Friday, March 5, 2010

Mystery Haus

{Or, This House Wasn't Here Last Week}

Last night we hung the show, so today is a post that has nothing to do with oil paint, linseed oil, deadlines, or crazy. It does have to do with an insta-house. Where our sand track road ends a spectacular kingdom of rock formations begins, and last night on my windy hike with the hounds I found a very large, very rectangular surprise: a Mystery Haus.

Let me assure you: it was most definitely NOT THERE last week when I was trespassing as usual. There was no freshly compacted earth, either, upon which large trucks must have driven when delivering said house. Because it is the kind of house that can be delivered in a box, like an Ikea cabinet, but probably easier to assemble.

WHOSE HOUSE IS THIS?! I feel defiant, defiant that the owners of this land have disrupted my free-wheeling hikes upon their property. I've never seen another human being here in the year and a half I've been tresspassing all over this pristine rockscape that I liked to think was wild and uninhabitable.  And maybe, just maybe, I liked to think it was *mine.*

But I feel giddy, giddy that one day there can be no house, and the next day, house. A really unbelievably KILLER house, reeking of recycled corrugated composite and architectural awesomeness. With subway windows and what seems to be lots and lots of glass hidden behind opaque plastic screens. I should also mention that I was relieved, relived to find no legs belonging to Wicked Witches sticking out from underneath this house (but as usual there were corgis snuffling for truffles in the soft sand).

It would be dishonest if I were not entirely forthcoming with my EXTREME JEALOUSY that the owners of this house also have a private view of Joshua Tree National Park. And their own private ROCK PILE, which, as I have mentioned previously, is the desert equivalent of having beachfront property in Santa Monica. (In my book at least.)

But I espied no sign of water or electricty, which brought me short-lived vindication that these new neighbors will be very hip but very thirsty and hot in this house. But then it dawned on me that, duh, in fact they will be very hip and very SOLAR POWERED, with a very FREE-STANDING WATER TANK like in the olden days, which fans the conflagration of my jealousy into the realm of unabashed covetousness.

Again, I axe you, WHOSE HOUSE IS THIS? And where can I get one?

It's called the ShowHouse, courtesy of Jennifer Siegal and her team at Office of Mobile Design, and you won't believe the original listing price: $175,000.  For a very, very fancy mobile home. And it looks like my new neighbor is Natural Born Killers producer Chris Hanley, according to Inhabitat. Welcome to the hood, Chris.


Hope you have a marvelous weekend. Tonight my sister comes, and tomorrow night I'll be celebrating with sister, husband, friends and other miscreants here. Thank you for all the encouragement and humor these past few weeks; you are great friends, muggles.


  1. Cute instahouse. I want one, too.

  2. tell us more as the mystery is revealed! if you ever meet these neighbors. you've piqued our curiosity!

  3. Oh, I love it! Would totally move in. Keep us updated on your new neighbors.

  4. Oh my. Awesomeness. And one of these would be very very useful in my nomadic life indeed. Hmmm...

  5. I love this post; for several reasons.
    the obvious one the Haus, secondly I share the envy...and third I love that you trespass properties!!!!
    I like to do that when possible, and start making stories in my head about the inhabitant on which land I trespass...
    I will investigate further about this type of settlement..
    GOOD LUCK with the show, I hope the red one got finished....

  6. I hope your neighbours are good people. I could do with one of those, I know the perfect place for it.I've always loved those houses made out of shipping containers.

  7. instant house! just add water!

    how amazing and curious! It's such a pretty colour too.

    did you take these pics with your iPhone? Which app again?

  8. This house is really cool, but these photos are even better! Very mysterious! Good luck today with the show; you'll be mah-velous!! XOXO

  9. Have you heard of tiny houses? This mystery house makes me think of them. Maybe it is one? Cool!

    Take a look:

  10. too funny!!! my husband and i are obsessed with these. he wants to put one at the far end of our yard. must remind him of his "caravan" holidays in the rain in wales. must remind me of "the boxcar children". did you ever read that book?

  11. That place is amazing. The views are insane and that house is so cute. Now I'm jealous, too.

  12. How interesting!!! That house is incredible.... how are you sweet Lily?!! XO

  13. OMG!!( i have never written that before) please trespass- go inside! please i will send you bail money if you get caught:) k. and i are moving and we are thinking of going this route!

  14. What a magical surprise. I wonder if it will brings something nice your way. The house is awesome!! Just last night my husband and I were talking about moving somewhere more isolated. I am a bit nervous, since I am used to this urban living. But then I remember how jealous I am of your location, beautiful walks, and studio time!!
    Hope your weekend was great!

  15. That is an extremely, extremely cool house!! So very wonderful. I love the instant feel and surprise of it, of course. But, most of all, I love how it looks and where it is. You know, it's likely the owners will be wonderful and your complete kindred spirits and so now you get to have a new great friend. Lucky you!! Lucky them.

  16. The best things come out of nowheres.


  17. holy shit man. awesome. what a fun mystery for you. (except the part where your uninhabited land becomes so.) Jeniffer Siegel. of course. her house out of shipping containers in LA is rad.

    anyways. these ppl are totally living the dream.

  18. we're up at the other end of the road, and we trespassed too - very deluxe but already not taking the high winds well. owners not making friends in the area, either.

  19. To amplify the previous anonymous posting: The owners did not apply for permits before gouging a 600-foot long, 15-foot wide path through the desert to reach the site for the trailer. On the day that the trailer was installed, they were served with a cease-work order by San Bernardino County Code Enforcement. They have yet to get permits for the ongoing work that has been occurring at the site.


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