12 January 2011

Preparing to move apparently isn't funny

So the Great Pond Move of 2011 is highly underway. While I sincerely hope to continue updating on at least a weekly basis, I can’t make any promises until I’m sitting my pregnant ass on a settee in the north of England eating a biscuit sometime in the middle of next month. Obviously it’s been a bit hectic around here so I figure I’ll just give you a roundabout update on everything.

The boring things to mention (which makes me wonder why I’m bothering to mention them) is that we’ve put in the 30 day notice on our apartment, set the utilities to cancel at the end of the month, put in our notices to our jobs, and told the post office to start forwarding the mail on January 29th. All that was all fine and dandy until our postal carrier decided to start forwarding our mail immediately making me wonder what my dad is going to think when he gets a Netflix version of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen in 2 weeks time. Of course, having to deal with correcting this error with the post office is a feat in itself but it’s all taken care of now even though I might have a few less hairs on my head because of it.

On the Chloe the cat front, things are also taken care of though it’s not exactly the route we wanted to take. The only person who was willing to watch Chloe for us was my mom, which is fine. What wasn’t fine is that my mom was severely concerned about what would happen to her furniture once a cat with claws moved in. To solve the problem, my mom was planning on constructing a chicken wire type cage in the basement with barely a window for light (and not one Chloe could see out of). I told my mother my concern about Chloe not eating if she didn’t get human contact which my mom responded, “that’s not a problem; Charles (her boyfriend) is down there smoking all the time.” Basically my mom was planning on storing Chloe in a chicken wire type dungeon with someone to torture her by blowing smoke in her general direction for 4 months. We decided to buck up and pay for her going into quarantine. I honestly don’t want to discuss the cost of this option as it pains me too much. All I know is that for 4 months Chloe will reside in Chester in a 4x5 foot enclosure attached to another enclosure that goes outside so she can sit around yelling at birds and we can go and visit her as often as we’d like. Chloe the EuroCat is what we’ve come to call her, by the way.

Please teach this poor cat how to construct a shiv.

I guess the biggest hurdle that we need to get through now is selling all of the things we aren’t taking without getting robbed in the process. We had our first yard sale this past weekend which was mostly clearing out the upstairs office of furniture, books, and clothes. Having a yard sale here is completely different than having a yard sale in the other states that I’ve lived in. First of all, this is Southern California which means that we have a plentiful population of Mexicans. Mexicans are nothing if not thrifty, clever, and have a willingness to do tasks the rest of us are just too damn lazy to take on. If you advertise that you are having a yard sale at 7 AM, by 6:30 AM there will be no less than 10 Hispanics waiting for you to put things out on your yard to sell. You won’t have even a fraction of things out and they will be there bargaining with you. Of course it’s Saturday morning and you’re probably a bit tired and a bit cranky that you have to move heavy things out to the wet grass that early and you’re defenses are down (clever Mexicans!) and suddenly you find yourself selling that brand new tennis racket for $2 even though you fiercely told yourself to sell it for $10. This continues for awhile and you suddenly realize that half your crap is sold and you’ve only made $27.35. Of course you reason with yourself that at least you don’t have to haul it all back in but you can’t help but feel you got cheated a little bit. These are your THINGS after all. The real kicker of it all is that those clever thrifty Mexicans do this every weekend – they go around to all the yard sales and get things dirt cheap – then a day later sell those same things at the weekly swap meet for 5x to 10 x higher than they bought it off of you. Hey! I don’t fault them and I’m certainly not mad about it. Hell, I’d do it too if could ever get my ass out of bed before 5 AM on a Saturday, drive around all morning bargaining with tired yard sale holders, then get my ass out of bed before 5 AM on Sunday only to sit around a hot asphalt parking lot selling other people’s crap all day. I’m too damn lazy to do that – hell, I’m too lazy to use that brand new tennis racket.

After the morning rush, it’s a lot of waiting around for all the people with hangovers to come and look at your things. These are the people that will look for a 20 minutes, talk to you for another 20 minutes, then try to get you to sell that 50 cent book for 25 cents – the only item they are wanting to buy by the way. My favorite guy was this skinny 50 year old white guy with a 70’s mustache who saunters up with a cigarette and a can of Red Bull. He tells us good morning and then states, “I’m so hung-over. Like REALLY hung-over. Do you have any candles?” and proceeds to buy every candle I had there. You just have to wonder what he has going on in his house on the weekends.

All in all, we sold over half our crap and made a little less than $200. We have yet another yard sale to do in two weeks to try to get rid of everything else. Then there are the big items (fridge, dishwasher, washer\dryer, cars) that we are posting on Craigslist. That means a lot of answering emails and scheduling times for people to come and look at your things and hope they actually bother to show up. Like I said, it’s a bit hectic around here and I’m already tired.

FYI - If you are interested in buying a brand new tennis rack for $30, I know a great one for sale at the Orange Country Fairgrounds.


  1. Mexicans!? Who knew! My Mom is like that, but she's not a Mexican, she's just loves a bargain.
    When do you fly over?

  2. My mom loves a bargain too and I wouldn't doubt if she could convince someone to sell her the pants they are wearing for 47 cents.