The Devil Queen

How my wife and I sold our souls to the Queen Anne Victorian we tried to save.

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Location: Crow Mountain, Arkansas, United States

Synopsis: This is a cautionary tale. A seriously disturbed couple find the charming, old ruin of a Queen Anne Victorian in Russellville, Arkansas, and buy it for $1.00. They tore the roof off, cut it in half, and had it moved to some land they owned sixteen miles away because they didn't know any better. Since then, they have hired and fired contractors, had all of their tools stolen, re-wired, re-plumbed, insulated, and essentially rebuilt the entire house. Their only problem is that after four years it still isn't finished. Now they are tired, broke, and wonder what in the hell it is they've done to themselves. And, it's haunted.
(Last updated on April 3, 2008)

Press: Russellville Courier Article - December 2003, HGTV website article, AP story - October 2006, and Victorian Homes Magazine - February 2008 (link coming soon).
Art: From time to time, I receive requests for my art. If you would like to look at more of my art, go to The Failed Artist. If you would like to buy my art, email me. I am more than happy to answer any questions you might have. Thanks!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Any Day Could Be Your Last

Last night Kenny came over to get paid for the week. It wasn’t a good week for Kenny and Burt (Kenny's cousin and co-worker). Monday Burt’s brother-in-law died. He found out while he was eating breakfast at a restaurant. Someone came over to give their condolences and he had no idea what they were talking about. Kenny and Burt both went to school with him, but Kenny said that he just couldn’t go to another funeral this year. He’d already been to four since January.

And, two days later Burt’s wife’s grandfather died.

Kenny said that there are four girls in the sixth grade at his sons’ school that lost their fathers this year. All of them were in the 30’s and died unexpectedly from heart attacks or aneurisms. Kenny looked pretty freaked out about it, and I can’t say that I blame him.

I must admit that I typically assume that I’ll live forever. Well, not really, but at least until I’m crotchety, evil, and impotent in my mid-to-late 80’s. Genetically, this is probable – living till I’m 80 something. My grandparents were all pretty nice folks, the evil and everything else is all me and my itchy fears. That gives me another 50 years or so to really screw my life up, and I’m looking forward to at least three hours of it.

Seriously though, the truth is there are no guarantees. So, have a good weekend, do something nice for someone (like your mom), and don’t take unimportant things too seriously (like my first two years of college), it could be your last day (not so sound like too much of a hypocrite, I’ll admit that I probably need to remember this more than most).

Even though it was a turbulent week and he was working solo for most of it, Kenny got a lot finished. Here are some pictures:

This is Gideon's room sans the 100 years of moldy, old wallpaper.

Yeah, I know. You're thinking, "Okay, it's a door. So what?" Well, if you tried closing it two days ago, there would have been a 2 inch gap between the door and the left side of the jamb. The was is really messed up from age, abuse, and the move. Now, the door and its trim look good and function like they should.

Kenny has started laying 1/4" plywood in preparation for the yet-to-materialize, new wood floor for the main hall. We want to run the new floor length-wise like the original floor, so we need the plywood to shore it up.

We're chasing two leads on flooring. We're hoping to get 300 square feet for less than $1,000. Wish us luck.


Blogger Tarr said...

Tarr and I will wave in your direction as we pass through Atkins in the morning on the way to Boxley. And, given the substance of your post, we will be cautious of the gut-wagons careening down highway 21 filled with chicken feet and beaks and other slop.

Heck of a way to die.

I have an excellent lead on some hardwood flooring. Let me know if you need it. (It is an old college buddy of yourn).

3:41 PM  
Blogger John said...

Thanks for waving. If you have a lead, please pass it on. The two we're chasing at the moment aren't looking too promising. Thanks!

2:02 PM  
Blogger Tarr said...

I emailed him and will let you know. He's also had some incredible luck with building supply auctions -some more than others. So I asked him about the one (mentioned in the dem-gaz) next Saturday in Van Buren.

2:58 PM  
Blogger John said...

Tarr, Thanks!!!

12:41 PM  

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