Bad Omens

My friends simply aren’t superstitious enough. (That’s right, I’m attacking all of you in a public forum – don’t make me name names, I’ll do it!) They walk around with confidence knowing that any unexplained noise is either plumbing or an intruder. I personally don’t like to limit myself to the explainable. Honestly, how dull is that? I know for a fact that I saw ghostly images on the wall when I was 5, that something came into my room and bit my hand, that Julie could move objects with her mind and that something still lives in the closet and underneath my bed at 2am. I’m also convinced that my stepbrother’s cat named Kitty Biscuit whispered beneath his breath where we couldn’t hear him “We are Legion”. You write off his insanity to his name, but I’m telling you it was a demon disguised in soft fur. Let me pause a moment while I thank God the beast was de-clawed.

This brings us to yesterday’s events. I sent an e-mail yesterday to many of my friends and relatives updating them on my house hunt. I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the status and thought I’ll just write everyone. I even wrote people who were probably not interested at all just in case they got it in their heads to ask. I mentioned a particular house that seemed to have some bad omens associated with it. Namely, we got to the property and the storm door was locked so we couldn’t get to the key box and get inside the house. Before we even made it to the door though there was a woman who glared at us. I smiled at her and she wouldn’t crack. See, when you’re trying to cause someone to spontaneously combust on the driveway you can’t break your focus by returning smiles. She had the look that would make most passing cats pause, turn around and hiss.

Needless to say yesterday morning I was driving into work when a grackle slammed into the windshield and almost tumbled back into my car. In case you’re not familiar with grackles, they’re big, ugly, blackish-gray birds. They’re smarter than your in-bred dog and they’re the cockroaches of the avian family in Central Texas. You’ve heard the term “murder of crows” well here it’s a “poop fest of grackles”. At sunset they tend to swarm in areas you want to be – namely the malls, the local grocery stores or back when I was at the University of Texas, along any street between you and your dormitory. I can’t count the number of times a grackle has added priceless little white accessories to my outfits or bare legs. Still, I hit it, screamed, swerved and had a gigantic fit on the way to work.

That was the final omen.

Last night I got the call from our realtor. In Texas it is mandatory that you disclose information about your house. The realtor got a copy of this particular house’s disclosure. Everything is mostly just “older house” type of problems, except the bit where it read “owner acknowledges settling” “contractor came out and said house needs 4-5 concrete beams poured beneath house to prevent settling” “second contractor suggested running soaker hoses along perimeter of house to keep ground damp” “termite damage from previous owner” “termite/water damage currently”.

Let’s just say that between the bruja next door and the cracked foundation we’re going to be looking elsewhere.

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