The Joys of Home Ownership

Home ownership, the American dream.  It's what we want to do when we are younger, it's a measure of success, of living that American dream.  Eat steak, perhaps get yourself some Cinimax for those lonely nights, a little radio in the garage.  It's the dream, it's what we strive for.  It takes hard work, and a bit of self reliance.  But that dream doesn't maintain itself.  Nope, that is something that is in the fine print, underneath the big letters congratulating you on your 30 year commitment to people that you've never met and that certainly wouldn't come over on a weekend to fix a busted pipe.  Pretty soon into the dream you find yourself elbow deep in an electrical socket thinking "I can PROBABLY cut this wire and PROBABLY nothing will happen and PROBABLY I won't die some horrible death like I'm on the Running Man."  That's the dream boys, right there, wondering if you've turned off the electricity before you cut a wire or running down to the basement to turn the water off before "record cold" freezes the torrent of water in your garage and makes it a mini short track speed skating venue. 

I have become a bit jittery in my years as a home owner.  Something always breaks, something always needs fixing.  It gets to the point, while living the dream, that every sound is a massive catastrophe that requires my samurai like home diagnostic skill.  I'm not sure what Samurai Home Diagnostic skill is, but I"m sure I have it. 

I heard a bump on the roof, coming from the front of my daughters room.  After the busted pipe, broken microwave, ice maker crapping out, garage door busting, a/c leaking freon etc, etc etc, I could only naturally assume the worst.  Because when you own a home nothing is just a creek or a moan.  It's never something settling, that's a story we tell children so they can sleep at night.  Adults know that the bogey man is real and his sole purpose in life is to jack up your house and put raccoons in your attic. 

I could only assume, naturally, that that bump that I heard must have been a meteor striking my roof.  And of course since it's a meteor, it must be hot from it's fall from the sky.  Therefore, my attic is now engulfed in flames and little red lava aliens, that hitched a ride on that meteor, are now knee deep in my wiring and are jacking it up.  Any home owner can tell you that this is not a wild assumption to make, just a careful assessment given the needs of home ownership.  I'm sure it's happened to someone before but the government is just keeping it quiet so that our meteor/lava men insurance business doesn't go under because of to many claims. 

Of course I investigate taking my trusty screw diver with me.  I don't know why I had it with me but I seem to just have them around the house for the many times I randomly need one.  Turns out it wasn't lava men or an object from space but just an icicle finally falling off my roof line on to the lower roof below.  Now I'm worried about something called "ice dams"  Own a home and you'll learn what that term means.  While I'm now sad I don't have lava men to melt the rest of my icicles, I hear a very loud thud on my bedroom door. 

As a homeowner I of course know what this is.  It is probably pterodactyl that somehow got into my house.  It probably  used the back door because we all know those creatures don't use the front door like considerate guests.  No, they use the back door like some busy body neighbor that likes to come in while you are on the crapper and take pictures of your underwear before you even know they are there while they secretly cataloging the number of strips you have your boxer shorts.  And as this neighborly pterodactyl takes pictures of my underwear he will obviously see his reflection in the mirror that hangs in front of my dresser.  Now most of us homeowners have had a bird get into the house on occasion and we all know what happens.  They see their reflections and go apeshit.  I once had a cardinal brain himself on my front door window because he could see his reflection on the mirror in the hallway.  He hit that window everyday for like a week and one day he hit it just a bit to hard.  Somewhere, I could hear my cat laughing.  Now imagine a prehistoric bird like creature doing the very same thing in the closed space of my bedroom.  If I'm extremely lucky he's corked himself out on the wall before ripping my bed apart with his claws and leaving massive trails of dinosaur dookie all over my floor. 

I go into my bedroom and nope, it's just my cat doing the thing he does best, randomly running into things at break neck speed.  I have no idea why he does this or why he loves to run smack dab into objects that he has no chance of overcoming.  He was hit by a car once, knocked out his tooth.  Perhaps there was a bit more damage there than the vet led me to believe.  However, being the cautious home owner that I am, I check under the bed for that pterodactyl.  Those bastards got a weird voyeur streak in them too. 

This is when I heard the soft moan of the house, a little bit more downstairs than upstairs I would think.  Of course I know what this is.  I've owned a home for 15 years and I know exactly what this is. 

It would appear that my house was built atop some sort of burial ground.  Whether it was Native American or a squatters prison burial ground, I'm not sure yet.   If I was a betting man, I would say both.  I would expect my TVs to turn on any minute now and play nothing but static while a little blond girl stares at it with her hand out right before a midget lady shows up and tells me not to walk into the light.  I would tell her that I am a home owner and we all know not to walk into the light, Christ we are not amateurs here midget lady.  It is also uncertain if this burial ground is evil in nature, maybe just kinda evil, or perhaps a tad bit evil with a dose of weirdo.  I haven't seen anything flying around the house, books moving about by themselves or my card catalog I keep in the living room spitting out all of it's index cards but I'm sure it's coming.  Truly it's just a matter of time.  That time would be when it's most inconvenient for me because this is how things are done when you own a home. 

Let's say that you have a baby, a young one.  And it's cold as dirt outside, like it's cold enough to burst a pipe.  And when that pipe bursts you have to shut your water off.  Now, you need to make formula for the baby but you have no water and the plumber can't come out for a day or twelve.  Yourself, you might be able to not shower for that time period but your hard working wife must go to work.  She is not allowed to wallow in her own stink like your worthless self.  This is also about the time that your oldest daughter gets a case of the trots and a flushing toilet is a lot more important now than it was yesterday.  And it also turns out that a washing machine requires water and that you should really do more laundry before that pipe bursts.  That's how you find yourself at the store at midnight on a Tuesday with two carts full of water by the gallon wondering if they can give you 10 bucks in quarters for the all night laundry mat. The night clerk, who has running water because they rent, makes a joke of some kind but you don't really notice because you are 1) wondering if you can make some sort of manual jungle shower from duct tape and your shower curtain, it could work if you poked holes in it, you just know it.  And 2) if you could fashion such an ingenious device could you convince your wife to use it while role playing Me Tarzan, You Jane which she will not find funny or sexy and instead ditch you for the nearest hotel. 

See, that's what I mean by inconvenient. 

I am pondering my ghost problem when Bacon Hoss wakes up from his afternoon nap.  He is screaming, screaming loudly.  I sigh and grab my fire extinguisher, my large dino net and my crucifix and holy water.  I'm pretty sure that the lava men are trying to ride the pterodactyl (who wouldn't!) while the prison ghosts are tossing diapers all over the room and tearing apart the pillows.  As you can imagine, this would cause a lot of noise confined to the baby's room and of course it has woken him up.  Seriously, sometimes it just never ends.  

No comments:

Post a Comment