Me and the Biker are sitting here singing along to 'Papa Was A Rolling Stone' and laughing like idiots. Is this how you envisioned your golden years? I figured I'd be in a flying wheelchair on Moonbase Alpha or some shit.
I have a bad habit of being interested in too many things at once, and when that happens I have to do an information dump. What this means is walking around the place doing chores and talking to an imaginary person about whatever comes to mind, just to get it out of my head already. This is just a private idiosyncracy, and I never gave it much thought.
As I was rambling around the apartment this afternoon talking away about What is there to say about the Rolling Stones that hasn't been said already, what constitutes soul, the mighty Hammond B3, Herbie Hancock, math rock, the invention of the theremin, Cement Music, how hot Pavrotti was before he became a ham planet, it suddenly occurred to me that, OMG. I now have upstairs neighbors! And the walls here are paper thin!
I'll tell them I was doing a podcast. Yeah.
Gladys Kravitz Department:
Our former upstairs neighbors would have never noticed that shit. They were a busy group. Two women, five children under the age of 12, one undercover dog, three regular gentleman callers, and one dude I'll call The Midnight Creeper. It sounded as if they were juggling lawnmowers up there. They were a happy group, thank God, no screaming fights or anything like that, but then again it wasn't me lying on my couch in the silence of the agricultural day listening to crows walk on the roof, either.
The Midnight Creeper would come in between 11:00pm and midnight without fail. Wham wham wham wham wham wham up the stairs.
Bam, front door.
Goes to the kitchen.
50/50 chance of being treated to the sound of Creeper puking in the kitchen sink.
Feeds and then plays ball with undercover dog. Bounce bounce bouncebouncebounce, skitteritteritteritteritter slide, scrabble, gudunk gadunk gadunk gadunk gadunk.
Repeat eleven more times. Without fail.
M.C. takes a shower. Then he takes a firehose piss. Flushes. Has animated, if muted conversation with unknown woman. Fall into bed. All sound ceases at 1:30am.
6:am rolls around and here comes our man Creeper! Bam goes the front door! Wham wham wham wham wham wham down the stairs! Off into the rising sun!
Life begins again for our two ladies and their children at 7:am. In and out and all about, doing whatever it is they do at high speed while wearing Elton John shoes.
This all changed three days ago. Come 9:am that morning an amazing changing of the guard took place as one group of people speed-moved out of that apartment and another speed-moved in simultaneously.
...but the little dog remains.
One of the unkindest things that can happen to a person is to stumble across Witness Money.
I've collected some over the years. It used to come in the form of an Eisenhower or Kennedy dollar coin; now you've got Susan B and Sacagawea too. Steam polished aluminum. One side looks legit, the other side is a bunch of demented 'Come to Jesus, money is the root of all evil Moloch 666 only Christ can redeem, turn or BURN' stuff.
Lately it comes in the form of folding money, commonly given to waitresses instead of a real tip, or found on the floor in resale stores, or near the Mission. Isn't this a wonderful way to call poor people to the throne of the Lord? Be short of cash, get pranked by a random stranger, get rebuked by fake money, and given a bible quote to make it all better. Make me feel all churchy just thinking about it.
Our handyman is named Jake. This guy is a mensch. Friendly, not creepy, busy, competent, shows up on time, keeps the place looking sharp. Super nice dude.
We're talking in the laundry room, just he and I; he's fixing the coin machine and I'm folding slogan t's. So many slogan t's.
So very, very many slogan t's.
When he leaves, there on the floor is a folded bill. I bend to pick it up, and sure as shit, there's Benjamin Franklin.
"Oh fuck no. Come on man, don't be one of these," I think, terribly disappointed, and I bend to unfold the bill.
I have a brick.
A hunno, children.
Cold hard cash! Swimmin' pools, movie stars!
"oh shit," I think, all in lower case like that.
The next day he's striding past with a big sheet of fiberglass and I ask him "Did you notice you had something missing last night after we talked?"
"A hundred dollars," he said, eyes big.
"I got it. Hang on."
And Jake is soo grateful. He is overjoyed. He is thanking me over and over and over.
Stone Troll Roll Dode 12, Icosa twentaaaaay, BOOM shakalaka!
I am gonna get my toilet fixed FOREVER!!!!!!!!