Thursday, June 9, 2011

Moving: I now feel your pain

The rental market is so tough right now that THIS is a viable option.
As it happens, some of my marketing isn't just fluff. I remember reading somewhere that moving is in the top five most traumatic life experiences for a person. It's right up there with a break-up or losing a loved one. Public speaking may still be the number one traumatic experience in a person's life, but moving is still up there.

I bring this up because we have to move again. Our landlords decided not to renew our lease, instead opting to give the house back to their son who, by the way, they kicked out to put us in there.

I. Hate. Moving. Ironic, no? I actually love what we do, which is essentially acting as the Special Forces of the moving industry -- we drop in in our Huey (or 16' box truck, whichever is available that day) -- assess the situation, load up and roll out before the echo fades. (A line I've always loved from Patriot Games, which I've never gotten to incorporate until now). That part is fun. But actually moving myself? It's a horrible, horrible experience.

As you know, first you have to find a place. You have to sort through hundreds, if not thousands of potential listings. You find yourself looking at former meth labs and trying to convince yourself of things like "You know, with the right curtains, that nest of black widows doesn't look so bad." When you go out to see the potentials, you have to be nice and friendly with all the other irritated, often desperate people looking at the same houses.

"We could put the crib over here," you might say. "And this room could be the office."

The other couple might say "Oh, wow, this room would be perfect for a landlord gift-making station!"

Then there's the personal and financial probing -- the credit checks, the background checks, the reference checks... Thankfully nobody asks how many parking tickets I've gotten, otherwise we'd be homeless.

And then, when it's all settled, and you've found a place that will suffice with some new curtains and a toxic spread of Raid and bleach for just $100 or $200 over your top-end budget, the packing begins. Oh, the packing! Great Odin's Raven, the packing! We haven't even gotten to that point yet and I'm already about to curl up in the fetal position on my office floor. I could take a six-hour bath with scented candles and the collected works of Colbie Callait and I'd still be tense. (What?) Yes, I know that kids make you accumulate an astonishing amount of crap, but really? 50 boxes of kids stuff? Yeah, probably.

At least I'll be in complete control once the new place is secured, the house is packed, and we're ready to load the truck. I've done THAT part about 2,000 times. Until then, oh buddies, it's misery.

On the bright side, we now have an unprecedented opportunity to film every aspect of the moving process in order to show people some best practices. What to do about dressers...how to pack wardrobe boxes...what to do about lamps...etc. It'll be instructive. Maybe even fun! Keep an eye out for those.

Anyway, enough of this. I have to go find a crack house for my family.

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