11 April 2004
Sights for a Sunday afternoon
This print ad caught my eye:
ADORABLE DOLL HOUSE
Close to Downtown OKC & I-35 & I-40. 1050 sf, 3bd, 2ba, inside util, kit bar, d/washer, huge corner lot, under const.
There was a price $72,500 and an address, and I knew I had to see this place.
This is, after all, a neighborhood I tend to think of as capital-S Scary, and while it's just off a major thoroughfare, it's cut off from most of the rest of the city the river and a railroad slice through the terrain nearby and while being somewhat insular in character is probably good for gated communities where houses sell routinely in six figures, it strikes me as less good in a place where six figures could buy five or six houses. (I checked realtor.com; the going rate for the smaller boxes in this neighborhood is a startling $14,000.)
So what do you get for five times as much? The lot is indeed on a corner, though its hugeness is arguable; the house itself is at the point where the exterior is complete and the interior is being finished, and I have no doubt that, given some proper care, this place can live up to its description. Still, I suspect that finding someone willing to spend this much money to live here will be difficult until a lot more new homes are built or a lot more old ones are torn down. And I have serious qualms about expropriating an entire neighborhood on the off-chance that it can be gentrified.
I mean, this is not much less than I spent for my own "adorable doll house," roughly the same size, in a neighborhood that presumably doesn't strike fear into anyone's heart. And on the way back to my side of town, I sliced through the western edge of Heritage Hills and caught a glimpse of a standard real-estate agent sign with an attached tag: "Just Beautiful." Same tag you could have seen in my yard, in fact, for the brief period between offering and closing. After what I'd seen earlier, though, I wasn't particularly inclined to be smug.
I did, however, manage a sneer while passing a salon which noted on its sign that "sandel season" had arrived, and they were offering a "foot facial." Now I appreciate sandal season more than most, and indeed I've seen some remarkably nice feet this spring, but I don't think there's any way you can stretch any definition of "facial" to cover the services they offer. Not that I'm going to spend the $45 to find out.Posted at 5:23 PM to City Scene