It is time to pack our things. The remnants of our stay will be left hanging from the telephone wires out front – the only sign we once reigned supreme in this brick shit-hole will be shoelaces of Nikes and Adidas wrapped around black cord.
The Meyran house was a hurricane of good times. It was impossible to escape. Its sun covered roof and weather proof porch were enough to convince you that studying was a secondary priority for more than two years.
The broken and holed walls inside left a winter draft that would chill you to the bone, but it was nothing the bottom of a few bottles couldn’t help.
Heat in the Meyran house didn’t run on gas, it ran on Vladimir.
It took hold of legendary names, the Bhasvars and the DeAngelis' and the McClendons and the Deleos and the Walters and even the Reds and Polens. Its summers brought in family from Virginia and Atlanta – a three month blur of time spent adventuring and exploring, breaking laws and traveling, living off one another in a black market of goods, and never being less than estatic to have this run down Oakland goliath as our home base.
We’ve hosted the proud alumni of the Pittsburgh Ultimate team and the proud employees of the XXX Easter special strip show.
Its rooms have been clouded with smoke from fires and smoke from glass; its couches have witnessed some historic make out sessions; its parties have given birth to some wholesome relationships.
Inside its walls, the house grew minds just as often as it destroyed them. It was home to the creation of Philaburgh, freestyle Friday’s and Chris McClendon bottle-breaks-take-one.
Of course, inside those same walls, we've also grown. We've lived through death, heard and seen tragedy as real as it can come, made steps in our lives as students and potential employees, lived, learned, and loved. Through all those times, we've always had a bed to come lay in when the night came to a close.
Those same beds have a history, no matter where you look. They’ve hosted friends and lovers and family from California to New York, West Chester to IUP, Florida to Boston, Ultimate teams traveling the country and the Oakland stragglers just looking for a warm place to rest their head. Occasionally, those beds have even seen the reality of a ménage à trios.
Our porches have been intruded by the legendary Shuffles, and they’ve also given view to a true Old Man Rivers. We bless this baby for her stadium seating to some of the most epic car accidents, fights and parallel parking jobs you’ve ever seen in your life.
It’s televisions have broadcasted the Flyers’ triumph over the Pens, the Eagles’ Monday Night destruction of the Redskins, Obama’s announcement that he sniped Bin Laden, Eli’s shocking victory over Brady and even the premiers and finales of Boardwalk Empire to the epic takeover that was Kenny Powers (now we’re fucking out, bitches).
Of course, the Meyran house was nothing without its women. On many evenings, we raised our glasses to the Slacks and McInerneys, the Lyons and Tantums, the Fields and Cannons, the Edgewood Tigers who never left, the Bobs and Easy Deazys and of course the neighbors – the 303 squad, the Tony Buis and Anna Schneiders, the whole 319 crew that were always there to finish the night with some hookah when things just didn’t pan out.
Without question, the 317 house has grazed disaster. We all survived the fall and the hospital stay that ensued. We’ve caught intruders trying to bring down our doors with flat head screw drivers and brute strength. We found the melted silver wear holder, moments from engulfing the house in flames, caught by a forgotten oven.
The Meyran house was just as much about survival as it was about living. Somehow, we’ve managed the latter. Whether it be the ghost infested basement or the angelically guided porch, some would argue we’ve touched God in this house.
We’ve looked on at its sturdy walls as outsiders, too. Some of us have left and returned, some have left without looking back, and some will never remove their heart from three seventeen.
At the surface, she may just be brick and dry wall, holes abundant and insulation non-existent, windows broken and the smell of York way’s trash seeping in through the back. But, beauty isn’t always external.
No, here, beauty is internal. Beauty is in the things that have happened under this roof, under her roof; the love shared, the hot sauce chugged, the four locos bonged, the carpets that can only begin to tell a story you can’t imagine, and even the historic family dinners we devoured.
In her final days, the Meyran house stood on the shoulders of Passion Pit and drank heavily with friends, her porch playing host to classics like the word game and freestyles, boombox blaring and lungs blackening.
With a lifetime of memories we leave this house, 317 Meyran Avenue, an address that could bring a smile to the face of many. But, with our exit comes a new group to endure, a new group of survivors – a worthy group. So today, tomorrow, and for the weeks to come, we celebrate the division of a family that can’t be replaced, and a reunification that is as certain nature herself.
Through all this, the one thing I’ll always remember about the Meyran house was how pig-proof she proved to be. The fuzz couldn’t touch us. Whether they never tried or never bothered, I’ll never know. What I do know is that they’d stop, they’d stare, they’d wave and smile or frown and scold, sometimes they’d even shine they’re lights and yell, bang on doors and wait, but in more than two good years of work, not once did they get one ticket. They never cuffed one friend, never handed out one underage, never truly stopped one party. Even when they thought they did, we stood strong, hidden with Meyran's brother Dunseith, delving in Macho Mugz and the last of a good ol' fashion Mellinger's shell.
And for that, Ms. Meyran, we thank you.