I’m still kind of waiting for the “joys of home ownership” bill of goods that I kept hearing about growing-up. Having the shrewd financial foresight (ladies and gentlemen, sarcasm) to not join the home buyer’s parade until 2005, I’ve yet to see anything remotely resembling appreciation in value on either of the two homes I’ve owned. But this is not the “sell when Gus buys and buy when Gus sells” investment strategy post (though history strongly suggests that you would make a bloody fortune following that advice, so it’s undoubtedly the post of far greater interest to you… you greedy bastard… wanting to cash-in on my wealth-amassing ineptitude… and laughing at prospect… but I digress).
Sure the home is “yours” (though that is somewhat flawed reasoning, and more likely just plain delusional, as long as you’re shelling out for a mortgage to an entity that owns a greater percentage of your house than you do) and you can do what you want to it without asking (though I imagine the whole reason that rental security deposits came into being was because many people just do what they want without asking regardless of ownership status… but I digress). And there’s something about plunking down property taxes that provides and extra sense of entitlement to yell at the damn neighbor kids, complain endlessly about city services, look down on renters as some kind of unwashed, unkempt, uncouth underclass, and hold the neighboring house with car parts and/or angel statuettes in the front yard in utter contempt. But this is not the “if I can see the neighbors, they’re too damn close” post either.
Those grousing opportunities are modest and momentary joys at best, and quickly obliterated by the realization that you purchased something that is in a natural and eternal state of decay and decomposition, and requires frequent upkeep and repair. There’s always something, and if you think for a moment there isn’t, then it’s something you haven’t found yet, which is even worse. Yet, believe it or not, this also isn’t the “my house is falling apart before my eyes, and I can’t find a handyman whose hands work on something other than emptying my wallet” post.
Which of course now finds you asking, “what fricken post is this then?”
Truth be told, I’m no longer sure, because that animated gopher gif is really distracting and making it even harder than usual to hold a cohesive thought. Most of my energy is instead going to keeping the associated Kenny Loggins song from permeating my noggin and ruining my evening. But no worries, I’m alright (crap!).
I really shouldn’t have placed the image before I started writing, hindsight being 20-20 and all that. Still, I maintain that had I simply titled the post “Gopher Broke” as I wanted to do at the outset, I could have managed to stay on point. But my buddy Rufus, the aspiring writer (formerly Rufus the comedian, but he’s going through some kind of premature mid life crisis, possibly from prematurely moving to Florida, or maybe he’s just been called “Mini Mencia” one too many times, but whatever the reason, he now fancies himself the Mexican Ernest Hemingway, which I suppose should make his pen name Ernesto Jaimengway) has threatened to disavow the blog if I keep inserting puns… and he pretty much accounts for my blog’s entire distribution… so I caved… and now look where it has gotten us… but I digress
This post was supposed to be about my 5+ year battle with pocket gophers in my yard, but all you really need to know is that they’re winning, and out-witting me at pretty much every turn. In all that time, employing all the varmint-killing weaponry Home Depot can enable me to muster, I’ve only recorded one confirmed kill, which is the same number my college roommate Chris logged in one weekend spent on a lawn chair in our front yard with a case of beer and a pellet gun (ahhh, college… a place for fun, a place for knowledge!). To make matters worse, the gopher I did manage to corner and extinguish one night with a golf club (God knows golf clubs are useless to me on the golf course) didn’t leave this world without an epic moment of defiance in the face of certain death (standing on his hind legs, arms raised, and snarling at me), that made sure I knew, that he knew, he had far more stones (or cajones, if you’re a fan of Ernesto Jaimengway’s work) than I.
I hate gophers. That’s really all I had to say.