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H. P. in the building lobby.

June 21st, 2001

Mine Was Fine
I called the company I used to find my current apartment and left a message for the woman I'd dealt with in getting the place I have now. She left a message on my office phone saying she had a number of places available in my area around Lake Merritt. She didn't quite remember and she didn't have my file in front of me, but what was it, I had two cats and paid $1,500 a month rent? No. One cat and quite a bit less rent, thank you, although anyone who lives in the Bay Area will know that $1,500 a month for a one bedroom apartment is not unusual.

In San Francisco that would be cheap lodging. In Jack London Square here in Oakland, they have a new set of waterfront units with studios going from $1,500 a month to $2,400 a month. Five hundred and fifty five square feet. I've lived in places with larger bathrooms. You don't want to know about the one and two bedroom units, the one's with a view, do you.

OK. There's a two bedroom condominium for sale up the street from me around the corner. Next to the Oakland Blues Alley festival. beat up looking $450,000 house. They're asking $300,000 for the two bedroom condo. Reality check. I will still talk with a realtor and I will talk with the woman who found me this place two years ago, once she understands she's dealing with a garden variety very ordinary high tech income applicant, for some feeling for what the current market is really like. I expect laughter. The people I work with, the ones who are commuting an hour or two in each direction to work, have had their homes increase in value between $100,000 and $200,000 dollars in the last eighteen months. My friend in Berkeley has had her home double in value since she bought it two years ago. Ho, ho. Ho.

Enough real estate. Maybe it will drive me out of the city, out of the state, out of the country and certainly, although I hate to repeat myself, out of my mind.

That was written last night, this is Thursday, eight in the evening, just after work. One of those days that starts at the office before seven and ends at the office after seven. Fortunately this isn't the norm. How was your day? Mine was fine.

The banner photograph was taken in the lobby of our office building. The second photograph was taken at the Blues Alley festival in Oakland. The quote is attributed to an English professor at Ohio University.