Throughout the year I come across things that delight and (more often) annoy me. It’s the time of year to share so you know you’re not alone.
Peeve: White Supremacy
Pictured above is the “white” section for Valspar paints at Lowe’s snapped a week ago. Really? Does the (first) world need 72 shades of white? Think about that. If I repainted the same room every year of my life, given the current life expectancy of a U.S. male of 76.1 years, I’d only need to repeat a shade four times.
Praise: Fighting white supremacy
Every washer and dryer I’ve ever owned has been white. This time around I chose a different path. While LG had dropped the red and blue options (I’d have so done red), there was still grey. I bought LG because they were very highly rated on reliability by Consumer Reports in August. Who knows? My next car might not be white (although not buying another car seems more likely).
Peeve: Makin’ Bacon
While living in a hotel for five months as part of my Penthouse Plunge adventure, I started buying precooked bacon to perk up a turkey sandwich. Then I started eating it like bonbons (because, you know, it was bacon). But this was controllable as precooked bacon typically comes in packages of ten or so slices. And then I saw the beauty of “about 100 slices” staring at me at Kroger for $14.99. Such a bargain. Surely I’d repackage this bounty into smaller portions and freeze it, right? It sat in my cupboard for a couple of weeks (sell-by date is May 2020) before I opened it on Christmas Eve. It’s four days later and while far from empty, not a single slice has yet made it to the freezer. I will never buy precooked bacon again. The time required in the cooking process deters the casual snacker (me). The fact that 100 slices is double the size offered at Costco was a warning unheeded.
Peeve: Signed Over Matter
This sign was posted at Mockingbird Station this past summer. It reads, “This property is proudly maintained by Brightview Landscape Services contracted by Dallas Area Rapid Transit.” If this is correct, DART contracted for erosion exposed dirt bereft of vegetation. Marie Kondo would be proud that all the plants that didn’t spark joy were removed. After falling over, the sign was gone within a week.
Peeve: Smelling “Nature” on The Katy Trail at Fitzhugh
Having moved adjacent to the Katy Trail, I’m on it most days (curse that bacon). I’ve started to notice a couple of things. First, what’s with the fragrant bathroom odor at the Fitzhugh crossing? Once you’re over the bridge heading north, there’s 100 yards of stench most days. A broken sewer line? Whatever it is, with The Terminal wanting $1,000-plus per square foot in this very spot, someone better figure it out. After Saturday’s rains, the smell disappeared, but for how long?
The second issue is why there isn’t an entrance to the Katy at Lemmon Avenue? I recall reading something a few years ago explaining why not, but can’t find the reference. Now that I live between the Lemmons and scramble up dirt embankments to reach the trail, I wonder again.
Peeve: Porcelain Pleasures
Having attended two community meetings in as many months at the Oak Lawn Methodist Church, I was met with this mood-killer of a sign. Had these signs been around during my misspent, discoteque-fueled youth there would have been considerably less romance in the black-lit air. Seeing this sign today makes me wonder if I missed a “trick” being atheist instead of Methodist.
Praise: Rooms Without a View
The view from my Penthouse Plunge includes architecture by Frank Lloyd Wright, George Dahl, and a questionable Howard Meyer. What it doesn’t include is any view of my prior home in PD-15 – from any room. I daresay the entire Pink Wall is masked by the butterfly roofed Two Turtle Creek building at Blackburn and Preston Roads. Considering the band of hate mail I still generate from the old ‘hood, it’s a win-win.
Praise: The Other Gleeson
In addition to a phonetic link between Tom Gleeson and Jackie Gleason, the two share status as comedians. During my travels, I stumbled upon Tom Gleeson’s appearances in a Daily Show-esque program in Australia called The Weekly with Charlie Pickering. Each episode features a segment called Hard Chat whereby Gleeson roasts a celebrity or politician. Thanks to YouTube, you can watch nearly 60 of the three-to-five minute segments (one of the funniest here will get you started). You’re unlikely to understand the nuance of the political scene, but politicians are universally lampoonable. You can also watch him riff on contestants on his Hard Quiz game show where the grand prize is a “big brass mug.”
But the jackpot comes from Gleeson’s own website where you can order downloads of several of his stand-up acts. Due to exchange rates, the already cheap AU$5 downloads cost Americans just $3.48. A bargain for hours of laughs. (TIP: When he refers to the ABC, he means the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, a publicly-funded channel similar to the BBC.)
I know this last one has nothing to do with real estate or Dallas (ditto the bacon), but sometimes you just need a laugh … and sometimes you have to travel far to get one these days.
Remember: High-rises, HOAs and renovation are my beat. But I also appreciate modern and historical architecture balanced against the YIMBY movement. In 2016, 2017 and 2018, the National Association of Real Estate Editors recognized my writing with three Bronze (2016, 2017, 2018) and two Silver (2016, 2017) awards. Have a story to tell or a marriage proposal to make? Shoot me an email firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to look for me on Facebook and Twitter. You won’t find me, but you’re welcome to look.