Tuesday, June 26, 2007

The Ugly House

Built without style, planning or aesthetics. A cobbled together mish-mash of lumber, each distinct section of a different vintage. Or, as I call it, home. We bought the place on a very limited budget, having two small children who needed a proper yard and access to parks and schools. It was close to being a trash house, the recently divorced woman who lived there couldn't quite manage a small dog (we filled a dumpster with soiled carpet!), much less a house. Every aspect of it was substandard, the plumbing was almost Roman (including a "drum-trap", illegal for over thirty years!) all the remodeling was slap-dash, but it was big enough, and in a good neighborhood. Over time, it has slowly been renewed; with four of the twelve rooms finished, and the others nearly so, now even the outside is approaching a sense of "unification." I had never known it to be anything other than an "old dog" of a house, or rather, with its six additions, a "Frankenstein's monster."

In my recent siding project I was stripping some of the shingles from the second floor, above the front porch, when this detail came to light:

At one time, six score years ago, someone had built a house, with design elements, a cozy cottage (it was half of its current size) decorated and painted, not exactly a Victorian mansion, but a structure pleasing to the eye, with proper proportions and a sense of completeness. When I have finished I hope that my work will be as comely as that of that unknown artisan, who worked so many years ago.

By Professor Batty


Blogger reetsyburger said...

I like discovering bits about your house!

It's like architectural spelunking!

Blogger Professor Batty said...

... and no shortage of bats!

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