Why don’t you do exactly what I’m about to say and get a fireplace? I don’t care if you get a gas one or an actual chimney system. If you have to, why not just put a pile of candles in a box or get one of those tragic electric ones? But if these options don’t appeal to you as they never did to me, it turns out there’s a new, marvelous option. You can buy bio-ethanol fueled fireplaces that don’t need any kind of extraction unit and it’s real FIRE. I bought one immediately and had my carpenter build it into the wall with a design I came up with. It’s incredible. It should go in Architectural Digest. (That’s a personal fantasy of mine.) I feel so good about life with my fireplace. My fireplace changed everything. You have to have a fireplace to hang art above and sit beside on a snowy evening with a glass of wine. You have to. 


Why don’t you consider repainting the outside of your home something unexpectedly decadent? I am, and I’m being completely honest with you, daydreaming about painting my house a glossy Paris Hilton pink. It’ll be absolutely stupid and vaguely threatening but perfectly accented and endlessly chic. I’ll make it look like fashion and not a freak show. Someday, it might be an extravagant regret, but I’ve fantasized about it for so long that I don’t know if I’ll ever be happy knowing I didn’t paint the house pink. Everybody looks good in pink. You can’t argue with that fact.

Why don’t you get yourself a copy of Martha Stewart’s New Old House? It’s a book from 1992 and it changed my experience as a human. In the late 80s, Martha bought this total dump in Connecticut. She restored and renovated and it is, I have to be honest, gross — very 90s. I’m thankful that Martha’s aesthetic has evolved, but that’s irrelevant. The first half of the book is all about how you restore a house, how you build a chimney, how you install a basement, where you bury trash. It’s been a revelation to me. I know so much but I know so little at the same time. That’s a problem with education, you end up realizing that there’s a world you’ll never have time to learn about. Very annoying, one of the reasons I want to be immortal. But that’s another story. I’ve been relishing every second as I follow Martha’s renovations and her thoughts. She’s always been hilarious. (When she writes that Tom is sick over and over again, you can sense her rage. It’s wonderful.)


Why don’t you sue Rick Steves for causing emotional distress? He hosted an hourlong special that went from Cairo to Aswan with stops in Alexandria and my beloved home away from home, Luxor. It was beautifully filmed and I about burst into tears a dozen times. He managed to do several things that I haven’t had a chance to do yet, and he wandered in streets that I knew well. When he took the local ferry across the Nile I about lost my mind. Was I going to see my friend Hassan or the other faces I can never forget? I didn’t, but the thrill was enough to bring me to a state near nirvana. Of course, this is awful because I can’t run away to Egypt at once. So, sue Rick for hurting my feelings. Cheers. 


Why don’t you buy a sensational new garbage can than needs to be plugged in and has sensors to open and close? It’s been transformative for me. I mean, trash isn’t exactly something I struggle dealing with, and it’s not the chicest accoutrement, but I have never had a garbage can that I vibe with. First world problems, I’m well aware. Well, I needed a new trash because mine started to smell of rotting fish for some reason. It could have been fish. It was a nightmare. So I jumped on Amazon and found one that opens with a wave of the hand. I feel like a sultan. It’s worth every penny. 

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