I love old stuff. I have always loved old stuff. Old furniture, old books, old music, old homes. It is an incredible privilege to be the first owner of a thing—to write it’s story from the very beginning, establish its original history—but there is something particularly romantic about reading a book already wept over, written in, used and entirely abused by someone else you will never know. It feels ethereal sitting in a chair that was once purchased new by—who? A newlywed couple? A growing family? A woman starting over? Were babies sung to sleep on this couch? First kisses shared in this chair? New stories told around this table? Was someone so moved by this old record that they had the courage to chase a lost love? To call their folks? To quit their job and sell their stuff and chase the sound the music made on that old 45?
Life is about the stories we tell. Old things have stories we can only imagine and it is an honor to continue telling them.
We could’ve bought a new home, perfect condition, turn-key, move-in ready. After all the money, headaches, and road blocks spent on our 1976 midcentury, we could’ve bought or built an incredible home. But this place has memories that we keep finding buried beneath layers of paint. It has conversations soaked into its walls, laughter seeped into its foundations, and dreams that have floated up through its ceilings. In our home, I can taste the meals cooked by a spouse spinning Beatles and Led Zeppelin records. I can smell the candles that were burned to mask the smell of the family dog that got into something he shouldn’t have. I can hear the sounds and see the scenes and just imagine what it will be like to continue the legacy that began in this home.
So if you are wondering why—why dump so much into something so dated? Why deal with the headaches of 40+ years of wear and tear? My answer is this: the money spent is an investment into the pure dreams of a couple who, in 1975, had the courage to say, “let’s build it.” The headaches are an emotional commitment to a place that has stood the test of time and will continue to do so for as long as I am in it. The road blocks are a reminder that, although age can throw challenges our way, the passing years are the testament to our identities and a representation of our tenacity and strength. The home is an extension of the family within it and by preserving the past, we preserve the family.
My husband and I have dreams of seeing a city transformed. We believe that begins by seeing new life come to old relics, new stories told in old places.
This is my home, and it was someone else’s before me.
Welcome to 1976. Come in.
(All photos from the original MLS listing)