I'll give you a little background on how I wound up where I am.
In 1996, I moved to Las Vegas to do stand-up comedy. I worked several of the comedy clubs on The Strip. My girlfriend, a graphic designer, who eventually became my wife owned an ad agency. I was tired of the road after nine years and went to work for her agency. We eventually broke away in 2000 and formed our own agency, Blazic Design, based out of our home.
We had a great home, a great business, a young daughter, a daughter from her first marriage, cars and all the amenities that come with being successful. In 2004, we were doing great. Then, in the first three months of 2005, my wife left me, my father died and my cousin died.
When my wife left, she was the Design part of Blazic Design. I kept the business and paid her a lot of money to keep MY name. But, I couldn't find freelance talent that was as good as her, and the business eventually went under in 2006.
From there, I fumbled around for a while before getting into trading stocks and options with my own money. I did extremely well for a short period, and bought a big house and life was looking great again. Then, I just couldn't make enough to pay the bills. Eventually, my house went into foreclosure, I lost all my money, I had to sell my possessions to keep the lights on and my health was getting worse and worse from all the stress.
In early 2010, my brother and sister in Ohio decided that they couldn't help me being 2,300 miles away. So a plan was worked out for me to return to Cleveland, OH and live in a "vacant" house an old high school buddy had.
On March 18, 2010, I arrived in Cleveland, but the house was not ready. It didn't have a toilet, sink or tub/shower in the bathroom. I had to stay in a hotel for a week, and the toilet was finally put in. I lived there for months without a shower or sink in the bathroom.
My buddy, Fred (Not his real name), who owns the house, hasn't lived there in about six or seven years. He has another house way out east of Cleveland. This house, though, has been a storage facility for him for more than ten or fifteen years. It was and is full of crap. And you don't dare try to throw anything out. Fred will go ballistic.
Being a person who was suffering from deep depression, stuffing me in a storage facility didn't do anything for my mental state. But I learned to accept my lowly lot in life - broke, living on food stamps and relying on charity from family to pay my bills.
After a brief stint in a psychiatric hospital in October of 2010, I went into a severe depression, which lasted for almost five months. I just sat in my La-Z-Boy chair and watched TV the entire time. I didn't do anything. I didn't go anywhere. I just sat.
Then, on March 7th, 2011, I decided that I HAD to get out of Hoarder Hell and do something. So I went to a nearby Dunkin' Donuts and started writing. In the last four months, I've pounded out over 300 blog posts and have taken my main blog from obscurity to levels I never dreamed possible.
My hatred for the Hoarder's House From Hell is what motivates me to get out and work, day and night. I'm on a mission to build an Internet based business. Blogging is just stage one.
Since most of what I write on my other blog is humor, I thought I'd have some fun on this site and start an Internet Soap Opera. Most of my time is spent at Dunkin' Donuts and there are plenty of interesting and strange characters that come through here, I thought I'd call the series - All My Donuts. It makes sense.
For this first installment, I thought I'd take you on a tour of my lovely accommodations.
I reside in a small bungalow in Cleveland, OH.
|Fred's house in Cleveland. I live alone.|
|That's a vintage Buick wagon. Whooo-hoooo.|
|I don't think this hot tub has been used in 15 years. I'm afraid to look inside.|
|This is what you see when you open the back door and enter the house.|
|The crap is next to the stove. The door goes to the basement. The scary place.|
|I know two of the burners work on the stove. However, the oven is dangerous.|
|Love the garbage can. It's a freakin' construction site.|
|Nothing has moved since March of 2010.|
|There is a bed in there on the left. I don't sleep in it.|
In the winter the room is freezing and in the summer it is sweltering. There is a tiny closet, which has the handful of clothes I can wear. The rest of the stuff, there is no place to put any of it, so these boxes have been in the same spot for sixteen months.
|There is a spare room that is full of Paul's crap.|
|Fred's idea of an ideal bathroom.|
Now, I'm no real estate expert, but when he plans on selling this house down the road, there won't be a woman in the world that will buy a house with a bathroom that has NO STORAGE. None. Zippo. I keep my toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant and the rest of my toiletries in the hall linen closet.
Last year, my brother was coming in to town from where he lives in central Ohio. Fred said to me, "We ought to get the guest room cleaned up so he can stay here." Ha! Take a look at the "guest room" - comfy.
|This sheet of plywood is over the stairwell. You have to duck to get by it.|
|I think my brother would have loved curling up with these boxes.|
|"More Than A Feeling."|
|The view from the third step from the bottom, heading into Scary City.|
Oddly, Fred knows where every freakin' thing is in this dump heap. If you move anything, he knows it.
|There are model cars that have never been built on top of this pile.|
|The priceless shirt collection.|
|More dusty crap.|
|Maybe they work. Maybe they don't. I won't try to figure it out.|
|My home. The blanket covers a huge hole in the top.|
My chair (home) is strategically placed in the living room. It faces a blank wall. It's the only place I can look and not see boxes or crap. It's the only thing that keeps me from going completely insane.
|View from behind my chair.|
Fred's Pleasure Palace was the impetus behind me getting out and starting to blog again. I just couldn't take it, sitting in that house day after day. From great pain come good things.
I spend every waking hour I can at one of my WiFi hotspots, writing.
Now that you know where home base is, in a future installment, I'm going to take you on a tour of the PLACES - the places where I connect to the Internet and do my writing. After that, I'll start to introduce you to the FACES - the colorful people who are All My Donuts.
In the meantime, I'm still living in a hoarder's hell, but I spend as little time there as possible.
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