January 21, 2012

House Hunters: Two Poles in a Complex Plane

Description: A medical student hunts for a study pad in Poznan, Poland.
Available on HGTV.com

Our international house hunter is Matilda, who moved from Germany to Boston, Mass, 10 years ago. According to the narrator, can't is not a word in Matilda's vocabulary. Matilda is moving from Boston to Poznan, Poland, to attend medical school, so I'm thinking she CAN'T get into medical school in the US. But I probably can't get into medical school anywhere - including the not at all sketchy-sounding American University of the Caribbean, which has started advertising on the L - so I'm not judging.

Helping her is her friend B'lala, who has lived in Poznan for the past year. Depending on who is saying it, her name is either pronounced Ba-lala or Be-lala. Punctuation-wise, I would think the apostrophe indicates that it should be pronounced Ba-lala and that it would be spelled B-lala if it was supposed to be pronounce Be-lala. When people abbreviate birthday as b'day, it just looks like they don't know how to spell bidet.

The real star of this episode is Matilda's realtor Richard. Richard adds a lot of extra vowels when he says certain words, like "okaaaaaay" and "alriiiiight." He's like a combination wild and crazy guy and the Fonz. If he was alive in the 1890's, he would probably be a flim-flam tonic salesman. He's awesome.

Matilda is looking for a one bedroom apartment that has a nice kitchen and big windows and is located close to school. Her budget is $100,000.

House #1 is $100,000 and is about ten minutes from Matilda's school. 

All three love the bathroom, and Richard very enthusiastically says, "This is one of the hugest bathrooms I've seen! Big windows!" Matilda and B'lala ask about the kitchen, so they head back to the foyer.

And the foyer is the kitchen. Matilda is shocked and Richard says, "Yes, madam, this is the kitchen. Yes!" Richard tells Matilda to "look deeper," and Matilda replies, "I'm looking as deep as I can."

B'lala thinks there's something "fishy" about Richard.

House #2...

Is that a Planet Hollywood? I thought those places didn't exist anymore.

Anyway, house #2 is a one bedroom furnished apartment for $125,000. 

Matilda asks, "This is the foyer and not the kitchen, right?" and Richard, enthusiastically says, "Yes! No doubt!"

Matilda likes that there's an actual kitchen and that the bedroom is bright and a good size, but the elevator might be too small for her bike. 

Richard insists that the elevator is big enough for the bike.

And he was right, though the bike just barely makes it.

House #3 is a one bedroom apartment centrally located for $100,000. Matilda doesn't like the graffiti. 

Or the tore up stairway, which "smells like death." Richard just says it smells like history. Matilda and B'lala are doubtful about the apartment, but

there's a giant closet in the foyer, so Matilda and B'lala are happy. 

The bedroom has a loft above the bed, which would be fine, but those curtains make it look like a puppet show is about to happen.

Perhaps a puppet show about the war crimes that definitely happened in the courtyard outside of the bedroom window. Maybe there's a reason the stairway smells like death and/or history.

Less war crimey is the kitchen and living room area. Whoever renovated these apartments was really into lofts. 

Matilda and B'lala go on a walk to discuss Matilda's housing options. They immediately eliminate house #1, because dealing with installing a kitchen would be a total pain. Since house #2 is $25,000 above her budget and further away from school, she decides to take #3. 

Matilda barely has anytime to decorate her apartment because she's busy with medical school stuff.

Like talking about the new microscope system with other lady medical students.

January 15, 2012

House Hunters: The Real House Hunters of Atlanta

Description: Rhonda is ready to say good bye to her nomad lifestyle and settle down.
Available on Hulu

So here's why I have a problem with people who live in Atlanta. They act like they're hot shit because they live in a city, but it's a shitty city, so they real have no reason to act like they're so awesome. People in Dallas are the same way, but the people there tend to have more money, so it's even worse.

With that said, let's meet our house hunter Rhonda.

Rhonda recently had to move out of her apartment because it flooded and she's been storing her stuff in a Uhaul until she can find a place to move into permanently. She has a good attitude and sense of humor about all of this, so I really don't know if I'm going to find anything to judge and mock in this episode.

Oh wait, she's bringing her "opinionated" and "direct" bestie, Ashley. I'm guessing that when confronted by someone calling her out on being an asshole, Ashley says she's just being real. Rhonda's a smart girl, bringing an obnoxious friend with her so she doesn't have to be the obnoxious house hunter.

Anyway, Rhonda wants an 800 square foot loft with hardwood or concrete floors, big windows, and an updated kitchen for $150,000 to $180,000.

The first place they look at is an 800 square foot, one bedroom loft for $180,000 in a converted cheesecakecotton factory in Atlanta's 4th Ward neighborhood. Neighborhoods with names like "4th Ward" are depressing sounding. Like put some effort into naming it. It's not that hard, just take a president's last name and add the word park to it. You're welcome, Polk Park, formerly known as Atlanta's 4th Ward.

The building has an atrium that Ashley, Rhonda, and her realtor Melanie seem to like, but I think it looks like a Slough office park

Rhonda likes the concrete floors.

And the exposed brick wall. Rhonda says that she's wanted to live in a loft since she and her parents went to New York when she was 14. Wow, she was really affected by Rent. But deciding to live in a loft is a way better alternative to deciding to get AIDS.

Rhonda doesn't like that the bedroom is open, but aren't traditional lofts open spaces like this, Rhonda?

The column in the bedroom has some dude's phone number on it. That's pretty funny.

There's a creepy space off of the balcony.

The second place they look at is another one bedroom, 800 square foot loft in Polk Park, but this one only costs $154,900.

There's an oversized novelty chess set because why not?

Rhonda and Ashley think the front hallway is really narrow, but, as someone with a very narrow hallway in my apartment, if two people can walk side-by-side in a hallway, it's not that narrow.

Rhonda and Ashley love the awesome? view of downtown Atlanta. 

Ashley is not happy that another building exists across the street and asks, "What is this green thing here?" It's a senior center, Ashley, for people who have lived in Atlanta longer than you've been alive, so STFU. Rhonda says that she'll need to get curtains now. Why wouldn't she need curtains before? I do not understand people who have floor to ceiling windows, but no window treatments. I enjoy it because then I get to see other people's tacky furnishings, but it's really dumb of them.

Ashley makes a spectacle of herself by spazzing out about the size of the island. Rhonda is clearly the straight man of this relationship.

Someone should tell Ashley that if she's going to buy a cardigan that's a size too small, she needs to safety pin the parts in between the buttons.

Ashley does not like the bathroom, putting on her stank face and saying obnoxiously, 

"Oh no, ma'am. No, ma'am." Rhonda does not like the bathroom either, particularly the yellow tiles, but manages to not be obnoxious about it.

There's a rooftop clubhouse with more awesome? views of Atlanta's four skyscrapers.

Ashley makes a spectacle of herself again in the rooftop gym, showing us how a treadmill works while wearing heels. She's so crazy!

There's also a rooftop pool, which Ashley describes as "true fabulosity." Shut up, Ashley, and use real words.

And shut up, Bono; you're worse than Ashley. She at least pays her taxes.

Apartment #3 is a one bedroom, 600 square foot traditional apartment that costs $157,900 and is in a 1913 downtown building. 

The apartment is on the 15th floor, so they get even more awesome? views of downtown Atlanta.

Rhonda doesn't like the placement of the kitchen island, which I think is a legitimate criticism. She's right when she says, "It's kind of in the middle of everything." They should have pushed it up against the wall so it's more of a peninsula.

Rhonda does not like how close the laundry is to the refrigerator. She won't be complaining, though, when she needs to defrost something quickly and the dryer is right there.

Rhonda and Ashley go to get some coffee from the sad barista and talk about the three places they've seen.

Rhonda likes the concrete and exposed brick walls of the first place, but it was the most expensive. She likes everything about the second apartment, except the bathroom. The third apartment has the best views, but isn't a loft.

Rhonda decides to go with the second loft and pays the asking price.

Rhonda finally has a place to sit and drink her wine while staring at downtown, like an actual adult. Do I count as an adult if I drink my Old Style on my back porch which overlooks an Italian restaurant that makes the back porch smell like pizza at all hours of the day?