In six months I will be moving into an apartment in a new city. A new city that happens to be New York City, a big city among cities one could be moving to. The process of finding an apartment is encroaching and I am looking forward to it like I look forward to getting my teeth drilled. The Three L’s of apartment rental, Landlords, Leases and Lies, have caused me pain in the past and I do not look forward to repeating the experience.
The first L, Landlords, describes a type of people I believe to be akin to car salesmen. They are all the same. They may come in varying degrees of sketch, but they are all cut from the same mold. All of them may not build a man-den in your garage for their 45-year-old ex-cop friends to smoke weed and watch the Red Sox. That’s only for the special ones, like my current landlord, we will call him Big Money B.
Big Money B likes to party. How hard you ask? Let me tell you. My garage is tricked outtt like the Medford version of Cribs. And by ‘Cribs’, I mean it looks just like a bar down the street. But it’s in my garage. When disheaveled looking men walk up my driveway at 11 pm on a Wednesday I am supposed to think that it’s normal. Winter comes and the temperature drops. Does Big Money B get discouraged by the cold in his DIY sports pub? No, no he does not. He simply moves it into my basement. Thank you, football season for making it even more difficult to do homework on Sundays. Silly me, I was trying to read; for a second there I was beginning to think that I actually lived in a private residence not a goddamn beer hall. Shucks!
B.M.B. lives his life as a landlord perpetually ignoring any and all laws related to renting. Does he call before he comes over? No, simply appears on the porch at the most inappropriate times. (i.e. the middle of a dinner party, when my roommates and I are hung-over in our bathrobes, or when my boyfriend and I are watching a movie on the couch.) Generally when he appears he is dragging along his son whose favorite pastime is taking chocolate milk from our fridge, chugging it as quickly as possible, and going back for more.
My former residence did not have such a colorful landlord, but nonetheless managed to provide my roommates and I with some stories. The official term for this house is ‘shit hole.’ The layout of the house was decidedly unique. Naturally the landlord had wanted to maximize profits by fitting as many bedrooms into the house as possible. Thus explaining why two of us lived in bedrooms clearly fashioned out of the dining room and living room. Lacking any sort of living space, the small mud room at the back of the house became the living room, complete with our own 400 pound 72” TV. This thing was straight out of the 90s. We inherited it after it was left behind by the previous tenets. Left behind because those boys did not have a snow balls chance in hell at getting the TV down the stairs without killing or maiming someone in the vicinity. Naturally, we left the behemoth behind when we moved out as well.
In a few short months I will be looking to put pen to paper and sign a lease, the crucial second L. I’m crossing my fingers that this one will come free of pot-dealing landlords and massive 20th century appliances. But thanks to the third and final L, Lies, you never can tell.