-like space to call home. Interested in having a large, open "great room" in a spacious, just under 2000 sq ft. flat? How about 3 bedrooms, and a bathroom containing an antique claw foot bathtub and a marble sink? This phat pad is perfect for a single person who wants a lot of space, or a couple who wants to have plenty of room to spread out. With a beautiful kitchen comprised of stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, in a gorgeous old estate home in Alameda just blocks away from the beach, and within walking distance of the local Park Street shopping and dining district, what else could you want?

This is a wonderful, unique space, in a beautiful old estate home in Alameda, and is available March 1st. Water, gas, and garbage/recycling are included, and there is easy off-street parking. As an added bonus, there is free onsite laundry, and a shared beautiful garden area for your enjoyment.

For more photos, please visit Pictures.

Get it while it lasts…

Please call Jennifer at 510.337.9678 or 415.609.1070.

This is a non-smoking property. Sorry, no Pets.

"Phat"?!  Well, at least their not advertising for a "childless couple" this time (oops, that was a bad idea, eh?) though I notice they still don't mention that extra 75.00 they charge for gas during the winter months (defined as Oct. through April). Also, again with the "off-street" parking? And "blocks from the beach" (technically correct -- it's 11 blocks from the beach. LONG blocks. And there's that pesky lagoon you have to navigate around)?

The final insult is that rent is what we're paying for our new location. You do the math.

Feh -- I need to go eat lunch. More later.
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Trip Tripping (or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Hate Black Ice)

Okay, so this was going to wait, but apparently the questions have begun to fly.

It's not that big a deal, really -- certainly nothing like my mishap last September when I took myself out. Hard.

This was equally stupid, but less damaging. After a wonderful weekend in Northstar, including my very first snowmobile driving experience (sweet!), we were leaving to head back to the bay area. There are these shuttles to bring you back to the main village from outlying housing. As I stepped off the shuttle, my foot buckled, which dropped me like a sack of flour.

Let me clarify here... the fall did zero damage. My ankle going "pop!" is why I fell.

Within minutes there were paramedics, and an ambulance that I practically had to get nasty about refusing (after the initial pain faded, I knew it wasn't broken, just really badly sprained). After signing an "Against Medical Advice" form and promising to have it looked at as soon as possible, I took the bus down with the rest of the crew, got a cab to an orgent care facility in Truckee, wherein it was discovered that I had...

...a really bad sprain. X-rays were taken, no break was there. The Dr. even spotted the old injury from the LAST time I was on crutches, about 23 years ago, in Ossinging NY -- I'm pretty certain that I've told that story here before. If not, I'll bore everyone with it again sometime soon.

So, I got crutches, a gel splint, and a scrip for Percoset that I still haven't gotten filled quite yet -- I still had some stashed from my LAST run in with the ground. Some pain killer abuser I turned out to be.

Once that initial fog of pain (in which I confused the hell out of a lot of people by laughing hysterically -- I mean, it was just so DUMB) had lifted, my first thought was "Aw SHIT -- we still have to pack to move!" Fortunately y'all are incredibly wonderful friends, because I've already had two people pretty much TELL me they were helping Roni out. I'm hoping that I'll be back in play in two weeks, which will let me do the last bits of heavy lifting and clean-up.

As it was poor Roni had to clean the house last night for the aforementioned viewing today at noon. Apparently telling someone you're proud of them makes them cry, which was not my intention, damn it all.

Anyway, more later. Yes, there's LOT'S more. A lot can happen in two weeks in almost anyone's life, much less the Chinese curse mine has been prone to since birth.