Corporate Wankers,  Cycling,  Title Insurance,  Wine of the Day

I’m just an animal looking for a home

Today’s post is like tapas. Little tasty plates.

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I’m still following LandAmerica, for all you former employees. I’m sure a lot of you are as well. I will say it’s becoming a fascinating bankruptcy. And I’m spending a lot of time reading the Times Dispatch. This one’s kind of interesting to me. If I’ve got this right, they’re calling themselves a creditor in the 1031 case so they can get the $65 million back that they lent the exchange company when their Gordon Gecko scheme ran amok, but they don’t want any of the people who entrusted them with their money to get that back? Oh my. Really? The judge said that the 1031 agreement papers were clear that the money wasn’t going into a trust account. I’d sure like to see one of those agreements. And I wonder what the sales people were telling the clients victims.

Oh, by the way Stewart Title in Alaska is looking for a receptionist.

We’re going to start seeing a gazillion of these. A good number of people are going to prevail as well. It’s about time.

And if I were in Virginia today, I would be doing this. When I got the email, I was all hopeful they were in Napa or Sonoma, but not to be.

Last weekend I went to Artesa and posted up a crappy picture of the amazing view. Well, today, this came across my screen. Down around numero 9 is Artesa. Too bad I didn’t really like their juice. Although I now have to add Merus to the tour. Look at that! Wow! Actually the architecture is one of the things that drew me to Clos Pegase. They call it a temple among the vines. He’s also an art collector so there are some amazing pieces around the winery. $14 million worth of art in the tasting room alone.

And who ordered up yesterday’s ass weather? A high of 58 and 25 mph winds? Or you kidding me? It was May 23 dammit! Thank God I went back home and put on a windbreaker. I would have died out there. I should have put on a thermal too. Especially at the part where I went up the back side of Moraga and dropped down in the Oakland and then Berkeley. It was foggy at 2pm in May ferdogsakes. WTF? I will say, I learned that it’s not the climbing or the distance. It’s the heat. I rode strong all day yesterday. I was even strong coming up the hill to the house. Tired but strong. In a fit of delusional thinking I believe I’m ready for the Sierra Century. I know I’m probably going to get my ass handed to me because it’s going to be hot. The bike fitting made a ton of difference. It allowed me to better pull through the pedal stroke and use all of my legs, not just the quads. My feet didn’t bother me until around mile 80 which is huge and my hands didn’t spend much time being all asleep and tingly. There was a ton of climbing yestrerday. 4400 feet. There’s always this big difference between actual mileage and mileage. said yesterday was going to be 94. My bike computer said 86. I was supposed to go 86 yesterday so that’s all good, but I turned the wrong way on Wildcat Canyon and had to ride about a mile back. Any road with “Canyon” or “Pass” in the title is fraught with peril, Wildcat Canyon was no exception so I was pretty pissed at myself for having to come back UP what I had just gone down. But I knew Park Hills was in Berkeley and I was supposed to be in Orinda and that just wasn’t right. I checked the map on the iPhone and there was no way out but to go back up the hill, so I did. So next week is a shorter ride and then the Sierra Century and that’s the last of the really stupid long rides, probably for this year. I want to work on getting faster and a better climber before I add distance again. I did make it to the junction without stopping yesterday. I’m very pleased about that. All and all a good strong ride.


  • OldTitleGuy

    Am I iggerant or what? I thought that the concept of a delayed exchange was established by the Starker cases. There it was clear that what the exhangor got was a “Book value”. A debt held on the books of Weyerhauser (I think) until the exchange property could be identified and purchased. One of my six remaining brain cells is telling me that scenario is what the court used to justify the “delayed exchange”. It was clear (I thought) that the funds were not held in anything resembling an escrow account, it was just a debt of the corporation like any other debt. My natural presumption is/was that all LandAm (or any other exchange company) had was a debt on the books and nothing resembling a trust account that the exchangors would have a call on.
    If that isn’t the way a “Starker” works, I wish somebody would ‘splain it to me.

  • titleslug

    OTG- You’ve forgotten more than I know. Your description is how I understood 1031.
    I enjoy (I use the word cautiously) reading everyone’s perception of the what has happened to the title/escrow industry. Providing clear title and sound settlement was an honorable profession and industry. I enjoyed working in that industry for many years.
    I’d love to read some forward looking thoughts on what this industry will look like in a few years. How will the few remaining players sell and distribute their products and services? What will the insurance products and settlement services look like? What level of error will be acceptable?
    Distribution, production and funding are critical areas in any industry. The title industry is changing all of these, at the same time.
    I’d love to hear thoughts from those inside the industry and those recently of the industry.

  • Skip-itty-doodah

    A bit off topic…but in hearing the news that Forclosures and Unemployment have hot unprecidented levels…it irks me that the creditors and lenders are still treating people like deadbeat criminals…verbally abusing folks like it’ll make a difference and they’ll reach into their magic Bag-O-Money and make a payment. As a title “folk” I can’t believe my own restraint from deeing their property to the State of California in 5% increments…think about it?…

  • rtherien

    Old Title Guy wants someone to “‘splain” 1031 exchanges to him, but I believe he already ‘splained it to all of us. I’m not an expert on 1031 exchange law but please allow me to spout off anyway. As I understand it, if a victim’s, I mean investor’s, money was put into a trust account, it would blow the 1031 exchange because the victim cannot have any “control” over the money whatsoever. The Internal Revenue Code mandates that instead of prudently putting your money into an escrow trust account, you have to give it to the accommodator to intermingle with its general funds. So when the accommodator files BK, the poor victims are just general creditors of the BK estate. Why on earth does the law require that? It looks like there are two perpetrators here: 1) the 1031 eschange company and 2) Congress.

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