Thursday, August 9, 2007


Bee Gees Song of the Day: Man in the Middle

I'm just the man in the middle of a complicated plan
No one to show me the signs
I'm just a creature of habit in a complicated world
Nowhere to run to
Nowhere to hide

Got a visit from my landlord the other day.

About a month ago, a pipe burst in my daughter’s bedroom closet. My no-math brain thought it was gushing about 5 gallons a minute. You should take that with a grain of salt.

After some frenzied scrambling and the help of a long-armed neighbor who showed me how to break into my utility shed, I was able to shut off the main water valve, move everything out of the closet, contact a plumber, locate the offending pipe, get it replaced and begin the long slow process of drying out. Fortunately, I was able to do so without the dreaded moulde (olde English sounds so nice, doesn't it?) taking up residence. I had no idea that wall to wall carpeting was so easy to pull up!

On the life crises meter of 10, it was a 1. No one was hurt, I caught it early, damage was minimal and I made friends with my neighbors. It took some time to get the wall fixed and my landlord came over last week to paint the closet so we could get back to good.

My current landlord, by the way, is one of the best of my experience. And I’ve had some bad ones. There was the little Indian fella who never followed up on anything and whose wife, obviously no longer entranced by this aspect of his character, was always in the background barking orders. Then there was the couple who owned the house and lived in the apartment adjacent to mine. His pick up truck proudly bore the name of his manly alter-ego – “Wolfman”. One day, Wolfman fell down the stairs in his house. My daughter was home at the time and could audibly follow his progress all the way down. Not critically injured, Wolfman spewed a torrent of profanity so twisted and vile that my baby can still hear it, quote it, and imitate his dance of pain four years later.

My current landlord is thoughtful, responsive, does not live right next door and promises never to raise my rent. If he curses, I am not aware of it, nor is my daughter. I still haven’t found a flaw, not that I’m looking, but sometimes colorful characteristics just sort of bubble up at you immediately, a la Wolfman.

On his way to my place to paint the closet last week, coming right from work, Current Landlord asked if I would mind if he used my bathroom to change. Very reasonable, very thoughtful and of course I consented. How could I not? The work was done quickly; though I have to wonder what poor Buddy was thinking. "Pant pant pant. Big man, big man tramping around my people's house. Must save my people. Can't escape my dreaded crate-prison!" Poor senile Buddy.

When I got home, there was barely any sign that Current Landlord had been there. Certainly there was the smell of paint emanating from the closet but there was something else. Something that reminded me a man had been in the house.

He left the toilet seat up.


lace1070 said...

Ewww ~ I abhor the leaving of the toilet in the up position ~ so not classy ~

E said...

Na na na. He's lovely. Just made me grin since I hadn't had a toilet seat up in a while. :)

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