for a while over this past Christmas break the PSE and i were going house-hunting crazy.
we've decided that it is our goal to buy a house before the close of 2017, even though neither of us have jobs and wouldn't qualify for a mortgage loan even if the Pope would co-sign.
we haven't had money coming in in months and we've just been living off of our savings but, fuck it, it's important to set goals, so let's buy a house before the end of 2017, why not?
this isn't the first year the PSE and i have set a goal to buy a house, Home-Ownership 2014, 2015 and 2016 have all come and gone, but this year will really be the year, i just know it.
or maybe it won't.
likely it won't.

anyways, the PSE and i looked at no less then a half-dozen different houses over Christmas break.
all in the $60-75,000 range.
because we don't qualify for a mortgage because we don't have jobs, we would have to buy a house with cash.
we only have $35,000 in savings and $20,000 in checking, but, i figure we could negotiate a little off of the asking price and maybe we could put the balance on credit cards?
i don't actually think we can do that, but when we first started looking we were optimistic.
anyways, of all the shitty houses we saw in Fort Worth in that price range, there wasn't one we thought was worth the money.
what the PSE and i think $55,000 should get us and what the Fort Worth housing market apparently thinks it should get us are two different things.
after a while my second semester of Law School started up again and i had to set this masturbatory exercise aside to focus on my studies.
until two Wednesdays ago when i came out of my office/closet to find the PSE looking at a house on the Zillow.
goddammit, i guess we're gonna have to take up with this fool's errand again.

i don't know why the PSE was looking at houses on the Zillow.
i can only assume it to be because she spends a lot of time with nothing to do while i am overrun with my legal studies and there are only so many things you can do on the internet if you don't have a Face Book or an Instagram or like to masturbate on webcam with strangers.
i assume that the PSE was just browsing, not taking the endeavor too seriously, but when i came out and saw what she was doing i seized on it, mostly as an excuse to be distracted from my readings for Contracts, which were boring.
i looked at the house she had pulled up and decided “okay! let's buy this one!”
the house in question was a three bedroom, one and a half bath little fella listed for $65,000.
it was located in the Lake Comp section of Fort Worth, which is historically Black.
there was a number for the listing agent so i called, but nobody answered so i left a message.
but, i was antsy, the thing about cheep real estate is that you've got to move quick, so i suggested that the PSE and i drive over to the house to look at it.
sometimes we can disinterest ourselves in a house just by looking at it in real life.

it was a beautiful day out two Wednesdays ago and i was happy just to get out of the house.
we took the Monster and drive four minutes down the street into Lake Como.
sure enough, yeah, this was a Historically Black neighborhood.
once we crossed the bridge over the lake, we were greeted by no less then four Baptist churches in various states of repair.
outside of one of them, in the corner of an empty parking lot, facing the street sat a Black man in his mid-forties in a lawn chair, reading a big Bible at the empty street before him.
out loud and emphatically.
the PSE and i slowed down to hear him screaming and he turned his attention to us, hollering his Bible verse at our taillights as we cruised past.
the house we were looking to buy was about two blocks up.

we got to the house around 5:00pm, as all the historically-Black people were returning to their historically-Black houses from their historically-Black jobs.
little historically-Black children were riding razor scooters up and down the historically-Black street, screaming the way children [and Blacks] will do.
outside the little house was a fore-sale sign with a different phone number so i called that one up and this time somebody answered.
a hungry real-estate agent, a subordinate of the first person i tried to call, answered the phone and said he could be over to show us the house in ten minutes.
the PSE and i walked Monster around the neighborhood in the mean time, down the alley behind the house.
things did not look good.

ten minutes later the house's listing agent came to let us into the house.
he got the door open easy enough but then had trouble closing it. it would not latch shut.
in a historically-Black neighborhood like this, you're gonna want a door that closes.
inside the house we found a mess.
apparently some guy bought it a year or so ago with the intention of renovating it but he ran out of money midway through.
everything looks hastily-put together and slipshod.
there was a newly-installed air-conditioning unit [which is one of the reasons the house piqued our interest] but the light switches were dangling out of the walls by their wiring.
when i tried to turn on a living room light i gave myself a little shock.
and sure, maybe this guy ran out of money, but light covers are $2 a piece at the Home Depot. what the fuck?
the rest of the small house was similarly disheveled.
the guy tried to mask his half-renovated kitchen in which he tore down a wall and replaced it with a wooden pier, by lining one side with brick to make it look like a hipster loft in Brooklyn somewhere, but the brick was really just a sheet of mock-brick plastic hung on the wall with tack so this guy wasn't fooling anyone.
the bedrooms were small, one bathroom was missing a bathtub, just a bathtub-sized hole where a shower had been set up and the second bathroom's toilet was wedged right up against the wall in front of it so that if you were going to sit down to shit, you would have to straddle it like a horse.
the faux-wood laminated flooring was peeling up, exposing concrete below and every single thin, cracked, broken window would need to be replaced.
most alarming, the roof looked like it would need to be replaced before it rotted away.
nevertheless, despite all the obvious problems this money-pit had to offer, after we thanked the listing agent and went on our way, it was the very first time the PSE didn't immediately say it was a pass.
odds are we won't buy the house, i don't want to buy the house, but if the PSE wanted to then, sure, why not, fuck it?
all we have to lose is $55,000.00

i told the listing agent to send me an e-mail with the seller's disclosures of everything he knows to be wrong with the place.
that's the second step in the long list of steps between finding a house to look at on Zillow and moving in.
it's been over a week now and we haven't heard back from the guy.
the PSE and i could have called him if we cared enough, but we don't and that's probably for the best.
what little enthusiasm we had for this shabby shithole in this historically-Black neighborhood has passed.
you missed your moment, listing agent, slim as it was.

//[ab irato ad astra]

September 2017

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