Monday, October 31, 2005

Oh, no, HE'S BACK!!

The latest is that HE'S BACK! Last night I looked out the window before going out with the terriers for "last pee's and wee's and night-night treats" (always have to, given the number of predators I live with here) and THERE HE WAS, CHOWING DOWN IN MY GARDEN!

Enough already! This is not a porcupine hotel, motel, or Royal Fork restaurant!

Now he knows where he thinks he lives so as I run out (with terriers locked up) with a pole to make him ball up so I can catch him, and garbage can in hand. He races (didn't know they could go that fast) under the shed. So back we are, my wife and I, with the same eviction routine with the fully-extended window washing pole and rake. Fortunately after not too much effort the silly creature runs out from under the shed right into the garbage can that's lying on its side waiting for him.

Now this time it's off to the thousands of acres of state park up a long twisting road about five miles away. "Find yourself somebody else to freeload off of!" he's told.

It's "three strikes and you're out" around here. Next time he gets shot. My wife says porcupine belly is good eating.

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Sunday, October 23, 2005

Evicting the tenant from Hell

This is sort of real estate story. File it under landlord-tenant relations.

Anyone who has been a landlord dreads the occasional tenant from Hell. One such moved in on me yesterday.

A pocupine trapped under one's shed, and two terriers, is not a happy combination. After a quick trip to the vet to get facefuls of quills removed, I returned to evict my unwelcome tenant.

How do you chase out a pocupine from under a shed that's 15 feet long and only about six inches above the ground? Like the vet said, when I asked him how he managed to neuter such a creature for the Alaska Zoo, you do it "very carefully".

A pocupine when challenged just rolls itself into a ball. But with the window-washing pole extended full-lengeth it was possible to shove and prod him to the the other end of the shed. Then running around the building with a rake, quickly before he moved farther back under, I dragged him out into the yard.

There he crouched in a ball. Silly creature. I just plopped a garbage can over him. Then I shoved the lid under the can and righted the now closed can, safely covered over. Lastly, it was down the road to show him off to the neighbor children, who then trooped after me to our neighboring 50 area undeveloped tract where we could let him go.

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Thursday, October 13, 2005

Anchorage homes more affordable, says national study

Coldwell Banker has done an "apples-to-apples" study of housing values since the late 1980's. The Home Price Comparison Index calculates what the same house is worth in different markets. This year's study ranks 319 US markets. Anchorage ranks #170, about in the middle. The index rates a typical middle-management 2200 sq.ft. 4 bedroom 2.5 bath house that has a family room and double garage. At $305,107 this Anchorage home is only 76% of the cost of the US Average home of this type, however.

This is a useful study for anyone who plans a move from or to another community. E-mail me, for the full study.

For full property searches, virtual tours and many other Anchorage real estate resources, visit