Critical (m)Ass

September 19, 2006 by
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.


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