I was watching an episode of House Hunters last night, and one of the homes featured a bathroom with a urinal. Predictably, the husband was thrilled and the wife, mortified. This made me wonder why urinals in home bathrooms aren’t common, because that’s a trend I could get behind.

Or in front of, as the case were.

I guess it just comes down to practicality. With a traditional couple, only one can use a urinal, but both can use a toilet. Too bad. I’d be flush with excitement to have one installed.

I also got to wondering why homeowners don’t install electric hand dryers in bathrooms. Sure, most of us just use a towel or our jeans (don’t judge!), but you’d do less laundry that way.

For the record, I also wouldn’t mind a dumbwaiter, laundry chute, and boot scraper. These things may all be out of vogue, but boy are they efficient.

Speaking of houses, I’ve got some really big news to share: Tara and I sold our house in Nevada!!

If this is the first you’ve heard about us owning a house in Nevada, it’s because I’ve rarely mentioned it. And really, “us” is just a formality; Tara added my name to the mortgage just a couple of months ago, though technically because Nevada is a community property state, it was half mine the moment we quit living in sin and said “I do.”

But really, the house was hers. Once upon a time it belonged to her grandparents, but she and her ex bought it in 2005. By 2012, the ex was history, and she moved in with me in Washington. She immediately put the house on the market, where it languished for eight long years. If you think real estate is a great investment, usually that’s true…but Ruth, Nevada isn’t much more than a dot on a map. It makes neighboring Ely—already a remote small town in northeastern Nevada—look like a bustling metropolis in comparison. It’s hardly a place people seek out to live. Ruth used to be a company town and its sole industry is still the copper mine, which has opened and closed many times over the years. The population was 440 ten years ago, and it’s probably lost people since. The town’s biggest claim to fame is that it served as the inspiration for Stephen King’s novel Desperation, whose title alone is telling. Ol’ Steve stopped in Ruth on a cross-country road trip in 1991 and, no shit, thought all the town’s residents were dead.

I’m not making this up.

Ruth isn’t entirely without charm. Sure, the streets are dusty and the mine is noisy. Many of the houses are in disrepair, and you’ll find old appliances riddled with bullet holes within city limits. But I’ll always have fond memories of my first trip to see Tara before we were even a couple. We hopped on her ATV and took off on the dirt roads around town, collecting garnets. The high desert landscape, with its sagebrush and bristlecone pine, holds a certain allure—and the night sky is alive with a billion stars. And when I stayed in that house over Christmas and New Year’s Day a few weeks after an extended hospital stay, it felt like a homecoming.

Still, we were ready to be rid of the house years ago. Tara had renters twice. The first were assholes who trashed the place and skipped town owing rent. The second were much more conscientious about rent and basic upkeep, but being a long-distance landlord is challenging. When they moved on earlier in 2019, she decided not to bother renting again and shuttered the place.

Finally, a month ago, she had an interested buyer. There had been a few nibbles over the years but nothing more, so neither of us held our breath. It’s why I never mentioned the house or possible impending sale on my blog; I didn’t believe it would actually sell, and didn’t want to jinx anything. But this guy was motivated (why?), and yesterday, the sale closed.

Hallelujah! We are finally free and clear of that thing!

29 thoughts on “Ruth-Less

      1. His house is a huge tourist attraction up here. You can’t go in, but people drive there just to stand outside and take pictures. I suppose I should do it one day just to say I have.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. I’d pretty much assumed it was never going to sell years ago. Plus, the town’s fortunes are directly tied to the mine, which has closed several times over the years. It’s all based on the price of copper. Suffice it to say, we were keenly interested in copper pricing over the last eight years!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. OMG! We’ve been to the Ruth Mine! (Not my choice. The husband likes that sort of thing.) I came across old pictures of it when looking for a pic of The Lonliest Road for my post coming out tomorrow. Small world. Congrats by the way. New car and unloading the house? You’re the only person I know who’s having a decent 2020.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. “…flush with excitement…” 😂 You kill me. 😀

    You really are having a fantastic year aren’t you. 😳 How how how…??

    Congrats. PS the dumpy house down the street that had items out on the driveway including hooker boots listed for $989k this week. ???

    Real estate prices in Toronto are insane. Maybe NOW would be a GREAT time to sell my house…which is in MUCH better shape, bigger, has a private driveway and is modern and renovated. Strange times…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Holy cow! I don’t know what the current exchange rate is, but either way, I’m thinking that’s pretty outrageous. Now would be the PERFECT time to sell!

      You know, until you guys mentioned it, I was thinking 2020 sucked just as much as the next person. But you do make me wonder about that all of a sudden.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I enjoy seeing the desert. My parents owned a shotgun shack on the Gulf of Mexico which I would have inherited but my dad sold it. That is okay. Sometimes location is everything. The market never really drops in Florida. Husband and I have put so much love and work into this home that it might be challenging to sell but we have offers all the time in the mail and in person.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Congratulations!

    I would actually love a laundry chute. One of my friends put one in his house years ago and has apparently said it would be super easy for me to do, too. One more thing to add to my list!

    Supposedly the electric hand driers pick up poop particles from the air and fling them onto your freshly clean hands, but I haven’t researched the technology so I haven’t vetted that theory yet. Otherwise I just see them as an electricity suck.

    Those photos are amazing, and remind me that there is way, way too much of this country that I still have to see.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh. Eww…
      Then what are they doing in public restrooms?!

      I read that the electric costs come out to 1/100th of a cent per use. So even if you dried your hands three times a day, your electric bill would only go up $1.00 a month.


  5. Yes….hallelujah to both Tara and you! I bet you both feel so relieved. As if a weight has been lifted off your shoulders.

    I have to say though, judging from the photographs you shared, it was actually a very cute/cozy looking house. LOVE the front porch!

    CONGRATS to you both! And cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yeah yeah…never mind the house…let’s go back to that urinal thing. Nice thought, but I have to believe the plumbing would create a (long term) nightmare. A toilet sits flat, everything is in the floor, and gravity does a ton of the work….but urinals…the plumbing is vertical through the walls. If it leaks, out come the wall to find the damn leak. the exit would have to go through the wall, to the floor, and cut 90 degrees to meet the toilet’s exit. Yeah. I see issues here down the road. As convenient as this would be, no thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s fantastic news. Always good to get rid of extra baggage, esp. something the size of a house.

    I’ve only seen a few urinals in my time, but the disgust of those little urinal ‘cakes’ has never left me. Ewwwww

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Congrats to you (and Tara, heck, mostly to Tara). That’s exciting news and will make taxes easier.

    I inherited a rental property when my grandmother died, and the tiny amount of money (because it was tiny when split between me and my many, many siblings) was not worth the PITA taxes. I could never do the EZ forms. Was so grateful when my great uncle finally sold it.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That’s very exciting! I’m relieved and happy for y’all! Selling a house is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, but eight years? Ugh!
    Our house sat on the market for two years, just waiting for us to make an offer so we could engage in a bidding war _eye roll. Obviously the other party had no idea this was OUR house!

    Liked by 1 person

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