06 March 2012
Although we've taken 18 months to paint and polish our house to our liking, getting it ready for a showing is another level of perfectionism that both Mike and I ascribe to.......I mean suffer from. And ascribe to. But suffer from. In other words, we are a realtor's dream come true. And we are bat shit crazy.
For two weeks, we go on an accessories/home improvement buying binge that looks like the high-speed hijinks reel from The Benny Hill Show. Cue Yakety Sax........get in Jeep.....drive crazy down the driveway......run into Home Depot.......exit Home Depot with a case of CFL lightbulbs and a ficus......speed through parking lot......enter Target........exit Target and fill back of Jeep with Euro shams.......drive in circles......run into Marshall's, HomeGoods, and Crate & Barrel Outlet.......reverse tape......run backwards out of Marshall's, HomeGoods and Crate & Barrel Outlet......tape forward......exit store with cart full of nurses with big boobs. Pat tiny bald man on the head.
The "Perfection Compulsion" is so strong that the car seems to drive itself. I don't want to go back to the Crate & Barrel Outlet! The house is perfect! Take me home, damn car! But what if there's a lap throw or a martini shaker that will tie everything together and make this house seem like it will make all your dreams come true? What if?
Mike symbolically shakes me by the shoulders and says "You have to STOP! You're going down the RABBIT HOLE!"
He should talk.
When it's time for the showings to commence (me in reflective vest directing traffic at the end of the driveway), he utters a series of statements that make me think 2 things: 1) This dude is crazy. And 2) How lucky am I that this dude is as crazy as I am? (love)
MIKE: You didn't fluff that pillow.
ME: Yes, I did.
MIKE: It doesn't look fluffed.
ME: I swear, I fluffed it.
MIKE: Fine, I'll fluff it.
MIKE: Those shams look like shit.
ME: What are you talking about? They look fine.
MIKE: The designs aren't going the same direction. The designs on all the shams have to go the same direction. Like this (grabs pillow to educate me about sham design direction protocol).
MIKE: This apple has a bruise on it!
He shows me how to smooth the bedding without defluffing the comforter - the comforter has to be fluffy - by grasping the edges of the faux top sheet (too complicated to explain here) between thumb and forefinger and doing this subtle shimmy shake thing with the sheet so that you're essentially vibrating the lumps out of the bedding (without defluffing. must be fluffy).
When we make the beds, we are so detail-oriented that we look like two surgeons operating on a preemie.
From a state of near perfection, it takes exactly one hour to get the house ready for a showing. I go around with an oversized duffel bag, filling it with random shit that would take too long to put away. The duffel bag, along with my laundry and the untamed paper tiger, will go in the trunk of my car (later that day, I will look in the duffel bag and I will find the phone).
I sweat like a whore in church while I race around making beds and putting out pretty soaps. Looking for signs of the unseemly side of life. Go back - get the panty liner off the sink!! Liam washes his hands and I scream "DON'T TOUCH THAT TOWEL! WHAT ARE YOU THINKING? DON'T TOUCH ANY TOWELS! EVER!" I smell BO. Like actual BO. So much wasted time at the health club when I could have just made my bed. This is why housewives in the 1950's drank so much.
When the realtor arrives, I stand at the door in a tank top and a down vest, my keys in one hand, an armful of dirty towels in the other. I get in the car with my dirty towels and take off my down vest and turn on the AC. My sunglasses fog up. I look down at the temperature gauge.
It says 34 degrees.
The next day......lather. rinse. repeat. Until this house is sold.