Friday, September 11, 2009

A Man Without a Home

Apparently, people who enjoy reading your blog like you to post more often than whenever the urge hits. Who knew? After writing fiction in the morning, I don’t always have the gumption to put something together I feel is worth sharing. I figured the State by State deleted scenes would see me through the move from marriage and a 3-bedroom, 2-and-a-half-bath condo to single life and a studio.

Well, the move is taking longer than it should. There’s a leak in the large closet (even though it’s a studio, there’s one huge closet and one small closet) directly over where the clothes would go, and a second leak over the shower. I guess if you’re going to have a leak, the shower is a good place for it. Except the water is brown. The other day when I assembled an Ikea book shelf and pushed it against the wall, trickles of water leaked from around the wall outlet where I’d planned on plugging my speakers.

The landlord has a favorite handyman. The handyman had eye surgery and won’t be able to look at the roof until Tuesday. If this is the same dude who replaced the toilet with two different colors of plumber’s putty, two different colors of grout, and waaaaaay too much silicone gel, then he needed eye surgery. It took me two hours to get floor around the toilet to the point I felt comfortable sitting in it, and it’s a brand-new toilet.

Since I heard someone use a word you seldom hear in conversation, a nickname less pleasant than Treehouse has haunted me every time I open the door. Dank.

This week has been biking from the old place, writing at Starbucks or the office, working a shift at Books & Books, buying dinner and putting it in my backpack, biking to the new place, eating, trying to get the place livable, then biking back to South Miami. Grease and hair and years of dust don’t come out of unfinished wood as easily as you’d think. Ha. I’m sore but it’s good to be busy. What’s not good is feeling rootless.

But grease comes off. The black edges where wall meet floor become cream-colored tile and wood floorboards. The LEBO will fit nicely above my cozy new dining table. A lovely paint combination in the kitchen and fresh corkboard shelf liner will hopefully obscure the fact that none of the doors and drawers close true (or better yet, maybe when I put them back together, I’ll be able to adjust them correctly). Trashing the clear vinyl clown balloon shower curtain felt intensely satisfying, and I can’t wait to replace the vanity above the sink.

I’ve also decided to hire an exterminator. The silverfish will have none of my books. Also, it took a year-and-a-half to see a roach at the Oasis. On day five at Wallace St, I pulled back from hanging an organizer for pots and pans on my kitchen wall and saw a palmetto bug the size of my thumb, disturbed by my drilling (and singing) not one iota. And me without any bug spray (FYI, bleach and degreaser sprayed in amounts copious enough to coat a palmetto bug’s wings and prevent it flying will also drown it once it hits the floor). I don’t see the logic in making car payments or paying for haircuts or buying cable, but I’ll pay the Orkin man a monthly stipend for peace of mind. I don’t want my first few months in the new place to be about fighting creepy crawlies.

Until Dank makes its full transformation into the Treehouse, I’ll have a foot in each world. I used to fear the first time the door closed behind me and there would be nothing but me and those walls. Now I can’t wait to brew some coffee, crack open my advanced copy of Stephen King's Under the Dome, sit in the window (or on top of the wall around the landing outside my door, I can’t decide), and enjoy some time alone in my new home.


  1. I was wrong when I said you are a good man. These past two months have shown me how far astray of the truth I had wandered. Aaron, you are a great man. I am proud to know you.

  2. Not sure why this post prompted that, but I'll certainly take it.

  3. Stacy aint wrong, brudda

    i want your new place

    without the bugs
    or the leaks

    but with you:)