Tag: House

Day 999: Buh-Bye, So Long and Hallelujah

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It’s a completely valid question.

For the past 50 or so days I have been fielding one question more often than most: what am I going to do for Day 1000? Will the final kilograph reflect upon the 999 that came before, like some extended clip show of my greatest guffaws and most aww-rending moments? Will I spend my final entry in closing-credits mode, thanking those who have made this all possible and put up with my considerable dearth of free time over the last 2 years and almost 9 months?

In short… no. While my original intent was to meander down that self-serving footpath for my final article, I decided that I would only do so if I could cite the Wikipedia page that had been created about me – as it turns out, that doesn’t exist yet.

In order to figure out my final missive, I felt I should turn to the moulder of my wisdom, the sage oracle who has helped to shape my morality, my perception, and even my understanding of the world: television. I have experienced the highs and lows of series finales – certainly at least one of them could illuminate the road to a poignant, entertaining, and (most of all) worthy coda to this monstrous undertaking.

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My first option is the beloved trope of bringing back a classic character for the finale. In my case I could introduce a surprise cameo by Yoko Ono, Craig David, Mary Nissenson, or if I really want to stretch to my roots, Phineas Gage. I could style the entire piece in a blend of haiku, musical theatre and secret code (did anyone ever figure that one out?). It sounds trite and cliché, but that’s always a place to start, isn’t it? Read more…

Day 853: Flipping The Bird At Your Neighbors And Calling It Home

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There are many reasons why one would construct a house. You might be tearing down an old dilapidated monstrosity, or maybe you’re breaking fresh ground that was once farmland – doing your part to fly the banner of urban sprawl. Perhaps you’re on estate land that has been re-zoned and you’re claiming their little chunk of suburban paradise. Then again, sometimes a home can be built purely on spite.

Yes, spite. That frazzle-haired, conch-kneed crone, wagging her accusatory walking stick with a crotchety shimmy at her mortal foes. This wicked spinster has inspired dozens of domiciles over the past 300 years – fully inhabitable and architecturally-sound testaments to the power of passive-aggression. A spite house might block a view or access to sunlight. It could barricade a quick passage or spoil an idyllic street. One thing it always does is send a message.

A spite house is more effective than a sign and more enduring than a malicious prank. It delivers far more essence of fuck-you than a punch to the jawline, and without the threat of incarceration. Have a beef with your neighbor? Check your local building codes and see if you can get away with something like this.

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No one knows why Thomas Wood built this strange house configuration on Orne Street in Marblehead, Massachusetts. It could be that he hated the plot of land he had been allotted, nudged right against a fork in the road. Some say he hated his brother and the two lived side by side without speaking to one another. This strange residence – now 298 years old – still stands and is still occupied, presumably by people who don’t possess such a loathing of their neighbors. It’s now a tourist attraction known as the Marblehead Spite House. Read more…