Last summer sometime, I was doing my best Tom Cruise “Risky Business” impression in front of the mirror. I was probably singing some Neil Diamond (badly), warbling like someone was kicking a bag of kittens, as I prepared to go about my day. I’d just showered, you see, and nothing gets me in the mood to live life like singing some “Cracklin’ Rose.”

I’d gotten about halfway through the second verse when I finally looked back at my mirrored reflection, holding a hairbrush like it was a microphone, hair wet, butt-ass naked. My second story window was open, normally no big deal, since it overlooks my roof and not much else, (I’ve probably traumatized my share of squirrels)(so what?) but on this particular morning, I saw something horrible. Something I’d not seen before my shower. Something, had I not been screaming Neil Diamond songs, I would have noticed:

My neighbors were getting a roof installed.

I had an audience. An audience of men watched me perform Neil Diamond’s greatest hits, butt-ass naked.

Good times never seemed so good.

I did the only thing I could think to do: I waved. Then I slapped some clothes on and went downstairs. Whoops! My bad!

Later on, hoping they’d gone on break, I sneaked out of my front door on my way to do whatever it was that I was doing that day. Nope. Of course not. I smiled, red-faced as they chatted about me; at least they’d called me the “hot chick” with the “nice rack.” Clearly, they didn’t know that I spoke Spanish. I resisted telling them they had “small balls,” just because it seemed mean. Especially since they thought I had nice boobs.

I hadn’t given the incident much thought beyond, “close the fucking blinds when you’re naked, moron,” because really, what’s there to say?

Last week, in the middle of The Migraine, I’d had a contractor come out to the house to talk color choices for the new siding we’re getting installed. I’ll pause here so you can laugh at the notion of a colorblind chick with a migraine picking out colors for a house.







So, you’re probably wondering what the hell I was doing picking out anything that’s colored and going to be seen by the world and that’s totally fair because I’d wondered that myself. Or I did for about five minutes.

See, now, let’s suppose I invite you over for a delicious BBQ. I give you my address. You plug it into your GPS. But, if you’re like most of the world, you probably want a description of some landmark or something that’ll tell you that you’re at The House Formerly Known As The Sausage Factory, and my house is one of three different models in the neighborhood. Got to love the 70’s for it’s unoriginality. And shrubbery. What the hell was up with all of those BUSHES they planted?


What I would have said is this, “It’s the ugly yellow Colonial-ish one.”

And it is.

You couldn’t miss it if you tried, and believe me, I’ve tried. It is the only house in the neighborhood that has this particularly hideous color and if a shade of yellow can be offensive, this color is. Brown would be better than this color, and I hate brown like I hate digital alarm clocks.

I can honestly say that there was nothing in the contractor’s color book that was as bad as the color my house currently is. (although, there was a green shingle option, which I have spent a great amount of time thinking about)(a green roof?)(seriously?)(this is what keeps me up at night, Pranksters)

So I picked out an inoffensive greyish color and a black roof and white gutters because while I love garish colors, I’m not sure that my house should qualify as a “painted lady.”

The work should begin when it’s no longer Ass Cold, which means anywhere from tomorrow to July. Chicago weather is a fickle bitch.

It hadn’t dawned on me until today that it was possible to get the same contractors who had seen me traipsing around the bathroom like a fool last summer.

Guess I’m going to spend the rest of the day wig shopping.

32 thoughts on “Underneath It All

  1. Ummmm … hello??? Remember me?? The landmark driver?? Just promise me you won’t take down the lattice work. You won’t take down the lattice work, right?? RIGHT???

  2. I lived in a bright turquoise house. So bright that if the door was painted pink, it would have been easily confused as a taco stand with front porch.
    But it made for easy direction giving. I gave my street name and turquoise description, and as long as the street lights were working, I never needed my house number. I am still questioning why any paint company made exterior paint in this particular color.

  3. Is this the time to bring up the roofers who invited me to be in a threesome with them?*

    From their stories, I doubt they’ll remember you specifically. Unless you wear a tight shirt.

    But I love the fact that you were doing that.

    *I declined.

  4. You prolly could have gotten an extra “nice rack” discount and the gutters for free if you offered to flex the new abs 🙂

  5. Ha – I needed a good laugh. My late husband was a tree trimmer so he got LOTS of “good” views. Some were intentional, some were not (as in your case).
    And sorry, if it is THAT yellow, they will probably remember you. What a funny coincidence!

  6. Am I the only one who watches Criminal Minds?

    What if one of those freaks remembers the booby chick and wants to do something dirty?

    You better let your husband, or brother or man-neighbor do the talking and let them finish the work while you are safety out of town at a day spa…

  7. Oh the HORROR. I would have died!

    On a related note, my father-in-law chose to paint his garage yellow. Because at the time, he worked for the city and he ‘got a great deal’ on the left-over curb paint that was over-ordered. Yes, it is THAT yellow, albeit it is now chipping and flaking after 15 years, and it does not match the house. Makes me giggle every time. And, also, it is impossible to ‘miss’ it.

  8. Oh my. Now that was funny. Bet those workers had a great day! Our house used to be brown, it was a nasty horrible dark brown. We re-painted it blue/grey when we moved in. It’s much nicer now.

  9. I’m still stuck on inoffensive greyish color. If you’re color-blind, how do you know the contractor wasn’t effing with you?

  10. When we moved into our current house it was the fugliest shade of blue anyone had ever seen. Several neighbors stopped by to welcome us to the neighborhood, and one of the first things spoken was, “So, when are you gonna paint the house?”. (Just to be an ass, we waited a year!)

  11. Woah, if it’s the same contractors, they should definitely give you the “I’ve seen you naked and you look hot” discount. Maybe if you wear your magic wolf shirt?

  12. At least you are smoking hot. I’d be mortified if someone saw me naked. I look like that little girl in the older version of Willie Wonka…the one who got all fat and turned blue. I’m not blue…but you get the idea

  13. HAHA – Love the dancing nekid story.

    And SNAP! While reading this I was thinking to myself please pick gray! And I agree with the above prankster. Red door would look FABULOUS and will be just splashy enough to help with your need to be garish. (not that I think you are garish, that was YOUR word)

  14. I wouldn’t be laughing so hard if I hadn’t done the same thing myself.

    I live rural, okay, so mostly, it’s no big deal. BUT, I also live surrounded by farmland, so occasionally there are farm workers and what not hanging around. I tend to forget that my bathroom window isn’t the bubbled glass and I’ll stand in front of it brushing my hair, or whatever, while I’m naked. I’m pretty sure that most of the farm workers have sprung me nude at some point. And you think I’d remember, right? Yeah, but it’s hard to remember when there are only people out there once every 3 weeks. Sigh.

  15. I have an underground house. My directions say ” Turn off where you don’t see a house. If you see a house, you are in the wrong place.”

    And since I cannot see them either, nor hear them in my driveway thanks to the dirt insulation and all my windows are at ground level, I have given the UPS driver, the postman & the guy from Swans quite an eyeful on more than one occasion.

    And they all stop by regularly so I get to pretend over and over that it never happened.

  16. Ah, see this makes me feel so much better about the Tourrett’s-like profanity I’ve been spewing lately when I think I’m alone or no one’s listening or just forget that you know what? OUT LOUD IS OUT LOUD.

    Of course, you were naked. So you win?

  17. You missed the exchange between Michelle P. and me, in which we talked about painted lady houses (hers in New York somewhere, and my friend Lorie’s here in St. Augustine), combining shades of yellow and purple. Lorie’s paint guy, when she went in to buy paint and was faint-hearted about the colors she had in mind (and this is fucking St. Augustine, FLORIDA, mind you!) asked her, in a north Florida drawl, “Are you paintin’ the house for yer neighbors? Or y’self?”

    I can send the links if you want ’em.
    Love, love,

  18. Ha ha ha….You rock Aunt Becky! When you went out you should’ve asked for $$$-donations….”you guys didn’t think that was free did you?” Oh yes—grey, black and white with a RED door!! Seriously classy!

  19. We painted our house a few years ago. My husband described it as lemon chiffon yellow. Neither of us liked lemon chiffon. So, we painted it green. We couldn’t decide on which color of green we liked, so the contractors kept painting huge swatches on the side of the house. It took about 15 rounds of green before we decided on a color. Some of the shades were pretty awful. At one point I thought we might get kicked out of the homes association. No hairbrushes involved.

  20. I’ve never told anyone, but the exact same thing happened to me. I hate closing my blinds-it makes me feel claustrophobic. But i looked out over a roof, right? No big deal-until I spent 20 min after my shower wandering around my room naked (don’t think I did any dancing or singling) and turned around and saw 3 or 4 guys on the roof next door. I hit the ground and crawled around finding clothes and sneaking out of the room. Unfortunately for those guys-I’m not a hot-looking chick. Unless they had a fat fetish I suppose. I’ve come across those . . .

    God that was embarrassing!

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