Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Michelle and I have been getting our tax stuff together. The IRS is going to be very suspicious this year when the Houghtons income suspiciously drops about 50% for 2011. I try not to think about it, because thinking about it puts a money value on the whole experience. Practical things really tend to get in the way of things for me, I would rather not deal with them. I like ideas, and concepts, and thoughts, not money, and numbers, and details. Every so often though, I need to be jolted back into reality.
Today, I cleaned up shit, which is a euphemism I use for cleaning up poop. As I mentioned, I’ve started working for my friend, Frank, doing odd jobs. Today, I was cleaning up a rental property he has. You know how you don’t like to clean up when you move places? You know how it is a hassle? You know how it would be easier to just leave in the middle of the night? It turns out people do that. Then, the landlord has to clean it up, or if the landlord is smart he hires a guy in between jobs to do it, because he’ll do anything.
First chore: Clean up dog crap from the garage. The renters weren’t allowed to have a dog, so they just kept it in the garage, where it had free range to poop and pee until it’s heart was content. Then, apparently, the child of the house would throw their toys in it, making a cruel cocktail of stuffed animals and feces. It smelled like, well, shit. Thing I learned: Marley wasn’t the only thing that died at the end of the movie, there was also a guy who had to come in and clean things up.
Second chore: Clean up the big things in the house. This consisted of cereal and other food, as well as an old mattress, and an old box spring. Is there anything grosser than a used mattress? They’re so absorbent, and they always have stains. There is no palatable explanation for a mattress stain. Any liquid involved is something you want no part of. I dragged it outside, as far away from my body as possible, so as not to contract anything. Thing I learned: You can throw up in your mouth from just a thought.
Third chore: Sell the old couch in the living room. Frank put it up on Craigslist and in a couple of hours there were a couple of women in the apartment sitting on it to see “how it sat.” I sat on the other end of the couch and offered foot rubs. Thing I learned: A Hide A Bed hides more than just beds.
Fourth chore: Clean the gutters. I love cleaning gutters actually. I think it’s because I get to be on a roof, there’s an element of danger. Thing I learned: The sugar maple tree was a mistake by God. Yes, I am aware that God is omnipotent and all that, but, come on, that had to be a mistake. If you aren’t aware, sugar maple trees drop golf ball sized spiky balls, that ultimately fall during the winter. They’re like miniature medieval weapons. Unnecessary.
Fifth chore: Rinse the garage out with a hose, then add ammonia, then, vinegar, then an odor blocker. Listen, I’m a dog guy as much as the next, but a dog left in a garage is simply an odor factory. By the end, the garage was sparkling. Thing I learned: Dogs have a dark side.
Sixth chore: Roll the refrigerator out from the wall to clean underneath. Thing I learned: Don’t. Just don’t. Ever.
Honestly, by the end of the day, I felt that I had accomplished something. I could not do this sort of thing everyday, but there is something about accomplishing some work and seeing the end result. Also, I would like to point out that Frank’s properties are nice and clean, it was just this tenant that was a hemorrhoid.