I Am Homeless

The building I called “home” for the past half decade is now more properly called “sold”.  This past weekend, contracts were signed, funds were exchanged, and Important Things were notarized.  In the  midst of the complete collapse of the housing market, I managed to sell my home at about a $9000 profit — WITHOUT any help from a realtor.

Suck on THAT, Re/Max.

Way back when in 1997, I was the first among my circle of friends to leave my hometown and dive headfirst into a new, unknown city with no safety net.  In 1999, I was the first among my new circle of friends to get a Cool Downtown Apartment (very important when you’re 23).  In 2004, I was the first among my circle of friends to do The Responsible Adult Thing and buy a house.  And now, in 2010, I am the first among my circle of friends to be, technically speaking, without a home.

The buyer and I agreed that I would maintain occupancy through January, thus giving me time to search for a new place to live (another post on this is coming up).  It’s just that, legally, I no longer own this house.  And my interests are not represented in any rental lease anywhere.

So in all but the most lenient use of the phrase, I currently do not have a home.

It’s great because it’s forcing me to do what I’ve been putting off since moving out of Pennswood back in the fall of ’99:  Go through my stuff.

I have boxes I haven’t opened since I moved out of Pennswood.  During my stay in Executive House I added some more boxes.  And in the last five years here, I’ve added even more stuff (unfortunately, not in boxes).  As I’m going through all this stuff, I can’t believe a lot of what I’m finding.  I don’t know why I ever thought saving, for example, a 2002 receipt for an oil change at Jiffy Lube would be a good idea.  Some choices are more difficult; exactly how much sentimental value do I need to attach to 1998?  How about 2008?

My VM/SP credential card (mainframe logon) from Mansfield circa 1993?  Yeah, that’s gone.

My paystub from my college years when I worked at a Pilot travel center, showing a takehome pay of $197 after taxes for 42 hours’ worth of work?  Yeah, that’s actually getting framed.

The black bonded leather sofa & loveseat that I thought looked AWESOME when I was 24?  Already gone by way of the “free” section on Craigslist.

I thought I would make one, maybe two trips to Goodwill.  Thus far I’ve gone to Goodwill three times and Salvation Army twice, and I have another bin ready to go.  My shredder has cranked out three lawn-sized trash bags of confetti.  My vintage computer collection — the Atari 800, the Commodore 64 & 128, the Coleco Adam, and all their brethren in 80s technology — is heading off to climate-controlled storage.  Every book comes along for the ride, but every DVD is getting dumped to my personal fileserver.

I’m making exactly three moving trips with my car.  Anything left over goes to the curb.

I even considered parting ways with my DCM KX-12 speakers.  They’re old-school heavy-duty full-cabinet full-throttle full-rock monsters that weigh approximately 4000 pounds each.  The cabinets are indestructible and they stand about four feet off the floor.  These speakers are equally at home powering through a college house party as they are quietly playing late-night downtempo.  They sound great no matter what you play or how you drive them.  And despite all the changes these past ten years have brought, they’ve been there for me without failure.

I decided good speakers deserve trip #3 all to themselves.

There’s nothing currently in the sub-$125k market in midtown condos that appeals to me right now, so I’m spending this week going apartment hunting.  A lot has changed since I last looked eleven years ago.  I’m signing a lease this weekend and, with luck, being completely moved by the 25th. If you have an apartment in downtown or midtown Harrisburg that you’re looking rent out, drop me a line.

2 thoughts on “I Am Homeless”

  1. Yup. The only furniture I’m retaining is my Amazing Seven-Foot Computer Desk and two Ikea bookcases. After posting I realized I will have to rent a truck, but today my boss offered to let me borrow his pickup – even better.

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