Beating The Man

We have been having a sort of slow-motion, protracted row with the city for several months over our plans for the garage. Since we like to be able to put friends up temporarily who are needing a place to stay, we had planned to convert it into a sort of mother’s-in-law suite, with a kitchenette, a bathroom, and a bedroom. Kathy submitted several different versions of this plan to the permit people, who kept returning it to her for various reasons. After several attempts, each time making all the changes they’d asked for, they’d come up with another batch of changes. Grr.

I finally decided that my wife didn’t need that kind of aggravation, so went down and had a 20 minute heart-to-heart with one of the guys. I took careful notes of what he said, while he alternated between coming up with more expensive things to add to the plans and saying “honestly, we’re not trying to be a pain about this.” I’m afraid I went home unconvinced on the last point.

Anyway, we finally resubmitted the plans, scrapping the kitchenette altogether, as the zoning people thought it looked too much like turning our house into a duplex — never mind that the whole house would have all been on the same utility meters and have doors connecting everything together. Today, at long last, they approved our plans, so we can get back to finishing out our long-stalled renovation. (And in spite of all of that, we have had a friend staying in there for a couple months already, bare insulation and all.)