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Real estate disconnect tips the scales

Letters From the Home Front

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I don't have a burning desire to draw pictures today, but if I did I think I would draw a lizard. Admittedly, I haven't been thinking much lately about lizards. If I'm honest, reptiles have been the furthest thing from my mind (ignoring, of course, the bank's short-sale processor we were most recently assigned). Until this morning, if you had asked me to draw something I might have whipped out a rendering of an appraiser driving a stake through the heart of my latest transaction, or even a quick sketch of me feeding a couple of offers into the shredder because they were missing zeroes. Those are the things that have been steadily rolling across my mental ticker tape -- not lizards. Why now the obsession with our scaly friends? Because my media told me I should be thinking about them, and it sounded like more fun than the other headlines. My Google top news stories are downers: a bunch of stuff about death tolls, typhoons, and health care. Their business news intimidates me;...