Sunday, May 3, 2009

My Neighbor, the Genius

So I have this neighbor. She lives in the apartment next to us, and I know her not because we are friendly and visit with each other but because she knocked on my door last spring and asked me to turn up the heat. (The thermostat for our section of the building is in our apartment.) And she liked to leave little notes on our door in the fall, when our landlord was once again breaking laws and not turning the heat on in mid-September. "Can you turn up the heat? It's only 65 in my apartment." When OBVIOUSLY, as the parents of a toddler, if we could control it, we would have. But having the thermostat in our apartment does no good when the furnace is not even ON. And we told her so. We got more, similar notes.

During the winter, whenever we were expecting a snow storm, she'd leave a note requesting that we crank the heat in case we lost power, so that we'd have residual heat. Because, you know, that never occurred to us. And we kept it cranked to a whopping 70 degrees all winter anyway- the highest setting our thermostat allows- because the windows are pitifully drafty and did I mention we have a toddler to keep warm?

Once again, our rat of a landlord turned the furnace off early this spring. In an odd stroke of generosity he gave us an extra ten days or so compared to last year but the fact remains that he turned off the furnace more than three weeks before state law allows. And we got another note on our door this week. "Can you turn up the heat? It's only 65 degrees in my apartment." Lady. It's like 50 in ours. Save your scrap paper.

So we've been having some really nice weather- but the nights are cold, anywhere from the 30s to 50s, so it gets really cold in here. Our apartment in particular has no chance at solar heat since only one of our windows faces south, and it's in the kitchen. It heats up a 2'x2' square on the kitchen floor. Helpful. It stays cold in here. There's that toddler to keep warm- the one who's woken up earlier than he should a few times because he was cold. And we co-sleep. It's that cold in here.

One shot we have at warmth is keeping the main door open. Logically, because the universe has its ways of making sense, if you keep the door open during the day, you let in the nice warm air. If you close it at night you keep out the cold air. Makes sense... right?

Not to my friendly note-writing neighbor. This morning, there were three instances of the front main door being slammed shut just a few moments after other tenants were in and out. It was her. Probably wrapped in a shawl. Or a cat. When we left for a walk shortly afterwards, she'd written a note on the outside of the door: "PLEASE KEEP DOORS CLOSED." On the inside, it read "KEEP DOORS CLOSED BECAUSE THE HEAT IS OFF."

It was almost 70 degrees outside today. That's 70 degrees we should be letting INTO our frigid building, not shutting out. YOU ONLY KEEP THE DOOR CLOSED AT NIGHT, CRAZY LADY.

I'm tempted to leave a note on her door asking her to keep the putrid cat piss stench to a minimum. Sometimes just walking past her door induces body-wracking gags. Sometimes we can smell it in our living room, which shares a wall with hers, and WE DON'T HAVE CATS.

"Can you steam clean and bleach your apartment, and cut back to one cat? It F**KING REEKS in here. And it's really cold."


Bridget said...

oh my gosh!! I don't really know what else to say LOL! Come move in with us.

Audreee said...

You crack me up. I'm sorry you live next to the wicked witch of the North.

Michelle said...

come to the south! we have had the air on for over a month now. (& no cats)

Momma Magpie said...

Wow. What a quack! I've had soooo many neighbors like that. Those middle aged lone women are the worst. So self entitled. There's a reason they live alone...

I hope it warms for you soon.