More affordable housing, less discrimination

Asheville needs much more affordable housing. This point is widely accepted, yet small groups of property owners continue to argue against it. In the opinion piece “Poor and Poorer” [Aug. 18, Xpress], the writer referenced his “poorer,”“nuisance” neighbors with their unkempt lawns, broken-down vehicles and loud parties. While some people of every economic class can be inconsiderate of their neighbors, many of these poor people are actually people like me.

I work full-time at an environmental nonprofit. I vote in every single election. I am a volunteer bicycle mechanic. I am an actively engaged community citizen. I don’t have loud parties. I don’t have broken down cars. I keep my grass short.

I am saddened by property owners who fear those of us living below the $45,000-a-year median income. It is my hope that those neighborhood advocates take the time to meet more people like me. There are a lot of us in Asheville, and we would like to be your neighbors.

— Lindsey Simerly
Asheville

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68 thoughts on “More affordable housing, less discrimination

  1. little sister

    “I am saddened by property owners who fear those of us living below the $45,000-a-year median income.”

    I am saddened by a persistent, repetitive online poster who doesn’t do her homework. The current median income in Asheville is $38,800. [City Housing Trust Policy and Guidelines, July 1, 2010] Having inflated the median earnings only weakens her claim of an affordable housing shortage. It also reveals an edge of contempt toward people whose earnings are in the middle of the income distribution, as well as those who are home owners. Apparently, discrimination goes both ways.

  2. J

    It is entirely possible for the county and city to have different annual incomes, so both little sister and moderator Williams could be right.

    Simerly blurs the issue, whether she does it intentionally or not is another question. The issue isn’t over people who live in affordable housing, the issue has been and will be the density issue. Current landowners bought and built the houses where they are now partly based on protections provided by the city zoning code. The contentious issue is the city pulling the rug out from under these folks and making their zoning protections somewhat meaningless.

  3. Barry Summers

    That $43,000 median income is for the entire median household, which in that same study is pegged at 2.33 persons. The City HTF Guidelines puts the median income for a household of 2 at $44,400.

    Lighten up, “little sister”. Lindsey is right on target, both on her facts and on her points.

  4. Margaret Williams

    J: You get my point (though I won’t get into the thorny zoning issue right now).

    Ms. Simerly does not specify WHICH median income she refers to (household? individual? Buncombe? Asheville? Asheville Metro Area?). However, her $45,000 figure is close enough to the Buncombe and Asheville-metro numbers to be a reasonable remark and not deserving of personal vitriol. That was my point.

    In any case, according to HUD’s guidelines for what’s considered affordable housing: 30% of income for rent/mortgage + utiiities/taxes. Or three times their incomes.

    So individual Asheville residents earning $38,800 could (more or less) afford a $116,400. By Barry’s numbers from the City HTF ($44,400 for median households), an affordable home would be $132,000.

    I’m not trying to be persnickety (and I really don’t like doing math), but the letters, articles and commentary about affordable housing in Asheville and the surrounding area stir up a lot of dialogue… which we welcome.

  5. JWTJr

    Why are we still trying to ram home ownership down peoples throats? Haven’t we learned anything with the current housing/mortgage crisis?

    Even Barney Frank is now agreeing that many don’t need to own homes.

  6. Barry Summers

    Where does Simerly state that her data is for ‘household’ income? She speaks for herself, not ‘households.’

    I think you’re really reaching hard to find some fault here, LS. She doesn’t specify that she’s referring to herself, or a household, when talking about income levels. Although, if I were picking her words apart to serve my ideological bias, as you seem to be, I would point to this:

    “I am saddened by property owners who fear those of us living below the $45,000-a-year median income.”

    There. ‘us’ means a household, not an individual. Satisfied?

  7. Barry Summers

    Why are we still trying to ram home ownership down peoples throats?

    Not the issue here, Jejunior. Some of us have referred to the HTF stats for info on median income, but Lindsey & the author of the Aug. 18th letter she is responding to are talking about renters.

  8. JWTJr

    Barry, I was referring to this:

    “So individual Asheville residents earning $38,800 could (more or less) afford a $116,400. By Barry’s numbers from the City HTF ($44,400 for median households), an affordable home would be $132,000.”

    I should have included that in my previous post.

  9. Barry Summers

    “So individual Asheville residents earning $38,800 could (more or less) afford a $116,400. By Barry’s numbers from the City HTF ($44,400 for median households), an affordable home would be $132,000.”

    I should have included that in my previous post.

    Fair enough. That came from the moderator, not Lindsey or any of us civilians. I believe we’re primarily talking about affordable rental housing, not home ownership…

  10. CityRez

    “Current landowners bought and built the houses where they are now partly based on protections provided by the city zoning code. The contentious issue is the city pulling the rug out from under these folks and making their zoning protections somewhat meaningless.”

    “Why are we still trying to ram home ownership down peoples throats?”

    Agreed and agreed. I do not feel like I am bashing anyone if I expect the development in my neighborhood to be consistent with the zoning in place when I purchased. The going rate for a home is a product of the zoning. When exactly did it become my responsibility to accomodate anybody who wants to own a home anywhere they want to own it if they can’t afford it?

    With all the bad mortgages out there, how in holy heck does anyone expect a subsidy or zoning accomodation for home ownership by people who can’t afford a house where they want it. There’s a name for these people….renters. It’s not like people are being denied a place to live. It just seems like people asking for a hand out or an opportunity to live in the city limits and often, downtown center for less than their neighbors had to pay.

    If you want to talk about rates for rental apartments, that may be a reasonable discussion, but I don’t see a lack of availability on rentals in the city limits, unless you’re stuck on living in downtown itself. I’m proud of actually buying my home from the bank, but it’s debatable if that’s been a good investment. It’s definitely not a good idea to keep penalizing those who pay their mortgages and taxes in favor of others who want special zoning treatment or exemptions from their obligations.

  11. little sister

    BS: ‘those of us…’ implies individuals, not households, so no, not satisfied. But that’s not really the point. Simerly has no idea whether Mike Lewis’ household income is > $45,000 and doesn’t say what her household income is, only her own (individual) qualifications as a good citizen.

    While I disagree with most of Lewis’ conclusions about renters and tend to agree with some of Simerly’s points, I felt it necessary to interject current Asheville (not outdated County) data into the discussion.

  12. Margaret Williams

    I have been “one of those people” but I never expected or asked for “a subsidy or zoning accomodation for home ownership.” I now own my home and pay city taxes, despite falling below the median income (for households or individuals). Whether this is a bad change or not, as far as investments go… time will tell.

    One of our staffers (also living under any median-income level cited here) argues strongly for NOT owning a home and says he prefers to rent. And to live close enough to work to avoid some huge daily commute (which I did for more than a year, 45 miles one way to downtown Xpress, in order to have an affordable place to live), that staffer pays a more than 1/3 his income to a property-management company.

    All choices, I suppose, but it’s the opportunity for affordable housing — whether rented or owned — that we’re discussing here, as well as attitudes.

  13. JWTJr

    “Fair enough. That came from the moderator, not Lindsey or any of us civilians. I believe we’re primarily talking about affordable rental housing, not home ownership…”

    Fair enough. Bad Margaret!!

  14. Barry Summers

    @CityRez: Zoning designations are not carved in stone. A city grows and changes, and like it or not, people have to change with the changing environment. Downtown used to have lots of single-family dwellings. Not anymore. Most of the surrounding area was farmland and orchards. Not anymore. Just because you buy a house in a single-family residence neighborhood doesn’t mean that it will stay that way forever, the end. That’s not realistic.

    And I think you’re supporting Lindsey’s point here, by suggesting that anyone who talks about affordable housing wants a ‘hand-out’, or that you as a homeowner will be ‘penalized’ by having renters move into your neighborhood. These are the kinds of prejudices that need to be addressed.

  15. JWTJr

    ” … or that you as a homeowner will be ‘penalized’ by having renters move into your neighborhood. These are the kinds of prejudices that need to be addressed.”

    Barry – have you every owned a home in a neighborhood that had a dramatic increase in the number of rental properties? Your home’s value gets hammered as the neighborhood declines. You can’t blame the existing owners for not wanting to take that hit. How is that a prejudice?

  16. Barry Summers

    BTW, I’m a renter. I rent a small house on the edge of the city limits, and for the past 9 years, I’ve had a nice view of a field and a wooded hillside out my back window. Recently, a luxury development started going in, and now I have to deal with trees coming down, construction noise, and a bare muddy expanse out my back window. Darn those wealthy aspiring homeowners ruining my rented property!!

    I kid. When the first new resident moved in, I went over & welcomed her to the ‘neighborhood’. Things change, but we can still be human to each other.

  17. Margaret Williams

    I’ll be “Bad Margaret” a little bit more and note that for renters, “affordable” means a rent payment (plus utilities) that doesn’t exceed one-third their take-home pay (or else it’s not affordable). So all my ranting about median incomes is at least somewhat relevant, whether you’re renting or owning. But enough.

  18. Barry Summers

    Barry – have you every owned a home in a neighborhood that had a dramatic increase in the number of rental properties? Your home’s value gets hammered as the neighborhood declines. You can’t blame the existing owners for not wanting to take that hit. How is that a prejudice?

    It’s a prejudice because it’s based on non-reality (property values will only ever go up, cities will never change zoning to accommodate growing population, etc.) and because it’s anchored in a desire to advance or protect your interests at the expense of others who simply want to a) rent their property out, or b) be able to rent a place to live somewhat close to where they work.

    I have not owned a house under those circumstances, no, but I am sympathetic. Especially under the crappy economy, it must suck to consider your property value going down even farther (whether because of the presence of those darned ‘renters’ or not.) However, the current crappy marketplace is the result of greed and manipulation at the top, and is not the fault of working class people like Lindsey looking to have a place to live without a 30 minute commute from the ‘burbs.

  19. Barry Summers

    I’ll be “Bad Margaret” a little bit more…

    Once again, I have to disagree with Jejunior. You’re not a ‘Bad Margaret’, merely average.

    Or maybe you should embrace it – “Oh that’s right honey, I’m Margaret, and I’m Bad!”

  20. Barry Summers

    And which would be worse for homeowners – ‘renters’ living in their neighborhood, or for-sale, foreclosed, or boarded up houses in their neighborhood? With more & more people unable to buy or sell, expanding rental properties might be a better longterm solution.

  21. JWTJr

    I don’t think those are the only 2 options. A neighborhood already full of empty boarded up houses is already doomed. Ripe for investors and renters. The issue here is neighborhoods full of homeowner facing an influx of renters.

    BTW – I was referring to the moderator, Margaret Williams. Is there something you’re not telling us?

  22. JWTJr

    “BTW – I was referring to the moderator, Margaret Williams. Is there something you’re not telling us?”

    Belay that.

  23. Margaret Williams

    Since I’m only average, I’ll lazily remark that Barry Summers makes sense, especially “which would be worse for homeowners – ‘renters’ living in their neighborhood, or for-sale, foreclosed, or boarded up houses in their neighborhood? With more & more people unable to buy or sell, expanding rental properties might be a better longterm solution.”

    And I’ll ask JWTJr: you’ll have to be more specific about what it is you think I’m not telling you.

    My mother has two properties (in another state) that have been on the market for over a year, and she’s taking a hit in a number of ways, including multiple price drops that attempt to salvage something of the original cost. Meanwhile, property taxes, ongoing maintenance costs, utility bills… she has to consider the option of renting just to stop the money drain.

    In my Asheville neighborhood (west), there are number of homes that have been on the market for at least as long. There are also many elderly residents, and some homes that I suspect belong to a family whose elder has died and now everything’s in a holding pattern (probate, near-dead market conditions, what have you).

    While an empty house makes for a peaceful neighbor (kinda like a cemetery), not all these properties are well kept. One particularly derelict home was bought by a “house-flipping” company, fixed up… and now has either a renter or a new homeowner. Hard to tell. She looks like a nice older woman. I don’t think I’ll ask her if she’s part of a sudden influx of renters.

  24. CityRez

    I don’t believe anyone here has a prejudice against renters. We’ve all been there. The issue is whether it’s “prejudice” to “protect our interests” by not wanting the zoning that we bought into modified in favor of the “interests” of people wanting to squeeze more money out of their property by putting up multiple apartments, duplexes, triplexes, etc. where it was never zoned for it.

    If the claim is that this zoning code abuse makes housing more affordable for some, which at the end of the day is debatable, then how is my desire to protect my existing interests subordinate to someone wanting to find a new loop-hole in their interests at the detriment of others?

    I’ve got no problem with renters in my neighborhood renting housing that’s appropriate for the zoning, in fact they do. The euphemisms thrown around want to paint the issues as if renters equate to high density development infringing on single family homes where it was not zoned for it. That’s a crock. The homes built on your previously vacant field were consistent with the zoning in your neighborhood weren’t they? Why do you even site this as a relevant example as if you could be upset about it. It would only be relevant if they put up 4 story apartments where it was previously zoned single family.

    It’s certainly fair to expect zoning changes on major corridors where industrial, multifamily, and commercial lots border one another, but the entire issue here is some activists trying to force increased density and zoning changes into entirely residential areas as if the rights of existing taxpayers aren’t as important as developers, landlords and others. Most of the arguments seem to skew toward intentional misrepresentation of the facts to promote a particular position. That goes for the claims of having to live 45 minutes away to afford a home. That math doesn’t even add up when you consider the commute costs. It’s just misrepresentation and embellishment to prop up a weak argument. It would serve the proponents better to focus on the corridors that make sense as demonstrated in many other similar cities and be truthful about the facts.

  25. JWTJr

    Margaret, I chimed in only when you talked home values instead of rental rates.

    You are doing a fine job.

    Foreclosed houses often turn into rental properties. Not much can be done about that.

    This is very different than a city initiative to create affordable housing in a neighborhood not experiencing a dramatic downturn already.

  26. dhalgren

    jr., instead of your usual dissembling, perhaps you could tell us exactly what your point is! You seem a little lost.

  27. JWTJr

    “jr., instead of your usual dissembling, perhaps you could tell us exactly what your point is! You seem a little lost.”

    Margaret and Barry did a good job of steering away from the letter.

    Carry on everyone.

  28. Barry Summers

    jr., instead of your usual dissembling, perhaps you could tell us exactly what your point is! You seem a little lost.

    Hey lay off Jejunior. He is lost outside his native Afghanistan. Isn’t that right, ???????

  29. JWTJr

    Pashtun to you too Brother. I’m glad you’ve figured out babelfish.

  30. JWTJr

    Pashtun to you too Brother. I’m glad you’ve figured out babelfish.

  31. Margaret Williams

    Jr (“Margaret, I chimed in only when you talked home values instead of rental rates.”: As I generally dislike math, I didn’t initially complete my thoughts or calculations to include rental rates. Wasn’t attempting to derail anything, and was also responding to LS.

    But question: does affordable housing (rental or homeownership, like Habitat for Humanity Homes, for example) have to go only in neighborhoods “experiencing a dramatic downturn already” or foreclosure? Market forces already steer nonprofits and other affordable-housing developers toward the least expensive land or existing buildings/homes.

  32. Barry Summers

    Sorry, JimmytWwoTimesJr, but I don’t think babelfish translates ‘Pashtun’ (not the name of a language, one would think an expert would know that, but OK…)

  33. Barry Summers

    Margaret: Good question, and good luck getting a straight answer out of Jejunior. If you haven’t figured out yet, he’s of the ‘freeper’ school of online discussion: throw a stinkbomb under the table, then run out the door & blame everyone else (the libs) for discussion breaking down.

  34. J

    Moderator Williams isn’t necessarily correct in her assertion that market forces steer affordable projects to economically depressed areas. One example: The Larchmont. MHO apparently had the funds and a plan to build units on Chunns Cove, and they are currently laying the paper ground work for a place on Choctaw, hardly depressed.

    Of course MHO has an advantage, as the owner of their properties are LLC’s, not a non-profit.

  35. The issue of the neighborhood deteriorating due to renters can be addressed. Property owners should require their tenants to keep up the lawns and not allow the yards to be cluttered up with discarded household items like appliances, old furniture, or even junk cars. Stricter enforcement would do wonders.

    I live across from a houseful of renters and I periodically have to call about yard debris. Takes a couple of years for the accumulation to get so bad as to need to call the sanitation dept…but it eventually does happen again. I’d suggest others consider doing the same rather than passively allow the neighborhood to deteriorate.

    Barry, I’ve had a similar experience of a wooded area becoming a bustling construction site……we are looking forward to a habitat community being built on Virginia Ave. Not high end, but an affordable habitat urban village type development….so some affordable housing is being built around town.

  36. JWTJr

    D. Management is the hardest part of owning rental property. It takes cooperative renters, a solid lease with incentives to keep up the property and obey the law and a landlord who understands the benefit of maintaining the property value of that property and the neighborhood. And then the tricky part … enforcement of those conditions when problems arise.

    For some reason, the properties the city manages decay into run down, crime ridden places where even the buses don’t want to go to. They need a lesson in property management. You can’t blame prosperous neighborhoods for being nervous when they are targeted for an affordable housing project.

  37. Margaret Williams

    Good and interesting points, everyone.

    J: (Moderator Williams isn’t necessarily correct in her assertion that market forces steer affordable projects to economically depressed areas. One example: The Larchmont. )

    Slight clarification: Market forces steer affordable projects to affordable properties, typically lower- or middle-class neighborhoods. Larchmont’s a good point, though. As I recall, it’s part of the push to place affordable housing, higher density developments on major corridors (Merrimon Avenue in this case).

    More later, miles to go before I sleep.

  38. UnaffiliatedVoter

    Whenever you see trashed out rental, or owner occupied properties around town, Call CODE ENFORCEMENT at the city and complain, they will send an investigator. Such problems are rampant in West Avl, where some people think it’s ‘cool’ to present a trashy appearance. We dont put up with it for long, just so you know! CLEAN IT UP
    people!

  39. dhalgren

    D. Management is the hardest part of owning rental property……………………..

    Looks like the mighty jr. has added rental property management and social engineering to his many areas of expertize. Golly jr., is there no end to the surprises in store for us? How about brain surgery, rocket science, macro economics, Marxism in the twenty-first century?

    I live across from a houseful of renters…blah, blah, blah, etc.

    You sound like you’re describing a nest of rats. I’m a renter, by the way, and my yard is well manicured (by me) and I also mow the elderly ladies yard who lives next to me.(at no charge) Has it ever occurred to you they (your inferiors across the street) might need some help? Your attitude is offensive to me and (I’m sure) most other “renters”. Don’t like your neighbors, MOVE to a “better” subdivision. Can’t afford it? Guess you weren’t all that after all. Get off your high horses home owners, your “investment” is now an albatross around your neck. A lot of you are upside down with no equity. That’s what happens when you start to think of a house as an investment instead of a home!

  40. Barry Summers

    That’s what happens when you start to think of a house as an investment instead of a home!

    Sad, and somewhat unfair it’s turned out that way, but true.

    About 5 or 6 years ago, I started thinking about buying a house. With all the ads from Countrywide and other predatory lenders on our local ‘progressive’ radio station, I thought, “Why not?” (Instead of ‘Countrywide’ ads, 880 AM is now flush with ‘credit relief’ ads, the secondary infection of the cancer they helped spread.)

    I’m glad I stayed a renter, or I’d be one of the 15 – 25% of mortgage holders who are underwater…

  41. “I live across from a houseful of renters…blah, blah, blah, etc.

    You sound like you’re describing a nest of rats. I’m a renter, by the way, and my yard is well manicured (by me)”

    Well unfortunately the term “pack rats” does fit. That said, I certainly made no attempt to paint all renters with a broad brush…you’re just reading this into my comment.
    I also live beside a houseful of owners who are using up their house….I didn’t mention that situation at the time as it wasn’t the gist of the thread, but maybe should be brought into this discussion.

    I was fortunate to have bought a home before Asheville became “chic.” So in spite of the market upheaval, I’m not underwater, & the house note was paid off way before the 30 year term.

    The predatory lending practices of the past decade reflect a certain madness ( almost a goldrush mentality)……used to be, obtaining a 2nd mortgage was highly undesirable. At that time a home was considered security / not investment. There are many folks who got loans on inflated equity, who are really up the perverable creek.

  42. JWTJr

    Wow dh. You take everything personally. If someone didn’t say it, you’ll just make it up just so you can feed your anger quotient. That will make yo grow old fast.

  43. Barry Summers

    If someone didn’t say it, you’ll just make it up just so you can feed your anger quotient.

    Like you should talk, ??????

  44. JWTJr

    Barry, your babelfish skills are sharpening. I’m so proud of you. However, if you actually read up on the topic instead of going straight to the ‘how to cuss in a foreign language’ tab, you might actually learn something.

  45. Barry Summers

    Wrong again, ??????. We were having a perfectly civil, salient discussion until you started throwing your usual sand in the gears, which is the standard freeper tactic when you feel you’re not winning an argument.

  46. Piffy!

    JW-dont have a heart attack, but i agree 100% with your perspective here.

    Also, barry, the whole ??????. thing is juvenile.

  47. dhalgren

    Sorry, D. Dial, I jumped to an erroneous conclusion.

    To jr. Once again: instead of your usual dissembling, perhaps you could tell us exactly what your point is! You seem a little lost.

  48. Barry Summers

    Also, barry, the whole ??????. thing is juvenile.

    This, from someone who (this week) calls themselves “?????”? Really hard to take that seriously.

    I am civil with Jr, until he starts with his dishonest freeper games, meant to derail. Then he gets the Pashto.

  49. Clyde Hunnicutt

    We need “affordable” housing? We USED to have plenty of afforable housing until we became a popular “move to” place for moneyed folks from elsewhere. They have run up the cost of housing. Also, there have never been the jobs here to support the type of lifestyle a person could expect in a larger northern city. Along with our love of traditional American values here, this is a primary reason Asheville has remained such a good place to live. It keeps the population in a certain range. Sorry, but you can’t live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and eat your cat too. Perhaps you should find a career in a better paying place. Retire. Then move back here.

  50. JWTJr

    Why don’t you guys try to stay on topic and actually comment on the content of my posts instead of just making your typical personal attacks?

    You don’t like cooperative tenants? Good leases? Responsible landlords?

    Babelfish isn’t a real estate translation site. Perhaps you can find one with some on topic content?

  51. Margaret that “Times” article is has a lot of interesting comments on the author’s perception/opinion.

    My take on the “bubble’ is folks borrowing equity loans on inflated values had a lot to do with the crash.

    Home ownership is not a bad thing if you buy your house to live in and raise your family…..as an investment to be flipped is where the problems arise. Besides once that mortgage is paid off (hopefully well ahead of the loan term), a large weight is off your shoulders.

  52. Barry Summers

    Why don’t you guys try to stay on topic and actually comment on the content of my posts instead of just making your typical personal attacks?

    Which I have. See my comments at:

    Sep 08, 2010 at 10:24 AM
    Sep 08, 2010 at 10:24 AM
    Sep 08, 2010 at 12:11 PM

    Serious responses to your comments. What tears it is when, in spite of those serious responses, you still say things like this:

    Margaret and Barry did a good job of steering away from the letter.

    You want to get your dishonest mean little jabs in, but then complain when others don’t treat you like you’re the arbiter of what constitutes “on-topic”. Grow up. I and others keep giving you a chance for a reasonable debate, and you keep blowing it.

    ??????

  53. Barry Summers

    Margaret, I’m very skeptical of the agenda of that article (I’m very skeptical of anything I read in Time).

    Trying to convince people that home ownership is overrated & maybe a bad thing? Blaming the mortgage-interest deduction?

    She tells this long, detailed story about the evolution of government intervention in homeownership, yet makes no mention of the regulatory changes that allowed the big banks to destabilize the housing market to the point of collapse. It seems to me like an indictment of the concept of upward class mobility, clothed in an historical analysis conveniently stripped of one major thread: the way the financial sector has been allowed to pillage and gut working people.

    “No wonder leaders of all political stripes wanted to spend more than $100 billion a year on subsidies and tax breaks to encourage people to buy. But our leaders, with our encouragement, went much too far.”

    Our leaders? What about the financial sector that knowingly set up structural conditions for the housing credit market that were guaranteed to eventually trap millions of people in debt they couldn’t escape? There is virtually no hint of that factor in this article.

    Comments like this one suggest to me that there’s an agenda afoot:

    “The economy is changing all the time, and we need people to be mobile in order to drop into the right job slots…”

    Anybody else smell an unspoken agenda in this article?

  54. pff

    [b]Sorry, but you can’t live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and eat your cat too.[/b]

    Sorry?

    Also, are you saying you prefer a poverty and crime ridden asheville to one with economic opportunities?

    [b]This, from someone who (this week) calls themselves “?????”? Really hard to take that seriously[/b]

    And yet your the one calling people names in ‘pashtun’ instead of debating the topic.

    hmmmmmm…

  55. Barry Summers

    And yet your the one calling people names in ‘pashtun’ instead of debating the topic.

    Hey why not do both, as you can plainly see I’ve been doing.

    And ‘Pashtun’ is not a language, pff(aux?).

  56. Barry Summers

    Sorry, but you can’t live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and eat your cat too.

    You can’t swing a cake around here without hitting someone trying to have their cat & eat it too…

  57. “Sorry, but you can’t live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and eat your cat too.

    You can’t swing a cake around here without hitting someone trying to have their cat & eat it too… “

    If this were not totally true, it would be roll on the floor funny.
    It’s still is a little bit funny.

  58. Barry Summers

    Weirdly, I have been sitting here trying to picture how you would actually swing a cake. It’s not like it has a convenient handle, like a cat does…

    calm down, I’m not advocating actually swinging a cat, it’s just an odd expression, and it deserves to be mined for it’s weirdness

    Oh sorry. Back to the topic… Darn those renters anyway, and their cats.

  59. dickyfauge

    Sorry, but you can’t live in the Blue Ridge Mountains and eat your cat too.

    Don’t pay them too much attention Clyde, they think people who can’t spell are stupid and illiterate. We kn ow we is right. Cause our values is right. We believe in America and what made her great. It was haed working white people who came here first and hacked a home from the wilderess. We had to fight off them savages and keep our women safe. Now we is being invaded by the north agin. Them with their fancy ways and education and money. It’s like we got to fight them off our women. Then theres the communist and literals making us feel like we has something to be ashamed of. I know how you feel Clyde Honeycutt, for I am one of us.

  60. Barry Summers

    I know how you feel Clyde Honeycutt, for I am one of us.

    And if you believe that, I have a cat ranch to sell you.

  61. kristen

    you people are truly boring (and apparently bored.) i only made it through the first 7 or 8 comments before realizing what i was being sucked into. i wish i had as much free time as all of you seem to.

  62. “I know how you feel Clyde Honeycutt, for I am one of us.”

    of course you know how each other feels because you are both Cullen.

    ” i wish i had as much free time as all of you seem to”

    you seemed to have enough time to comment.

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