Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Time to Split?

This is so frustrating! Here I am, all ready to get going, and the realtor is stalling us because she says she can’t get hold of the guy who owns the property. Gene says maybe the poor man dropped dead, because with an investment like this he couldn’t afford to get old. The east side of the strip, the newer part just beyond the old dime store, was developed by a son of one of the Maples, who’d inherited her part of the family farm and sold it to the air strip at the end of the 60’s. He turned that into some houses in Westhampton Beach, which he flipped fast to put up a whole development around Crescent Pond. I actually remember that. Everyone in town knew it was ridiculous, but I guess Mr. Wilber was feeling so lucky that anything seemed possible to him then. Or maybe he was drinking. Too bad because until that point, he was almost a visionary. Now I didn’t remember this bit, but Gene says Wilber developed this end of the strip around the same time, trying to expand the local shopping to make Crescent Pond more attractive. He took off for Florida about twenty years ago. It must have killed him to miss out on the boom. Most of the stores have been empty for years now. Gene says there was some kind of tax thing that got the Heart Association got the old dime store, so we were hoping Wilber could use the same kind of break.

Well, I’m not giving up so easily! I spent the weekend sending emails to anyone I know who either still has money (and probably stuff to throw out) or is having a hard time (and could use a few dollars from selling stuff off). And I had a long talk with Maggs, who promised to clean out a few closets and ask some friends to do the same. And I started working out a way to put some of the lyrics from the song on the walls. I saw that in a restaurant once, quotations in a nice font on the walls, and it looked so clean and powerful. Jeff loved the idea when I described it. I think he’s proud of me for doing this. He’ll be even prouder once we really get it going. I have to wait til we get into the space to pick a background color – it’s going to depend on what’s orphaned at the Home Depot that week.

Now for something completely different, like Monty Python used to say. I gave Carmen a call today. We used to have her out to the beach house the weekend after Memorial Day, so I was thinking about her this weekend and thought I really should call and see how she was doing. She’s still not working, which is awful; no one is hiring. And there’s not even any temp work. It’s a good thing they extended unemployment. I’m trying to get her to come out here for at least a few days. A change of scenery would do her good. She was telling me that she keeps getting these pathetic emails from Taylor, who just doesn’t get that his father died flat broke. He’s sure if he keeps asking that Carmen or the lawyers are going to pull a rabbit out of a hat – the rabbit being a trust fund. He was always the dimmer of the two. Simon’s a selfish shit, but not entirely stupid. Taylor lives in a fantasy world, and Gary let him. I’m far enough away that I can almost feel sorry for him. Anyway, he can’t afford Paris any more, so he’s talking about moving to Split. Split! Someone told him it’s going to be the Prague of the Teens. He thinks he can start a literary magazine. As if there are magazines anywhere any more besides online. And he first has to learn Croatian, which I can’t imagine comes easy. I lived in Prague for four years and can’t talk about anything more complicated than dinner and driving instructions. Amazing, right? Oh, Gary, what you did to those boys! I’m so glad we never had a child.

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