Category Archives: Basement Dwella

A port in the storm

I’d just like to mention that a big thunderstorm is rolling through the A right now. While I am perfectly content to sit in bed and listen (see figure above), my dogs are pretty scared. Bro, our big lion, likes to curl up to the smallest possible size and hide under furniture. Chip just pants and follows me around. Sometimes they sleep on my bed–and, I might add, hog the covers. My room becomes Dogtown.

As sad as it is to see them so scared, it’s also kind of funny because their facial expressions are priceless. Here’s a picture of BroBro from the another time we had a storm. He had jumped into my bathtub.

Oh, here comes Chip now. I’ve set up a little dog bed next to my bed, so hopefully I’ll have my pillow to myself this time.


In which the narrator attends a tour of homes

it's official

Dear Readers, listening to NPR is a very good thing for you to do. In the first week of March, I happened to turn on WABE 90.1 in the car, and I heard about this event called Phoenix Flies. The Atlanta Preservation Center has sponsored this event for seven years, and it comprises historical tours and events sprinkled throughout the city for the entire month of March. Obviously I had to go to something.

My friend S was game, too–two Basement Dwellas are always down for free events–and this past weekend, we decided to go to Whittier Mill Village. WMV, a settlement sandwiched between the railroad tracks and the Chattahoochee River, is only a few miles from my house, but I had absolutely no idea it existed before this. (Then again, one of the most dangerous blocks in the country is also a few miles from me, but I’ve never been there either.)

The backstory: the Whittier family, who owned the mills in Lowell, MA, decided to use Chattahoochee, GA, as it was known back then before its incorporation into ATL proper, as their base for expansion. Of the original mill structures, only the tower and the carpenter’s shop remain, but so do many of the mill workers’ houses, ranging from one of the original 1895 houses to duplexes from 1926.

somehow we wore matching shirts

The medical clinic has been converted into a residence. I was in love with the exterior of this building:
old medical clinic for mill workers

As S can verify, I kept getting a weird Massachusetts feel from this area. Case in point:
looking out from the hill

The local building code has provisions to maintain the historical elements, but you could tell that the owners of these houses were really into the historical details, even without the codes. Here, a candle with a magnifying glass to spread the light:
candle with a lens in front of it

And here, an original fireplace. (Note: this belonged to a house that S and I decided we’d eventually have to buy and live in as roommates, even though neither of us are staying in Atlanta.)
original fireplace

And this house was built in 2000/2001, and according to the codes, it has a big front porch and a double-sided fireplace in the middle of the room. The people who lived in this house were also the nicest people ever. The lady, dressed entirely in blue, plied us with peach wine spritzers and cheese buttons, and we had a nice discussion of our Atlanta upbringings and the pros and cons of living in an old house. The husband, dressed in all red, was telling us that he wanted to paint the house an even brighter orange, like he had in his office, but that his wife put her foot down.
the sweetest couple lives here

A really cool garden. The people in this house also had a studio and a darkroom.
sweet garden

Down by the tracks.

The carpenter’s building, now part of the park.  They hold Parktoberfest here every year, and now that I know about it, I really want to go.  Too bad it’s 6 months from now.
part of the park

And the tower:
mill grounds, which are now a park

Obligatory tower poses:
and poses
mill tower

And lastly, this is an icon on the Westside, one of those places you pass but never end up going in. Well, we passed it on the way there and back, but didn’t go in. So there you go.
Bolton Road icon

Spring fever

Not to brag, you guys, but I’m having a pretty good day so far.  I don’t have work today–which helps–so I slept in until 11.  Then I had the best breakfast ever.

breakfast this morning

Strawberries and cream, toast with butter, two kinds of soft cheese, and my already-mixed Cafe viennois, paired with a free issue of Harper’s that I was sent for being a former subscriber. I have to say: that’s a really effective marketing strategy. I’d been thinking about renewing anyway, and I was so happy to see an issue that I think I’ll pull that proverbial trigger.

Because of quite a few factors that I don’t feel like getting into until things settle down, I’ve decided that the credo du jour (de la semaine?) stems from the Beastie Boys, of all people: No time like the present to work shit out.

This means: spring cleaning, extensive wardrobe culling, storage of seasonal clothing, mass genocide of extraneous papers via recycle bin and shredder, much more of a minimalist approach to my belongings, and organizing my thoughts about what I want to happen in the next year or two. I’m also giving a lot of thought to what I want to do in my free time, of which I do have an atypical surfeit recently. There is going to be a lot of prioritizing that goes on here.

I took a break from all the Serious Bizness TM to tend to alcohol-related matters, with the end result looking like this:

they call me mrs. limoncello

In about a week, I’ll get to taste my limoncello (!), and then you should expect a post about how to make it. I am definitely excited for this.

Anyway, I should get back to what I was doing, since my room is in a state of massive upheaval while I sort everything. It’s hard to walk in here, and I can’t see my desk. This must change.

Bachelor Week

I am again left to my own devices in this large house.  If, say, a squatter were to reside in the bottom opposite corner of the basement, I would have no clue.  But don’t worry about my safety, gentle reader, for I know that a punch’s strength follows the core-to-extremity principle, and thus my own knowledge will ultimately prove my salvation.

Between checking for squatters in the nether reaches of Casa BlogStyles and fending off Jehovah’s witnesses–alas, they got the last word: I now have no fewer than two different Watchtower publications–I have actually been uncharacteristically productive.

I’m hoping to write about both of these projects in a later post (a.k.a. when it’s not 11:30 pm), so I will leave you with these two images.  And yes, they were taken on PhotoBooth.  Computer Issues, remember?

Now it’s time to enjoy my nightly hot water with lemon* and watch the latest episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

* Or, if you’re excited, you can exclaim, ‘Hot lemony water!’

Randoms: Spring is still springing edition

So I made a playlist of all the songs I want to listen to now that it’s sunny out.  A lot of these were my main jams last spring when I was still in college.  I would sit out on the porch of my house and listen to these on my Grados and enjoy the weather.

Another bonus is that many of these songs remind me of the time when D and I were just starting to date.  Those were exciting days, to say the least.  It was the first time I was consistently cooking good meals for myself (instead of bacon, pancakes, and bacon), and we went on a lot of walks and random nighttime car trips.  Sorry to get so nostalgic here, but I really like thinking about last spring.  This spring is shaping up to be pretty epic, though, so stay tuned for that.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Another thing that I’m jamming on and have been loving for a while now is hot water with lemon. It sounds really pointless–and gross, even–but it’s really good for clearing up your skin or when you want something hot to drink at night and you want to avoid caffeine. After a while, it even tastes delicious, I promise. I love citrus, so I may be a bit biased, but it really does work if your skin decides to act up because of the change in season. (Ahem.)


I drink it out of a mug that I decorated back in middle school.  It is the WonderMug Of Many Colors.  If only you could see the matching saucer.  This is how Basement Dwella rolls, yo.  But seriously, hot lemon water (gotta think of a better name than that!) does wonders for everything that ails you, I am convinced.

Okay, lastly, I am listening to ‘Teenage Kicks,’ and my mom just mused, “It’s such a good song…”  Damn straight, Mommo.

Hunting season

I interrupt this pause in blogging (due to Computer Issues) to bring you this ridiculous scenario: bird hunting in my own house.

Yes, a bird flew into the house, and I spotted it while my mom was in the shower.  Who got it out of the house?

Not Chip, that’s for sure.  Normally an infamous foe of squirrels, moles,  chipmunks, turtles, and basically all small animals the yard over, he had no idea that a bird was flying around the house.

I’d like to think that the plastic owl and menacing youtube owl noises helped my cause, but I think in the end, blocking off a small chunk of the house and opening up the front door was the best plan of [team] action.

Oh well.  You live and you learn, right?

Also in today’s news, major congratulations to Matt, who absolutely killed it at State today.  (Kayte, I don’t know about you, but that 400 free relay took about 5 years off my life.)