We are officially looking for a new house.
The place where we currently reside technically meets our needs, as demonstrated by the 2-1/2 years we’ve shared the place. However, this “starter home”* is missing something.
*And it is truly a starter home—2 bed, 1 bath, 1 car garage. I bought it 9 years ago just after I got out of college. I will backhand anyone who refers to their 3 bedroom, 2-1/2 bath, 2100 square foot house as a starter home. For real.
So from a space standpoint, we could use a little more. But that’s not what’s missing, at least for me.
We have done some really nice things to the house, both inside and out, and “made it ours”. So that’s not it either.
It’s the location.
From a physical standpoint, our lot backs up to I-70. As you may guess, that makes it LOUD. Inside the house isn’t bad, but outside it’s nearly impossible to enjoy a peaceful meal or conversation.
Also, the hill between our driveway and the street is a magnet for litterbugs. For whatever reason, assholes throw their trash out the windows of their cars for us to pick up on a near-daily basis. It’s a beautiful sight to wake up to every morning.
Geographically, we’re not really far from anything…but we’re not close to anything either. There are very few non-fast-food dining options near us. We’re almost 15 minutes from a nice grocery store. We have to drive further than that to get to any of the bars we like (which is a distinct disadvantage when visiting a bar). Our friends don’t visit us often because by their perception we may as well live in Lawrence.
But more than anything, KCK is just…depressing.
The wanna-be thug who starts yelling at my fiancée (in broad daylight, no less) because she dared to chuckle at his advances while she’s pumping gas. He: probably 20, in plain white T with pube-like mustache. She: very attractive 30-something in business suit. I mean, why wouldn’t he think he had a chance?
The adults—ADULTS—who are having a conversation a good sixty feet apart in the grocery store. This is painful when you’re only 3 feet from one of them.
The carhop at Sonic who came out and told me, after waiting 28 minutes for my order, that next time I needed to hit the button again and ask “where the f—k my food at”.
I won't get started on the murder last week a block from my parents' house or the one two months ago that was 1/4 mile from mine.
This is where I live. This is my hometown. No one knows how to act. And these are NOT isolated incidents. Shit like this happens more often than not when we try to patronize local businesses.
It’s worn me down. I always wanted to be the guy who stayed around even when everyone left, who would be an example of someone who achieved some modicum of career success but stayed put by choice. I always wanted to be the guy who gave back, who had thoughts of even running for office some day.
I’m no martyr.
I have given back.
But what the hell has KCK given ME?