Welcome to the Concierge Lounge
Seriously, the lease has an entire subsection dedicated to rules concerning our blinds. We can have window shades, if we want, but they are only to be visible from inside the apartment. For God’s sake, said shades are never to breach the provided blinds.
To be fair, it’s not as if the landlord is completely neurotic. Apparently their money-men (corporate money, not tenant money) can’t stand shades or bicycles. Hence both being verboten.
Strange, but everyone always seemed to try to play along. At least I thought we did…
Recently I’ve started noticing that my neighbors have been less than diligent with their window’s maintenance. Maintenance is perhaps the wrong word, I’d be fine if they just called a moratorium on destroying the damn things.
The first neighbor was okay. I could understand their blinds’ deterioration. The man beats his girlfriend monthly; surely there’d be some collateral damage. He must be suffering from some sort of man-period or something. So the blinds are just a physical representation of the apartment’s domestic discord. Mr. Window‘s way of calling the cops if you will. Helping create an atmosphere usually only found in a Bukowski poem!
(On the plus side, the dilapidated blinds do create an eerie optical illusion when you arrive home late at night. The contrast between the white blinds and the shadows being projected backwards through them always make me uncertain whether or not some sort of sea hag is watching me. Granted, this effect loses its effectiveness outside of October, or whenever I’m not dreaming (nightmaring?) about sea hags.)
Another neighbor’s blinds might also be tied to his relationship status, only inversely here. This guy didn’t beat his girlfried, mainly because I’m certian she’d kick his ass if he even though about it. No loud, late night fights here, no dramatics.
This man is defined by his determined, ’round the clock work ethic centered on his car. Street racing runs his life, as its jettisoned loose engine parts litter over 60% of our shared parking lot. His girlfriend, while always eager to help out with spreading nuts and bolts over every inch of parkable space, is actually instead obsessed with a subject very near and dear to my heart: me.
Which can make things kind of uncomfortable, especially when she turns out to be a nurse at my general practioner’s office.
“Don’t I know you from somewhere?”
“Huh? Not to my knowlege.”
“No, no. I know you from somewhere,” snapping her fingers then pointing them, “…downstairs! You’re the guy who lives downstairs!”
“Oh, yeah… hi.”
“The apartment that’s catty-corner from mine!”
“Geez,” thankfully interjects my savior, dressed as her co-worker, “stalker much?”
That was not the conversation you want to hear at your doctor’s office. Especially when the querying nurse is also searching your arm for a suitable vein. I’m known for being tight-lipped everywhere, except in this blog, making my time as a (quite literally) captive audience all the more tormenting.
Luckily for me, she’s now gone. Probably forced away from him in some perverted twist on the age-old “pink slip” race. Which is perfect in a “I don’t have to worry about everyone in my complex learning my dosages” kind of way. Not so perfect in the “her ex is now letting his windows deteriorate” kind of way. Pick my poison I guess.
I just wish one of them had been mature enough to think about what their split would do to their poor, defenseless window treatments.