Tag Archives: moving

Adventures in Being Mistaken for a Domestic Violence Victim

A few years ago, I went through a month-long period where I constantly had suspicious-seeming bruises that I’d actually inflicted on myself through gross stupidity.

It’s story time.

I can’t remember in what order these events transpired, so I’ll just tell them from least stupid to most stupid.

Least stupid:

I worked as a bartender at a high-volume restaurant in Arlington. In this restaurant, I made margarita mix by the 10 (or so) gallon bucket. Then, I’d have to carry the very heavy bucket into the walk-in cooler and dump it into an even bigger bucket. A system of tubes transported the margarita mix back out into the bar’s margarita machine. Then, the drain on the margarita machine led to another system of tubes which dripped onto the floor of the walk-in cooler. It’s the circle of life.

Ideally, when you have recycled margarita mix dripping out of a tube, you want that tube to lead to a drain of some kind. However, when they built this restaurant, they apparently forgot to put in a drain. So the margarita mix would just drip onto the floor of the cooler, congealing into a very slippery goo.

So, one day, I made a batch of margaritas and carried the very heavy bucket into the cooler. When I stepped onto the congealed goo, my foot shot out from under me. I did the cartoony slipping-in-place thing for a second or so, then fell backward onto my ass, dumping ten gallons of margarita mix onto my face in the process.

I came away from this incident smelling like tequila and with a nice big bruise on my extreme-upper hip.

Slightly more stupid:

When my husband and I moved into our first apartment, our bedroom had two giant windows. As someone who regularly worked until 2:00 in the morning, the sun was my enemy. So I made us some curtains.

We were poor and couldn’t afford a curtain rod. However, we had a staple gun.

I set out one day to staple our curtains to the wall above the windows. We didn’t have a step-ladder or anything, so I used a chair. But the only chair we had that didn’t weigh a ton was the desk chair. A swivel chair. On wheels.

So I bravely climbed onto the chair and started stapling. When I got to the mid-point of the window, it was kind of a stretch to actually reach what I was doing, but I proceeded anyway. The staple gun I was using had a bit of a kick to it. So I stretched all the way out, barely hanging on to the staple gun, one hand holding the curtain, leaning really far over, so that most of my body weight is hovering over nothing. And I pulled the trigger.

The kick from the staple gun caused the chair to start spinning around, making it difficult for me to regain my balance, which led to me falling.

Because the chair had wheels, it shot in the opposite direction of my body, and I ended up somehow falling under the bed, scraping my back on the metal bed frame in the process.

The best part was when Adam, who had been taking a shower and heard a huge thump, came out, soaking wet, in a towel, calling my name. And since I was under the bed, he couldn’t see my whole body, just my legs, which weren’t moving. He though I was dead.

It was hilarious.

Most stupid:

This one is really, just…

You know what? I’ll let you judge for yourself.

I was getting into Adam’s sister’s car, and I hit myself in the face with the car door.

No build up. That’s it. I remember doing it, seeing the car door coming at me and thinking, “Hmm. That’s about to hit me in the face.”

And still, I didn’t stop it, or move my head or anything. Just hit myself in the face with the car door.

This gave me a lovely black eye. But that’s not where the story ends.

My husband and I were moving. Our moving day happened to coincide with a friend’s daughter’s birthday party, which I had to at least make an appearance at.

Because of all that we had to do that day, and because I generally got off work at about 2:00 am, I hadn’t gotten any sleep the night before. I was exhausted, dressed in shitty clothes because we were moving. And I had a black eye.

So Adam and I show up to this birthday party. I’m sure I looked miserable. I’d warned all my friends about my black eye, and that I hadn’t gotten any sleep, and that I was moving that day. But one of my friends forgot to tell her mom.

As soon as she saw me – standing next to Adam – she came up and started a conversation as she pulled me into the kitchen in an iron death-grip.

The conversation went like this:

“Oh Lindsay, last time you were here, you left something in the kitchen, let’s go get itohmygodwhathappenedtoyoureye?! Did he do that to you?”

I explained about my stupidity and she seemed to buy it. (It’s really a pretty easy sell if you know me.)

I told Adam afterward. He thought it was funny. (Thank god, you don’t want to see him when he’s angry.)

It’s a good thing I didn’t have to go to the doctor during this Month of Suspicious Bruises. Adam would still be in jail.

***

This was not the only time I was mistaken for a domestic violence victim. I can’t really tell the other story, but it begins with me hitting some guy’s car and him being really angry at me, and ends with the same guy pulling me aside and telling me I deserved to be with someone who respects me and treats me right.

Apparently people just want to take care of me.

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

The Crappy Apartment Saga Part Three

Okay, this brings us up to our current residence, and if you’ve been reading my blog, you already know a lot about the duplex. It’s huge, it’s pretty, it has a yard.

We also have a shared wall. Just one. And it’s the one right behind our bed.

Things started out so well. We got all of our stuff moved in. We hung up our pictures. We adapted to living without a real, human-sized refrigerator.

We’d lived at the new place about a week and a half, when, at about 3:30 Monday morning, I woke up to the sound of thumping bass.

Now, you should know that my sleeping patterns are a swinging pendulum.  Sometimes I wake up at the slightest noise, and sometimes it would take somebody repeatedly slapping me and screaming in my face to wake me up.

So I figured I was in a light-sleeping cycle. I looked over at Adam. He’s still asleep. Okay, if he can do it, so can I. I tried to go back to sleep.

Have you ever put in a dvd of a movie or tv series and fallen asleep to it? Then, at some point in the night, the movie ends and the dvd goes back to the title menu, which has some loud, annoying, repeating noise or song? When that happens to me, at first I’ll just have really frustrating dreams that go around in circles. But then I’ll slowly wake up and realize what disturbed my sleep, and at that point it is impossible for me to go back to sleep with the dvd menu still going.

(I know I could just turn it off. But we didn’t have a remote for our bedroom tv for a long time, so I’d have to get out of bed, in the dark, half asleep, and stumble and stub my way to the tv, turn it off, and stumble back. It was annoying. And sometimes painful. So yeah, I’d try to ignore it for a while first.)

Anyway, that is what this noise was like. It was obviously a repeating pattern, but I was just hearing bass, no melody, so I couldn’t even figure out what song it was.

I didn’t want to pound on the wall and wake Adam up. At least, I didn’t want to wake him up that way. So I began the Wake-Up Dance: a series of heavy sighs interspersed with frustrated tossing and turning in bed.

It worked. Adam woke up, so we both banged on the wall. After a few seconds, the noise stopped, and we went back to bed. Problem solved.

A week passed, and we didn’t have any repeat occurrences. Problem solved forever, apparently.

Until the next Monday morning, at about 3:30. Same story, same Wake-Up Dance, same wall pounding to get it to stop. And it seemed to work.

For about ten minutes.

Then the noise started back up. We pounded on the wall again, harder this time. Nothing. I moved to the couch to try to sleep there. The noise was too loud, and seemed to be getting louder. It finally got to a point where it was all we could hear. We called the cops. And I sent an email to our landlord letting him know what had happened, and asking him to do something.

I’m sure the cops came, but at some point, I was so tired that I actually fell asleep despite the noise. Adam had to leave for work at 5:00, so he was gone before the cops showed up.

At this point, we decided we had to talk to the guy. We hadn’t met him, we hadn’t even seen him, but we clearly had evidence that he was there.

So Adam knocked on his door. And waited. And noticed that there were menus and business cards rubber-banded to the doorknob. It looked like this guy hasn’t seen the outside of his front door…ever. So Adam went to the back. He knocked at the back gate. And waited. Still nothing.

Oh, we also got a response back from the landlord. It basically amounted to “Handle it yourselves. What am I, your mother?” Thanks, jerk.

A week passed. Same time, same story, same result. We called the cops, and this time we actually talked to them – the cops, I mean. They told us that since the noise wasn’t audible in the street, they can’t issue a ticket. But they’ll go over and try to talk to the guy. We hear them knock on his door. We hear them wait. Knock again. Wait longer. Then get frustrated and leave. This guy won’t open his door for anyone.

This time, we decided to do the adult thing – a passive aggressive note. Adam wrote it, so I can’t tell you what it actually said, but I imagine it read along the lines of “Dude. Come the fuck on. Band practice can wait until daylight hours, okay? People need their sleep. Asshole.”

He left it under the guy’s windshield wiper.

I drive past the guy’s car every day on the way to work, and I saw that the note wasn’t there anymore, which, I assumed, meant that he read it. So I waited for some sort of retaliation, or for him to come over and apologize. Nothing.

And, stupidly, I further assumed that meant that he read the note, he’s sorry, he understands, and he won’t do it again.

Monday morning. Awake at 4:00. Pounding bass. Near tears at this point.

We’ve pounded on the wall. We’ve knocked on his door. We’ve left a note. We’ve called the cops. We’ve contacted the landlord. At this point, I’m really thinking revenge is the only answer. If I’d had an alarm clock that I could just leave on all day while I was at work, I would’ve. Damn cell phone alarms have left me powerless in these situations.

So, before we did anything drastic, we contacted our landlord one more time. My husband emailed him this time, and his tone was less business-like and more pleading. Please help.

This time, the response was only three words, all caps:

CONSIDER IT DONE.

So, this brings us to present day. It’s been a week and a half since my husband sent the email. This Monday was the first Monday in over a month that we got to sleep all morning until the alarm went off. We’ll see if it lasts.

And by the way, it really bugs me that when I sent the email, our landlord was all, “Please, I have much more important things to do,” and when my husband sent the email, he’s immediately responsive. I know it was the second email about the same thing, and that’s probably why he decided to actually help, but still, in the back of my mind, I’m thinking, “Sexist bastard.” Actually, it’s closer to the front of my mind.

And yes, construction has started on a natural gas well across the street from us. I assume it will be completed about the time we’re ready to buy a house.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Crappy Apartment Saga Pt. 2

At this point we both had regular jobs and were making a bit more money, so we figured we could afford a higher rent if it meant a better neighborhood. So we found a place that was nice, a bit more expensive, but a much better neighborhood (at least when we moved in).

The only problem: we weren’t able to get into a new apartment right when our lease was up. We’d have to wait a month.

Our choices were to either pay the much higher month-to-month rent at our old crappy apartments, or to move in with Adam’s parents for a month and save some money. We went with option B.

Now we had a new problem: we had to find a place to put our stuff. So we rented a storage facility and waited for a month.

Finally, the month is nearing its end, and we get a call from the new place. There’s a problem with our apartment.

See, someone in the office had “accidentally” extended some guy’s lease for a month and the guy happened to be living in our future apartment. Great.

So, we’ve got a couple of options. They’ve broken their end of the lease, so we could go somewhere else if we want. But we’d put a lot of effort into finding this place and we didn’t want to have to pay new deposits at another place, so we nixed that idea.

They tell us, since they’ve inconvenienced us so much, they’ll put us in a bigger apartment for the first month of our lease (at the same price, of course), and they’ll hire movers for us. Hell yeah! Option B again.

So, we get everything set to move, but then we find out they’re only paying to move us once. We can decide if it’s for the first move (to the temporary apartment) or the second move (to the permanent one).

Now, we initially scheduled our first move-in day on a weekend so my parents could help us move. But since we were getting movers to help, I’d told my parents we wouldn’t need them after all. And – also because we thought we’d have movers – we scheduled our second move on a week day. So, okay, fine, I call my parents and tell them we need them again – to move us to our temporary apartment.

After living on the third floor for several months, we’d requested a first floor apartment at the new place – which we got. That was one of the reasons I’d felt comfortable asking my parents – who are both in their fifties and occasionally have back problems – to help us move. So before we agreed to move ourselves to the temp apartment and have movers for the permanent one, I made sure to ask if our temp place was also on the first floor. The answer was yes.

Liars.

We go to pick up our temporary key to our temporary apartment on moving day, and the apartment number was 6305. Hmm. Logic and experience tell me this apartment will be in the sixth building on the 3rd floor.

I was livid. I felt like we’d been jerked around so much at this point, I immediately turned around and tried to go back into the office. Luckily, Adam stopped me, because there may have been bloodshed. He never lets me get into fights.

So my parents moved us into the temp apartment and we spent a month there, happy to be away from the construction and the gunfire. And then we were professionally moved into our real apartment a month later. And this apartment served us well for a couple of years.

But, of course, it was still an apartment. Which means we were sharing two walls and a ceiling with other people. And sometimes those people jumped up and down on our ceiling at 2:00 in the morning. And sometimes they slammed cabinet doors late at night. And sometimes they had loud parties at the pool just outside our patio – with a paid DJ.

Also, about a month after we moved to this place, which is right next to a major highway, the city (or state, I guess) decided our exit needed to be widened. Yes, that’s right. More construction. I wonder if it was actually the same crew, and they just followed us over.

Oh well. At least it wasn’t happening on top of the roof this time.

We were kind of looking for a way out. Luckily, our apartment’s management company was happy to oblige.

We’d lived at this place for about two and a half years, through two lease terms. So when this lease was coming to a close, we started to weigh our options.

What we really wanted was a house. We were in no position to buy it, so renting would have to suffice. We started looking, but we were still keeping an open mind to staying at our current place. Then the signs went up.

“Lock your doors. Take your keys. Hide your belongings.”

Yes, the same signs you see in mall parking lots.

They also started putting up “$99 Move-In Special” signs. I think some of our old neighbors came over.

Now we were pretty eager to leave. But money was still an issue, so we decided to talk to management to see if we could get a better rent rate. We decided that if we had to actually move to a new place, it wouldn’t be an apartment. But if we could get a better rate for where we were, we’d stay put. After all, we’d looked on the apartment’s website and noticed that they were now renting our floor plan at $100 per month less than we were paying. So we went by the office.

“Hey, guys, it’s great that you came in, we were just about to contact you about whether you want to renew your lease. We just wanted to let you know that we do expect a small increase in rent for that unit.”

Excuse me?

“Yeah, with the housing crisis and the economy, we’ve got to offset our costs and everything.”

But on the website it says you’re renting our apartment for $100 less than we’re paying now.

“Oh. You checked the website. Um.”

*arms crossing*

*foot tapping*

*heavy sigh*

“Well, we could give you a better rate, but only if we move you into a new apartment.”

So, long story less long, we found the duplex and moved in, thinking that sharing only one wall would be infinitely better than sharing two walls and a ceiling. Of course, it all depends on who you’re sharing with.

Come back tomorrow for The Crappy Apartment Saga Part Three: The Crappening.

***

Epilogue

The construction on our exit ended about a week before we moved out. Perhaps you can guess where that crew got their next job.

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

The Crappy Apartment Saga Pt. 1

Part One:

When my husband and I first got an apartment together, our sole criteria was cost. How cheap is the rent? Cheap? Okay, when can we move in?

(Actually, that’s not entirely true. It was: how cheap is the rent, and how lenient are you on the credit check? We’re not out there writing hot checks or anything, we just didn’t really have any credit then.)

So, we found a place that was pretty cheap and accepted our credit. It was a third floor apartment, which is good for keeping in shape, but sucks when you come home from a 13-hour shift waiting tables and then have to climb 2 flights of stairs to get to your bed.

This first place was not in the best of neighborhoods, and, a side-effect of them accepting people with crappy credit, anyone could get in. We didn’t have a lot of trouble with our neighbors at first, but after a while we noticed that our next door neighbor had at least three dogs. Big ones. And he left them alone all day. Every day.

They did not suffer silently. So there was barking all day.

And then we noticed an odor. I guess he wasn’t home often enough to take them out for walks. So now it’s loud and stinky.

And apparently they’re all infested with fleas. Which meant our cat was suddenly infested with fleas. Awesome.

We just kind of trudged along, accepting our crappy-neighbor-having fate, until one day, we came home to find Animal Control there. They were taking his dogs away. I guess he’d been away too long. And those dogs were huge. And hungry. And sad. It was like an ASPCA commercial.

We were pleased that suddenly our living situation had gotten much better…until it got much, much worse.

The apartment complex had big ideas about attracting a better class of resident, so they started improving things all over the complex. This meant construction. Which would have been inconvenient but not life-altering, except for one thing. I mentioned the 13-hour serving shifts I worked then? Yeah, those ended at about 1:30 in the morning. So I would go home, take a bath, eat dinner, unwind, and be in bed by about 3:30 am, knowing that I’d have to be back at work at 10:00 am.

But at 6:30, construction would start. And they started with the roof. And we lived on the top floor. So it sucked.

Then we came home one night to find a notice on the door from the apartment management saying they assumed we’d heard about the shooting, so if we had any information, please call the police. That sucked more.

Then one morning I went out to find my car’s passenger window shattered, but still intact (which was actually pretty impressive.) We weren’t sure whether it was an attempted break-in or a bullet, but either way…that sucked the most.

So we decided to move.

Stay tuned for Part Two tomorrow!

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

So random that I posted it on a different day.

Random stuff about my new house and neighborhood:

My cat has burrowed deep under the covers on the bed and will not come out. I think it’s half terror at her new surroundings and half knowledge that we haven’t paid a pet deposit yet. Smart kitty.

There are trees here! Everywhere! I like trees.

The Schwan’s man comes to this neighborhood! You have no idea how truly happy this makes me. They have these little fudge swirl ice cream cups that are the most amazing thing you will ever put in your mouth. Yes, even better than that.

I have a back yard. And a front yard. But no lawn mower, and the grass needs cutting, so I could use some help in that department. Hint hint.

We still don’t have a real refrigerator. Our friend Daniel gave us a tiny little mini fridge to hold us over. It’s big enough to hold some cheese and an iced tea pitcher. Iced tea is a food group to me, so this is a huge help.

I just used three words that mean exactly the same thing to describe our temporary fridge. Huh.

I desperately need a shoe rack, because my shoes take up the entire floor of my closet, and I’m not getting rid of any. In fact, I’ve joined a Shoe of the Month club, so I’ll probably be adding to the problem very soon.

I haven’t had to turn on the air conditioner yet. This bodes well for my summer electric bills. But it’s actually been chilly inside the house a couple of times this weekend. This does not bode well for the winter electric bill.

But! We have a fireplace! That should help.

Are you allowed to make s’mores in a fireplace? Or hot dogs? I’m now planning a camp out themed party this winter. BYO sleeping bags and hot dog-cooking sticks.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Mindless Prattle

I’m moving this week. To a duplex, which is like the shortstop between an apartment and a house. I’m excited.

The new place will be almost twice as big as what we’re living in now (“we”, for those of you who don’t know me personally, is me, my husband and our obese cat.) It also has really high ceilings. Like 20 feet high. And a small ledge, with a window up next to the ceiling, that I want to turn into a clubhouse with a rope ladder (I’m not sure how our landlord will feel about this).

It also has an actual yard, with a fence and trees and everything! I’m going to try to plant some flowers. My mom has a major green thumb, but I’ve never been able to grow anything. So I might just be setting myself up for failure. Stay tuned.

It has three bedrooms, and two patios, and four closets. Four! I could have a whole closet just for my shoes.

(Sidenote: Did anyone else ever see that movie with Monica Potter and Freddie Prinze Jr, where she moved in with a bunch of models, and her room was really, really small because they’d converted one of the bedrooms into a closet, and she was living in the actual closet? Anyway, ever since I saw that movie, I’ve wanted to have a room-sized closet.

Also, I once knew a girl who really did convert her closet into her bedroom. It was not a large closet. It really only had room for her mattress – a twin-size. And she didn’t use the actual bedroom for a closet. It only had a desk in it. I think she may have been slightly agoraphobic.)

Back to the duplex. It’s awesome, and has lots of awesome features. But it doesn’t have a fridge, so we’ll need to get one of those.

Some other things it doesn’t have: 

  • Upstairs neighbors who seem to make a hobby out of throwing themselves into the walls and floors.
  • Screaming children playing about 18 inches from the bedroom window.
  • Signs posted in the neighborhood warning you to remove all your valuables from your vehicle so they don’t get stolen.

However, I will be leaving behind my beloved garden tub. That’s gonna hurt.

Also! Our move-in day is my super-long work day (Thursday), so Adam will be moving all of our stuff, and I just get to come home to a new place. It’s like magic.

Okay, here’s something I could use some help with: I will now have an abundance of wall space, including the aforementioned wall that’s 20 feet high. I need cheap decorating ideas, and lots of them.

The duplex has a fireplace. Now, we have one of those photos that everyone has from their wedding, where all your friends and family sign the mat. I was thinking of putting it above the mantle, but I’m not sure I want to look at my own face that much. Alternate ideas for above the fireplace?

For the big wall, tell me if you think this is stupid:

I was thinking about getting those old Arthur Murray dance diagrams and mapping one out on the wall. Not exactly sure how I’d go about doing it. I can’t paint it on, but I could use fabric and spray starch to stick it to the wall, or I could use picture frames for bits and pieces of it. Also, I’m having trouble finding the actual diagrams.

And I’ve promised Adam a room all to himself where he can put all of his video game paraphernalia, so I won’t have to worry about that.

Eeeeeeeeee! Yay new home!

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized