The Summer of Teachbad
Mr. Teachbad took a longer than planned vacation. I hope you are enjoying your summer. Mine’s been pretty good.
Coming up on the blog we’ll look at the final, unconditional validation of Michelle Rhee. I also owe you Part II of her book review (here is part one) and Part II of the review of Paul Tough’s book How Children Succeed (here is part one).
Having none of these things prepared, I will tell you about my summer. It started with a family trip to Minneapolis, Minnesota for my grandparents’ 70th wedding anniversary. That’s a long time to do anything. It was on Grandma’s 90th birthday. Grandpa had a couple weeks off from the war in June 1943. He made it back to North Dakota from a transport ship in San Francisco and they got married on her birthday. Then it was back to bombing the Japanese on the Pacific islands. They’re very cool and more or less together. They are huge fans of the blog even though we all know they can barely see and don’t even have a computer.
There was a family reunion-style party so I saw a lot of outer-rim relatives one doesn’t normally see. I had no idea that my grandmother’s sister’s son and daughter-in-law adopted a Korean girl 14 years ago and they live in South Carolina. That was all brand new information, just like their names. It’s probably the last time I’ll see my grandpa’s brothers and sister.
I saw The Suburbs play at the Cabooze with some friends. It starts making you feel a little old when people you met as an adult have been your friends for 20 or 25 years, and grateful to have friends like that. I was hoping to see a Twins game, but they were playing in DC that weekend, naturally. It was our first time getting a hotel instead of staying at my mom’s house. Hotel = Better.
I’ve also been busy evicting a tenant and beginning the long and expensive process of updating the building, starting with that apartment. You’re initial reaction might be to feel bad for the guy I evicted, and I did too. But understand that you must be fully committed to the purpose of being a shitty tenant in order to get evicted in Washington, DC. It took almost three months from the first court filing in May until the eviction in late July, and he hadn’t paid any rent since February. That’s five months. Maybe you don’t have a home, but you can’t stay here anymore for free.
I almost started a new blog called Evicting One Fuckin’ Guy in DC. Then I almost started another blog called Shit I Found In This Guy’s Apartment. He was/is a serious hoarder of garbage, crap, stolen tools and other things. If anybody named Sanchez or Hernandez has had tool box or a tile saw go missing, I know where it was three weeks ago. He had more TVs in a 750 square foot apartment than I’ve owned in 43 years. The sheer volume of matter in the apartment, and the chaos and variety of it, nearly blew my mind.
He hauled away two box trucks full of stuff, two vans, and wheeled his washer and dryer around the corner somewhere on a cart. I had another three large pick-up trucks, packed and loaded over the top, hauled to the dump. A bunch of stuff was poached from the sidewalk and I took a Honda Pilot full to Goodwill. Here is what it looked like before the cleansing.
The eviction services company, legal fees, and additional trash haulers to clear the apartment cost over $2000, on top of five months lost rent. All in all it was unpleasant, time consuming and expensive. But now the magic of sweat equity, disinfectant and more money take hold as we transform this apartment into a fully habitable, modestly upscale apartment just 5 blocks from the metro.
The other new thing is that I’ve been becoming a mortgage loan originator, a.k.a. loan officer, at a mortgage bank.* I’ve been working there processing loans and learning the business for a year. On September 1, I will be licensed to do (or originate) my own loans in Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia. In fact, I have already started scheduling after-school Homebuyer 101 classes for teachers and staff in area schools.
If you are in the DC Metro area, there is very little chance I will come to your school. There are 211 K-12 public schools in Montgomery County alone. But if you would like to inquire about Mr. Teachbad’s Home-Ownership Prep Course at your school, email me. This a referral-driven, commission-only business, so if you are thinking of buying a home, refinancing, or just want to know how to get ready, send me an email.
I worked on over 200 home loans in the last 12 months, most of them first-time home buyers, nervous and with a lot of questions. I have degrees in economics and public policy (and education), and a lot of experience with mortgages as a consumer. I can help you or a friend you refer.** Email: mr.teachbad (at) gmail.com, which is not my normal work email. Put house in the subject line.
Enjoy the rest of your summer, if you have any.
*My company’s advertising policy prevents me from naming it in this context.
**Federal law prevents me from offering you, or you from receiving, “anything of value” in exchange for referrals. Otherwise I would give you something really nice.