I’ve written about it on here before in 2008 AND 2010 – the crying, the screaming, the kicking, the pouting, the massive hair loss caused by uncontrollable ripping that all came about because of apartment hunting and subsequent moving of mountains of crap. This time, while I’m still neurotic about the whole process, it has yet to make me do any of the aforementioned things. The only thing that makes me cry these days is grad school. The massive, engulfing stress and lack of sleep is making me super pleasant to be around sans alcohol. When the stress of information and work overload is so bad that you lay down to sleep and your heart pounds up into your neck and face preventing any sort of rest night after night, it tends to make you a
Anyway, enough of that, back to the hilarious encounter we had earlier today while house hunting. After a gentle shove of the please-help-me-look-for-rental-houses-dammit variety a couple weeks ago, Pat has been calling to ask questions or make appointments every few days…it’s amazing how a few old pictures can make a total dump look like a palace on craigslist. We’ve seen a couple of places that have all been quickly vetoed, but today we saw a pretty good one once you looked past a few minor things…
It was a result of a drive by for rent sign sighting on a house near South Pearl followed by a quick phone call. We both took a short break from work and pulled up to the place around 9 a.m. and a member of ZZTop mixed with Grizzly Adams emerged from a beat up Chevy pickup. His tiny grey ponytail and ripped up flannel shirt accented the white/grey beard that reached almost to his stomach. My first reaction was, “Oh god,” then I told myself not to be Judgey McJudgerson because he was probably a nice old dude…and he was, as I quickly learned.
We walked into the house and it was completely trashed, at least by my standards, by the total stoner that lives in the basement. The guy that lived upstairs just moved out and basement dweller took it upon himself to take over the rest of the house. This also prevented us from seeing the basement, which is apparently finished kind of like a studio apartment. Note: Basement dweller is moving out soon and the entire house is for rent.
Pat walked past the beat up couch in the living room in front of me and subtly pointed at the floor. My eyes followed his finger and met up with a colorful glass pipe laying on the floor. Lovely. As we strolled into the kitchen, the first thing I noticed was the pizza box and random shit all over the counter. The second thing I noticed was the one hitter made to look like a cigarette laying next to the pizza box. I’m like, Jesus dude, calm down or at least put your paraphernalia away when your landlord comes over.
The two bedrooms and bathroom upstairs were empty and clean and the deck, backyard and two car garage were pretty much free of illegal substances. My ability to look past the dirty tenant and think ‘bleach, lots of bleach and this place will be beautiful,’ was pretty uncharacteristic of me, but the bedrooms were big, the closets were decent, the blonde hardwood floors were so pretty and the neighborhood is awesome. Hey, at least there weren’t dirty needles and a pile of cocaine sitting on the counter. This was actually the second place we walked into in a week that showed signs of massive amounts of marijuana usage. People just really, REALLY love their weed in Denver.
ZZTop landlord expressed how women were weird, referring to his wife, while we were in the backyard by making a funny little, rolling the eyes, throw the hands in the air gesture. We apparently have to talk to her if we want to know the rules of the rental house. As we walked from the backyard back to the front porch, Pat gestured to the neighbors’ koi pond and water feature and made a comment to which landlord man replied, “Yeah, you can just sit back, fire up a doobie and watch, heh heh.” Pat looked over his shoulder and grinned really big at me for about the third time on our tour while I refrained from yelling, “ZING!” or “HEY-O!” Things just kept getting better and better.
Then, as we said our goodbyes at the curb, landlord man inquired, “And what’s your name again?” I told him my name, he repeated it and then he said, “Niiiiiice looking,” while nodding with a big smile on his face. While I averted my eyes and turned a bright shade of pink, Pat laughed hysterically, put his arm around me and bellowed, “YEEEEAH!” I managed to utter a bit of a shocked, “thank you,” as I don’t take compliments very gracefully - I never have - especially from strangers and especially from ZZTop landlords. Yep, that’s me, the trophy girlfriend…riiiight. Maybe it will help us stand out from the pile of applications.
Moving is still a month and a half away and the location is still a mystery much to my dismay, but I’m not sure that anything – house or experience – can top what we saw today. Hopefully once pothead is kicked out and I employ my “bleach…lots of bleach…and Febreeze…and maybe Molly Maids,” theory, Pat, Andy, Maggie, old hippie ZZTop landlord and myself can all be one happy family. If not, then we’ll just have to continue the hunt and I’ll try to keep the neuroses at bay…as long as the metaphoric ball punching is kept to a minimum during the process.