Archive for November, 2010

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Motivation to Move…

November 22, 2010

It has come to the attention of your humblest of scribes that a particular house may be available for purchase. Said house would be, if my family were to have one, as close to being called our ancestral home as any. It not the oldest home to have passed through our hands, but it is the one that holds the most memories, and it has the most to offer.  1,613 sq. ft ranch with 2 beds and 2 baths on top of a full basement with a walk-out garage, a seperate 3-car detached garage, all on 3 acres of land in the city, butting up to the Metro Park.  The front yard alone is larger than my whole lot now.

This was the house of my great-grandfather (GGF, for now), whom I had the rare fortune of being part of my life until barely a decade ago. He passed away at age 97 in 1998. In what should have been his golden years, a certain unscrupulous bastard took advantage of my GGF, to the tune of a new Buick, $90,000 in signature bonds and the house.   The bastard either forged the signatures or coerced my great-grandfather to sign the papers placing the house for sale, then he short sold it to move it quick, and pocketed the proceeds. My father had power of attorney, and my GGF was in the process of being declared non compos mentis (when 90 years old you reach, think and remember as well, you will not, eh?)  But because he undersold the house so quickly, he got away with it before the rest of the family was in a place to do anything about it.   GGF had to spend the last years of his life in one of the most revolting care facilities I’ve ever seen because of the bastard.

The bastard is now dead, and I swear, if I ever find where he’s buried, I will drop trou and take a huge, steaming diarrhetic shit on his grave.  This is one of very few things that I and my father agree wholly upon.

So, some fourteen years later, after at least two different owners, a good deal of renovation and subsequent disrepair, the house is back on the market.  For about half of what it should appraise for.  Needless to say…

I WANT THIS HOUSE.

Now, SWMBO and I bought our house in 2006.  Very late in 2006.  We just had our 4-year anniversary of buying the house, actually.  Right after that, some asshat bankers decided that they would screw us all and drop my property value, to the point where I’m upside down on my current mortgage.  I’m not behind any payments, but owing more on a house than it’s worth is quite disheartening.  It also puts me in a difficult position to buy my GGF’s house.

So last night, I started looking at numbers.  What I would need to make owning the house a reality.  I’m behind on my student loans, but I’m catching up there.  I can’t really do anything until I am caught up, though.  I need to be able to put a real down payment on the house, and I need to do some repairs to our current house to do anything real with it.  Bare minimum, I need about $30,000 to make this work.  If I save everyhting coming in that isn’t allocated (paying bills or buying groceries, basically) I can scrape up about $5,000 by April.  I have maybe $1000 in a 401k that I could pull, but past that, I’m tapped.  If anyone needs their computer fixed for cheap, let me know, ok?

Suffice it to say, I have gone into full on penny pinch mode.  Every dollar that goes out hurts.  SWMBO and I are basically a single income househod, at least until her book gets published.  Consequently, it feels like a lot of dollars are going out.

Another thing I’m looking at doing is selling off some assets.  I have a nice entertainment surround sound system that is collecting dust.  I have disk jockey rig that’s doing the same.  I have a box of computer parts that has probably $500 in marketable RAM just sitting on my bench.  And I also have a few guns that I’m looking to sell.

My last recourse of action is to ask my parents for either a loan or outright gift of some of the money to buy the house.  I hate the prospect of doing that, but I think that they would like to see that house back in our family as much as I would.  Add to that the fact the my father’s income is going to roughly double in January, I might actually get something if I asked…

So look forward to more updates here.  I’m trying to get better about posting more (I have a post rattling around in my head as to why) and this will serve as a nice archive of what I’ve done to buy this house.

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TS… Aaaagent Man, TS… Aaaagent Man!

November 19, 2010

So, when I started this, I never promised to be all regular and stuff.  You want regular, go buy some Metamucil. SWMBO (She Who Must Be Obeyed) is the better of this pair at the bloggity-bloggity thing, even going so far as to try to get published.  My attempts here are for more…  personal reasons and/or moral support.

Still, I admit.  Been a while.  I do need to get better than this.

So what should I rant about today?  I know.  I’ll jump on the bandwagon of the last few weeks.  Ye Olde TSA.  I have a unique perspective on this, both as a person of not inconsiderable size and as a recent business traveler.  I have to admit that in my most recent foray into Mordor (Chicago) that I only saw one person get pornogra-fied, and no one seemed to be getting, ahem, extra-friendly.  In perspective, I watched probably 200 or so people go through that security line.  Mathematically, that means there’s one half of one percent chance that I could have been subject to the ‘enhanced security procedures.’

Now, allow me to fantasize.

Had I been selected, what would I have liked to do?

I’d have asked for both procedures.

You may have remembered, I mentioned that I carry a little extra baggage when I fly.  Or walk.  Or sit.

Big Butt

To the point where I’m relatively certain that those TSA guys really don’t want to look at nudie pictures of my corpulence.  Hell, even I don’t want to look at myself when I get out of the shower.  The whole idea is to make this venture even less appealing for the TSA people than it is for I, their intended passenger victim.  This goes doubly so for the guy that’s gotta put his hand in the perilous danger of personal injury from the pat down.  (Note to self, on my next flight, I need to route by the nearest Chipotle for my pre-flight burrito with extra beans and peppers.)  The agents themselves are already starting to dislike these new procedures, I think a little more motivaiton is all that’s needed to add a little more pressure form the inside and start an all-out coup or revolt.  How revolting!

(See what I did there?)

As a side note, I should mention that under normal circumstances, I’m fine with the prospect of someone jingling my bells, but I usually prefer them to be cuter, and wearing a lot less.  And there’s usually beer involved.  And maybe a cover charge or some tips or something.

And ya know what would make this even better?  I want John Pistole himself to do the screening.

Butt Head
(credit image:  DayLife/Associated Press)

I figure that if the special sauce is good enough for his rank and file TSA grunts, it’s good enough for the head as well.  Head honcho, I mean.

I think he needs to hold his hand a little flatter, though. Gotta make sure both the boys get equal attention. A little cupping might be nice, too. Just sayin’.

And eventually, we can even have this:

Butt Head
They’re even already in the blue uniforms!  Won’t that be so much fun!

Or we could, ya know, employ security techniques that actually work.

But where’s the fun in that?