Tuesday, July 23, 2013

When something sparks a memory

I was relating how my Dad gave me advice some 20+ years ago.  He said, "Brenda, not everything needs to be a fight. Sometimes it's just better if you'd shut up." Interesting advice, but it has an interesting story behind it.
(The picture has noting to do with the story, but I have to add them because I like pictures.  This is Tigger, my kitty)

Back some 20 years ago, I was on welfare, getting Section 8 housing after that SOB of a Father to my son left us high and dry before I was even showing.  What do you do when 1/2 of the parental units bails on you? You go on welfare and work your ass out of that situation.  Well, Alex was less than 1 year old, and Section 8 will not allow you to be living in a 1 bedroom apartment with a child. You need 2 bedrooms, so I needed to move.

I found an apartment on the other side of town in an 8 unit building; upstairs and to the right.  It'll do and Section 8 approved it. Only after that did I find out that the Landlord of that unit was the same as my Parents who were renting a house.  OK, so I wanted to get in early, get stuff cleaned up and arranged.  I got the phone # of the Landlord from my parents, called him and asked if I could get the key 3 days early.

The dude went ballistic. "WHERE did I get that number? NEVER call him again!" I mean he was just livid.  That's when I tucked that little piece of paper away for later use. I mean, if you're a landlord -even if you have a manager- EXPECT PHONE CALLS FROM RENTERS. If you don't like it; GET OUT OF THE BUSINESS!!! Try weaving baskets or something.

K, so I move in. The building is about 3/4 full. The only empty apt, is to the back and left of mine. For some reason the manager gets her knickers in a twist and barges into my apartment one day insisting that I was doing something wrong.  I was not. And I did not get that 24 hour notice that I was legally supposed to be given before inspection. Not that it would have changed what I did, but...

SO she tells that ass of a landlord that I am the cause of a cockroach infestation for an 8 unit apartment. Why? Because she said she 'saw something swirling in the bottom of my garbage pan.' yeah. Feathers.
Back then I made dreamcatchers.  It was feathers.

That landlord tried to get me evicted.  In fact, EVERY. FUCKING. MONTH. he'd be at my door on the 2nd with eviction papers because he didn't have the rent money in his greasy, greedy palms. Yes, I did have to pay part of the rent: $125 a month.  So when he held up his eviction notice, I held up the money order receipt, stamped on the 1st by the post office. Sure, I could've just handed him the rent check, but...let the fucker squirm was my thought.  Let that fucker squirm for his pretty little cash.

Section 8, who were very helpful to me because I was a good tenant and didn't trash apartments, came to my aid.  Told the landlord that NO, I was not the cause of a cockroach infestation when 6 other families lived in the same unit. But he kept on trying to get me evicted before the lease was up.  So I turned him into HUD for racial discrimination.

Yes, asshole, THAT WAS ME WHO TURNED YOUR ASS IN. I learned from the other tenants that the dude had refused to rent to a woman in the same situation as me because she was black.  In fact, there WERE no black people in any of his units. Asshole was racist and I was going to make him pay.

So HUD sends a man to interview me - BIG imposing black man.  I was not afraid. I told him what I knew and the investigation went on..for many years I gather from info I get from old friends. The landlord kept on his tirade, trying to evict me at every turn.  That's when my Dad says, "Brenda, not everything has to be a fight.  Just shut up and let the guy have his apartment.  You're moving in a few months anyways." He was right, it really wasn't worth the fight anymore.  Let the asshole king pretend to have his 'realm'.

 Needless to say, I was not offered to renew my lease.  I moved on, but not before giving everyone in that apartment unit the Landlord's phone number.  Was it petty? Yes, but at some point you just gotta stick it to them.  Yeah, and I got my entire deposit back from that asshole...the one that said I was such a slob that I caused a cockroach infestation...THE WHOLE DEPOSIT...BOO YA!

So the moral of the story is that sometimes, you should just let the petty little kings have their petty little realms.  It feeds on their mental illness and allows them to go on when really, they're just pathetic assholes. I guess if I was that pathetic, I'd need to think of myself as better than I am just to get through the day. 

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