As I start this post, it’s 1:33 pm on October 7, 2021, so this post has been on hold for quite some time. It’s not quite the type of post I publish here, but screw it.
There are still some stories trickling in regarding the recent death of comedian, Norm MacDonald, and the specific message of one story sent me down an internet rabbit hole. I asked myself, “During my lifetime, what was the most significant local celebrity death for the Washington, DC area?” My answer: Glen Brenner, sportscaster with WUSA (a CBS affiliate).
On this day 30 years ago, January 14, 1992, DC lost the most popular broadcaster in the area at the time. Glen died of a brain tumor at only 44 years old. He had run the Marine Corps Marathon just over two months prior, fell ill, and never really recovered.
It took about a week for local stations to stop covering the story, with networks interviewing broadcasters from rival networks. I remember his best friend (though I forget his name; Gordon, maybe, but not Gordon Peterson) then on the ABC affiliate, breaking down in tears as he said a public, posthumous goodbye. Steve Buckhantz of the relatively new Channel 5 (not yet a Fox affiliate) had the last one I saw in which he said (paraphrasing from memory), “This will probably be the last we discuss this on air, but it’s unlikely we’ll ever forget him.” I certainly never did. I remember some of his broadcasts. When he reported that the Boston Marathon demanded Rosie Ruiz return her medal for having cheated to win it, he said matter-of-factly (paraphrasing), “in a great showing of humility and sportsmanship, she said . . . no.”
I don’t think his humor would translate 100% into today’s world, but some of it was timeless, and even as a child in the late 70s, I got the jokes.
I don’t want to drag things down, nor do I like airing dirty laundry, so I’m going to give you a quick, unsupported description of me, then move on to the funny part.
I had an exceptionally rough childhood, and my emotional conditioning had me tolerating a lot of shit from people. Of course, even my mind could handle only so much, so eventually I’d snap (which was always disastrous), but for the most part, everything was bottled up until it exploded. As an adult, I still am very much that way but not nearly as bad. I’m more prone to snap at people than I was, but my preferred method remains to simply cut them out of my life.
Enough of that.
Now here’s the context for what happened recently. I bought a house. I shopped for homeowners’ insurance, which included my current auto insurance and renter’s insurance carrier (Farmers). I found a much better deal from another carrier (State Auto, A- rating) with the same coverage, so I decided to go with them. However, when I asked the agent for a quote on car insurance, he inexplicably went silent. I didn’t have time for any of this shit. I didn’t have time to haggle, and I wanted everything cleared up quickly. The time to give me an insurance quote had passed; I wasn’t going to go back and forth between them. So, I decided to go with State Auto for homeowner’s insurance and stay with Farmers for car insurance.
My Farmers agent wasn’t happy. He wouldn’t take no for an answer. After telling him how much of an ass he was being several times over, I stopped responding to his emails. He eventually changed his tone and acted as if he’d accepted reality, agreeing to provide only car insurance. However, he tried to manipulate me by insisting he needed information about my new homeowner’s policy to cancel my renter’s insurance. Why? Because he wanted to compare quotes. In other words, he hadn’t given up yet, and as I said, the time for quotes had passed. (Besides, his rates were almost twice the rates others were charging. Seriously. $1600/year v. $880/year for car insurance, with a lower consumer rating. What was I thinking?) His behavior was ridiculous on its face, and it gets worse. He charged me a renter’s insurance premium on the day after he knew I moved out. This could get him into a lot of trouble with the Maryland Insurance Administration. You can’t charge a premium for insurance that’s unnecessary or useless. The fact that he’s doing all of this to me, both an attorney and insurance agent, is risky. But hey, no need to ruin the idiot’s life. I just want him out of my hair.
Now onto the funny.
He sent an exceptionally rude email that a vendor should never send to a client, which made me instantly decide to get car insurance from another carrier that night. Here’s the only important excerpt from the email:
You seem incredulous. The information in your e-mail below is ostensible.
He then shifted the goalposts so that he could pretend to back up those sentences. When I got home, I got a new car insurance policy with Progressive, cancelled my policy with him by going through Farmers corporate, and sent him this email.
Well, you’ll never have to remonstrate against my incredulous, ostensible, insolence again. I’ve abrogated the policies.
And that’s how I roll. I have no time for bullshit, and I also own a thesaurus. Do what you’re supposed to do or leave me alone.
Why progressive? Because who doesn’t love Mittens?
Friday, it was legally official. Today, it’s logistically official. The movers came and moved in all the big stuff. I’m 100% in my new house.
A few points:
Why didn’t anyone tell me I’d be spending so much time at Home Depot? I guess my Realtor did by implication. Among other things, he (Jeff Ganz, Century 21 Real Estate) gave me a $100 gift card to Home Depot, but that wasn’t blunt enough for a dolt like me.
I’ve lived a rather simple life; one without things like cabinets. For the past 8-1/2 years, do you know where my frying pan was stored? On the stove. When I wasn’t using it, I simply moved it to the back burner that I never used. Now I can put it away. Fortunately, my childhood memories told me that there’s often a drawer at the bottom of the oven for that sort of thing, so I have that covered, but you can imagine how little I have covered.
It doesn’t help that I have so much cabinet space that trying to store things is like perusing a Cheesecake Factory menu. If anyone would like to come over and organize everything, please do. I could use a nap anyway. Wake me up when you’re finished.
I’m happy to say that a handful of people have offered me free furniture, one of them more than the others. This will look less like a wasteland and more like a home soon enough.
Yes, I own a frying pan.
If you have a better word for it than “logistical,” start your own blog.
Sundays now are lazy days for me. I either post something silly or other people’s work. Usually both. Today, it’s a video on 25 tips for home improvement. Having just bought my first house, I’m on a house-related run.
Some of this is obvious/lame, but as a new homeowner, there seem to be some good ideas in here. If you have a better video, please let me know.
I’ve started moving boxes in today, but the movers move the big stuff on Tuesday. That’s when I’ll actually start living there. But tonight, I’m going to do something there I haven’t done in about 7 years: Order food delivery. It just wasn’t convenient where I was. EDIT: That plan failed. Over an hour for delivery? I’ll pass.
Stone Ridge is rated A+ for livability. I’ll probably bring down their rating.
I’m scheduled to close on my first home this Friday. I’m really happy to finally own my own home, but I’m not as excited (or nervous) about it as the average buyer because I work in the industry. Ho-hum. Happens everyday. You might find it odd that, as an attorney that focuses almost entirely on real estate law nowadays, has never owned a home. I can explain it with one simple fact about me:
I’ve been a party to a month-to-month lease for the last 8-1/2 years.
You see, I love to game the system when it comes to my commute. My best commute was from 1997-1998, when I was in law school. I lived in Presidential Towers, and my commute consisted of walking to the other side of the intersection of Madison and Clinton to the Citibank Building (now known as Accenture Tower apparently). When I moved to McLean in 2013, it was because I was working in Tysons Corner, which was about 1-1/2 miles from where I lived. When I took a job in Rockville, MD two years later, McLean represented the closest place to live that was still in Virginia. I wasn’t going back to Maryland.
Because I don’t change things up frequently, I stayed in both of those jobs far longer than I should have, which in turn meant I stayed where I was in McLean. However, intellectually-speaking, I knew I was at each of these places too long, so I wanted to stay flexible so that I could relocate on a dime. I’ve been working for my current employer since April 1, 2020, and am only now comfortable doubling down and buying a house based on where I’m working. Of course, buying a house is harder than finding an apartment, so I’m not right down the street, but my commute has been cut down to about 1/3 of what it is currently. That’s pretty good considering I was facing a seller’s market. (Stone Ridge is rated A+ for livability.)
But the point is this: It’s in my nature to always keep my options open but never actually exercise them.