Monday, September 10, 2012

House Hunting With Jeremy Renner

When I decided to show what a wicked rad grown-up I was and buy a home this year I thought it would be like an episode of "My First Place" or "Property Hunters International" where I would be whisked to exotic locations while a smarmy, well-dressed, European homosexual regaled me with a veritable plethora of palatial homes.*

*Although, in retrospect, most legitimate grown-ups don't have collages of the Avengers on their bulletin board or use phrases like "wicked rad".  Lesson learned. 

Little did I know that I would soon be buried deeper than a Chilean coal miner in a mountain of paperwork, mortgage approvals, and so many obscure realty acronyms that I was left stammering "I'd like to buy a vowel?"   Before long my home search quickly devolved from a jaunty traipse through the suburbs to the type of odyssey that would make the Donner Party cringe.

In theory, it shouldn't have been that difficult.  I basically know what I want: something in the same school district, at least three bedrooms as right now the short people and I are crammed tighter than Kirstie Alley's Spanx, and preferrably somewhere where our neighbors are neither registered sex offenders or cooking crystal meth in their garage behind the push mower and the old Christmas decorations.  When working with a normal, functional adult, this is a relatively simple task.  With me?  Not so much.  (A) I'm pickier than a vegan having Thanksgiving dinner at Ted Nugent's house, (B) I can squeeze a penny so tight it makes Abe Lincoln cry like a little bitch.*

*Rationally, I know that my new job and pay raise puts me in a position where I can now comfortably support my family and purchase a small home.  But there is a small part of me that still remembers life post-divorce/pre-graduation when I would wake up nauseous wondering which was more important: water or electricity, because one of those bills was not getting paid.  That kind of fear doesn't fade easily, y'all. 

And most importantly, (C) despite logging countless hours of valuable HGTV research, I don't know jackshit about what to look for when searching for a house.  I tried to explain this to my realtor/high school friend, John, when we met for coffee the other day.*

*John may not be smarmy or European; but he is a well-dressed homosexual, so I'm 2:2.

     "How can you NOT know what to look for?"  he sighed, throwing up his hands in exasperation. "Didn't you read the pamphlet I gave you?  And the booklet?  AND the checklist conveniently titled 'What To Look For'"?

     I sipped my latte and shook my head meekly.  "I tried, John, I swear to God; but it was so freaking BORING!  Seriously, who writes this stuff?  It was the literary equivelent of watching paint dry."

    John rolled his eyes.*

*Drama queen.

    "Honey,"  he said patiently "it isn't InStyle magazine.  There are no pretty pictures or stories about how stars are 'Just Like Us'."

    "Hah!"  I cried triumphantly "That shows what you know!  'Stars, They're Just Like Us' is in US magazine, not InStyle!"  I gloated over my victory until I noticed John struggling to remain composed as the veins in his neck began beating out the bass line to Toni Basil's "Mickey".

    "Fine."  he said at long last.  Then why don't you find a way to make a home inspection checklist that you'll actually READ and will hold the attention of someone with obviously latent ADHD."
    "Maybe I will."  I taunted. 

    John snorted derisively.  "Yeah, good luck with that, Freakshow."*

*On second thought, I take back what I said about him being smarmy.

OK, game on.  If there is one thing I am it is competetive as hell and as my parents can attest to, the best way to get me to do something is to imply that I can't.  So, I went home and thought carefully about what interests me.  Blogging?  Yeah, but if I started printing out home inspection checklists and mortgage assessments on my blog my readership would drop faster than Willard Scott on a greased flagpole.  Shopping?  Sure, but again, spending money on useless (but pretty!) materialistic things isn't really condusive to a discussion on financial equity.  Reality TV?  Hmm, interesting thought, but seeing as how I only watch reality TV because I can muli-task on a shit ton of other stuff while watching it, I wouldn't say it actually HOLDS my interest.  Rather, it's like a refreshing sorbet that cleanses my mental palate before I can shut off my brain enough to sleep.  So, what's left?

I settled in to look at my movie collection and choose some quality viewing while I mulled my latest project.  Hmmmm. . ."The Hurt Locker"?  Too depressing.  "The Town"?  Too Ben Affleck-y.  "Ghost Protocol"?  Too. . . then it hit me.  Of course!  What is the one thing I can always count on to make me feel better and hold my interest?  It was right there in front of me, lovingly embodied in my DVD collection.  Jeremy Renner.  That man could read the Portland Trimet bus schedule and as long as he did it with his shirt off he'd have my complete and unwavering attention.  So I raced to my computer, dusted off John's pedantic Realty Guide, and got to work creating my masterpiece.


I raced to my next meeting with John, eager to show off my newly attained acumen.  I whizzed through the latest home, tapping on walls to check for dry rot, commenting on the water-spotted ceiling in the foyer, and waxing eloquent on all things flagstone and granite.

     "Holy House Hunters,"  John cried, shaking his head in wonder.  "You actually read the damned brochure, didn't you?  Sweetie, I'm so proud."

     I shook my head like a chihuahua with Tourette's.  "Even better!"  I cried "Jeremy read it to me!"

John looked at me with cautious bewilderment. . .*

*I get that a lot

. . .and then stared in stunned silence at the photographic masterpiece.

     "You. . .you made realty porn."  he whispered, awestruck.   "I feel both appalled and aroused.  Is that weird?"

     "Pfft!  Babe, that's nothing."  I laughed, throwing a concillatory arm around his shoulders. "Wait until I show you Chris Hemsworth's guide to adjusting your mortgage."



Tainted Fibers said...

I would HATE to be house hunting. It's bad enough that we sold our house quickly (9 days),then had about 6 weeks to get the hell out of Dodge. We are building a new home, paying the majority of it in cash, and the banks are STILL taking forever to get approval. Meanwhile we are in a 3 room apartment, our belongings divided between apartment and 3 storage units. Good times I tell ya. Good luck with all this.

Jennielynn said...

I swore we'd never move again, but suddenly, you make me want to house hunt.

FFW said...

Now I want to buy a home!! Thank you, Jen!

Jen said...

FIBERS - I just am ready for the short people to have their own room before it gets all Battle Royale up in here. ACK!

JENNIELYNN - Jeremy can compel me to do anything. An. Y. Thing.

FFW - Ooh! Maybe for my next work of art I can have Chris Evans explain how to adjust your insurance rates! RAWR!!!

Leauxra said...

I don't know why they don't just hire you to make safety booklets and... holy shit... can you do this for my taxes? I start trying to figure it out and it's all ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. I need some EXCITING taxes. Would you do that for me?

Anonymous said...

Holy COW - you should seriously publish and SELL SELL SELL that shit!!!

Jen said...

LEAUXRA - Ooh! Bradley Cooper explaining tax withholdings? Genius!

Jen said...

ANONYMOUS - I shudder to think what Jeremy's legal team would think of me publishing this. . .restraining order! YIPPEE!!! :)

Leauxra said...

Jen, you're nobody till somebody takes out a restraining order.

MommaRock said...

Oh.. how to the point you are! I was a realtor and it was boring as hell almost all the time except when I had a client. BUT, I hated it, cause I just hated being a "convincer".
I came via Angie Uncovered blog and glad I did, you are now added to my roll.
Oh.. and I will be waiting for both Chris's guides!!

Jen said...

LEAUXRA - Shit, if Nathan Fillion hasn't issued one yet then I'm golden.

MOMMA - Yay! Glad to have you here! Can you gues by my stalking list how many times I've seen The Avengers? Ummm, yeah. . .that would be 9.

Brett Minor said...

I am one of those unmanly men that doesn't know anything about that stuff. Or cars.

But my father and brother are great at it. I just ask them to look at anything I am considering buying.

Johi Kokjohn-Wagner said...

It could be a compilation book, with all the hot talent. A little Bradley Cooper with the tax withholding, some Renner on the School Districts, and a little Ryan Gosling with the "Hey Girl, check for cracks in the foundation."

Jen said...

BRETT - I'm trying to learn all of this stuff so I never have to be dependent again. This year I learned how to file my takes, change the oil in my car, install a sink, and fix my garbage disposal. It was magical. :)

JOHI - Oh, damn, Girl. we are SO publishing this!

Brett Minor said...

It sounds like you can already do more than me.

Anonymous said...

For some strange reason, I now have a burning desire to have my home all inspected and shiz.

Now, if only Bradley Cooper had been involved in those tomes I used to study for the bar. I would have passed the hell out of that exam! (Please note, I did pass, but it was no fun at all, with entirely too little man meat to teach me things).

Laura said...

THIS is a thing of beauty!! I look forward to all of the boring adulty type brochures to be turned into porn for bored ladies. ;)
You are a goddess!!!

Candice said...

Oh, my God! You are a genius! A couple of questions:

One: How have I been unaware of Jeremy Renner for so long?

And Two: If I send you some information, would you please make me some using Trace Adkins?

Chrissy said...

OMG I think I love you! Ha! We're just starting the home-buying process...and finding it really hard to look for the boring stuff (foundation, size, location, water heaters, furnaces) and avert our eyes from the sexy stuff (fancy kitchens, jacuzzi tubs, pretty decks, quirky accents). It's tough out there!

Jen said...

MISTY - Bradley Cooper reading Constitutional Law. . .dear God that might be enough to get me to return to law school. . .ummm, meh. No. Not really. But I may audit a class or two!

LAURA - Maybe a guide on assembling IKEA furniture from Denzel Washington? ;)

CANDICE - (1) Knew him as a brilliant actor since "Dahmer" and "12 & Holding"; didn't start lusting after his fine ass until "Hurt Locker". and (2) Oh HELLZ yeah! Send away; I loves me some Trace Adkins. RAWR!

CHRISSY - I know! I keep getting hung up on things like ugly wall paper and getting all excited about sunken tubs while my realtor John just shakes his head and sighs.

Jillian said...

If Hugh Grant were present in all of the instructions I followed this morning to set up my wireless internet, it would have definitely set my day up right.

Valerie said...

I would buy anything from Renner... including herpes.



Anonymous said...

As a bookseller I think I could sell "Jen's Soft Porn Guide To Life"

Anonymous said...

Please post all of your househunting tips. Apparently, Kiefer and I stink at it.

Chrissy said...

I hate when I see a house with ugly wallpaper...You wonder to yourself, "What the hell were they thinking?" Then again, you could make a pic of Jeremy saying, "Hey pretty, it's okay, just think of how much better this room will be when it's plastered with pictures of me."

Also, I nominated you for a blogger award(It may or may not be a “chain-blog,” and you can choose whether to continue or not--It will not find you love, make you rich, or any other luck-stuff.) If you want to though, you can visit my post today to accept your award :)

Leslie said...

I am thinking you may definitely have a market with redoing brochures and pamphlets to make them readable. I think I could get through the most boring of material if Johnny Depp were reading it to me! Great job! Loved it.

Jen said...

JILLIAN - I used to love Hugh Grant until the whole skanky prostitute debacle. After that? Not so much.

VALERIE - If I had Jeremy in a locked room I would tear that boy apart.

ANONYMOUS - Have your people call my people; we'll confab. ;)

THOUGHTSY - You guys are going through it too? Meh. . .good times.

CHRISSY - Thanks for the shout-out, Girl! You're awesome. :)

LESLIE - Johnny Depp reading the Driver's Manual? Or maybe "Depp Does Dietary Guidelines"?

Anonymous said...

I pinned this because it NEEDS to be shared. Non-lame motivational learning tools! I think I need one by my alarm clock... Benedict Cumberbatch saying "Get up now, sweetheart, it's a whole hour of freetime before the kids are up."

You are the best, Jen!

-Vince said...

Damnit, Jen! I watched "The Town" this weekend and all I could hear is a thick bean-town accent saying "Don get jammed up on collah... ya can always paint dat shit."