Having potential homebuyers walk through your home is such a surreal experience. You pretend not to care, eating boneless buffalo wings at Chili’s, trying to keep your son from inserting the complimentary crayons up his nose. As I reflect on his “terrible two’s” and his “yes, it gets worse three’s,” I realize it must’ve been a parent who wrote those now infamous words “I want my babyback babyback babyback…”
To break up the monotony, we sometimes forego Chili’s and hop into the earthfucker for a little suburban recon. We park a few blocks away, so as to witness the intruders and size up their worthiness. As we sit there, surveilling our potential buyers, untitledhusband brings his laptop and tries to hook into a rogue wireless Internet patch. God forbid he’s without digital dialysis for more than 30 minutes. As I try to make sense of the man’s Hawaiian shirt (Parrothead, maybe?) and the woman’s sandals (Borns, or Payless knock-offs?), questions start bubbling to the surface.
Did the filthy motherfuckers take off their shoes?
Did they notice my bathroom ceiling paint job in which one little area is a shade whiter than the rest? Or how about the dent in the bathroom door, which I tried to mask with a Formby’s wood stain pen and a subtle trompe l’oeil effect?
Did they take one look in untitledson’s closet and wonder why, nestled in between his wind-up lullaby lamb and Duplo blocks was, of all things, an Afro wig?
Upon testing the garage door opener, did they sense the ghost of untitledfather, who bought and installed it for us as a housewarming gift? It was to be the last thing he ever gave to me.
After touring our bathroom, did they realize that yes, they were witnessing the masterworks of the Queen of Caulk (a title which untitledhusband says I shouldn’t say too loudly).
What did they think of the Box of Bastard Gifts stowed away in the guest bedroom closet? What merciless bastards we must be to not display the prairie-style pillow with our wedding photo ironed onto it, or the framed leather artwork featuring an embossed rose and words that say “Sometimes I reach out to touch the thought of you.”
When walking the hallway between the master bedroom and untitledson’s bedroom, did they feel their emotions shift from exhaustion to resentment to sweet contentment, just as mine did whenever untitledson would wake me at 2 a.m. for his feedings?
Did they open my nightside table drawer and find my precious Fukuoku? Were they disgusted? Confused? Jealous?
Did they feel that blurred, numbing rush as they stood in the same place where untitledhusband and I decided to separate and two months later, work things out?
Did they step on the one stealth pile of petrified dog poop in the backyard — the one that always evades untitledhusband’s merciless pooper scooper?
In my heart, I am a private soul (aside from this whole blog and all). I don’t like it when people get all up in my business, examining my home, deeming it worthy of purchase or passing. I curse them and welcome them, all at the same time. Yes, I want my new house. But I want whomever takes possession of this house, our home, to treat it well. Respect it. Don’t forget to water the grass – it’s very persnickety and wouldn’t think twice about turning on you during a two-day dry spell. Don’t wear your shoes on the white carpet. Spot Shot can only do so much. Don’t paint over the firetruck mural in untitledson’s bedroom. We painted it at a time when we thought we’d be able to use his crib for our second child, too. But most importantly, do the decent thing and offer us our asking price, bitches.