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April 30, 2003

house news

so, here's the update.

the current owners of our house-to-be have apparently set up the inspection on their new house for late this week, which means we can set up ours for early next week.

the mortgage guy now has our house information.

the current homeowners have also asked if we might want to move up our closing date to be able to move on the long memorial day weekend.

so, i'm calling tomorrow to set up the inspection. what fun. i also got 2 faxed letters today regarding my paid accounts (that i spoke of earlier). hopefully I'll get more soon!


Well, I've completed a hearty attempt at cleaning up my credit report, and I should be receiving letters within the next couple days which will remove a great many debts from my credit report.

The listings were as follows:
Chase $2064 Paid 3/14/2000, Req'd Letter 4/30/2003
Arrow Financial/Bank One $559 Rec'd PIF Ltr 4/30/03
Arrow Financial/Bank One $399 Cancelled out
Simm Associates/Bank One $325 Cancelled out
GECS/Bank One $294 Cancelled out
Anderson Financial/Verizon/GTE $391 Paid 12/14/01, Won't write letter
Anderson Financial/Verizon/GTE $391 Same as above
RMA/AEP $291 Paid and Req'd Ltr 4/28/03
Martel/AEP $291 Cancelled out
Alltel/360 Communications $277
Alliance One/Columbia Gas $195 Rec'd PIF Letter 4/30/03
Marlin IT/Pizza Hut $74

I was a very very poor student at one point, who got stuck paying rent on a 2br by himself. And lost a job or two. Yeah. I made choices which weren't in line with thinking ahead to bad "what if" scenarios.

The Pizza Hut bounced check credit thing messes me up. I gotta figure that one out. The other is from a cell phone bill, now owned by Sprint.

Cranky Decorators

I've been thinking a great deal about our new place, on the nights when I can't seem to fall back asleep, and the how to decorate and where to put everything and all that crap. I think I've got the "where to put everything" part all done. But, decorating is another thing altogether.

Thankfully, our soon-to-be home is livable quite as it is. Sure, there's work that could be done to make it more "ours", but it's definitely not in the near future.

That makes me very happy, especially when I read about Cranky and her new place. All the comments make me glad I'm not picking colors for anything yet.

Last night, we went over to the Popkorn house and talked to Pam about her recent redecorations and renovations, and let her know the good news about us. Well, after several years, she had actually gotten around to patching the hardwood floor and painting the walls in her living room. It looked to be a very pale green, and for green, it was very very muted and friendly. Usually, the greens I've seen are very bright or very dark, or a combination of the two. Her next room to paint was their parlor/dining room, for which she was considering a dark steely grey or a medium-to-dark purplish blue. So many choices.

If it were me, I couldn't do it.


Ok, so last night was full of dreams. I actually woke up at 1:40 thinking it was 5am, and then couldn't get back to sleep for a LONG time. But when I did, man, was my sleep chock full of dreams.

The one I remember was perhaps the strangest and most disturbing... Preston, Danny, and I were living in a one-room house, somewhere overseas, with grass and trees, and people who didn't speak English. They looked Mediterranean or Middle-Eastern. Anyway, we were living there, and apparently had only been there a short while. We hadn't learned the language completely, but were fairly good at communicating. Thankfully, a couple younger guys (teenagers, really) spoke English. Come to think of it, I don't remember seeing any women in this dream. Anyway, there was a tension between us and our neighbors, since we were foreigners.

Then I found out why. Air raid sirens went off, and we all started scrambling. This apparently was the first strike since we lived there, since we really didn't know what to do. Danny went out the front door, Preston and I out the back, and the neighbors with their big, old, rusty pickup were hauling all of us to the bomb shelter. Guess who was bombing them? You guessed it. Americans.

We were riding across the "town" if you could call it that, to the bomb shelter, across yards, over small hills, anywhere to get us there the fastest. Bumpy ride. As we watched the skies turn black with smoke from all the bombs dropping around us, everyone in the truck was silent. One of the English speakers said "Don't worry, this happens all the time."

To see someone be so relaxed about it was quite a shock. We watched the planes continue to drop bombs all around us in the surrounding area. And then out of nowhere, just as we were getting to the shelter, it all went black. Lots of screaming, and I felt myself falling, almost as if slow-motion. A LOT like when I had vertigo.

My mind scrambled to wake me up from it, and I could feel my own heart racing as I tried to get out of that dream. I did, eventually, but it was the pull of that last scene that seemed far too real.

Perhaps no more war documentaries and Rotolo's pizza before bedtime.

April 29, 2003

Look, Skank

No pink for you!! ;)

I'm kidding of course.



Stupid friggin seminar. Not targeted to the audience AT ALL. Remind me to send WebTrends a letter about how to research your audience BEFORE you start talking about how to use a product nobody owns.

I left an hour and a half early. Screw that. Everyone else stayed for the free food. I have more important things to do.

Day 3... still waiting

So, Nala and I did a little pre-house window shopping. You know, "could we put this there", "do you like this?", and "how about this in the bathroom?"

It was all silly, really. We have no immediate need for anything aside from those big plastic storage bins and maybe some cedar sachets to put in them with our clothes.

No news from the girls who currently own "our house". We're waiting to hear that they've had theirs inspected and are moving forward, before we get our inspection.

Skank asked last night if her room can be pink. I say, sorry Skank, you'll be living with off-white walls and scary old furniture till we can settle in and paint, etc. There are no pink rooms in this house, unlike the one on Como.

Have I even talked about our new cat? I can't remember. Chester is the newest resident of our house. He's a svelt, 5-year old Snow Spotted Bengal, and is FINALLY getting used to us, and the various noises in the house. He used to hide under the bed when he heard someone coming up the stairs, but now he lays contentedly in the middle of the bed. I can't wait to hear him and Zig tumbling down the new hardwood stairs. Oh, the insanity.

Have I told you how excited I am to be able to plan new furniture and not worry about "oh, I might move soon, I don't want to get anything nice" and "why spend money to decorate if I'm just going to move soon."

However, I was thinking, seriously, about the two lamp projects I have already, and the old clocks, and the console radio we have. I have an old, heavy duty twin bunk loft we made for my dorm room at OU which I do not want to carry to our new place. If I can borrow my dad's saw, I can cut it down and make a workbench for my new basement, on which to finish these projects. A space! A space! Hoorah!

Ohkay... enough of the forethought. I have to get downtown for my seminar.

April 28, 2003

exciting times

I left the house this morning thinking "what a great day!"

We'll see how that holds up. I need to call my doctor, and get a refill on the guaifenex. I need to pick that up with a refill on my zithromax.

I need to talk to my trainer and tell him to postpone my last 2 sessions till after the move.

I need to talk to our realtor and find out how to arrange an inspection, and then call the inspectors. We have 14 days to get an inspection, and our realtor said since we agreed to give the girls 14 days, we should wait at least a few days, to let them schedule theirs, so we'll know for sure that they're moving.

I need to talk to our mortgage guy about my credit clean-up. Talked to Andy and to the creditors, and within 48 hours, my credit should be much better. I'm leaving now to go pay these 3 and fax requests for confirmation letters on the other two. According to him, I have plenty of time, since the suitable housing clause was in the contract. Which means, I'm going back to work and not going to worry any more today, and leisurely fax my requests.

I need to read 3 chapters for tomorrow's class, and take some photos at Pete's.

Is there anything I'm forgetting? I don't think so.

April 26, 2003

Giga House

Oh what an incredibly odd day.

We went to see House #1 today, but they weren't willing to budge on the price, so we ruled that one out. Then we saw a place on a street called Tibet, which was very very very very extremely cute, and we walked away from it thinking it was possibly the right thing.

Big backyard, driveway, and 3 bedrooms full of charm and character, and just the thing we've been looking for. We just sort of said "ok", and left it, just like we had all the others over the past weeks. It was something we would have to think about.

And then, our realtor said "Oh, I have one more to show you."

One more...

And, it was the one. The one we'd been looking for all along. I wish I could show you how gorgeous it is, or how plain on the outside. Or, describe to you the feeling when we saw it.

But, suffice it to say, it happenned like Vijay and Jen said... "when you find it you will know."

And, we looked it over. We poked and prodded. We critiqued. We sat outside. We went back inside and looked it over again. And poked and prodded more. And critiqued. And talked outside. And looked it over one more time. We spent nearly 2 hours there.

And then we knew.

So, as of right now, they have accepted our offer. We have 14 days to get and accept inspection, and financing... financing for which we already have been approved.

Oh, but soon, if all goes well, we will be living in style.

April 25, 2003

A "Most Recent" Friday Five

It's another Friday... let's see how it goes...

1. What was the last TV show you watched?

Hm. Watched Donnie Darko last night, but that's a movie. I watched X-Men Evolution before that (thanks, tivo).

2. What was the last thing you complained about and what was the problem?

Customers who clearly DON'T READ DIRECTIONS.

3. Who was the last person you complimented and what did you say?

Probably my coworker who was wearing a new suit. I told her she looked nice. That was a week ago, at least.

4. What was the last thing you threw away?

A piece of cigarette pack foil which somehow made its way into my office.

5. What was the last website (besides this one) that you visited?

realtor.com, lowes.com, google.com and naladahc.com

Chester the Molester Invades

Tonight's the night which begins our week-long trial of Chester the Molester, our friend's snow-spotted Bengal cat. She is giving him up due to her boyfriend's allergies, and we're first on the list of potential homes.

We aren't really worried about how he'll be with Hensley, since Hens has a pretty good record with cats, and Chester has a good record with dogs. What has us concerned is that Siegfred, aka Ziggy, my cat, might not get along with him. Or might get in a pissing match over territory.

That, we don't need.

So, when we get back from taking Hensley to the vet, it's time to clean the house and attempt to kitty-proof it. No breakables on shelves where he could climb (he's a jumper), etc etc.

Ok, back to work... happy Friday.

April 24, 2003

Donnie Darko

Donnie Darko is a very very strange but very very interesting film.

Aside from the fact I cried at the end. Both times I watched it. Something about the moment everything changes, and the waking of the entire cast, some as if they knew something was drastically wrong.

Old home week... or something

First, my friend Shannon from OU. Then, my online friend Jay, who I hadn't heard from in ages. My friend Chad of Boston, formerly Ohio, emailed me earlier... Then, my friend Nik from OSU.

Holy cow. And, I heard from my friends Anthony and Link who I hadn't heard a peep from in weeks.

Who next?

Oh, you're asking why I'm up so late? Pseudoephedrine and caffeine from the iced tea I drank at dinner. What the hell. I'm an idiot.

I have to be up at 5am. AAAAAArgh. And, tomorrow I must also photograph Pete's coffee shop and print those photos and my paper, and prepare a short oral presentation by 5pm. Or... I could just print the paper and display the photos on my laptop in looping slideshow form... Hmm.

Hmm. It's bedtime although my brain is still wide awake.

April 23, 2003


One thing I cannot stand is corporate literature with misspellings, grammar mistakes, and use of homophones. I'd be classified as homophonophobic, I guess, but I really can't stand when someone uses the wrong one.

For instance, I see this ALL the time, working with the print industry.

Business Stationary: letterhead, envelopes, and business cards.

"What is wrong?", you might ask. Well, the business isn't moving.

StationAry is when something is stAying in one place. StationEry is something you can write on with a pEn.

And if you're a printer, or anyone who deals with printed materials, you ought to know this and use it.

Every blessed email I get from one of our vendors has it misspelled. One more reason not to do business with them in my opinion.

Yet another pet peeve.


Ok, I'll admit it, I'm not very conservative when it comes to my beliefs, politically or otherwise. In fact, you might say I don't really fit with any one group which could be labelled.

Through my nearly 30 years, I've befriended quite a few people of various backgrounds and beliefs, usually because of some common thread in our lives, and most of us have still remained friendly, if not in touch, over the years, despite changes in beliefs.

My point is, people change. Some of my current circle of friends are Christian, some are Buddhist, and most are not really anything. All have an education. But, sadly, this "war" has split us... not because of the war itself, but the differing 'big picture' views.

I don't speak to those people anymore. I can't. I won't put myself through the anger and stress of justifying my own beliefs, and the facts which they ignore despite being smacked in the face with them daily.

Americans have become complacent. They believe what their government tells them. They find ways to believe the hype, because it's delivered by a government who claims to have a higher power on their side.

Wait... isn't that also... nevermind.

On the 'home' front

Ok, so, in anticipation of buying a home sometime in the foreseeable future, I have taken the time to find the names of two residential real estate lawyers (a friend and a relative of coworkers of a lawyer friend) and talked to an inspector, who, in fact was the most cordial and unoffensive man on the phone.

Now, all we need is to (someday) find a home he and I can agree on.

My parents leave the first week in May to find a house near Daytona Beach, FL. Theoretically, I may need to fly down and give my approval. Ugh. And, I'll need to make a gentleman's agreement with my dad about the payments, since being partial owner on the mortgage may jeopardize my ability to get a mortgage here.

See, isn't that fun?

Springtime in Ohio

It was 32 Fahrenheit when I got in my car this morning. A thin layer of frost coated the windshield. Welcome to springtime in Ohio. This is to be expected. Later today, 60 and sunny.

My headache is gone, thankfully, and my appetite is back full-strength. I'm on my sinus meds, and I don't take the antibiotic till dinnertime.


Oh, and our mailserver is down for a hardware upgrade this morning. More ram and a second nic.

Got a comment on here from my entry about my friend Shawn's funeral last year. It was unexpected to say the least, being so long after the fact, but also because I hadn't heard from Shannon (the commenter) in years. I always hear about him through mutual friends. Shannon is a spectacular guitarist who used to front a band in Athens, Ohio, Set On Edge. A discography is here. If you happen to click to their site, make sure to check out the photos... time travel, for sure.

Shannon probably remembers the night when Jen and I got engaged. I know Shawn did. He was sitting behind us... and when Jen said yes, Shawn, in his usual Eeyore fashion, threw up his arms and said "Oh, Joy."

Those were different times, thank goodness. And, although Shawn is gone, Jen has drifted into obscurity, and Shannon now lives a world away, it's fun to remember some of those times. Shawn, I've said before, was one of the most fun (and funniest) people I've known, and when I look back, I smile.

April 22, 2003

Pain and Fever

Ok, so I woke up last night with a fever of 101.7. When I got up at 8, my temp was 98.6. At 3pm I was back down to 97.1, which is pretty normal for me.

So, the doctors say the sinus meds I've been on probably both allowed and later masked a secondary sinus infection which, when I stopped taking the meds, became painfully evident on top of normal seasonal sinus problems.

What does that mean for me, exactly? Pain in my head which feels as if you put it in a vice. Nausea caused by drainage. General sloshy-headedness. What did they give me? An antibiotic which has the side effect of causing abdominal pain. So now, my stomach feels like it's trying to digest rocks.

So now, I hurt in both my head and stomach. By morning, both should be gone, and I should be back to feeling "normal".

I'm starving. I want to eat, but we dont really have much in the house good for eatin when your stomach doesn't feel so good. And, I'm not sure I want to go anywhere either.

Nala's busy updating a site, and I'm sitting in the dark, silent bedroom typing away. I would've been in class tonight but with all this pain, I probably wouldn't have made it through the presentation.

Oh, a big plate of mashed potatoes sounds so good right now. Boring, bland and yummy.

April 21, 2003


I don't know why I like it.
I kept repeating that over and over.
I couldn't sleep.

Sure, I liked the livability of the most expensive places we looked at. But, I was somehow drawn to the 1920s bankruptcy house.

The space? Could that be it?
It certainly wasnt the decor. Or the "curb appeal".
The potential was there.

It comes down to I'm scared. Sort of the same way I got scared while looking at cars. I don't want to be left behind renting for the rest of my life.

I want a house with the potential to be my home. The size to be comfortable. The potential for a profit on resale.

Maybe I need that second look to convince myself it's a bad idea. That usually seems to work.

But what if it doesn't this time?

Maybe Nala needs to play my part in this one. Be the discourager. Who am I kidding. That would imply he gives a damn about this house, which he doesn't, so I should just drop it anyway. The point is moot.

The point is moot.

I keep telling myself that, but I have this still, soft whispering in my head repeating "what if".

Househunting is Done for a While

As Tweek so succinctly put it, "Too... much... pressure!"

In this case, not so much pressure, but disappointment. Things we looked at should've either been cheaper or were just out of the acceptable range.

Let me list them and their faults.

House #1: Bankruptcy house. Ugly exterior. Basement which smelled of cat pee. Possibly saggy roof. Garage door problems. Screen porch which needed removed. Glass patio door which needed replaced. Landscaping that was neglected for years. No central air. To it's credit, it had 2 working fireplaces, a newer furnace and water heater, a dry(?) block 1/4 basement. Storm windows. LOTS of SPACE. Single story.

House #2: Small. Disaster area. Money pit waiting to be discovered under all the CRAP. Owner chopped off the back porch and did nothing with it. Living in filth. Too small.

House #3: Not bad, really. Disasterous back yard and "studio" which might've been a garage at some point but certainly wasn't now. Bad neighborhood, too campusy. Needed love. May've needed a lot more than that. Basement was damn near inaccessible. Addition wasn't finished.

House #4: Sweet, charming, perfect bungalow. Priced right for the neighborhood, but a little high for us. Sears house. 2-car block garage. Big lot. Space not conducive to pets and escapism living. Very cute, nothing to fault it about, really.

House #5: Renovated Dutch Colonial. Big upstairs. New tile in kitchen and bath. Half bath downstairs. Unusual space. Hardwood floors. Gassy basement. Beautiful lot with driveway and privacy fence.

House #6: Very suburban 2-story, dry livable basement. 4 bedroom. Big bland yard. Not much to fault it except the panelled kitchen and 70s updates. Know nothing about the neighborhood. Felt very suburban. Not close to anything, really, for being urban. Very sub-divisiony. Very... middle-aged midwesterner.

To be honest, we looked at some very nice houses. By list price, in ascending order, they went #3 for 117K, #6 for 121K, #2 for 134k, #1 for 144k, #4 for 149k, #5 for 159k.

Now, normally I wouldnt think that #1 would be my choice as something I would want, but I did some poking around on the auditor's site, and based on the auditor saying in 1997 that it was a "very good" house, and the fact that it's a bankruptcy house, and I really liked the size... and the neighborhood, and the lot, and the proximity to work and the park, river, and bike path, and coffee... It's been on the market for 2 months now.

Well, suffice it to say I'm doing some research on bankruptcy houses. I'm thinking a lower bid, more in line with a "fixer upper" in the neighborhood, contingent upon inspection, would be something I could live with.

Oh, and if anyone knows about buying such things, let me know.

Don't Call it a Comeback

Well, Mike is back online.

Didn't realize Dunn.net existed, but I should've imagined. My dad used to joke about my cousins and I starting an architecture firm called "Dunn and Half-Baked", and my uncle owns a consulting biz called "2WELDunn" (Too well done, WEL being short for William ELlis).

Such an easy name to play off of.

My mom used to call me Dunny when I was younger. Weird.

April 20, 2003


  1. Milk:: Duds
  2. Itch:: Scratch
  3. Raisin:: in the sun
  4. Contempt:: of Court
  5. High:: Times
  6. Take:: Five
  7. Hamburger:: Helper
  8. Frilly:: Dress
  9. Tigger:: Pooh
  10. Creek:: Indian

April 19, 2003

Catching Up

Today was a very odd Saturday, starting with a very carbohydrate heavy brunch at Carsten and Verena's apartment on north campus. Nice deck and outdoor space for a sunny morning get-together, and the homemade, potluckish feel made it perfect. Plus, conversations about corporate culture and the perils of publishing with Microsoft products brought everyone together. And, I have to say I don't think I've seen so many native German speakers in one place here in the States, and that was cool. Carsten started to speak with someone, and I tried to follow, but I couldn't really since so many other conversations were going on simultaneously. Definitely an environment that would be conducive to my passing German 104... now that I'm so out of practice.

One of the American guys reminded me of my uncle, Ronald, in a way that made me very edgy. Don't know why.

After a stupendous, and delicious, brunch, we ventured north to go see more houses with our realtor. Unfortunately, I missed the open house completely. Sad, since that one is a brick gem in a suburban part of Clintonville. However, we did see a few overpriced mediocre places. And with that, we're done for a while.

Then, back to the house to take a nap...

Then, we visited who may become our new cat.

And we visited our neighbors Dave and MaryBeth and told them about our house hunting adventures, and we conversed about the insane prices of real estate.

And just now, we finished off the day with another carbo heavy meal at Marshall's Restaurant with Vijay.

I have a throbbing headache. And with that, I'm going to bed.

April 18, 2003

Paid on Time

You know, I have a good record with paying my bills on time. Since Wednesday, I've gathered payment histories on two installment-based accounts, and one letter of "good standing" is on its way.

My insurance document shows payments back to December 11, 2000. With Sprint, my payments go back to August of 2001. And I've had TimeWarner since 1998, and those bills were always $60 or more.

I've emailed the mortgage guy to let him know what I've received so far. Today, I'll start on writing letters and making calls to the places I still owe money, and soon, I'll be on the fast track to good credit. Woohoo.

Friday Five, 4/18

It's a celebrity Friday Five.

1. Who is your favorite celebrity?

Erm... if I had to pick one, maybe Jon Stewart or Dave Attell. I can't think of many funny, down-to-earth celebs.

2. Who is your least favorite?

Including politicians as celebs, I'd say Dubya.

3. Have you ever met or seen any celebrities in real life?

Sure, who hasn't at lease seen one on stage. Or backstage. I met Poe (Annie Danielewski) and her brother, author Mark Danielewski at a party once. Well, that's the second time I met her. I have a great respect for anyone who learns an music on their own, and especially one who learns to professionally edit the music on their own on their home computer. I've met Neil Armstrong, Douglas Applegate and Bob Ney. (politicians. the last is the Freedom Fries idiot.) I met David Newell once at the radio station. I met Janet Fielding at a Doctor Who convention in 1988. That's about it.

4. Would you want to be famous? Why or why not?

Nope. I like my fair amount of anonymity.

5. If you had to trade places with a celebrity for a day, who would you choose and why?

??? Didn't I say I liked anonymity?

April 17, 2003


I'm posting this from the Oval...

A bunch of students set up a "Solidarity Camp" apparently for promoting peace, since they have a UN flag hanging there.

There's a crazy drunk accosting them. How fun.

Class in half an hour. Peer review of the paper. I just wrote it half an hour ago. Aaaaargh.

Another House Bites the Dust

Well, yesterday was mortgage day for me. An enlightening trip down Memory Lane, reminding me of how I spent my early to mid 20s... too poor to pay off debts incurred during my late teens and early 20s, and too poor to pay for my own utilities.

So... what did I find out? Well, with some calls, and some checks, my credit can be back up to 'normal'. And, if you've been good at paying your car insurance, or even your cable bill, you can get proof and have it added. It helps.

The good news is, I can still be on Nala's mortgage without bringing up the interest rate. I've just emailed our mortgage guy to see if it will bring down Nala's credit.

Update: It will not disrupt either of our credit reports. Only payments (or lack thereof) on the mortgage will affect them.

Since I've moved here to Columbus, I've made much better decisions and I've actually had jobs which paid enough. It makes a big difference.

Ok, now today I have a paper to write and a few letters and calls to creditors.

Update: Made all 3 calls. TimeWarner will not do a payment history, but will send a letter explaining my good standing. Sprint will not do either one, but explained that "a payment history can be printed at any time from the sprintpcs.com website." State Farm is faxing me an actual payment history.

Perhaps the Matt on Earth-1 has a better credit rating.

April 16, 2003

So much going on...

Things slowed down a bit at work, for me at least, for the time being. I mean, our mailserver is dead, but I can't do anything to help there. Apparently, the reports are all ok (knock on wood), and now I'm back to doing things like programming and graphics instead of database queries and reports.

What really sucks is, my calendar is all in Outlook. I think I'll need to fwd every appointment to my home email account too, so I can put it all in iCal.

I know I have a 2pm with my boss, and a 3:30 with the mortgage guy, and a 5:30 with my trainer...but I can't remember tomorrow and Friday's appointments.

I have a report on a cultural site due tomorrow, and a rewrite due on Tuesday. Three pages. No big deal. However, I hadn't even decided where to write about as of last night. I think I'll write about Pete's coffee shop and the artwork his wife has hanging there, and the communal art which hangs near the bar. It's different, at least. And, I'd say the "exhibit" reflects Pete and his wife's culture, and the culture(s) of the neighborhood.

Nervous about my 3:30 appointment.

April 15, 2003


Well, the stress from work is subsiding and the stress from school is increasing.

I talked to my folks this morning, and they're doing ok, gearing up for the Florida housebuying trip.

Dad gave me lots of advice on househunting. I took notes.

Then, when I got off the phone with him, I looked up both my parents' and Nala's parents' houses on their respective auditor's sites. My parents' house has "no heat" according to the county, and according to State Farm. Since they heat with baseboard electric heaters, and a wood stove, State Farm wouldn't even insure them. No heat.

No heat? Good lord. It roasts you.

I admit, I see the logic. Sort of.

Ok, I have to go take a pill now, so I can get to sleep and then tomorrow round up my paperwork to take to the mortgage guy when I meet with him at 3:30.

Oh... it's going to be a fun week.

April 14, 2003

One, two... campus is doo doo

So, our realtor, Bonnie, called us around 5:00pm to say she had a place unexpectedly come back on the market in the Historic District just northeast of campus, in the 130s. It was nicely sized, and surprisingly intact inside, despite it's crappy exterior. However, that doesn't take away from the fact it was, indeed a money pit. Nice wood, a few details, finished attic. Definitely the worst property on the block by a great distance. You wouldn't know by the description.

However, one of the three properties we were going to look at Wednesday was open, and Bonnie had time, so we went by. Definitely the condition we wanted. By the looks, a tolerable neighborhood. VERY convenient to work, convenient to restaurants and schools. And close to the ravine. New siding, newer windows. Newer roof. Waterproofed basement. Hardwood floors. Dishwasher. Move-in condition. Charm. Uniqueness. Nice backyard. Nice front yard. Nice porch. Dishwasher. Eat-in kitchen.

Bonnie said it was "weird". I said, "well, so are we."

It felt doable. I want to take a second look with someone we know who has bought before. I don't necessarily want to buy, but it seems very nice for the price. If he wants it, and all the other pieces fall into place (inspection, other opinions) I'm definitely in.

PromoGuy 3:15

It's another Monday.

1. Are there any illnesses that you seem more susceptible to than others?

I got strep a lot when I was young. Then in high school, I got bronchitis about every year. I get a really bad "cold" of some kind about once a year, and I have allergies, too. Currently, fighting a sinus problem.

2. What are your favorite boy and girl names? What names do you think are trendy or overused?

I've always liked Keturah Elohe for a girl and Jakob for a boy. Matt and Mindy and Amanda are all overused names. Jennifer too. Currently, Kaitlyn (and all variations) are overused. Names which sound like they come from soap operas need to go, too.

3. Any current songs on the radio (or elsewhere) that you think are pure crap? Why don't you like it?

Just about anything Top40 needs to die.

4. Can you (now or in your youth) play any musical instruments? Do you still play?

I played first-chair saxophone in every band my schools had for 8 years, and then recreationally for a few years in college. Then, one of my youth group kids broke the sax while I was in the other room... It needs $200 in repairs and has been sitting in my parents' house for the last few years.

5. What is the most recent self-improvement program (fitness, weight loss, learning something new) that you began? Did you stick with it? Why or why not?

I've been going to a personal trainer for the last 20 months. I'm going to give it up because all I can do now is barely maintain what I have, and I don't have the money if I'm buying a house.

6. How would you look in a Hooters uniform?


7. Have you ever had a dream where you interacted with a celebrity (sex or otherwise)? What happened?

I was talkin to Oprah. But hey, I was on new meds and had a fever to boot.

April 13, 2003


  1. Compassionate:: Caring
  2. Zodiac:: Spider (what the hell?!)
  3. Suit:: Green
  4. Marble:: Floor
  5. Track:: and Field
  6. Miscellanous::
  7. Supermarket:: Cart
  8. Stone:: Soup
  9. Daylight:: Savings
  10. Cap:: Gun

Nice Day

Well, it was a nice day, starting with gyros at Tommy's and then a drive around Old Towne East and a drive up to southern Clintonville to look for houses for sale. Plenty of places in OTE, but most were too expensive. A few places in Clintonville, too. Three worth checking out in the 130s.

And one BEAUTIFUL place on Glen Echo by the ravine.

April 11, 2003


Things were better today. The stress from work was minimal. The panic from Nala's announcement that he'd found a house subsided. However, when he called at 2:30 to say "can you look at two places today at 4, including THE house?" I got short of breath.

I have to say, it was worth seeing, and had it been equal to two nice 1br apartments per month, I would've agreed. My lord, it was nice.

That's not to say we've been looking at junky places, but just that this was, without a doubt, the best place for the money we had seen. Everything was done. It was completely livable as is, and livable in luxury. It helped, of course, that the decorating style of the current owners was that of our own.

I was expectedly nitpicky. I wanted to hate it, but I didnt. But, I was able to make myself not be ecstatic. I went in being rational, knowing what the payments were, and knowing that I would have to absolutely love it for the money.


I did love it though. It was the most perfect house we'd seen, including the new builds, simply because you could see the love which was put into it and the charm and character.

And the backyard, with the beautiful landscaping.

Anyway, after the "God this is nice and this is what I eventually want out of a house" episode, we went on down toward Franklin Park to see what I initially called the "backup plan".

Again, this house had its charms. It needed work, of course, but it was massive and had a great floorplan, with hardwood floors, a full basement which could possibly with some work become finished, one and a half baths, and most of all CHARACTER. But, sadly, it was missing the one thing which would keep us from buying: a garage or space for one.

It had enough work left to be done to be relatively cheap, while enough niceties to be livable, if barely, in Nala's eyes. 4 huge bedrooms. A dining room at least as big as two of our bedrooms. A basement big enough to have a workshop for stripping and refinishing windows and such. The living room 16x30 feet, at least.

God, if Nala would allow it, I would become a househusband and do most of the work myself. Hell, if we had a dishwasher I would even learn to cook. I know I could, and if that was my job, I would. I loved the satisfaction that came from working with my hands and seeing the results.

This may be the one thing he doesn't know about me.

And yes, I know I say that, but you know, I'd still want to work some freelance on the side.

So, we continue the hunt, but now, at least we know what we can afford, and what we can aspire to.

April 10, 2003

Emotional Effing Overload

I have had the most shitty week ever at work. E V E R. Things just arent going my way outside of work, either. And, I talked to the doc today, and he says I'm going to just have to let this thing with my ears run its course.

Do you realize I almost quit my job yesterday? Yes, literally. I almost walked into my boss's boss's office and said "F your reports, F this place, F Hellspawn, and F you, I quit."

I was all prepped and ready. The thing was, I didnt have a backup plan.

So, I bit the bullet.

Things got better today, after the initial hell of being put on the spot regarding something I know nothing about by someone I hate in some other office, and then trying to fix it.

I actually got to leave on time. My professor was nice enough to waive her rule of 1/3 total grade level off for missing a guest speaker.

To top it all off, Nala says he found a house, (albeit an expensive one in an up-and-coming neighborhood), and my friend Jay made a guest appearance unexpectedly.

My vertigo is back again.

My nerves have been on edge all week thanks to work stress.

Nala announced finding a perfect (and expensive) house.

I literally don't know how to feel.

Scared as fuck? Yeah, that would describe it.

I don't know what's what anymore.

I could lose my job. I could go insane.

We could afford it, maybe. What if the neighborhood fizzles? What if we end up losing money instead of breaking even. What if I lose my job? How are we going to live when our housing payment goes up $500? How're the utility payments?

So many questions. All I know is I'm on the edge of madness. Too many variables on top of too much stress.

April 9, 2003

h e l l s p a w n

Finally, the reports I've been assembling have been scrutinized such that errors perpetuated over months (via guesstimates) have been found.

What does this mean for me? Well, since I just query the database and report back what it gives me, it doesn't mean much, other than I'll be helping my boss correct the 6000 rows of data which have been generated by 3 faulty systems.

It's not bad. I think there are maybe 500 rows which might have errors. Mostly duplicates with zero quantities and high dollar values.

After 22 hours of working on these reports so far this week (out of 30 hours worked), I'm ready for a break.

And my prof still hasn't emailed me!

This n That, Late

Ok, so Juice-man decided to do this one...

1. Sexier (female)...Pamela Anderson or Jennifer Garner?

Garner is girl-next-door sexy, while Anderson-Lee-Anderson-Lee-Anderson-Rock is trailer trash wannabe-sexy.

2. Sexier (male)...Ben Affleck or Matt Damon?

Ass-chin bad actor loses. I have other reasons too, but I don't want to get into them.

3. The better piano player...Billy Joel or Elton John?

You make me choose? While I don't really like either, I'll agree that they're both great musicians.

4. Funnier...David Letterman or Craig Kilborn?

Letterman's been doing it longer, and it shows.

5. The dumber cartoon cat...Stimpy (of *Ren & Stimpy*) or Tom (of *Tom & Jerry*)?

Er... I never saw an episode of Ren & Stimpy. Tom was pretty dumb, and I know Stimpy was too... so, no clear winner here.

6. A better news anchor...Tom Brokaw or Dan Rather?

Rather creeps me out. Always has. I've been watching Broke-jaw since his days on the Today Show with Jane Pauley.

7. A better TV chef...Emeril Lagasse or Jacques Pepin?

BAM! You lose.

8. The trashier talk show host...Maury Povich or Jerry Springer?

While Maury is barely less trashy, Springer is trashier because he doesn't have an intelligent wife who holds her own in the media.

9. The worse fast food burger joint...McDonald's or Burger King?

Good god. Juice, the burgers are smaller and less flavorful at McD's. Trust me. They're 1/8lb at BK and 1/10lb at McDs.

10. Thought-provoking question of the week: Only a handful of U.S. Presidents have been considered to be *great* Of the following two, which one do you consider to be greater...Franklin D. Roosevelt or Abraham Lincoln?

This doesnt even need a justification.

Weddings... and stuff

Well, I've narrowed my weddings down to 4. I think.

Two still haven't set dates, one of those will probably be next year. Another is just too far (Baltimore).

That leaves 4. One in Chicago, one in Toledo, and two on the same weekend here in Cowtown. And they're all this summer. Three in June, one in August.

I just don't have enough money right now to go to all 7 anyway, so it works out well. Sending gifts and cards is a lot cheaper than hand delivering them, and truthfully, it's not like you get to spend time with the couple anyway.

In an unrelated thought, here's a question... why is it that web developers like me often have shitty websites? And why is it that people that work with printers every day and have access to print shops still print 72-dpi graphics on their home inkjet instead of spending $0.49 per page and doing it on a proper color laser copier, and redesigning the graphic (when it's JUST TEXT) at a higher resolution? Or asking someone with know-how for help?


Sake Bombed...

For the second time in as many months, I heard someone mention a "sake bomb". In case you hadn't heard, you take a glass of sapporo, lay your chopsticks across the rim of the glass, support a shot of sake on top, and pound the table loudly and forcefully with your hands until the sake drops in and you drink the mixture.

Now, the first time I heard of it, I thought it was the noisy annoying drunken faggot at the next table making something up, but according to Google, he was just a drunken faggot trying to get even more drunk.

The second time was my friend Dave in Atlanta telling about taking another friend's brother out to a sushi bar and getting drunk last night, doing sake bombs. I can't imagine the hangover from mixing Sapporo and sake.

April 8, 2003


Despite my 12 hour workday, my lack of nicotine and/or alcohol, my absence from class... I had a good dinner out with nala and his friend fforest. Katie Turner indeed.

I'm already over the aforementioned house. And, my apologies to Juice for my comments earlier, but like I said, today was a stressful fucking day. Props to Max Power for bringing me back to earth.

Hopefully tonight I won't dream about that house again.

All I have to say is PLEASE let me make it through this hellish week with my sanity. One more class and 2 readings to go, with a trip to the museum and a financial planning seminar as well. 4-5 more reports to run, a site to finish, and another site to redesign, and another database to convert from Access 97 to SQL.

I hate

I hate the fact that I'm missing class, missing dinner, and can't take my meds because I'm stuck here doing the bidding of Hellspawn.

I can't make up the class, and I have no idea how long I'm stuck here.

The more I hear

The more I hear from coworkers having done repairs, the more I think we could lower the bid on that place to $75k.

And then there's Juice, who decided to pee in my Wheaties this morning. Yeah, he's probably right, to an extent. Who said we would do all the work ourselves? Not I.

do not put yourself in the position of trying to do massive repairs. do you both not at least weekly gripe that you can't find the time to clean out the front room or the attic? how will you build walls or make the other obviously vital repairs to this house?

Ugh. You know, if I didn't dream about things like this, I'd be looking forward to a trailer park. You have to have some dream goal to keep you motivated.

Back in the dream world, I would hire the big work done. And in reality, no way in hell I would pay $145k for an empty shell unless a) it was new and b) it was supermegafantastic. Fuck that.

Give me some credit, G.

Houses Houses Everywhere


You're probably going to get sick of us talking about all the houses we've seen, but this one in particular stands out.

It needs a LOT of work. Thankfully, the plumbing will already be done, and the roof. It's a double lot. Brick, 3 storey, new windows throughout. 2 car detached block garage. Walk-in basement.

Gutted. Needs $5000 in drywall and drywall supplies. I'm assuming $15k for a porch on the front, deck on the back. Assuming you would want hardwood or Pergo floors throughout, that's $11k without installation or underlayment (Pergo pricing). Privacy fence would be roughly $1k, not counting concrete to set the posts into. My estimate for stairwell and jut-out: $20k, incl. labor.

Now we're at $56k.

Decorative soffit replacement: ??? This is assuming that the roof would be finished. Don't forget appliances and furnace, a/c, water heater, fixtures... And kitchen...(Granted, Ikea kitchens could run $3-5k).

Now, here's the rub. Something that Nala doesn't know. The guy and gal who own the place are currently being sued. I imagine he's trying to sell this one for money he's going to need in that suit.

Like I said, for $100k, maybe. It could be a showplace. Thankfully, half the work is already done.

I was going to link you into the county website to show the lots, and the photo from last May, but decided not to.

April 7, 2003

Monday Mission 3.14

This week's Mission sucks.

1. Would you rather impress or influence others? Why? Which do you tend to do more than the other?

I tend to do neither. And I don't see much of a point in impressing people other than myself. At least outside of work.

2. Are you able to admit your weaknesses to others? How do you handle your weaknesses (Can you accept them and see them as a strength? (Do you strive to overcome them? etc.)

Sure I can admit them. I strive to better myself, but ultimately dont change much. I'm a lazy ass... a self-perpetuating weakness.

3. How do you react when you are bossed around, treated as inferior or taken advantage of?

Hm. Not too well, actually. I try to be diplomatic in my life, in the way I interact with others who I don't feel are doing things the right way, but it doesn't matter much. They all hate me the same.

4. Do you live your life to meet your own needs, or do you live to meet the needs of others? Why?

Huh? My own, mostly. I try my best to help those close to me, too

5. This is your Mission on Mondays, but what is your mission in life?

To annoy and to serve.

6. Can you focus on your goals and achieve them, or are you sidetracked by minor distractions along the way?

My goals are so lofty there are zillions of distractions along the way.

7. When was the last time you cried? What were you feeling at that moment (anger, sadness, etc.)?

Hm. Stress. A few months ago, I guess.

BONUS: Who can it be knocking at my door?

Go 'way, don't come 'round here no more.

NBC lost a good one

Can I tell you how much I think this sucks? When I first heard it, I immediately thought "friendly fire". Then I thought heatstroke/heat exhaustion, especially when he'd been doing round-the-clock reports.

Officially, it's "pulmonary embolism".

I really liked watching him. He was cute, charismatic, and charming, but still did his job well.

It'll be interesting to see who they put up with Soledad O'Brien. I hear Connie Chung is looking for work again.

Cool stuff

Courtney always seems to be ahead of me when it comes to linking to cool stuff. I think I saw this on Ernie's site a LONG time ago. Never thought of joining the crowd till now.

Oh and as usual, my blogging (and blog reading) has made me late for work...

April 6, 2003

Unconscious Mutterings

1. Cost :: Plus
2. Head :: Shop
3. Eclipse :: Mitsubishi
4. Pestacide :: DDT
5. Private :: Parts
6. Betty :: Paige
7. Leech :: Bed
8. Jam :: Band
9. Playground :: Swings
10. Trauma :: Center

April 4, 2003

Friday Five 4.4.03

1. How many houses/apartments have you lived in throughout your life?

11 so far, if I counted right. Delaware, Zanesville, St. Clairsville, Barnesville, 2 different dorm suites at OSU, 2 different dorm rooms at OU, 1 apartment in Athens, and 2 here in Cowtown.

2. Which was your favorite and why?

My current apartment. Good neighborhood, mostly good neighbors, lots of sun (in the backyard) and space, and of course the roommate is pretty cool, too.

3. Do you find moving house more exciting or stressful? Why?

The act of moving can be stressful, and certainly looking for a place can be. But, if you like the place you're moving to, it's exciting.

4. What's more important, location or price?

Location. But price plays a huge factor, too.

5. What features does your dream house have (pool, spa bath, big yard, etc.)?

Room for the animals. A place for everything and everything in its place. A jacuzzi would be nice, of course. I think space is important. Not feeling crowded.

Must clean attic. And middle room. And front room. In that order.

About Last Night...

I think I posted two things last week about the feelings of peace, etc.

Last night, crossing the oval under a clear twilight blue sky, smelling spring in the air (finally!), seeing the William Oxley Thompson Memorial Library backlit with a deep red halo from the sunset, and watching the stars begin to appear was definitely one of those moments for me.

I not only wanted so badly to get a photograph, but also find a way to capture and bottle the entire sensory experience.

Spring is here.

It's funny, the memories you can have associated with a time of night, an area, a temperature, a clear sky, a scent...

I wanted so badly to call Zandy.

I remembered what made me so happy when I moved here when she and I were 17. It was that feeling. That was also the feeling that made me cry when I left, and, deep down, need to come back when my time was done at that other place.

Not because this is my city. Not because I intend to stay here forever, because I don't know that I will. But, that once and occasional feeling.

Maybe that's why people come back?

April 3, 2003

Pseudoephedrine is your friend


The meds that the good Doc gave me are not the same as the ones I got from the other doc 2 weeks ago. These also have pseudoephedrine.


Class was good. Lots of discussion of "what is art?", "what makes an artist?", and "what is a cultural site?"

And believe it or not, I felt intelligent. For once. It's rare, really. I spent my life trying to live up to what I thought were my father's expectations and failing, or being told how intelligent I was and knowing I wasn't. But tonight, as we spoke about our lives and our experiences and our "art", my experience in the design field far outweighed anyone, and I could articulate it. It felt good.

Yay. I'm better than a bunch of students 10 years my junior. Whoopee.

I should bloody well hope so.

So, I had some news from the warfront, and news from Virginia newsrooms. And from the Illinois Institute of Technology's Communication Design program.

I really just want to sleep now and tell you more in the morning... the buzz probably wont let me, but I think I will try.

Back on the Pukey Meds

So, Dr. Doe and I had a nice chat about virii. Apparently, I have one. We'll know more Monday. It's hanging on because I'm not a very good caregiver to myself. Need more fluids, more juices, more sleep. And keep taking the pukey meds, since even without them, I felt pukey.

We ruled out a bunch of things today, which was nice. It's definitely coming from my inner ears, and definitely affected by my sinus inflammation. The meds will help but not completely rid me of the vertigo. He doubled my dosage.

So, I call him back Monday, and we'll see if I'm better. And maybe see exactly what I have.

Retiring the Beretta

Since September of 1993, my father had driven his 93 2-door 4-cyl Chevrolet Beretta. Sure, it had its share of problems, mostly cosmetic, and despite the three accidents it was involved in (backed into by a truck with trailer hitch in a parking lot, sideswiped by a lady making a left turn from a righthand lane, and run off the road by an oncoming jackass turning left against traffic on a highway in mid-hill -- new hood, bumper, and passenger door), the high miles (close to 300k), and the leaky head gasket (x2)... it was still a decent car.

My parents' only other vehicle is a 2001 Chevy S10 3-door pickup. Since it barely seats 3, and neither of them can ride in the "rumble seat", I figured it was a reasonable assumption they wouldn't get rid of the car till they bought a new one, since they frequently have to take my homebody grandmother to the doctor, or on shopping excursions.

I figured wrong. My dad just sold his pride and joy for $300 to another farmer on the other side of their hill.

Apparently, the inconvenience outweighed the expenses of keeping the car. It was in need of a tune up, 4 new tires, a new exhaust system, and a new head gasket. And, (horror of horrors) according to my mom, the $180 they paid in insurance every 6 months was too much.

"How are you going to get around now? How are you getting to work when Dad needs the truck?" I asked my mom on the phone Monday.

"We're looking into alternatives," she said.

"But you can't afford a car," I laughed, "what's Dad going to do? Buy cousin Jeff's Vespa?"

"Maybe," she answered, seriously. "He's been looking at scooters."

I laughed again. "I can see you riding the ridges on a scooter, greeting people as you go, saying 'Ciao!' and looking fabulous."

"Not me," she said, "your father."

That conjured up visions of my dad in aviators jacket, leather helmet, goggles, and scarf, piloting his baby blue Vespa 150 Super up the dirt road to town, and I couldn't stop laughing. Like the scene of Priscilla crossing the Australian desert, leaving a trail of dust behind...

Yesterday was hump day?

I've had vertigo for almost 3 weeks now.

Walking into walls is my new thing. I went off the vertigo meds on Monday. It's worse now than ever. I had a fever this weekend and Monday. I have a sore throat today. I have a doctor's appointment at 10:45.

Now, isnt this a great way to start the quarter?

Oh, and I need to get an MLA handbook. I thought I had one somewhere, but I can't find it. Been a long time since I had to write a paper. Now I have to write at least 5.

Much love to Annalisa for volunteering to be my interviewee for one of them.

Had dinner with Dave and MaryBeth last night. Mmm, Greek chicken sandwich at Easy Street. They're always fun to spend time with. I would link them, but I can't find Dave's site.

Then, after we got home and were watching the new South Park episode, we find out OhioJay had "the talk" with his parents. Or rather they had the talk with him. I ended up calling him to hear the story, but there really wasn't much to say, and he was still in shock. Congrats, Jay, on having (seemingly) cool parents!

April 2, 2003

Strike Two for the New Neighbors

Apparently, they DO own the jack russell terrier. And he barks waaaaaaaaaaay too much, sort of like a certain hoont/chihuahua mix we know from the Glass City.

Must ... find ... new digs ... before kill ... new neighbors...

When Lenders Compete, You feel worthless

So, maybe I've told you before, and I'll likely tell you again, my credit sucks.

Looking for a house with Nala makes me feel good, but when I try and see what kind of loans I can get, I get rejections and only feel more worthless.

The house we both could agree on and was in our range is still on the market. I want to see it again before it passes on to someone else, not because I think it was so stupendous, but I want to see what I missed the first time. And I want to convince myself that it is horrible.

Talking with Jamie at lunch made me realize I want to read more. Talking with Diane after lunch made me realize low offers aren't always bad, and estates are usually good for making deals.

On a sidenote... Nala even got me with his April Fools Day entry... till I realized we still had empty boxes...

Blog Market

Courtney and Gretchen got me started on this blogshares thing.

First Class

My Second Writing Class started last night at 5:30. It's an Art Ed class, which means, you guessed it, it's focused on art. 5 papers, 5 presentations, and various discussions. Not too bad, I guess. I'm a little intimidated, but I was also intimidated by the technical writing class I had at OU, so I'm not really worried. The class is led by a soft-spoken, petite assistant professor named Lyn.

The subject matter for the class (Ethnic Arts: A Means of Intercultural Communication) is a bit new for me, but I intend to make the most of it. When most people say "Ethnic" they immediately think "Black" and that is simply incorrect. I've become accustomed to thinking of Ethnic as Polish or Lebanese or Irish or German, depending on who I'm speaking to. Black does not mean Ethnic.

According to the American Heritage Dictionary, ethnic can be defined as:

Of or relating to a sizable group of people sharing a common and distinctive racial, national, religious, linguistic, or cultural heritage.

In fact, in today's terms, ethnic could be more about which part of our HUGE nation your family is from. Growing up in the midwest is certainly a different culture than the upper east coast, which is different than the deep south, which is different than the pacific northwest.

Part of the class is learning to defend statements like these, which I imagine I will continue to do over the next 10 weeks here on my site.

Fun, fun.

April 1, 2003

Strike One for New Neighbors

We live in a half-double. Our old neighbors Mike and John bought a house in Clintonville and moved out in September. Saturday, new tenants began moving in.

Now, I'm usually forgiving for silly things like music too loud, etc., because you just don't know what your neighbors can hear till they tell you.

Strike one against the new neighbors came last night at 11pm. 11:04 to be exact. Just after we'd gotten to sleep. Repetitive pounding as if someone was nailing something to the wall which separates our two units. After waking everyone including the two animals, it stopped.

Then, 15 minutes later, it started again. Just after I'd gotten to sleep.

Now there's one thing you dont want to do: wake me up after I've just gotten to sleep. Add to that the fact that I've been sick, and the fact that I get up at 5am to go to work, and you've got one pissed off neighbor.

So, what would you do? Yell through the wall? No, you'd be civilized, get dressed and go next door, right? Well, that's what I did, anyway.

And, since they don't have a doorbell, I pounded forcefully on the screen door, which is directly below the room from which the pounding came. I almost pounded again when someone peeked out the blinds.

They didnt turn on the porch light. They didnt open the door. In fact, even the lights within the house remained off. I motioned next door, and he removed his hand from the blinds. After a pause, he twisted the blinds open, and stood there.

I said "Hi, I'm Matt, and I live next door. Could you please not be pounding after 10pm?"

All I got was a muffled response. I assumed it was "Sure, no problem" or "Sorry" but the world may never know.

Then, he turned the blinds shut and I returned to bed. I still didnt get to sleep till well after midnight. The dog was audibly upset. Nala ended up downstairs for a while, too.

So, I'm running on about 4.5 hours sleep. And a cold. And still a teensy bit of rage about the new neighbors, who I will still give a second chance.