300-If It Looks Too Good?

We’re having roofing guys come out to the house to give us estimates to replace our roof. It’s been a trip.

The first guy told us about a “problem area” in the back where water was collecting during rains. He said that when it went, it would go in a really big way and result in a lot of destruction to the interior of our house, and that he would need to put in a “cricket” to fix it. His quote was $11,000 and he couldn’t figure out how to ring our doorbell.

The second guy saw the area the first guy was worried about, but he didn’t think it was any kind of problem. (The house is nearly a hundred years old, and the roof hasn’t caved in yet.) He said that gravel accumulated there a bit, but no water to speak of, and no cricket necessary. His quote was $8,000 and he couldn’t figure out the doorbell either.

Now there’s a third guy on the roof. I don’t have his quote yet, but this is the guy our realtor (who lived here before we did) recommended to us. He seemed really nice, and I liked him, but his eyes were a little glassy and I’m not thrilled about a stoner running around on my very steep roof. Of course, as Lena pointed out to me, that’s probably going to be the case no matter who we go with. At least he’s insured.

There’s some irony in all this in that we just paid off all of our non-mortgage debt with a refinance and now we are about to jump right back into it again. When this is over we’ll need to start looking at house painters as well. Sigh.

There’s a funny thing about money. For folks with a lot of it, money is a friend. They like it and are comfortable with it. For folks without, money is an enemy. An implacable creature that serves to keep them disadvantaged and on the outside, looking in. For both kinds of folks, what they really want is more of it. Personally I’d rather trade chickens. (Of course in order to do that I’d first need to buy some chickens!)

We keep talking about hitting the convention circuit to start really promoting the comic, but we are always putting it off until everything gets paid. I’m starting to wonder if a better solution would be to keep stringing out new lines of credit until we both die, and leave someone else holding the ball. (We don’t have any kids — so no inheritances to squander.) That could be a lot of fun, seeing all the places around the world I’ve always wanted to go… but of of corse you always run the risk of living too long and outlasting your credit.

I guess the only thing to do is to keep at what we’ve been doing. Pay the bills, maybe a little extra here or there, save and plan. It doesn’t seem like a solution, but I suppose it’s gotten us this far so I shouldn’t complain.

At least the stoner knew how to ring the doorbell.

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