Open House is a Verb

My cousin, Julia, created a new word. It’s called “open-housing.” Julia and I went open-housing on Saturday. It is convenient that Julia created this word because now you don’t need to use all the other words you would otherwise refer to. For example, instead of saying:

“Today I left my house at 11am and went through a taco bar, pasta bar, and hot dog bar all in one afternoon and ate five pieces of Costco cake and looked at dozens of baby pictures and gave away thirteen graduation cards and got rained on and got sunburnt and spent three hours driving and said the word ‘congratulations’ six-hundred and twenty-three times,”

you can just say:

“Today I went open-housing.”

There are multiple actions that can be included in “open-housing,” but here are the three most common:

Driving – Julia and I definitely spent more time in the car than we did at the actual open houses. This was due to long distances between parties and also a slight directional challenge on my part. Okay, maybe more than slight. I’ll just say I turned around a few times.

Eating – It was interesting to observe the decreasing appetite of the open-housing crowd throughout the day. At the first open house everyone was starving; they lined up for burritos, grabbed dessert, and chowed down on nuts and jelly beans. But by mid-afternoon people had what I call “frosting phobia.” They took a piece of Costco cake to be polite, ate the cake part, and then threw away the frosting because it was just too much. After 5pm, forget it. Everyone open-housing that day was stuffed to the brim. They were lucky if they could suck on a breath mint.

Congratulating – I think every high school graduate would agree that they’ve heard the word “congratulations” more in the past month than they ever have before in their eighteen years of living. But really, what else are you going to say? I always tried to think of something creative to say to the graduate when I greeted them at their open house, but nothing ever came to mind, so I would revert back to the classic “congratulations,” which really summed up what I wanted to say anyway.

(On a side note, if it was up to me I would change the wording of the term “open house” altogether. It really is quite deceptive. I don’t remember ever going to an open house where the graduate’s house was truly open. Open garage, open backyard, or open deck, maybe, but not open house. If anyone’s allowed inside at all they’re corralled into a section of the kitchen with linoleum floors so they don’t stain the carpet with their dirty feet and salsa drips.)

Though I was tired by the end of the day, I really had a very nice Saturday spending time with my cousin and visiting with friends. I hope that many of you are enjoying the open-housing season as well. And to all of you graduates out there… congratulations!

1 Comment

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  1. I like the new word…very “catchy.” Right about now I feel like I’ve been open-housing all day…in regards to the point on food…:)

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