Taking the “Sub” out of Suburban

Not my house.  But mine would look something like this if it had owners with some free time.

Not my house. But mine would look something like this if it had owners with some free time.

A long while back, we bought a house in the lovely suburb of Milpitas, CA. Now first of all, since we all need something new to be offended by, let’s try the word “suburb”. The prefix “sub” means less than. Which is calling my town somehow imperfect or below an urb. We have the same ethnic food and crazy people. Just fewer of them. And we can park.

I don’t want to be called “suburban”. Let’s go with with “Applebees-American”.

I was pleased to see that Milpitas got its first crazy person recently. He hangs out at an intersection that has 3 gas stations and an abandoned bank. Urban, son.

He’s a black guy who dances like Michael Jackson, yells bible quotes into an unplugged microphone, and wears a plastic pro wrestling championship belt. Doesn’t ask for money. He just does it for the love of the game. Urban crazy people are just in it for the money. Our guy keeps it real.

My favorite part is that nothing phases old Asian ladies. There will be an old Asian lady standing on the island waiting for the light to change with her stolen shopping cart as if nothing is happening. Like there’s not a former pro wrestler yelling bible quotes next to her. She just stands there like she’s in line at the bank. And next to her is “Thou shalt not covet they neighbors oxen! Eee Hee!”

The light turns green and she just toddles off sloooooowly across the street.

Nothing phases old Asian ladies. Years ago I was doing a small part in a movie in a scene at a goth club. And I’m totally goth’d out for the part. White face makeup, teased out hair, leather top hat, clothes with straps and buckles that seem to have no function. Like a depressed mime junkie.

At the end of the day I call my girlfriend and say, “Hey, we’re done shooting.” And she says, “Are you still in your makeup? I need to see this. Come over.” So I show up and knock on the door. Her mom opens it and just goes “Come een, come een.” And that’s it. No “Hey, did a series of seagulls shit on your face?” Or “Should we put a suicide watch on you?”

So how can you say we’re not urban? We have crazy people and we have people that ignore them. Though we do have a light rail train that definitely defines our suburbanism. Our light rail train does not go to the airport. But it does go to the mall. Because the mall is full of people who don’t want to go anywhere else.

And we do have plenty of ethnic food. Milpitas is actually a destination for foodies who like Asian stuff. And the best part is that none of the places are ironically named like in the big cities. We don’t have a Thai restaurant named Thai Me Down. We don’t have an Italian place called Suck My Noodle. We have lots of Pho places. It’s a Vietnamese soup. And we have a place that is completely un-ironically named Pho Kim Long.

When we bought our house we had two distinct things we wanted. I wanted a small yard because landscaping upkeep isn’t my forte. And my girlfriend wanted a walk in closet because she’s a girl. A walk in closet is like a Woman Cave. It’s not like a Man Cave with a huge TV, a pool table, and beer signs on the wall. A woman cave is a place with shelves and racks for her clothes and mirror so she can feel bad about herself in private. Like some horrible meditation sphere.

So we wanted a small yard and a huge closet. We ended up buying a house on a corner lot. Her closet barely qualifies as bigger than a breadbox. And you can land small planes in the front yard.

And I keep telling her I’ll happily store all her stuff in the front yard.

We even have a picket fence. We painted it brown to match the lawn.  We’re just 2.5 children away from being a total cliche.  And I don’t like being a cliche. That’s a good enough reason to not have kids, right?


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