I remember going through the Anthony Schools course. Religiously cramming every factoid I could get, into my brain. I was a true believer. A supplicant vying for admission into the secret order of all things REAL.
Fittingly, I took my licensing exam in the Scottish Rites Hall in San Francisco surrounded by 500 other eager wannabes. Walking out afterwards, I experienced a huge core dump as all the information I had just memorized, spontaneously fled my body.
I didn’t know it then, but that was my first auspicious real estate sign. I was ready. I had to empty myself of everything I already thought I knew and just start practicing real estate each day in order to find the hidden grail that it holds.
Along the way I’ve shown property at midnight, written offers on the hood of a car, gotten frantic buyers remorse calls at two in the morning and once listed and sold a property in less than five hours. Along the way, I’ve met looky-loos, nosey-neighbors and tire-kickers by the score. Along the way, I’ve represented buyers who just had to grind to the very last penny and others who had a million dollars burning a hole in their pockets. I even saw a client try to bring cash in a suitcase to close his escrow one time.
Along the way, I started carrying a box of Kleenex tissues in the car for those convinced they would never be able to afford a home in Santa Cruz. Later, I upgraded to an EpiPen when anaphylactic sticker shock became the norm. I earned a masters degree in grief counseling with a minor in hand-holding during the early 90’s at the same time I learned what it meant to chase the market down.
Along the way, I also learned how to find lost septic tanks by bending ordinary coat hangers into the shape of dowsing rods. And along the way, I occasionally employed a psychic house cleaner to clear away some of those dustballs of dirty energy that often accrue in people’s lives. I also hired Crime Scene Cleaners once, when I sold a house that a compulsive hoarder had completely filled with thirty years worth of rotting possessions.
Along the way, I’ve seen more Michael Jordan posters and more odd and eerie doll and owl collections than you can possibly imagine. I’ve shown houses where bongs were sitting out in the open on kitchen tables and naked college students were running around totally oblivious.
Along the way, I’ve run out of gas in the boonies with a clients in the car. I’ve come home with a loose key in my pocket after showing ten properties without a clue as to which house, I forgot to put the key back in the lockbox at. Somewhere along the way, I seem to also remember sitting an open house where there was a parrot with a huge vocabulary of swear words, greeting each visitor.
Along the way, I’ve worked with Tibetan Lamas and the other kind of llamas. I’ve worked with Fortune 500 execs, motorcycle club members and middle-aged sex therapists – all in the same day. I’ve sold ego homes, wondering how people could ever stand to wander around in that much space and homes under 500 sq ft, wondering how people could possibly live in them without strangling each other after the first week.
Along the way, I’ve been called the Bodhisattva Realtor, a spiritual advisor, a consummate professional and a dirt pimp. I’ve been accused of breaching the NAR code of ethics for humorously suggesting that Realtors should carry a moral compass with them at all times.
Have I arrived? Nope. I’m still on the bus with the license plate that reads “Further” and yes, what a long strange trip it’s been. Strange and endlessly fascinating.
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