Cascade race report to come. But in short, I got my ass handed to me. Not nearly as bad as I did last year, although I miraculously placed exactly the same on GC as I did last year, which was 96th. But anyways, on to more pressing news:
I’m here in Park City, Utah with teammates Lang and Spencer. The housing situation has been Craigslistesqu, meaning slightly confusing and unplanned. In the past, I’ve found one, maybe two houses to possibly stay at when moving to a new city, then I’ve driven to that city and hoped for the best. This has not been the case this time. This time I found roughly a dozen places to stay at, and I’ve kept five or six of them on hold, and another four or five believing they sealed the deal. The secret to Craigslist housing is options. Options to opt out in case one of the houses has 13 dogs 5 cats and a squirrel. A back up house in case your back up house is owned by a pedophile. And a plan D in case your landlord turns out to be a huge D. But when you finally do land the perfect house, the difficult job of breaking off your commitments with the other houses begins. Examples:
Herb’s story. (Who sounded like a raging douche on the phone and just had a bad attitude altogether. Plus he wanted us to bring him the rent in cash the night we arrived in Utah). I didn’t want to stay at his place at all, so we planned on him being a back up for the back up just in case our current destination turned out to be adjacent to the city dump or built over a pet graveyard. Herb called twice on our drive to Utah on Monday. I avoided his first call, letting it go the the answering machine. But I answered when he called a second time around 10:30pm, right as we were getting into Park City.
Herb: Hey, so where are you guys? Getting close?
Me: Uhh…we’re on our way, but I don’t think we’re gonna make it to park city tonight.
Herb: Where are you?
Me: Uhh, just a second. (I pretended to ask Spencer where we were.)
Me: I think we’re still in Idaho.
Herb: Oh, yeah it’s a long drive. blah blah blah. I ended the conversation quickly before I had to lie again. But by Tuesday the texts started pouring in. Along with the voice mails.
‘The Silent Treatment’
“Hey Kennett, this is Herb. Just uhhh wondering where uhh you guys are. Let me know. Bye.
“Hey Kennett this is Herb calling. It’s uhh mid day and I haven’t heard from you yet. Just wondering what’s up.”
“Hey Kennett, it’s Herb. Haven’t heard from you yet. You still coming or what? I’ll be out of the house for an hour, but you can just leave a message. Bye.”
“Kennett, you still haven’t called. You’re probably in the shower or something. I’ll call later. Bye. It’s Herb by the way.”
“Hey Kennett, I haven’t heard from you yet, but–oh wait, this might be you on the other line.”
“Hey Kennett, it wasn’t you on the other line. Looking forward to your call…Call me.”
“Hey Kennett, it’s Herb. I thought I heard the phone ring. Guess not. Anyways, I’m just waiting to hear back from you. Wish you’d call. Byyyye.”
“What’s your deal? Why won’t you call back? You’re starting to piss me off God damnit! I’m sick of your shit. You can go F yourself because I’ve had enough of this.”
“Hey Kennett, it’s Herb again. Sorry about that last call. Your phone is probably just on silent or something. Haha. Anyways, I’m here at home. Call any time. Bye bye. Talk to you soon.”
Three actual texts I received from Herb yesterday. The first at 11pm or so, when it was clear we weren’t showing up anymore:
Herb: Hi what happened?
Me: We found another place.
Herb: Lame. You suck. Bad luck will be yours.
Herb (about an hour later without me replying): You wasted your trip. You don’t have a chance in the race.
The silent treatment is not the preferred method of breaking up with your Criagslist housing. It should be reserved for maniacs like Herb, although to avoid being hexed, continuing to lie may be a better solution than coming clean.
It’s not you, it’s me. And…there’s someone else.
We got to Park City late Monday night, having decided to stay with a young family who wanted to rent us their basement, which has a bed, a couch, and a blow up mattress. Plus we have a little hang out area with a TV and a kitchen and bathroom. I thought it was a pretty sweet deal. And it turned out to be real nice. But, we’ve become altitude junkies and the idea of staying at 6,700 feet when we could be at 7,300 just wasn’t sitting right with us. A condo was opening up on August 1st that we decided to stay at, which was the same price as our current basement. Plus it wasn’t a basement, it was a nice condo with three beds. And it was 500 feet higher up. Anyways, we went up there the other day and looked at it with the current tenants and decided it would be great for us. But later that night I got an email from a bike racer in town who owns some rentals in town that offered us an even better deal. So began the process of breaking up with Belinda, a nice elderly lady with a crushed esophagus, which made understanding her on the phone a bit of a problem. The phone conversation that ensued:
Me: Hi Belinda, this is Kennett.
Belinda: Ohhhkis hihgs knnekdtt hwr you difso dchance to skjd condo?
Me: Yeah, we took a look at the condo and it was real nice. Very nice. But uhh, we just got an offer from someone else. Uhhh, someone who’s on, who’s, who knows our coach and uhhh, is offering a place for us to stay for free (not quite true but cheaper than Belinda’s). Ummm. But you’re condo was very nice though, and thank you so much for offering it to us at such a discounted rate.
Belinda: lkasdklfj alksdjfljasdjf ksdjfj, oh that’s alksd lkalrl.
Me: But I’m sure you can find someone else. It’s just that we’re on a real tight budget and this other place is uhh…I’m sure you’ll find someone else to rent your condo out to. It’s such a great place. Very good looking and a great location….It’s not you, it’s us. Your condo is just a bit too nice for us. It will be better off with someone else.
Belinda: kalsjdfj alskjdfkljasdlkjf
Me: Oh, of course. If I know of anyone else in Park City who’s looking for a place to rent, I’ll send them right your way. Of course. And thank you so much for offering your condo to us. It was really nice of you. Ok, goodbye. Good luck.
This strategy seemed to work pretty well. Although I couldn’t really understand most of what she was saying, Belinda seemed happy in the end for us and the the breakup went well.
Once we found out about the place we’re about to move to, we realized we’d have to break the news to our current hosts. They’re real easy going people and it seems that they don’t really mind whether we’re here or not. In fact, they just don’t care enough one way or the other. It’s kind of disheartening being a guest in someone’s home when they don’t miss you when you’re away. So considering that, combined with our new house we have lined up, has helped to drive us away. We want to be missed. We want to be needed. We haven’t broken up with them yet, but it seems like it will be pretty easy. They seem to have moved on without us already, so our absence likely won’t upset them anyways. Oh well…
The moral of the story is to have plenty of irons in the fire. Keep the craigslist homes waiting to hear from you. Wanting to hear from you. Don’t be too eager to commit to any one of them, and of course don’t let them know about each other. They may suspect something’s up. That’s fine. That keeps them trying to sweeten the deal. Just don’t let them know for certain whether there’s another home. And of course remember: when it comes to Craigslist homes, you can always do better.