I had a real estate orgasm Wednesday when I finally officially got notice of official close of escrow at 3pm on March 17, St. Patrick’s Day. I was so excited about closing escrow that I misplaced my keys to the old place twice trying to get out the door to Koreatown.
Yes, I have a mortgage now, I must now worry about things like leaky faucets, faulty electric, property tax, termites. That part sucks, but I feel like I’m in love with life in this weird equity-esque way. I actually have pride in where I live. And I finally feel like I’m not that kid who just got out of college and is blindfoldedly navigating life. I feel so happy and at peace with my past and with my life. So weird is that all it took was a little condo in Koreatown to do it.
My realtor brought me a bottle of champagne for my arrival and left me alone in my new home. I sat in the living room, sipping on bubbly and taking in my new setpiece for my life. Imagining a whole future ahead.
My friend Nahkone is moving into the second room. He’s a very fun gay boy and we played records on my Fisher Price record player I’ve had since I was a girl. When I was growing up in San Francisco, my friend Ariana and I would play the same records on the same record player. We talked about how we’d buy a house one day and play records when we moved in. So it was a great moment that I’d been anticipating since I was a girl. Me and Nahkone played music and took turns walking down the stairs like we were Norma Desmond and it was Sunset Blvd.
I danced by myself in the living room and we cheered for each other.
Ironically, I went to two housewarming parties yesterday. Two different friends who just bought new places. I never thought it was possible to be up late on a Friday night talking about home inspections and linoleum, but baby, meet the new boring Kristina! I’m loving it!
It’s quite possible that any desire to love or get closer to another human being has been completely obliterated for the next 30 years– the amount of time I have left to pay off my mortgage.
It’s been a while since this little cat lady has gone on a date. And last night I found myself invited (thankyouverymuch) out to dinner and a show. He’s a totally cute fella and we get along enough. And he even pulls up in his shiny new convertible with the top down to pick me up. He asked how I was doing, was super attentive and caring, and all I could talk about was my condo. How I was going to orchestrate this move. How I didn’t know what furniture to get. How I wanted to steam clean the carpets and bleach the toilets as soon as I get my keys on Wednesday. You know, real sexy talk.
He’d reach for my hand, I’d squeeze it back. But all I could really think as I looked into his eyes was: “I wonder if I’d get more renters for the second bedroom if I lowered the rental price $10 and included utilities in the price of rent…”
We had an hour to kill before dinner and the show. He asked, “What do you want to do Kristina?” probably anticipating some kind of romantic response like a walk in the park or a stop for wine at a bar.
I screamed, “I want to go to the Mattress Superstore! No! No! Bed Bath and Beyond!!! I need to look at duvet covers!”
Yes, I was serious.
On Saturday night, my recently divorced friend had a bunch of women over at her place for a pool party. I hadn’t hung out with a bunch of women like that in god knows how long. We were like a non-profit women of color version of Sex and the City, with more cat hair. We were talking about how owning a home and being financially independent totally makes you look at dating differently: What’s the point of dating anyone if you have your own condo? And what self-respecting homeowner dates a renter?
That’s right, I’m turning into a homeowning snob! With no libido. Who instead of being obsessed with love is now obsessed with carpet cleaners. Hot.
Today, I go to the mortgage office and drop off a check for a large amount of money. Please pray that check does not whip out of my hands into the sky on the way to there. Wednesday, I pick up the keys. And at that point, I finally unite with my soulmate for eternity– a 2bedroom+2 ba+loft condo in Koreatown.
Last night was Friday night. Rather than go on a date, party, see a show or live life, I was on Ikea.com trying to pick out the set pieces for the rest of my life.
It looks like I might close escrow as soon as Monday and pick up my keys Wednesday. I did the final home inspection Thursday and feel really great about this new life transition. I feel totally confident about this purchase now. No matter what happens in my financial future, I’ve put a huge net under me. And I expect this to be the first of many homes I’ll purchase in my life.
I am in the market for a new bed, mattress, new chest of drawers, crafting table, dining set, flatware, dishes, and a whole lot of other stuff I haven’t bought in a long long time. When I moved from West LA, a lot of my furniture (mostly hand-me downs from past subletters and friends) were falling apart in the move. I actually had to dump whole pieces that had totally fallen apart as soon as they came out of the UHAUL as they were literally disintegrating in my hands. I’m leaving behind my dining set, my futon, and futon frame. I was going to leave my couches behind until I saw what new couches were going for.
For the first time in how many years I actually walked into the antique furniture stores on Santa Monica Blvd. I’ve passed them so many times, and wondered how they stay in business. And I found myself looking at end tables. And dining sets. And antiques. And so confused wondering who I am. I’ve been sleeping under the same sheets for 10 years!!!! Am I shabby chic? Modern? Art deco? Am I a King bed or Queen bed gal?
I’m basically trying to build a whole new big adult life. It’s kind of awesome. And for the first time in my life, I have the advantage of choice, and $8k from Obama to do it.
I’ve never had the dilemma of choice. And I’ve never really gotten to choose my furniture. It always chose me. The desk I write you from, was a hand me down I’ve had since college. My couches were fortuitous offerings from Out of the Closet. I have been travelling so much that making a “home” has always been a challenge. I take what I’m given.
I have the means but I only seem to have one chance to really get these decisions down right. I’ve been thinking about sustainability and how I’d like to have furniture that lasts but doesn’t kill the planet. But just looking at sustainable furniture is making me broke. $1400 for a bamboo coffee table? Wha?!?
Unfortunately, Ikea does not have the best reputation for furniture that transports itself well or lasts. And that’s a real sustainability issue. But nor do a lot of other furniture makers have a reputation for environmentally sound production.
So for now, I’m going to move most of my old furniture in. Buying new pieces to slowly take their place. And trying to keep my new place spare and beautiful.
Greetings from Syracuse, NY where I’ve been an artist-in-residence since Monday night. It was a packed three days of lectures, workshops and a performance for a video art class. I also bought a “Bumpit” at the RITE AID to get down Snooki Wong style. But it wasn’t as trashcan as I was hoping it would be.
Now I get on a Greyhound bus at 1:15am bound for NYC. I’m going to work on my Cat Lady play for a few days then go home to LA where I can pack my stuff up, close escrow on the condo, and move in already!
If I don’t survive my 6 hour (ARGH!) bus ride tonight, please remember me by the above video which I totally just found by accident on youtube just now. It’s from a youth TV station thing that interviewed me when I was performing in San Francisco last November.
I emerge from my blogging silence in a hotel room in Tulsa, OK where the short version of the story is I had a helluva week. The long version of this week is reserved for a shrink’s couch or tell-all autobiography. But in short, I’m no longer the nauseous home-buying mess that I was in LA. I’m feeling much better. I’m ready to face the world again when I close escrow in mid-March and enter life as a mortgage paying slave.
That is, if I can ever get home. I’m on the road for another week so I can pay for said new home. I head to New York tomorrow where my friend Ann, who was a recently eliminated contestant on a VH1 dating show is having me out to her school to do a lecture and performance! I know people in high places!
Contrary to popular belief, I did not “get killed” here in the Bible Belt. It is my first time in Oklahoma and I was so happy to be welcomed with these big banners downtown where my receding gums were on the display for the whole city to see!
Oklahoma is not a bunch of people in overalls and no shoes standing in fields with guns! They are people who love theater!
I did a public egomaniac dance in the street.
I took this picture of me on the festival posters on “Cherry Street” and a woman inside this studio ran out into the street after me screaming, “Are you the girl on the poster?”
The shows went so well. Some people asked me before I left, “Are there enough Asian women in Tulsa to come to your show?” And my response was, “I don’t need an audience of only Asian women! White people love me!”
Kristina Wong is the new black! And Tulsa came out to my show! Only one older Asian woman came to my show. She was very sweet. An older Asian woman who put $5 in a Chinese New Year envelope and during the pre-show walked onto the stage and whispered, “Miss Wong? Happy New Year” and put it in my lap.
I never got to thank her. So I just wanted to let that lady know THANK YOU. It was very touching. THANK YOU!
Before Saturday’s show we went to Pawhuska, an hour from Tulsa to check out the Bison.
It was like a road safari. We were able to see the Bison from the car. Many of them were just 20 feet from the road. Bison eat and shit in the same place– what many would liken to a “workplace romance.”
I avoided stepping on Bison pie! I have the rest of my life to step in shit.