Friday, April 14, 2006

Kansas riddle

What's 568 square feet, has an incinerating toilet, a polyethylene dock, and costs $159,000?

If you guessed a tent within the perimeter of the Palo Alto school district, you're way off.

It's a cabin that was once owned by William S. Burroughs on a lake outside of Lawrence, Kansas. Lone Star Lake, to be specific. Do you somehow inherit some of Burroughs' authorial mojo if you live in this cabin and crap in the incinerating toilet? Are his prescriptions still in the medicine cabinet? Are there identifiable bullet holes in the nearby pines?

You'd better get some kind of intangible benefit for $159K. Or even a tangible one.

I'm guessing by the write-up and by the decor shown in the eBay photos that the current owners are (a) nice people and (b) not in close philosophical alignment with William S. Burroughs. They've done their research though in hopes that it'll make the place worth an extra hundred grand to a fan with means. Look what they've turned up:

William Burroughs once hosted Saturday Night Live and a movie about his life is being considered with James Woods playing the lead.
I don't think of these as salient details about Mr. Burroughs. They've made him out to be a regular guy, a fisherman, possibly even a triathlete (they boast of a triathlon held at the lake in the summer). He's a CELEBRITY!

I wonder how much his place in New Waverly, Texas would command. I bet the place still has scorpions and giant rats, especially since they seemed to be numerous and gun-shy at the time. Unlike his neighbors at Lone Star Lake, I doubt these are the same scorpions and rats; however I'm sure they're similar scorpions and rats.


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