Vomitorium

September 19, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

I just took out the trash. As I was completing this task I noticed that my shoes were sticking to the floor. This is because someone has seen fit to vomit in our foyer, up the stairwell and outside our front door. This person was even thoughtful enough to leave their used puke rags for me to savor and cherish.

Miss Heather

P.S.: If you are wondering, I still do not have a working telephone. It is 11:00 a.m.

Critical (m)Ass

September 19, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

Just when I think things can’t get any more shitty around here at “Half-assed Junction”, the universe throws a couple more turds my direction.

Among the numerous items on my agenda for today, I get to wait for Verizon to repair our telephone. We have not had phone service since Sunday. I spent all day yesterday waiting for Verizon, to no avail. I suspect the work the MTA was doing yesterday (READ: a 8+ story tall crane occupying our street), has something to do with the phone company not showing up.

I am not necessarily angry about having an inoperative landline: I have worked enough Reception desks to harbor a dark hatred of telephones and most of the people who use them. Rather, I am getting very tired of this full-scale assault against the peaceful sanctity of my home. As I write this (at 9:00 a.m.):

  1. I have been awakened at 7:00 a.m. by Clarence the Tom Cat making his morning visit. This worked our cats into such a frenzy my husband had to intervene before they beat the living shit out of each other.
  2. The construction crew out front fired up their machinery at 7:30 a.m.
  3. The landlord started work on his new roof behind us at 8:30 a.m. Hopefully the Department of Buildings will pay him a visit today. God only knows I have waited long enough for this to happen: OVER A WEEK.

If I have managed to achieve anything during the 30-odd years I have been in this mortal coil, it is the cultivation of anger management skills. I was quite the ball of piss and vinegar in my teens and twenties; I am still as angry (if not more so) now, but I channel it in a more constructive fashion. This newly-developed ability of mine is being pushed to the absolute limit right now. The recent revelation that our landlord is refusing to accept rent checks from one of our neighbors isn’t helping much.

Over the last month or so I have noticed that the garbage in our building is not being handled like it used to be. Instead of being sorted and bagged on a regular basis, now it piles up into an uncontrollable heap. When this matter is (finally) bagged, all the contents (recycling and household waste alike) are being thrown together.

The is happening because the landlord is no longer allowing our neighbor (a section-8 tenant whose husband is very ill) to work as a porter in our building in exchange for a nominal reduction in rent. Her rent checks are not being accepted either. Apparently this has been going on for two months, but we only got wind of it last night. I am not certain what else is going on (with our nabe), but I imagine it can’t be good.

While I cannot offer many details as to what is happening (with this neighbor), I can give a compelling reason as to why it is happening: our landlord recently refinanced the mortgage on this building. One of the stipulations of this mortgage is that the rent collected from this building goes against the balance (of said mortgage). If an apartment turns over, he can raise the rent*; if he raises the rent, it means more money to throw against the mortgage payment. I wonder how many of the other long-term residents of this building he is doing this to— or if my husband and I will be next?

Miss Heather

*and we’ll get more neighbors like this.

Ghetto-gate: September 17, 2006

September 17, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

The landlord next door has done no new ‘renovation’ work the last two days (that I know of anyway). Had he done so, I bet he’d get really pissed about what happened to his roof. Literally.

Clarence the Tom Cat has seen fit to ‘spray’ copiously upon his (new) plywood domain (much to our cats’ displeasure) and the neighbors next door have reverted back to throwing food/garbage out their window. The landlord can gentrify the building, but he can’t gentrify the residents contained therein. The Crapstravaganza continues!

H

This is why I live in Greenpoint

September 15, 2006 ·
Filed under: (s)Hit Parade, Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

I found this piquant piece of social commentary at the Greenpoint Avenue stop of the G train on September 11, 2006.

Jackass number two

‘Nuff said.

Miss Heather

Ghetto-gate Update

September 15, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

Headline

After seven days of construction constriction, I am finally regaining my sense of humor. I have no doubt that sleep deprivation and consuming ample amounts of Budweiser* have helped me get back to my usual beatific state. There is a certain dark humor to be found in my predicament: the recent ‘improvements’ going on around me (in the name of ‘gentrification’) are the very reason for my diminished quality of life. “Progress” has my rendered my apartment (which one would presume to be my place of refuge) downright unbearable of late.

Thankfully, the rain has given me a reprieve from any construction-related rooftop hijinks the last 24 hours. Other than the soapy smell of glue** wafting from the untreated plywood behind my apartment or the occasional “pop” made by a(nother) piece of plywood warping, it has been fairly peaceful. I have even managed to get some work done.

Mr. Markowitz, I have the Dog Shit Queen of Greenpoint on line one…
After running errands this morning I arrived home to find an email from a Ms. Luyando from the Brooklyn Borough President’s office in my inbox. I had honestly forgotten about the crazed missive I had sent to Mr. Markowitz’s office last Saturday, so this was a pleasant surprise. Ms. Luyando asked me for some additional information (which in my rage I had forgotten to provide, but then again jpegs like this speak for themselves) and she gave me a case number. I gave her the information she requested and told her she could consult my blog (www.newyorkshitty.com) for images of the questionable construction I was complaining about.

I can only hope she (or one of her assistants) did so. If I were (still) a civil servant I would be overjoyed at the prospect of being paid to parse through pictures of dog crap and blog posts with titles as “Hot in the Ass”.

Otherwise, I am going back on the beat and am currently planning a trek to a very special part of Greenpoint. I spent two (LONG) years of my life in the area I plan to showcase and suspect it will be quite the fruitful snootful. (It was awful then and I see no reason why it would be any better now.) I also plan to do some much needed troubleshooting/maintenance to New York Shitty and add new links to my blogroll this weekend, so stay tuned!

Miss Heather

*The Dog Shit Queen of Greenpoint’s drink of choice is the King of Beers. For obvious reasons.

**My husband says it is formaldehyde. He was a finish carpenter once, so I guess he would know.

Photo Credit: I found this genuine vomi de l’artiste (the presence of red wine is a dead giveaway) in front of 123-125 Green Street.

Dung of the Day: 110 Green Street

September 15, 2006 ·
Filed under: Dog Shit, Dung of the Day 

I have never been a big fan of soup with dumplings. Today’s “Dung of the Day” has ensured that this culinary quirk of mine will not change in the foreseeable future. Bon appetit!

Butt Dumplin' Soup

Miss Heather

Nature: 1, Landlord: 0

September 14, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

For reasons one can only imagine, the landlord next door did not see fit to protect the untreated wood on his new roof against the rain. Perhaps he had planned to do so yesterday but the visit from the Fire Marshal threw a monkey wrench in his plans, who knows? In any case, it’s becoming a real mess back there. The last time I saw something as bucked and wonky as this, it was the result of British dentistry.

Uh Oh...

I wonder what the Building Inspector is going to think about this? I will find out soon enough.

Otherwise, he is back at work and concealing his DOB Permits (AGAIN).

Permits?

I wonder if the man wearing a jacket reading “Bureau of Fire Prevention” I saw standing across the street noticed this?

Miss Heather

What I did September 11, 2006

September 14, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51 

Most consider 9/11 a day of remembrance. Ceremonies are held where survivors give statements about how the events of that day irrevocably changed their lives and our current regime doles out their usual fear-mongering and panders their failing agenda. I for one had neither time for reflection nor outrage: I was busy collecting a delinquent payment due to my husband.

An advertising agency has repeatedly failed to pay my better (?) half for his consulting services. Five hundred dollars worth of consulting services rendered over two months ago, to be precise. I suspect these people have been acting in good faith; their incompetence was (is?) the root of the problem.

Last Friday I visited their office and personally picked up a new check. The prior two checks they have cut never found their way into our possession. This is probably due to the fact that this agency addressed these checks to my husband’s DBA and had them delivered via the United States Postal Service to our home. I do not know where these checks went and I do not care to know. What I do know is that my husband and I want our five hundred bucks.

The check I picked up last Friday also proved to be made out to my husband’s DBA, so we could not deposit it. My husband got really pissed, so I took charge. I sent an email to his contact stating when I was going to return for a new, properly-written check: September 11, 2006 at 11:00 a.m.

September 11, 2006
I woke up late and hurriedly put myself together. Most of my clothes were dirty, as was my hair, but I did not give a damn: $500 was at stake. I threw on the first clean tank top and skirt I could find, pulled my ratty hair into a ponytail and headed to Manhattan.

I arrived ten minutes early. This agency had just relocated to a new office, so everything was in disarray: lots of plastic sheeting, plaster and no Receptionist to meet or greet me. I waited and surveyed the cubicle farm around me.

Several years ago I worked in the Advertising Sales Department of a travel magazine, so I have some familiarity with the industry. This office struck me as being just like any other: an incubator (presided over by Baby Boomers) teaming with fresh-faced, edgy, 20-something college graduates awaiting transformation into the surly, burned-out assholes who staff the so-called ‘upper tier’ agencies I had the misfortune of interfacing with. Young and Rubicam immediately comes to mind, but I digress…

I waited for ten minutes before a high-status silverback female saw fit to ask my impeccably-wrecked 30-something person if I have been helped. I told her “no”, explained why I was at her place of business,and handed her the bad check. She ambled off to find someone to help me.

I waited.

And waited.

The cubicle monkeys took note of my blighted presence and whispered among themselves.

The silverback woman came back 10 minutes later and told me that the people I needed to speak with were not in the office, but they would be back soon. I asked if I could wait. Reluctantly, but politely, she said OK. I sat in a cubicle right by the front door (clad in this tank top) in plain view of anyone—staff and clients alike— who came and went. I made myself feel right at home.

For the next forty minutes I:

  • called friends
  • asked the employees around me where the kitchenette was so I could get a glass of water
  • asked around as to where the bathroom was “because I drunk a lot of coffee earlier this morning”
  • made a rather lengthy phone call to the Bureau of Fire Prevention about some construction work that was “blocking the only means of egress* from my neighbor’s apartment (other than the front door) in the event of a fire”

Long story made short: I got our money.

Miss Heather

*It has been my observation that civil servants really like it when you use the proper terminology. It makes their job easier.

Dung of the Day

September 13, 2006 ·
Filed under: Dog Shit, Dung of the Day 

I found this cutie pie in my inbox today.

September 13, 2006 Dung of the Day

“Fred Sanford” wrote:

I almost stepped on this upstanding turd this morning while in Canarsie, near the intersection of E. 103rd and Flatlands 6th Street. While initially (and understandably) glad that I’d avoided it, closer inspection revealed a particularly well-formed, gravity-defying specimen that I just knew I had to alert you to.

Thanks Fred!

Sincerely,

Aunt Esther

Miss Heather: 1, Landlord: 1

September 13, 2006 ·
Filed under: Area 51, Greenpoint Magic 

Fuck you up
I returned from running errands this morning to find a fire truck— an honest to god FIRE TRUCK gaggle of New York’s Bravest and handful of chromosomally-disadvantaged onlookers in front of the building next door.

When the Fire Marshal cometh, I guess he likes to make an entrance. If that was his intention, it worked. Ever since the Greenpoint Terminal Market caught on fire, the local yokels around here get very interested when a fire truck shows up on their block.

I have no idea what transpired, but the landlord next door has gone back to work completing his new ghetto-ass roof with two notable changes:

  1. The openings made around several of my windows and those of belonging to my neighbor have been enlarged.
  2. His DOB permit is in plain view.

I guess it is a “draw”. But there is one question I can’t get out of my mind: if this man had to file plans with the Department of Buildings in order to get permission to make these ‘renovations’, why weren’t the fire code violations (which would presumably be manifest in his ‘plan’) caught earlier?

Hmm…

Miss Heather

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