Picture of the Day
yesterday | today tomorrow

December 22, 2004

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Today the job took me to 308 20th ave S,
a beautifully built 4-bedroom house on
a corner lot. Almost as soon as Marty
and I got there, a man arrived in a new
car, introduced himself as the owner, &
asked if his friend could scavenge some
appliances for his own remodel. There
weren't any, so they left. It turned out
later that he wasn't the owner, but just the
owner's son. Why split hairs? Primogeniture
is not dead. The house is getting knocked
down so the lot can be subdivided and
developed more profitably. In a city, density
is a good thing, but what will replace the
craft and attention that went into this house?
A lot of crappy pressboard boxes have been
going up in a hurry, built to last maybe 30 years
before being landfilled to make way for someone
else's get even richer quicker real estate scheme.

As we were carrying a salvaged window out, an
old timer passed by and said with a smile, Keepin'
it alive! All right! That's the last one we got.
thought we were there fixing it up, when really we
were just picking it over to save the best parts.

When I was a kid, houses would stay boarded
a long time and earn big local reputations for
being haunted. Things happen quicker now, too
fast for ghosts to figure out. I found an unopened
Christmas card in the hall, delivered less than a
week ago. FOR RENT still hung in the window....