HGTV You’re Killing Me

Plagued by guilt because I haven’t posted the end to Snarky Saves the World just yet here is little something new in the form of a post I did for The Detailed Decorator site last month.

Don’t get me wrong – I love my HGTV and I have the DIY scars and bruises to prove it. What I can’t stand are those house hunting shows. Sure, House Hunters is okay and House Hunters International is acceptable if it isn’t some 30 something couple looking to buy their 3rd vacation home in Bali. (I mean really show some common decency.) What drives me crazy are those inane first time home buyer shows like Property Virgins and most especially My First Place. If you really want to asses the intellectual quality of America’s younger generation don’t examine college graduation rates or employment stats all you need to do is look no further than these two shows to discover a hearty collection of 20 to early 30 something idiots.

The dumbest of the bunch are the couples that are looking to buy a home while planning and paying for a “princess” wedding and “fairy tale” honeymoon. Where are these kids parents? Someone over the age of 40 needs to sit them down and explain a few things. Primarily, you can’t have everything. Maybe, just maybe,  you need to, in no particular order, get a handle on your student loan debt, tie the knot, write all your thank you notes, pay off your wedding and honeymoon bills and if you’re still, after all that, speaking to each other then you can proceed onto the perilous and stress filled emotional journey of homeownership.

The most annoying and delusional are the young women who in every house hunting expedition wail upon walking into the kitchen and discovering (gasp!) that the countertops aren’t granite. You see them stomp their flip-flop clad feet, arch their tramp stamped back and cry out, “But I wanted granite!” All while giving their realtor the evil eye for daring to show them a non granite surface. Never mind that they’re in the market for a home that cost $65,000. It should still have a brand new kitchen with stainless steel appliances, enough granite to fill up the Flintstone rock quarry, and of course, an 8 foot island.

Coming in a close second to the whining granite gals are the couples that walk into every home and utter in unison, “This would be good for entertaining.” I’ve done an inventory on this saying and almost everyone on these home buying shows are all “looking for a home where they can entertain.” Really?  Who “entertains” that much where that would be one of your top 2 home “must haves”? I’ve seen how people entertain, I know how I entertain, and as long as you have alcohol and some dips (especially the artichoke and spinach one) and chips from Costco it’s all good. Seriously, you could watch My First Place and Property Virgins and do a drinking game. Every time someone uttered,”But I wanted granite in the kitchen” or “This would be good for entertaining” you would take a shot and trust me you’d be highly inebriated by the end of the show.

These house hunting shows have also given birth to a new way to measure someone’s I.Q. Sure, it’s not as reliable as the traditional I.Q. test, but the “Gateway to Being a Functioning Adult” quiz (trademark pending) is a sure indicator of intelligence. The test is super simple all you do is have a person above the age of 25 enter a home that is super cute, but painted disgusting colors and ask them if they think they could live there. If the person comments that the house is nice, but will need some paint then that person passes the test. If the person enters the home and goes off on the wall colors like, I don’t know, they’ve just been told their student loan is due in full in 24 hours, then they have failed the test. Because if you’re so lacking in cranial matter, imagination or common sense that you can’t envision priming and painting some walls to make a home look better than you are, indeed, not a high functioning member of adult society and should not be allowed to own a home or really even be left alone with sharp objects.

So, thanks HGTV for providing programming that leaves me just a wee bit wary for the intellectual future of our country. If you’re interested I have a new show idea for you. When Realtors Kill because I have no doubt there is not a realtor out there that after spending time showing homes to such a varied collection of idiots hasn’t been tempted to add murder to their MLS repertoire.

Many thanks for all of you who “liked” me on Facebook!  May the Snark Be With You.  For those that haven’t done the deed yet to stay up-to-date on new posts and take part in my not so deep thoughts click on this Facebook link – http://is.gd/iEgnJ (That’s the abbreviated link to my FB page) or I twitter @snarkynsuburbs.

37 thoughts on “HGTV You’re Killing Me

  1. Kelly O'Sullivan (HILWD) says:

    I haven’t commented here in, like, forever. I vow to be more attentive.

    In complete agreement on HGTV, What is it with the granite and entertaining spaces? Real life needs a kitchen with a place to put the garbage can, feed the pets, and, if I HAVE to, cook actual food. And don’t get me started on what these first time buyers expect out of a bathroom and closet. You’d think they wanted to entertain in the master bath! (because a master bath is, of course, non-negotiable).

    Love you, Snarky.

      • Janice says:

        my favorite comment (besides the granite counter top one) is when the wife/girlfriend looks at the husband/boyfriend and says “I don’t know where he will put his clothes, but this closet only has enough room for me.” Seriously, honey, your husband will like you longer if he doesn’t have to walk naked into another bedroom to get his clothes.

  2. hunnerwoof says:

    Add walk-in closet to the drinking game list, too. It’s in every episode. And, I get it…walk-ins are nice. But, really…this is your first home! My first home was a 700 square foot 1969 condo. And who really needs to walk into their closet? I mean, you open the door, you grab a pair of shorts and a t-shirt (or in others’ cases a pair of Target track pants) and you throw them on. Who are these people lounging in their closets? That’s what a living room is for.

  3. TracyJune says:

    I have admit, I have the huge island and more kitchen cupboard space than I know what to do with. But it came with ugly tile on the countertop, 80’s wallpaper and cracked tile floors. We spent the first year of home ownership removing 2000sqft of wallpaper and repainting. What is wrong with our young people now a days? You wanna bond w/ your spouse (or realize you made a mistake and the garden is a great place to bury a body) buy a fixer upper. A little elbow grease and hard work is good for you!

  4. Kris says:

    I watched one where the couple let their dog pick their home! I thought they were joking at first but I continued to watch like a train wreck I could not look away! Sure enough the dog picked their final choice! LOL!

  5. One Funny Motha says:

    You read my mind. And … I think I love you. Love the “if you are still speaking to each other” after paying off everything from the wedding then maybe you can enter the emotional torture of homeownership. And “enough granite to fill the Flinstone quarry.” Hilarious.

    And the entertaining bit. I like how you roll – alcohol, some dips & chips from Costco.

    I am going to take you up on your HGTV drinking game suggestions. It’s the drinking game for our generation.

  6. Heather says:

    I see others have mentioned my husband’s pet peeve about these shows: the need for the master suite to be larger than the living room and the whining about how all their clothes will not fit in a normal sized closet. He wants to know why they need so many clothes.

    The whine that makes me want to throw things is when people start complaining because a house has carpet. Even worse is the “but it’s laminate not real hardwood” whine. Don’t like the floor? Replace it.

  7. Jodi Blackwood says:

    I have decided they are told what to say. Everything is always “nice”. If there is nothing obviously wrong, as in anything mentioned in the above comments, then they find something to compliment. Last night one woman said she like the “pot lights” in the kitchen — that’s it. Really? Such bad acting!

  8. Ashley says:

    I love all the comments and the post.
    It is like they all have too much class to open up a can of paint and hold a paintbrush, we are fully aware of how frivolous you are, despite your poor choice of clothing ON TV.. Entertaining? Really? Generally it is the people who their peers fake illness, death, and give birth to not have to show up at their house.

  9. marian wilson says:

    This just struck such a cord with me! LOVE every word in this hysterical and hysterically accurate account on HGTV shows and their ilk. How entitled and demanding people have become (or at least pretend to be for the cameras). I agree with you that we need to have the shows go for the “full monty” and have honest reactions from real estate agents. How I would adore to hear an agent say, “After having spent two full days with you whiney, self-involved prima donnas showing house after house and having you reject them on the most superficial level, I’ve determined that you are too stupid to purchase a house. I have to club you to death to protect my sanity and that of my fellow agents with this matte silver, 1000 psi pressure, rainflow shower head. I feel quite certain that once CSI HGTV investigates, I will be completely exonerated, and my actions will be deemed to have been justifiable homicide.

    I used to think I understood real estate, but not anymore. I live in a subdivision that is still under construction, and I know that generally speaking, if you attempt to sell a house in a neighborhood still under construction it is very difficult to do since most people would prefer to wait on a new one to be built if they have the time to wait.

    We just refinanced our 3 1/2 year old house, and it appraised for thousands less than we paid for it. We are in one of the fastest growing cities in the US with one of the lowest unemployment rates and one of the healthiest housing markets. It just baffles me. As I was leaving our neighborhood yesterday, I noticed a sign for an open house (an open house on a Thursday afternoon?). I stopped in and asked the real estate agent what she thought was the explanation for the resale houses in our neighborhood just languishing on the market for so long. She asked me what upgrades we had made since we’ve lived there. I almost spit out the water I was drinking. Really? Upgrades to a 3 1/2 year old house that already has the holy triumvirate of granite countertops (even in the laundry room!), an open concept living/kitchen area that could be a bowling alley in a pinch, and acres of closet space in the MBR. We actually have spent a few thousand on landscaping and changing out light fixtures, etc, but the bitch in me wanted to say, “Hmmm. Upgrades on a 3 1/2 year old house. Let’s see. We’ve unpacked and thrown away all the boxes and mowed the yard a couple of times.”

  10. peachyteachy says:

    I don’t own a dishwasher. I sleep with one. And I do not want to be able to see the mess I left in the kitchen while I am trying to relax and watch HGTV (or entertain) in my “open concept” living space. I also enjoy the charming couple whose budget is 1.6 million, but they fall in love with their 1.9 milliion dollar dream home—“Oh, honey. It’s only $300,000 difference!”

  11. LT says:

    Funny stuff! Y’all know House Hunters isn’t real, right? Do a search and you will find a nice story about how it’s scripted and how the houses are already purchased in advance of filming and most of the houses they look at aren’t even on the market. Makes it all the more ridiculous! 🙂

  12. Susan says:

    Love this, my friends and I are always saying the same thing. The worst is “Your House, My Money” where parents buy the property for the whining, spoiled kid, who hasn’t even put together anything for a down payment. Yikes…

  13. Michelle B says:

    Wow. I’ve never seen these shows, but the thought of such spoiled brats makes me cringe! We just bought our house last fall in an older neighborhood and yes it’s a fixer upper, and we’ve been putting a lot of sweat and time, and LOTS of paint into it, but we like being able to make it our own. And as for all that granite and stuff, my in-laws were renting a house with all the upgrades and I never liked it. The house never felt homey. It felt like a model, or a vacation home for a couple with no kids. Not a place I’d want to have our family of noisy munchkins running around in. Give me my laminate wood floor, and fake wood counter any day! We did paint the kitchen cabinets (orginal from 1978!) because they looked gross. We’ve got huge trees and a big yard for the kids, which is what drew us!

  14. Lynn says:

    They would have run screaming from my sunshine yellow and cookie monster blue kitchen accent walls (3 of the 4), adjoining tan and reddish coral accent walls in the living room, white laminate countertop, and blue and white tiled backsplash……guess what, Hubs and I took one look around, commented–“wow, that’s bright”, realized the floor plan worked, then changed ALL of it…guess that would elevate me to “genius” status!

  15. kerry says:

    I, too, just came across your blog. I am on my second fixxer upper. It’s just in a better neighborhood. Those show folks are clueless. You purchase a house because of LOCATION. Then you look for the basics – in my case a garage, a shed to store the lawnmower (so you can park in the garage), more than one toilet, and a usable basement.

  16. Jill Bukowski says:

    MUST HAVE STAINLESS STEEL. I remember when the “IN” color for appliances was avocado, harvest gold and burnt orange. Stainless will be the next thing to be out of style. Paint? Seriously, the paint job that they would produce would probably scare us all.

  17. June says:

    OK….are you my long lost twin sister?? My hubs just showed me the latest 435 south magazine article about you saying, “Um, honey, you’ve gotta read about this gal!! She reminds me of you!!” Of course I read it immediately (laughing out loud till my kids ran upstairs saying “you’re so weird”) and then proceeded to your hilariously awesome blog!
    How have I not known about you for this long!! YOU are the voice in my head….ok…..and my lips as well. (I’ve been known to say what I think…..out loud…oops) So now I’m going to take all of my free-time this week to catch up on all of your posts and am going to buy your book tomorrow!! yea

    About HGTV…LOOOOVE IT……I’m obsessed….BUT….wow, I just want to squeeze those little 20-something’s heads off when they start whining about the it not being exactly what they want. My hubs and I have been married for 23 years, have lived in 2 total fixer-uppers, and I STILL do laundry in the dungeon basement!! (OK, so I complain and whine like a baby every time I drag those clothes up and down the steps, but I’m 47, have dry scraped 7 layers of painted-over wallpaper on every wall of both our homes, and have bursitis in my legs!!! So take that you stupid little spoiled brats!!)

    You rock Snarky!! I feel like I’ve found a new best friend!!
    Love, June

  18. SLM67 says:

    My favorite are the kids who want a waterfront view, balcony, in-unit laundry, workout facilities, doorman, “gourmet” kitchen, two bedroom with storage, close to transportation condo in Manhattan and they have a whole $250,000 to spend! Then they whine about the fact that the stuff the realtor shows them is either missing one of their must-haves or is about $2 million over their budget. Do these people have a clue?

  19. Mommy Write says:

    Hilarious! I always like watching some of those silly shows because it just makes me feel that much smarter than some of those people.

  20. Donna Myers says:

    I am a big HGTV and DIY fan since my husband and I have been remodeling our double wide mobile home for 9 years–yep–and we’re in our 60’s so progress is slow. I scream at the TV when the youngster who has no idea about life in general says, “I’m not liking this” and I think the place is fine. Why do these young, not-yet-even-married kids think they have to have THE perfect house better than their mom and dad’s? Makes no sense to me. The worst one though was when a woman from the South somewhere–maybe Atlanta–was looking for a house in Paris and wanted one just like she had in Atlanta. Really?

  21. rcmoss says:

    You hit it on every cylinder. Ha, ha! Especially the one about entertaining. I have wondered that one myself, in fact our friends inevitably migrate out to our very cluttered shop and sit on anything that won’t roll it from under them.

  22. Chad's Crooked House says:

    Hmm, I’d like to look down on all the same people for all the same reasons, but when it comes to entertaining space, guilty as charged. Though maybe since I can cook a 4 course dinner and I was willing to give up a powder room to keep the dining room big I can still argue my innocence.

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