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Monday, May 4, 2009

The Enigma

Our house is now officially an enigma.

My father, incidentally, who as most of you know is Israeli, labors under the misapprehension that this word is pronounced "exioma," which brings to mind an unfortunate skin condition or an anatomical component of an ant.

Anyway, as I was saying: our house is an enigma. Officially.

The downstairs (living room, dining room, kitchen and stairwell) have all been painted by a professional, and his three Mexican workmen who have undoubtedly given me the piggie sickie. Our front door, instead of the flakey, messy, yellowed white it once was, is now a vibrant Cherokee Red, a color trademarked by the eccentric and overly penile Frank Lloyd Wright, used in tasteful abundance in Pittsburgh's Fallingwater estate. It's a rusty, almost orange-y red-- and it looks quite smart.

The dining room is also Cherokee Red, above the chair rail. Below the chair rail is a soft, buttery yellow or cream.

The kitchen walls are swathed in an inoffensive color called meringue and, if you weren't careful, you'd find yourself licking the walls to get a taste of soft, lemony fluffiness. Pervert.

The living room is a real feast for the eyes. A vibrant, sunny yellow that warms your cockles and assorted parts makes the walls come to life. And there's a lavender accent wall above the faux fireplace and the same beautiful purple runs all the way up the stairs and softly coats the upstairs hallway.

I love to look at the walls-- it's far more fulfilling than watching television. Being in the living room or the dining room fills me with a sense of maturity and satisfaction-- that this really is a place where two competent, employed grown ups live and love together.

Then, I go upstairs.

Upstairs, it's a place where competent, employed grown ups fear to tread. Upstairs, it's a place where two rabid, epileptic tigers live and they use the walls as stratching posts. Upstairs, they test nuclear weapons. Upstairs has been ransacked by the Normans and the Huns. Upstairs is the place where visitors are strongly discouraged from visiting.

"But, we have a bathroom right off the dining room-- there's really no need for you to go... UPSTAIRS!"

The luscious lavender stairwell seductively beckons the unsuspecting houseguests.

"Come," it says naughtily, like a siren, "climb me and see what lies beneath my trestle."

You fool! You susceptible, vulnerable fool! Don't do it!

I beg you. Don't.

Our clothes are everywhere for want of closet space. The walls that still wear fifty-year-old wallpaper are offensive to the tastes of anybody under the age of 83. The walls that have been stripped of said wallpaper look like those of a Yugoslavian insane asylum. Wallpaper strips and shavings litter the floor, as if we were houstraining a puppy.

Seriously. It's like two different existences.

So, come on over. Just keep it on the Down Low.


  1. Not only am I going up there, but if I ever get there? I'm taking pictures. Also? "piggie sickie" = sprite all over my monitor. ;)

  2. haha nice, i like schizophrenic living space!

    totally my style.

  3. At least the upstairs doesn't give us paint-fume headaches.

    The downstairs is making the upstairs jealous. They're agonna have a brawl on the playground at 3 o'clock, or do you think they should meet on the not-so-neutral turf of the staircase? Which technically is "neither up nor down" but wears the gang colors of downstairs.


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