Natural Disasters

June 24, 2009

Today was kind of a disaster from the get go. I JUMPED out of bed when my alarm went off, thinking “you have to be on time today” – not that I ever really have a problem being on time. I think when I got up, I was just motivated to come in this morning and be ready to go. I hopped in the shower (even did my crest whitestrips!) and got ready for the day. (Little known fact: I think showers are too time consuming. I think the longest I’ve ever spent in the shower was 30 minutes… I’m a 10-15 minute sort of gal. Get in, get busy, get done – I’m still talking about the shower… pervs.)
But I’m thinking jumping out of bed that quickly set the tone for the whole day… for some reason I was really anxious, and when I feel that anxious when I wake up, it’s usually the sign of an impending anxiety attack that will take place 4-6 hours later. I didn’t think of this until now. This is unfortunate. Natalie – 0, Bad Day – 1.

So I swing by the corner store on my way in and grab an iced coffee. Lately I’ve been disappointed in my regular bodega – their coffee is good and the price is right, but the way its prepared is total crap, specifically in the execution of the sugar. They throw in maybe 2 tablespoons, don’t mix it, and it floats to the bottom so it feels you’re drinking sandy coffee. I don’t like my coffee to be crunchy, thanks. So this morning I got the bright idea to order without sugar, and next thing I know, my iced coffee is magically delicious. Natalie -1, Bad D– And then again, I never seem to learn that drinking coffee on an empty stomach makes me jittery and stomach ache-y. We’ll call it a draw. The score is still Natalie – 0, Bad Day – 1.

I arrive at work and things seem okay. I jump right into my responsibilities and everyone seems to be responsive and on top of their ish (good way to start the day I suppose.)

And then I got an email from my friend (who, for the purposes of this post, will call) “Chris”.

Chris is a good friend. I would say Chris is one of my best friends. I am pretty good at estimating how he’s going to function in certain situations and know that when Chris is in professional-mode, he’s a professional… no fucking around. Recently, I referred Chris to a landlord I met while I was looking for apartments back in December – he’s got these beautiful buildings out in Bushwick I remembered met Chris’s criteria. This landlord, for the purposes of this essay/blog/post/whathaveyou, will be referred to as “Tom”.

The email essentially said: “Tom is batshit crazy.”

This I know. When I met Tom, he was almost 40 minutes late to our appointment, citing that he was hungover and driving back from his house which is just outside of NYC. Whatever, I got over it. He seemed pretty on top of his shit as a building owner/landlord, but struck me as a bit off from the get go. “Crazy” is an excellent way to describe him. (I would also use “eccentric,” “larger-than-life,” and “possible coke addict” to the list.)

It didn’t strike me as odd that Chris thought he was weird, so I wrote back “duh” or something of that nature and went about my business.

Then I got an email from Tom. A LOOOOONG, completely unsolicited email.

He had forwarded me all of the correspondence between the two of them and, in typical Tom fashion, had a staccato-like note at the beginning:

hey natalie

good morning-i hope alls well
im trying to help you friend

he is being so difficult with me, im letting you know
i appreciate you thinking about me

read below

i dont have any thing in williamsburg even close to $1500 for a 2 bdrm-unrealistic.

i mentioned this but told him bushwick under $1700-

i followed up with him this morning with photos-and next thing i know, all this attitude
im only trying to help your friend

i appreciate you trying to help your friend and mucho appreciated you trying to help me-but i dont understand all this attitude for trying to help someone….with his attitude, he can stay in the [neighborhood he currently lives in]-

have a good day
scroll down

and then followed multiple days of correspondence. I read through… Chris wasn’t out of line in any way, It was clear there had been a slight misunderstanding and things had gotten a little snappy, but nothing that could be clearly labeled as “difficult.”

So I sent Tom a quick note:
[Tom] – I’m sorry things aren’t working out… I thought that you’d have something that would work for him… It’s not really my business what is going on with you and my friend, but from your emails it looks like it was a miscommunication. I don’t think his intention at all was to be difficult, just to find an apartment that suits his needs. I’m sorry that there was a misunderstanding. – N

I then received an email back from Tom, only 3 minutes after I had sent mine. Now, we all know I have a bit of a mouth, but that’s usually reserved for competition or inebriation. But I was so offended by this email, I have decided to spare my readers his exact, disgusting words… I have decided to present Tom’s return email in the form of a madlib (for everyone’s amusement.):

excuse my [foreign language], WHUT A [ugly name for vagina]

especially when i was trying to help
i hope i never see that guy in [trendy neighborhood] or [trendy neighborhood’s bastard cousin neighborhood]
he really pissed me off
god what a [ugly name for vagina, yes again.]-
fucking HATE that guy

its not you-i really do appreciate you trying to help

that guy and his [music-related noun] and [performing art related noun]
can go [sex verb] HIMSELF AND I HOPE HE NEVER STEPS FOOT IN [nyc borough]

My jaw was on the floor. Shocked. Really. I don’t really know Tom personally, so having him vent to me about one of my best friends caught me way off guard… I really only know Tom in a professional capacity, so I expected at least that much from him. This was completely out of line.

So I called him.

I told Tom that while I understood that he was upset and venting, I am an inappropriate outlet. It was unprofessional and completely inappropriate to speak to me using any of that language, especially about my friend. It is not my responsibility to babysit his business transactions when I have referred someone to him, and this event has led me to believe that I cannot trust him with people I refer him to and I will no longer be giving his name to people I know looking for apartments.

He hung up without really saying much of anything. I got an email a few minutes later apologizing and explaining he was just upset. Sure, I get you’re upset, but this completely is out of line. I’m not responding.

About 90% of this entire ordeal had been conducted before 10:30am. I had been awake for about 2 hours when all of this went down, and believe me, this is not a hearty way to start your day. There is no complete breakfast here. This is a plate of bullshit in my face.

Chris was totally cool about it. He didn’t seem to care that it didn’t work out with Tom, and quite frankly, I don’t blame him. I told him about the nasty email (that madlib is the first time he’s seen it in it’s “entirety”) and he was pretty floored. In the end, Chris is fine. Tom is probably feeling guilty (as he should), and I’m just a little irked by the entire thing. I am fairly certain this contributed to the energy of the day. Natalie – 0, Bad Day – 3. (Editors note: I ran this post by Chris, just to make sure it wasn’t crossing any lines, and he told me he would like to add that he is a “hottie,” that he’s “boneable,” and that he’s a “beefcake.” I agree with all but beefcake; It makes me think of these dog food things that Rossy and Jason feed their dogs.)

I told my coworkers about what happened and we all had a nice chat about how craigslist people can be batshit. I brought up my experience from a few weekends ago where that girl signed a lease and in the end I thought she was a con artist (read HERE). Everyone was shocked at this and about half of them suggested I change my locks.

And then I told them what happened last night:

On my way home from work, I stopped at my apartment and picked up my paycheck, which is always mailed to me on Tuesdays. Instead of going inside and dropping off my stuff, I walked to the bank, deposited my check, and walked back to my apartment after picking up a few toiletries. As I turned the corner at my block, there was crazy con artist lady and her weird dad, walking away from my apartment building.

What. The. Fuck.

I called out to her and she turned and said “hi” as nice as can be. We chatted for a few minutes and I asked her what she was doing in the neighborhood – what I mean was “WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING HERE?!” She told me how much she liked the neighborhood and wanted to keep looking for an apartment here. Uh, okay. Whatever. Have a nice life. Her dad suggested we get tea together. WTF.

They left and I went inside totally creeped out. Considering I was so upset about her possibly being a con artist and breaking into my apartment with my keys that she may or may not have copied after signing the lease, imagine how upset I was when I saw her outside my apartment. She was AT MY APARTMENT.

I told my coworkers this part of the story and they unanimously agreed I put a deadbolt on my door or change the locks. I called both of my parents and they both volunteered to pay for it – you know when your parents are worried about a con artist breaking into your apartment, you should be too. It really stressed me out on top of the previous anxiety. I went for a walk outside to cool off. Too bad it’s humid as a jockstrap out there. Natalie – 0, Bad Day – 4.

I called my landlord’s office and asked if I could install a deadbolt. The building manager actually transferred me to the building landlord/owner, who always seems to be so nice and helpful, and he said it was fine. He suggested a guy to do it to and volunteered to send someone over to show me how to use my alarm system, which doesn’t turn on as far as I can tell. I thanked him, and before I lost him forever (cause who knows when I’ll get ahold of him again) I asked him about the roof situation. I explained that I just wanted to go up there to sit in the sunshine, and that many of the other residents felt the same way. He explained that he had installed a camera, seen the recent parties (and their subsequent messes), and couldn’t allow me to go up there. If he let me, he’d have to let everyone. I told him I understood, but made a suggestion: that if he can’t rent the 4th floor apartment (which has “private roof access”) that everyone else in the building would probably be willing to chip in $25-$50 per month to have roof access. He surprisingly said he liked the idea and would take it into consideration. Natalie – 1, Bad Day – 4.

So by then it was almost 11am… all of this chaos happening before noon. I think it threw off the energy in the office… everyone seemed concerned for me and my safety and could tell that I was upset. They offered to cover the phones while I went outside “to scream as loud as humanly possible” if I wanted. I told them I was fine and went about my chaos. I had about 40 things to do at once, and somehow I pushed through. It’s now almost 3, and I’ve somehow survived multiple office crises. Everyone can tell I’m on edge, and just as I’d hoped, they’re all incredibly supportive. At other jobs, I would have just kind of been abandoned to deal with my own shit, but these people almost treat me like family, and it makes me really happy.

But I’m exhausted. My brain hurts. I’m running low on fuel. And all I can think of is going home and going to bed. The first half of the day made it “just one of those days,” and quite frankly, I’m sick of having them.

I’m pretty sure this is my longest post ever. Natalie – 2, Bad Day – 4. I think I still lose, even with 2100 words…


2 Responses to “Natural Disasters”

  1. very nice to blog tanks.

  2. Lurc said

    Amusing. Continue in a that spirit

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