Greener Grass

On my meanderings, I see people with binoculars watching birds. Others carry cameras to capture the perfect picture. I am an expert at spotting greener grass. I envied fellow students who did not need braces on their teeth. I fought so hard against metal in my mouth that my parents relented and I now envy people without crooked teeth. I hated school until my final graduation forced me to get a job. I never wanted to enter a hospital, even as a visitor, until my appendix burst and I was convulsing on the floor and begging my wife Mollie to drive me to the Emergency Room. Going to Church seemed like a drag until mine locked me out at the beginning of the Coronavirus Pandemic.

What have I learned? Absolutely nothing. This week the annual property value notices arrived. Apparently oil has been discovered under our home because our property appraisal increased 40.9% in just one year. If an appraiser had actually been anywhere near our property, we would have been reported to authorities for flaunting code violations. For 24 years, we have been on the “deferred maintenance” plan. That term provides an aura of legitimacy to our criminal negligence. My pal Herb is admired for living without television. Mollie and I should get credit for living without a working stove. Our gutters function only as storage units for badminton shuttlecocks. The carpet that came with the house has changed color.

The year we turned 30, we lived in a small rental home in a neighbor’s backyard with two young children and one bathroom. I hated listening to co-workers complaining about high property taxes. Nice problem to have I thought. On paper I am now a wealthy homeowner but the greener grass is everywhere except in my backyard.

53 thoughts on “Greener Grass

  1. County upped my property value for tax increase too and my “fixed mortgage” goes up now as taxes part of payment and homer owner’s insurance increased too. It’s a good thing I have to drive only about 100 miles a week for everything. Being on fixed income is becoming more and more frightening. I have gutter covers so no problem there but the leaves still find a way to sneak in onto my floors and carpet and love the bottoms of my shoes too.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Greener grass, indeed. Anita and I lived in a long-stay hotel for the first month of our marriage as our apartment complex we signed up for did not have a departure on time! Everything we owned fit in boxes in our one room with a kitchenette. We moved with a small U-Haul behind our Camry a year and a half later. Now it would take a semi to just empty my basement of all my junk, much of what has not been used in 31 years!!

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    1. Yeah, I just posted that to remind myself to take the good. But I am a little amused that I get a huge increase in taxes right now while the house will likely be sold after I die and others will reap all the benefits of the increased value.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Life isn’t really what we think it should be and what it is often resembles an illusion. I think practical and theoretical will never see eye to eye. Maybe you could tap into that oil. And green grass is so twentieth century. How about some neon or fluorescent. Now that could stand out. Haha. Great expressing, Geoff! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. And here I thought heavy metal had something to do with music. Who knew that some people pay significant sums of money so that orthodontists can have greener grass?

    Liked by 2 people

  5. There is a hole in my countertop where a cooktop should be. I dropped frozen tamales on it and it shattered. I have a nice DIY cover for it. But… now the cover covers the hole. I bought a $14 hot plate at Walmart. What the county says my house is worth and living in it like a college kid with a one burner are worlds apart. My backyard is where two Irish setters manufacture used dog food and mud. However the front yard… nah. Another story.

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  6. Our house doubled in value, though not (yet) on the tax form. I can’t believe the craziness!

    I’ve heard you can contest the valuation if you think they’re in error if that helps you.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. First, I appreciate the high honor of being called your pal, almost as much as being called Uncle Herb. Now, since I was in Manitou Springs over the weekend I realize you could mean a different Herb entirely, but I like to think not. Our house payment went up as well and it’s no great shakes to look at, either. My wife worries when I get on a ladder to look at the gutters, let alone clean the things.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I got the plans for a gutter blaster made out of inexpensive PVC that screws on a garden hose. Two stories? No prob. Just more PVC. The trick is make sure you’re ahead of it or it’s ahead of you because standing under it while it semi pressure washes funk out of your gutter is not a good idea. Don’t ask me how I know that.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. No, I am no longer accepting other friends named Herb, so there will be no confusion. I am embarrassed to admit that I switched to “Pal” only because I thought it was a wonderful alliteration for “Hal.” Luckily, I proofread my post because I have a whole week to work on it. I was shocked and relieved to remember that your name is “Herb” because I did not want to ask you to change your name to “Hal.”

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Gutters filled with shuttlecocks? Certainly every bowling team’s nightmare. 😳 (Our team’s been down in the dumps lately, but wait until I tell them how much greener things are looking for us now, in comparison!)

    Liked by 2 people

      1. So true. And thank you for pointing this out since you have inspired me to write a story “battle for weed” tonight. I am talking about real weed that grows on river banks. Not its derivative meaning.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I don’t know this word, “shuttlecocks”, although I’ve played badminton a lot. LOL. In many other languages, it is simply called badminton feather ball to give people a hint what it really is and won’t burden people with more vocabulary, but English has its unique way of dealing with language issues. My memory is getting bad now and I don’t know how long those English words will hold on to my brain cells. LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

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