If You See a Blue Porch Ceiling, This Is What It Means

8 months ago

Are you ready for this? A Canadian blogger managed to turn a paperclip into a real house. He decided to run an experiment in which he would swap objects to finally get a house.

He started off in July 2005 with a red paper clip which he traded for a fish-shaped pen. The same day the pen was traded for a hand-sculpted door knob. About 10 days later, he traded that doorknob for a Coleman camp stove with fuel. Two months later, he exchanged the stove and got a Honda generator. The generator was later traded for a bunch of random stuff for parties, including some kegs and neon signs. By December 2005, he already had a Ski-Doo snowmobile instead of that red paper clip. Next, he traded the snowmobile and got a two-person trip instead which he never used because he exchanged it for a box truck. The box truck turned into a recording contract, the contract was traded for a year’s rent. Stakes got higher. He then got an afternoon with Alice Cooper, a super rare motorized snow globe, and the last thing he got was a role in a film. In the end, he traded the movie role only to get what he was looking for: a real house. It took him a bit less than a year and 14 steps to fulfill his dream. He got a two-story farmhouse in Kipling, Saskatchewan.

The world’s largest treehouse also known as The Minister’s Tree House is located in Tennessee. The house is supported by 6 large oaks and the structure required about 250,000 nails to clip all the parts together. The living area is about 32,000 square feet, which is not a surprise, considering this house has 10 floors. There’s so much space there it’s even possible to play basketball there. While a regular fun tree house can be built within a day or so, it took a whopping 14 years and about 12,000 dollars to build this enormous tree palace. Tourists could visit this tree house before, but eventually, it was closed in 2012. The problem was about the local fire code — since the structure is made entirely of wood, a fire could have, you know, burned down the house. And the tree.

Ever noticed those iron eagles on the outside walls? They have a hidden meaning! These eagles symbolize freedom from mortgage payments. Once the house owner was free from mortgage payments, they would place the eagle on the facade to let the whole world know how happy they were.

Housewarming is about warming the new house before it got central heating. So in the olden times, guests would bring logs and firewood to set fires in all the fireplaces that were in a house. Another thing they’d burn was the mortgage papers — that was another tradition to show the person was free from the payments. And yeah, the paper burns well.

The porch ceilings are blue for a reason. By the way, this color is not just blue, it’s called “haint blue”! There is a reason why this color was so popular. Lye was an essential ingredient for older blue paints — and lye is a good insect repellent. As the color faded, a new coat was applied, and the repellent properties were refreshed.

Bathtubs don’t seem to be a necessity as most people seem to prefer a shower, but it’s still not a crime to have one in your house. Unless your house is in Virginia — yeah, it’s illegal to have a bath inside your house there! However, if you live there, but you really want to own a bathtub, you can place it in the yard. Those who live in Arizona and own a donkey, beware! It’s illegal to have a sleeping donkey in the bathtub after 7 p.m. Alligator owners in Arizona can’t place their pet in a bathtub. But I think people in Pennsylvania have the toughest law: they aren’t allowed to sing while taking a bath. Hope they can do that in the shower!

What’s the most typical barn color? I bet you said red! Indeed, most American barns have this color, and it’s for a reason. Back in the time, paint was expensive and farmers always tried to find the cheapest ways to paint their barns, so they came up with a solution. They would make a mixture of lime, milk, and red iron oxide aka rust. Sure thing people don’t use this makeshift paint now, but many Americans still paint their barns red — it’s more of a tradition today.

In Scotland, however, people have another tradition linked to the red color. See those doors? Those who finally paid off their mortgage paint their doors red.

By the way, the door color can help you sell the house for a better price! A 2018 report revealed that houses with black or gray front doors and tuxedo kitchen cabinets can bring you up to 6,000 dollars more than you expect. Houses with brown or red walls, instead, can lower the final price. Neutral colors make the customer think that your house is well-cared, and they’re ready to shell out!

There’s a real Simpsons house at 712 Red Bark Lane in Henderson, Nevada. I mean, it looks accurate down to the furniture. The architects and designers had to binge-watch 100 episodes to bring this project to life. Back in the 90s, there was a contest run by FOX and Pepsi, and there were two prizes: either the Simpsons house or the cash prize. Barbara Howard, the winner, went for a generous 75,000 dollars cash prize because she lived in Kentucky, which is about 2,000 miles from Nevada, and yeah, she needed cash more than the cartoon-inspired house. Hey, what would you choose if you were her?

Now this one’s actually kind of cool: it was possible to order an actual house through a catalog and they would deliver it. In the early 20th century there were extremely popular mail-catalogs Sears & Roebuck or simply Sears. Right, today there are department stores Sears, which are basically the same company. So, about a century ago Sears offered a surprisingly large variety of self-assembly houses via mail. In total, they sold about 75 thousand houses like that and they claimed that any man could easily assemble them. If you wanna take a look at those houses or even buy them, well, they’re still available! On the resale market, for sure.

While a coffee pot is an essential part of almost any American household, an electric kettle is something you aren’t likely to find there. There’s a technical reason for that: unlike typical 220 and 240 volts for the UK and other countries, US homes mostly operate on 120 volts. The lower the voltage, the slower the eclectic kettle heats up the water. Therefore, standard stove-top kettles are more popular than electric ones in the US.

In New York, there’s a house owned by 5 different countries. In Manhattan, there’s a luxurious mansion inspired by the castle of Versaille [ver-SIGH]. It’s a 20,000-square-foot building owned by Bosnia, Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia, and Slovenia.

Many houses in San Francisco are built on ships. It all started during the California Gold Rush. Back then, many prospectors from all over the world would sail to California. But when they arrived, the sailors and even captains would choose to abandon their ships. They all hoped to get rich in the goldfields. Even in the 19th century, not to mention the 21st century, real estate in San Francisco cost a pretty penny, so those ships got repurposed. Some of them were turned into hotels, others became actual houses, and some even were used as jails. Sadly, some ships simply sank and were left to rot, and some of them got buried. Still, the entrepreneurs didn’t care about that much — they just continued building right on top of those ships.

In 1994 in San Francisco there were underground works for the Bay Area light rail. The workers found an almost intact ship called the Rome while digging. It was impossible to move it, so the trains now travel right through its hull. Another 70 ships are still underground, and they’re reportedly located right underneath some world’s priciest real estate — just because they’re in San Francisco. Hey by the way, if you’re out here, don’t miss the Cable Cars.


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