Monday, July 2, 2007

Just 'cause you've got CASH doesn't mean you've got CLASS

We were supposed to go to Hunter's rugby game Saturday, but his feet were hurting him, or so he claimed. I suppose if I'd had half the skin of both feet frozen with liquid nitrogen (warts, don't ya know?), I might be in a little pain, too. I also might have believed him a bit more had it not been over a week since he'd had it done. But I digress... I'll be honest--I didn't want to go sit outside with no shade for 2 hours in almost 100 degree heat. I hate summer. It sucks. So anyway, seeing as how the rugby game was out of the question, Kenin got the wild idea to go look at garage sales and see if anyone had any good junk they wanted to get rid of. Junk that might match our junk, as it were. So off we went, out into the nasty summer sun. And heat. Did I mention I really don't like the summer?

On our foray into the various areas of Highlands Ranch, I discovered that the $250,000 house that I'm renting in is in the slums of Highlands Ranch. I pay well over $1,000 a month for rent, but it's the HR slum. Not the Denver slum by any means, but most certainly the Highlands Ranch slum. But then, as we followed the signs for a garage sale into a neighborhood that was very obviously NOT a slum, I panted like a dog in heat (because it was really, really hot) and even got a little excited that someone in a non-slum area of Highlands Ranch was having an ESTATE SALE and I might be able to get some of their cast off junk to go with my junk and then maybe I wouldn't be living in a SLUM any longer because I finally had some non-slum stuff! And then I was disappointed.

Picture if you will, a beautifully modern, yet classical, 6,000 square foot home. It's got an incredibly manicured lawn leading to a wide row of brick steps that proceed to the front door. You walk into a large marble-floored entry, a curved staircase standing before you. To the right, a formal living room, to the left, a wet bar. You walk through the living room (which, BTW, is almost as large as the footprint to my entire house), around the corner and into the dining room where you see a beautiful antique dining table. Past the dining room you see a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances and beyond that the marble floors continue into what in more modest homes might be called the family room. Looking through the french doors, you can see a built-in outdoor fireplace, a fountain, and a small pond. As you exit the family room with the marble accented fireplace and built in bookcases, you can go downstairs to the library or the fully appointed mother-in-law suite, or you could go up the wide, curving staircase to the second floor. If you chose to go to the second floor and to the right, you'd find a master suite, complete with bidet, that I swear is bigger than the entire second floor of my house. If you went to the left, you'd find 3 more bedrooms, each larger than any bedroom I personally have ever had.

Now that you have this beautiful home in your head, imagine it filled with junk. This place was really rockin', until you saw the crap everywhere. Where you might see a nice turkish rug, there was an old, stained, half-bare thing. The carpet upstairs was old, worn out, stained, and faded and the walls hadn't been painted since the house was built, over 10 years earlier. The lamps in the living room and family room were the kind from the 1970's (and I know... I was there) that hung from the ceiling with the cords hanging down. The TV in the living room was an early 1980's model, and there were old broken children's toys lying all around. The antique dining table I mentioned earlier? It was missing a leg, and someone had carved their name into the top of it. The library in the basement had the most gaudy 18th century reproduction light fixtures (maybe it was 19th century, I don't know for sure, but it was UGLY) and the mother-in-law suite had no less than 6 very large dead spiders in the tub. The upstairs was just as nasty. These people were even trying to sell half used bath and body products! And I don't mean stuff from Bath & Body Works, I mean half used no name brand crap. (Just for the record, it's just nasty to try to pass off (and want them to BUY IT, no less!) used personal hygiene products. Don't do it, no matter how broke you are.) I won't go into the old, broken kids toys in the back yard, or how the pond was green with scum and that there was almost certainly a mosquito sex orgy happening before our very eyes. All I know for sure is that you know their neighbors were having a party the day those folks moved out.

I guess the biggest and most important thing that I learned on my excursion was that just because you have a big ass house in a nice ass neighborhood, you still can't buy class. But you ought to try.

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