Thursday, July 21, 2011

Faster than a speeding miniskirt, more powerful than a great pair of heels

So, my closing was supposed to happen yesterday, but it didn't. I found out last Wednesday that the underwriters needed some extra paperwork from my HOA, which would take the HOA about a week to get together and cost $500. My realtor valiantly fought to get the seller, CitiMortgage, to cover the costs, but they refused. I'm not actually all that bent out of shape about the money; in the grand scheme of things it's not that much (I just spent $900 on a fridge I chose solely based on the fact that the condiment shelves on the door are removable and dishwasher-safe). But in principal, I got screwed. This paperwork the underwriters needed was part of the vast sea of bullshit you have to swim through now to get a mortgage thanks to the housing market crash. And the housing market crash was due in large part to foreclosures, which were caused by people defaulting on their mortgages, and I can honestly say I have never once in my life given anyone a sub-prime mortgage, HOW ABOUT YOU, CITIMORTGAGE?

I'm just saying, you guys. I'M JUST SAYING.

I'm a huge stickler for fairness, especially when I'm the one who's not being treated fairly. Now, obviously, I know that the universe is vast and random, and it would be unreasonable to expect that everything should work out exactly the way I feel it should. I don't even really believe in karma or any other sort of cosmic justice system. I think more than anything it's the sense of powerlessness, knowing that you know how things should be but aren't able to change them or convince other people to change them for you.

Case in point: I was a pretty good kid in grade school, but the one thing I would constantly lose my shit over was when the teacher punished the whole class for something only a few kids were doing. I would sit and argue with my teachers about being punished (and in retrospect, my goodness, what was wrong with these adults that they would engage in heated arguments with an 8-year-old?), about how it wasn't fair that I had to write sentences or stay inside from recess just because other people were talking. But it never worked. So I would sit and endure my punishment and stew. I tried every form of subversive protest I could think of - writing smart-alecky parenthetical asides in my sentences, really, really enjoying my recess time spent at my desk, even loudly commenting on how sad it was that the teacher wasn't playing close enough attention to her class to figure out who the real troublemakers were. But nothing ever worked. Finally, one day, I think in Seventh grade, I was arguing with my teacher over some stupid punishment and getting nowhere when inspiration struck. I turned to my teacher and said, "You know who else had to suffer for other people's wrongdoings? Jesus. So every time you punish me for something I didn't do, I become more Christ-like. Thank you."

I didn't get out of the punishment, but at least my teacher was too dumbfounded to get me into any real trouble. And I learned that day that the combination of scriptural knowledge and complete disregard for the consequences of speaking my mind was a dangerous weapon, one whose power would only be rivaled by my discovery a few years later that guys didn't care how small your boobs were as long as you had nice legs. Yes, I had learned what countless numbers of politicians, theologians, and opinionated people had learned before me: You can use the Bible to prove yourself right. And suddenly, I had a super power. The power to end any conversation in my favor by name-checking the Almighty. A way to be an asshole, but in a way that made you not sound like an asshole, but somehow that made it even more of an asshole-ish thing to do.

So, no, I'm not all that upset about losing $500 dollars and a week of home-ownership. Actually,  I'm feeling a sense of peace about the whole ordeal. As I sit here in my non-air conditioned bedroom I'm reminded of a young man who lived 2000 years ago who was stuck somewhere he knew he didn't belong, his stepdad's carpentry shop. A young man who, years later, would also suffer at the hands of a corrupt institution being propped up by the government. We're not so different, he and I.

Thank you, CitiMortgage. I feel closer to heaven already.

Friday, July 8, 2011

HOLD ON, YOU GUYS

I just took a look at the ol' Blogger dashboard and realized I have like five or six half-finished posts from the last couple of months. We can blame that on the fact that I'm a perfectionist and I don't have the attention span to do anything from start to finish, or we can list off a couple of quick excuses that make it seem like I've been really busy lately. One of those options involves lots of links, and the other involves lots of crying. Let's do this shit.


I started hula hooping. Then I started making hoops. Making hula hoops, as it turns out, is easier than actually hula hooping. I can't do tricks, but I can waist-hoop for 30 or 40 minutes a day on my lunch break. And, more importantly, I can allow my coworkers to believe that the 23 pounds I've lost since March were due to said daily hooping regimen rather than my other daily regimen, stress and amphetamines (seriously, Adderall killed my appetite. It's totally gone. You know what else is gone? My ass. And I miss it so, so much). So I've been making exercise hoops for my coworkers. I'm a hoop mogul now. A robber hooper baron. J. Pierpont Hoopsalot Morgan (Arcane references to Gilded Age industrialists are not, to my knowledge, a known side effect of Adderall).

It was my friend Laura who initially got me into hooping. Laura is also the reason that...


I'm stage managing a Fringe Festival show. It's Laura's show, and she needed a stage manager. I don't know what that is, but I do know how to Google, and I also know who Scooter from the Muppet Show is, so I should be okay. And the more I read, the more it seems like stage managing has basically the same skill set as directing a handbell choir. Actors are easier to deal with than church ladies, right? I can do this, right? "Stage managing" is an actual verb, right??

On the upside, the show will take up the time that I would have spent thinking...

Holy fucking shit, I bought this!
Pictured: How the hell did this even happen?!
 Because even though it's all but official at this point, every time I think about it, I experience this strange mix of incredulity and swear words. I'm buying a goddamn house. In 12 days it will be mine. Well, mine and Wells Fargo's. 20% mine, at least. And let me tell you something about accomplishing a major milestone such as this: you think, oh, look at me, being a grown up, but the farther into the process you go, the more you realize you have no fucking clue. I had to start carrying more auto insurance (more than the state minimum, for once) because people can sue you if you cause an accident and you don't have enough insurance to pay for it? What? Even though it looks like a townhouse, it's really a condo? How is that possible? I have dozens of pages of homeowner's association documents, and none of them say how long you can keep your Christmas decorations up, even though that's the only thing I thought associations controlled? And for some reason, there are like 12,000 fucking washers and dryers on the market, and at least as many refrigerators, and you can reach a point where all the paint chips start to look the same, and you can't decide, because all you really wanted was a grey bedroom and WHY IS THAT SO HARD??

Okay, maybe this option had some crying too.

But, I have scene changes to highlight and hoops to tape. And lots and lots of boxes to pack. So this is the end, just a few minutes after I started writing (Thanks, Adderall, although focus won't make up for the missing butt).

Alright then. Back to work.