We went to a couple of open houses this weekend. It’s been years since I’ve done that and I was surprised how quickly I became comfortable with walking into a stranger’s home and rooting around, judging them for their taste and questioning their design choices.
While each home had its quirks, after a while they all started to blend together. However, there was one house that really stood out.
It was built in the mid-90’s but I promise you that the person who lived there had been dreaming about building it since the last episode of Miami Vice went off the air.
It was all white. White marble floors. White shag carpet. White wood railings. Even the plastic crystals in the chandeliers were turning white.
The person who met us at the door was actually the insurance agent. At first we wondered why she was there but then we realized it was to make sure we didn’t hurt ourselves falling into the sunken living room. The monochromatic scheme and high polish on the marble made your depth perception questionable.
But it wasn’t just the living room. The whole house was designed to facilitate an unfortunate accident. Every third stair on the twisted staircase was half the size of the previous two and they were covered in such thick shag carpet you couldn’t tell if you were standing the step itself or just the pile.
“I don’t know what to make of it, Officer. My business associate was just coming down the stairs, seems to have lost his balance and then fell to the bottom and landed on the knife.”
As we toured, I expected to see a giant Scarface poster on the wall. That was before I realized that whoever owned this place wouldn’t be an admirer of Pacino’s character. They were Pacino’s character.
There were only three other colors in the house and it was mostly in fur. I’m not sure what kind of animal died to make the rug we encountered in the entryway. I’m guessing it was Monchichi or maybe Tauntaun. But it was a shade of black that swallowed all the light that dare touch it.
The living room was splattered with red and could double as a crime scene. I’m sure the designer and the owner had a conversation about the choice.
She flipped through a variety of shades. “Here are some shades of red to choose from. Rose Red. Lipstick Red.”
“That’s the one,” he would say as he stabbed at the paint chip.
“Blood of My Enemies Red it is then.”
The only other color in the house was in the office because if you have an entirely white house you have to have green carpet for where you do business. What color green?
“Laundered Money Green?”
“Small Unmarked Bills Green?”
“I don’t think so.”
“Illicit Funds Green.”
“That’s the one!”
“I’ll have them start working up the dye.”
Glass brick and gold fixtures could be torn out and replaced but nothing could change the fact that the house was laid out by a psychopath. But, one day they’ll find the perfect buyer. A buyer that needs two entrances into a shower built for six. The perfect couple will walk in and fall in love with the place.
“Dear, it’s perfect. It would be a great place to have my women’s group meet. Let’s get it.”
“We can’t afford it.”
“Oh, but we have to have it. I love this shower.”
“Okay. First, we’ll get the money. Then we’ll get the shower. And then we’ll get the women…’s group over.”