The Devil Queen

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

My Photo
Name:
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!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

It's A Disaster

[I found this draft post today; it was supposed to have gone up a couple of weeks ago, so sorry if it's dated. It should have gone just before or after this one.]

See, it’s not just me who’s become disillusioned with the whole process.

The problem with spending a lot of time navel-gazing about your house, your life, and your universe, is that eventually you start thinking that everything relates to you. I know, very narcissistic. Song lyrics are the worst. What started as a midnight raid on the last of the Christmas Krumkake with a glass of milk ends up with you cackling like the Mad Hatter in with a mouth full of cookies because you have found the theme song to your home improvement efforts:

"It's a disaster
It's an incredible mess
But it's all we've got now
Yeah it's all we got
Howling with laughter, panic
alarm, and distress
But it's all we've got now
Yeah it's all we got"

Fortunately (?), no one was home at the time.

While I'm on the topic of the many moods of home improvement, I can’t help but wonder if there is a cyclic timeline/pattern that all home improvement projects move through. Something like this maybe?

Year 1: Euphoria of acquiring said house and beginning work with naïve gusto.

Year 2: Saddled with the realization that this is going to be much harder than you anticipated, you still manage to dig-in and keep working hard. On the upside, if you haven’t accidentally killed yourself, your skill level should be steadily improving at this point. It’s definitely a small bonus, no?

Year 3: You can feel the cosmic screws tightening on you. You work harder out of a sense of desperation and secretly begin wondering if this really was such a good idea.

Year 4: You are so fucked and you know it. You might manage one last desperate push to end it all, but chances are you fail. If you have any luck, the house is mortgaged and you have enough money to make your monthly payment. If not, foreclosure might be a blessing.

Year 5: If you’ve made it this far, you’ve abandoned belief in lists, plans, budgets, or organized progress at any strategic level. To save you sanity, you’ve come to embrace the beauty of tactical victories. If you can make yourself tackle one tiny project at a time ad infinitum, you may finish. Self-medication or prescription drugs may be necessary to maintain you calm.

Year 6: You list the house for sale whether it’s finish or not. Or, you resign yourself to the fact that you are work not on a home but a mausoleum. The house will never be finished and you will die here. And, you are okay with this.

Year 7: Success is not an option. You move on with your life. Hopefully this involves a substantial inheritance, winning the lottery, and a book or movie deal. Bugger the house.

Some of you have been at this old house, DIY thing a lot longer than me. What do you think? Does this sound right to you?

Labels: , ,

14 Comments:

Anonymous Kate H. said...

Look at it this way: You can sing this plaint because you've actually been working on your old house, unlike some of us shatter-brained, shiftless louts. You didn't expect it to get itself done by magic-- and by gum, you were right!

BTW-- "The Mad Hater." That's a great Freudian slip. Or was it?

2:29 PM  
Blogger Derek said...

We're entering year 4, and it seems to be getting better. We have all the tools and the know how, and we're starting to work on projects that actually will be seen, not just making sure the house won't fall down. Maybe once we start to work more in the living space, I'll feel differently.

2:57 PM  
Blogger Jamaila said...

I think I'm ahead of the curve. I'm just starting year 3 and I'm already at "bugger the house".

4:11 PM  
Blogger Gary said...

We are soon to enter year 7 of our 3 year project. Of course we have Elizabeth as our reward and she is a time magnet. The key is to never lose sight of your end result. We are so far over the hump that it would be a shame to slack off now. Of course I know I will have projects for another 10 years but that just gives my life meaning. It's better than sitting on my butt watching Jerry Springer! I am more in tune with reality than I was 6 years ago.
Always remember. If at first you don't succeed, use a bigger hammer.

7:09 PM  
Blogger Gary said...

You have been tagged by the Linky Love Train:
http://thisoldcrackhouse.blogspot.com/2008/01/crappity-crap-again.html

Whaaaahahahahahahahahaha! (maniacal laughter)

9:03 PM  
Blogger John said...

Kate, that is a lovely Freudian slip. Guess we all know what's on my mind. Hmm.

Derek, having the tools definately helps. It was much easier working on the house before ours got stollen in year 2.

Jamaila, Amen.

Gary, good point. The trouble is long this goes, the more impatient I become. Grrr. As for the "Linky Love Train," is that the blog equivalent of a STD?

6:12 AM  
Blogger John said...

Damnit. I meant to say the "the longer this goes . . ." in the comment above. Oh well.

6:13 AM  
Blogger Lee said...

I started reading your blog when I found out your fam used to own my house. This post is soooo true.

we are on year 13 of a damn bathroom renovation. Everytime we save enough $$$$ to finish the thing, a water pipe breaks/radiator explodes/roof leaks and ruins another room. stupid house. I will die here.

7:01 PM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

ninest123 11.13
jordan shoes, michael kors outlet, louis vuitton outlet, louis vuitton outlet, burberry handbags, christian louboutin outlet, replica watches, uggs outlet, tory burch outlet, polo outlet, ray ban sunglasses, longchamp outlet, tiffany jewelry, christian louboutin shoes, michael kors outlet online, nike free, michael kors outlet online, nike air max, oakley sunglasses wholesale, ugg boots, michael kors outlet store, gucci handbags, oakley sunglasses, ray ban sunglasses, replica watches, cheap oakley sunglasses, louis vuitton outlet, uggs on sale, tiffany and co, louis vuitton, michael kors outlet online, longchamp outlet, louis vuitton, nike air max, christian louboutin uk, ugg boots, michael kors outlet, christian louboutin, prada handbags, nike outlet, oakley sunglasses, burberry outlet, uggs outlet, polo ralph lauren outlet online, prada outlet, longchamp outlet, oakley sunglasses, ray ban sunglasses

10:45 PM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

juicy couture outlet, lancel, pandora uk, moncler outlet, moncler, pandora jewelry, louis vuitton, supra shoes, swarovski, converse outlet, michael kors handbags, moncler, thomas sabo, canada goose, pandora charms, juicy couture outlet, barbour uk, louis vuitton, canada goose, louis vuitton, hollister, doudoune moncler, canada goose jackets, ugg pas cher, ugg, montre pas cher, moncler outlet, canada goose outlet, barbour, doke gabbana, canada goose uk, karen millen uk, moncler, louis vuitton, ugg uk, canada goose outlet, replica watches, moncler uk, pandora jewelry, louis vuitton, marc jacobs, links of london, wedding dresses, swarovski crystal, coach outlet, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, toms shoes, michael kors outlet, moncler, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, canada goose outlet, canada goose

10:49 PM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

nike free uk, burberry pas cher, ralph lauren uk, michael kors pas cher, sac vanessa bruno, coach outlet store online, nike air max uk, true religion outlet, nike roshe, ray ban uk, jordan pas cher, michael kors, coach outlet, hollister pas cher, converse pas cher, hollister uk, louboutin pas cher, timberland pas cher, polo ralph lauren, longchamp pas cher, nike trainers uk, north face, lululemon canada, ray ban pas cher, guess pas cher, nike air max, nike blazer pas cher, sac hermes, nike air max uk, mulberry uk, true religion jeans, true religion outlet, hogan outlet, nike huaraches, vans pas cher, true religion outlet, michael kors outlet, north face uk, michael kors, oakley pas cher, coach purses, abercrombie and fitch uk, air max, nike roshe run uk, sac longchamp pas cher, new balance, polo lacoste, nike free run, nike tn, nike air force

10:52 PM  
Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

abercrombie and fitch, valentino shoes, wedding dresses, mont blanc pens, ghd hair, lululemon, hermes belt, converse, iphone 5s cases, baseball bats, bottega veneta, iphone 6 plus cases, soccer shoes, ray ban, north face outlet, oakley, reebok outlet, iphone cases, vans outlet, iphone 6 cases, asics running shoes, beats by dre, soccer jerseys, nike air max, hollister, vans, mac cosmetics, new balance shoes, ferragamo shoes, nike roshe run, nike air max, babyliss, north face outlet, timberland boots, chi flat iron, herve leger, louboutin, s6 case, celine handbags, ipad cases, mcm handbags, insanity workout, giuseppe zanotti outlet, iphone 6s cases, ralph lauren, jimmy choo outlet, instyler, gucci, p90x workout, iphone 6s plus cases, hollister clothing, nfl jerseys
ninest123 11.13

10:56 PM  
Blogger dong dong23 said...

michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet
oakley vault
coach factorty outlet
hollister clothing
ray ban sunglasses
coach outlet
cheap ray ban sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet
replica watches
coach factory outlet
kate spade
coach outlet store online
kate spade handbags
adidas trainers
caoch outlet
louis vuitton outlet
polo ralph lauren
nike nfl jerseys
coach factory outlet
michael kors handbags
ray ban sunglasses
coach factorty outlet
jordan 3 infrared
ray ban sunglasses
toms shoes
ralph lauren polo
ray ban sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton
toms shoes
longchamp bags
coach outlet
cheap nfl jerseys
ugg outlet
christian louboutin shoes
coach factory outlet
adidas outlet store
canada goose outlet
replica watches
20164.19wengdongdong

5:57 PM  
Blogger Xiaozhengm 520 said...

2016-4-22 xiaozhengm
nike sb
jordans
timberland boots
nike air max
michael kors outlet clearance
michael kors online
ray ban sunglasses outlet
nike trainers
nike air huarache
coach outlet online
fitflops
lebron 12
nike roshe run
louis vuitton handbags
fitflop sandals
cheap jordan shoes
gucci outlet
louis vuitton handbags
marc jacobs
michael kors handbags
jordans
coach outlet store online
louis vuitton handbags
pandora jewelry
michael kors outlet
nike blazers
ray ban sunglasses discount
cheap oakley sunglasses
michael kors handbags
mont blanc pens
oakley vault
adidas superstar
tory burch outlet
beats wireless headphones
replica watches
burberry outlet online
oakley sunglasses
toms shoes
toms shoes
nike air max

11:32 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Free Web Site Counter
Website Counter