Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wednesday Factoid: Roommates/Neighbors

Today's Wednesday Factoid is: Have you ever dealt with objectionable behavior from a roommate or neighbor? Tell your horror story.


First of all, I'm moving on Monday and the ENTIRE REASON I'm moving is that my upstairs neighbors are obnoxious. They stomp and drag furniture and slam doors until 1:30 in the morning, have kids that run down the hall all the time, play loud music sometimes, and create unexplained loud thuds that shake my house with astounding regularity. However, weirdly enough, even though I'm moving BECAUSE OF THEM, they are not the worst neighbors I've had!

I think my worst neighbor story is the chick who lived behind me in Gainesville. I shared a wall for a while with someone who would begin blasting music around 10 PM on weeknights. And I'm talking about LITERAL WALL-SHAKING BASS here--there was nowhere you could go to get away from it, my glass knickknacks that weren't even touching the wall were audibly VIBRATING, the whole place was shaking, I could hear it with my eyeballs basically.

I tried banging on the wall and there was no change, so one night I called the cops. The noise actually stopped a little while later.

I mentioned to the apartment manager that I'd had to call the cops on someone in case there were any incidents. They said if it was after hours then that was what I should do, and if it was during hours the office was open, I should let them handle it. But of course since this woman only blasted music starting in the late evening, that never happened.

The second time it went on long enough for me to call the cops, after the noise stopped SHE CAME TO MY DOOR AND FRIGGING CONFRONTED ME.

I opened the door because I thought it might be the police, but it was her. And she told me to stop calling the cops on her. That instead of doing that, I should just come to her door and knock and ask her to turn it down. (Lady, do you think you will be able to hear the door over that? You sure didn't hear the bangs on the wall I made.) She explained, extremely indignantly and aggressively, that they have to make that noise and it has to be at that level because they are artists recording their album and they cannot afford to rent a studio so they have to do it in the apartment.

And on top of all that? She was holding a cigarette, and she walked into my house holding it and smoking it while telling me off.

She acted like she just wanted to make peace and resolve the issue, but the entire thing came off like she was way more interested in taking me down a peg for daring to request enforcement of noise regulations. In any case I actually never had to call the police on them again, but I wasn't intimidated by what she said. I knew damn well that I would have been happy to call the police on her again if I'd had to. You aren't entitled to create situations where other people are forced to tolerate your extreme noise in their own homes.

As for roommate stories, I guess my worst roommate story is probably JW from college, about whom I wrote my very first Internet rant in 1998! (Great honor, huh?) He was messy, but that's not even the right word to describe the scope of it. He left his crap everywhere of course, but the peculiar thing was that he would also kidnap other people's belongings and leave them in his disgusting room or bathroom. I'd find my books swiped from my spaces or the common areas, sitting on the back of his toilet. His bathroom and room had dead bugs just lying around, and he would leave literal half-eaten food on the FLOOR in his room--I actually ONCE STEPPED ON PART OF A CHEESEBURGER while going in there to find out what was happening to all my coffee cups.

On top of the mess, he was also super irresponsible. He would use my dishes and not wash them, promise to wash them and then "forget," never take the trash out, borrow and lose my laundry key, and ignore his part of our collective bills. Back in those days, phone bills were itemized with long-distance charges, and I was the eldest and had seniority in the apartment so the bills were in my name but I would ask my roommates to identify their long-distance phone calls and pay for those themselves plus a third of the local bill. JW would just mark random stuff, as if he could bullshit it like one of his English tests. I found phone calls I had made claimed by him. Eventually I'd just identify mine and my other roommate would identify hers, and then I'd assign the others to him. He never disputed that.

I worked with our other roomie to write him a letter once and he totally ignored our complaints, so it was really frustrating.

When he moved out and I got two new roomies, they kept his part of the deposit because the incredible deep cleaning they had to give his bathroom was beyond the typical scope. 

I wonder what ever happened to him.

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