"The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of" ... Bogart, Shakespeare, The Maltese Falcon, Those Great Movies

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Around She Goes, And Where She Stops, Nobody Knows!

I love the Twilight Zone, but I never expected to find myself living in it.  Within the last 72 hours, I stepped from one dimension to another -- I had a nice little house to rent, and my own house closing was scheduled for this Wednesday.  In one day, the closing was postponed, and I found out that my potential landlady is completely insane.  I am now bereft, bothered and bewildered, caught in a legal whirlpool, and also really mad.  So I have adopted the Tasmanian Devil as my alter-ego for the moment.

I rented the same little house 25 years ago when my boys were in grade school.  We loved it.  My landlady then was eccentric, but knew her business.  We lived there 7 years and I've always remembered it fondly.  I had kept in touch with the landlady over the years -- she would call every couple of years and ask how my sons were doing, how I was doing.  It was really sweet.  So when the offer on my house was accepted, I saw that the house was for rent.  I was very sad to hear that my landlady had died last Christmas.  However, her daughter (I will call her Myrtle) was taking over, and very interested in having me again for a tenant.  You see, I pay my bills on time and I don't tear up houses.  Myrtle lives 4 hours away and is rarely able to come to town to check on the house.  It has been refurbished and just lovely.  All looked to be going great.  Myrtle sounded eccentric too, but I just figured it was a family trait.  There is just one difference -- her mother was eccentric ... Myrtle is crazy

She was allowing me to move in before we signed a lease -- she believed me to be trustworthy, and indeed I am.  This past Friday, we got everything boxed up, all junk removed, and the moving men were coming Saturday morning.  In Friday's mail, I received the lease in the mail to sign and return.  Oh my God -- Myrtle had taken a standard lease and added to it 52 -- count 'em-- 52 codicils, handwritten in a crabbed scrawl.  What I could do, what I couldn't do (1 nail for 1 picture only), how to scrub the floor, etc. etc.  If anything inside the house breaks, it must be my fault so I would have to pay for it.  I was not to allow water to stand on the countertops.  If something spilled on the rug, I was not to use any cleaning products, but call her first and pay for professional carpet cleaners of her choice.  She knew I had a cat, but the lease said no pets -- yet one of the codicils said "Cat shall not climb mini-blinds."  Huh?  I felt like I was in the belly of the beast.  I cannot even begin to try to describe the 12 page lease with the 52 handwritten clauses, and how crazy it really is.  My sons read it and flatly refused to move me in there at the mercy of a crazy person.  I sincerely thank God that the lease didn't arrive on Saturday afternoon or Monday, when I would have already been moved in.  Just the thought of it makes me shudder.  So I turned down the house (I can't bring myself to describe that conversation).  It was a huge disappointment, to say the least. 

On the same day I got the lease, my realtor called and said that the buyer's FHA loan would not be approved until lead paint all around the house, window trims, door trims, porch had been scraped off, painted and every chip swept up.  It's an old house in an old neighborhood -- all the paint is lead paint.  So the closing was postponed for this coming Wednesday.  The FHA appraiser was here 3 weeks ago, and we just found out.  Apparently the buyer's realtor did not read the appraisal report correctly, and just realized himself what was being asked before the loan could go through.  The buyer was perfectly willing to do it himself after closing, but oh no -- FHA refuses the loan until it's done.  So the painter has to spend at least 3 days doing all that, then FHA wants 2-3 days, then the bank wants 3 days -- the closing will not occur, if all goes well, until late next week, if then. 

So here I sit, boxes all around me, wondering if I'm going to be leaving at all.  Meanwhile, the house is being spruced up, which really makes me whirling mad because if I could have afforded that kind of thing myself, I wouldn't sell in the first place!  Irony can be so ironic sometimes ... (I love that clever phrase!)  Of course, the first thing I corrected, the most important thing, was cancelling my transfer of AT&T.  I knew that Turner Classic Movies and my computer would save my sanity!  On Saturday, I just spent the day recovering.  Today I looked for places to live.  Now I'm here for a while until the next round of moving plans begins.  My son the Marine refers to events like these as FUBAR.  I couldn't say it better.

I don't usually do personal kinds of posts, but had to get it out and let my Faithful Readers and Friends know that I am still here for a while.  I will be making the rounds and catching up on your wonderful blogs, between crying jags -- LOL!  Actually, I am doing extremely well through all this.  I'm going on faith, doing what I can do, looking for another place to live, all the things that must be done.  I have not once gone to bed at noon and pulled the covers over my head.  I think that is quite an accomplishment!


  1. What an unfortunate situation! That really, really sucks, but I'm glad to see you're keeping your head up. Hang in there--I'm sending you oodles of good wishes that things will work out for the best!

  2. So sorry to hear this Becky, if its FUBAR its much worse than SNAFU. I hope you'll only transit through the Twilight Zone.
    Christian (silver screen modiste)

  3. Oh, Beckey, how awful. Seems like moving days are always FUBAR. The day of my closing there was a little thing called the Northeast Blackout. And, as you know, there are a lot of moving parts. Once one thing goes wrong - fuggedaboutit. Good luck, my friend!

  4. My son the Marine refers to events like these as FUBAR.

    And you don't have to necessarily be a Marine to know what that stands for... :-)

    Irony can be so ironic sometimes ... (I love that clever phrase!)

    That does have an oddly familiar ring to it...

    There is a reason, of course, why things happen like this in real life -- they make for entertaining blog posts. Not that I'm unsympathetic about your plight, Beckers...I'm hoping that everything comes out in the wash (and I have known some crazy landlords in my time, but that dame sounds really out there) and it's gratifying to see that you are keeping your sanity in the midst of this moving maelstrom. So keep a stiff upper and when the eventual e-mail arrives with another playlet as performed by the TDOY Mighty Art Players I'm sure you'll keep that all in perspective, too.

  5. At least you haven't lost your sense of humor. :-)

  6. Oy vey! Becky, I'm so sorry you had to postpone your move on account of the deranged would-be landlady (Vinnie and I had one like that during the first year of our marriage, so we can certainly sympathize), but relieved that you were able to get out of that lease. On the bright side, you'll have TCM to cheer yourself up some! :-) This too shall pass, but in the meantime, good luck hugs to you and your kitty from all of us here at Team Bartilucci H.Q., and feel free to vent as needed!

  7. Thanks for all your caring, support, humor -- you guys give me a lot of happiness in your friendship! Things will work out -- they always do eventually. You are a big help in keeping my sense of humor!

  8. Becks, Just for you Joann and I posted Trivia Time late hoping your DSL would be up and running.We can relate I'll have to the your about our FUBAR on drugs moving event, makes yours look like a walk in the park. Trust us when we tell you that you'll find a place thats even better.

  9. Becks,
    In all of our conversations why in the world didn't you tell me you were renting Grey Gardens from Edith Bovier Beale?

    I can't imagine what a weekend you've had and I'm so sorry Missy. You probably want to slap me now for all of the times I told you this was a new beginning and a great way to create new memories.

    If I were closer I would pack my painter pants and fly out there to help you get things into tip top shape. Then there's the fact that I make a mean mojito when the situation warrants one.

    You're a toughy so I know this is just a small road block. Keep your chin up and there's always the fact that you may have written the first couple of pages of a best selling book here. I'll get back to you on genre suggestions. I'm going back and forth between horror and comedy.

    Oh, I have something that might cheer you up! I bet the house doesn't have a creepy basement that scares you to death. Oh, it does and it needs fresh paint too? Okay, I got nothing but love for ya then.

  10. PAUL: I would LOVE to hear your moving horror story...and I am really honored that you saved TT100 for me! You know what a fan I am!

    PAGE: Grey Gardens -- LOL! You're very close, believe me! Bless you for wanting to pack your painter pants...the mojito sounds great! Actually, I DO have a creepy basement now, and I only do laundry during the daytime. What a wimp, huh? But I will NOT have a creepy basement in whatever place I move to. I just refuse to have one!!

  11. Oh, Becky, I'm so sorry you're living in The Twilight Zone. I've lived there for years though, so welcome to the neighborhood. :)

    Thank God the lease arrived when it did.

    Think happy thoughts. Watch old movies. Eat plenty of Halloween candy - you're entitled.

    I've had my own moving horror stories, believe me. If moving were easy everyone would do it.

    Wait, everyone does do it.

    You know what I mean.

  12. Hey, Becky, maybe this will cheer you up a little: I put a YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN joke in one of my SPELLBOUND captions! Yeah, I know it's not as wonderful as having a clean, gorgeous home with a nice sane landlord/landlady, but it's a start! :-) We're rooting for you, hon!


  13. YVETTE: You kill me! Laughing, I mean. I've actually been in the Twilight Zone many times -- glad to have you for a neighbor!

    DORIAN: Thanks, lady. I'll be over real soon!

  14. I'm so sorry to hear about all your house troubles! I know crazy landladies well--I had to share a house with one once, and it wasn't pretty!! Good luck, and there's nothing like TCM to keep you sane!

  15. You are so right, backlots! TCM is the great comforter -- you had to LIVE with a crazy landlady? You poor thing! At least I escaped mine in the nick of time...

  16. Beck, I'm sorry for your huge disappointment, but.. you can count your lucky stars, that you did not move into the crazy ladies house. I think some one upstairs is looking out for you. :)

  17. Despite the mess, Dawn, there is plenty of evidence right now that I DO have help -- thanks so much for adding yours!

  18. Holy cats! That could be either a horror movie or a screwball comedy.

    It's like Richard Lewis says in the TCM tribute that what he learned from watching Buster Keaton was: Buster Keaton in his TCM tribute: "You can take life on life's terms. You don't try to change it. You say, "Hey, come at me. I'm ready for you!"

  19. I'm making myself see it as a screwball comedy that many people have laughed at before! LOL! Good advice from Richard Lewis, CW ... it's either that or lose your mind!