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Friday, August 7, 2015

Pop Songs of Wisdom to Get You Through the Crazy Days

Sometimes we are just faced with crazy situations ya just can’t back out of easily, that ya just can’t win: Unhappy tenants; irrational co-workers; and things that just go wrong…like backing up to another car in the parking lot. It’s life. We’ve all been there. So sometimes I hum these tunes in my head, get a laugh, get through, move on. Hope you find some humor here too.

Paul Simon wrote “One Man’s Ceiling is Another Man’s Floor.” I’ve suffered with Music Bullies myself, and very loud and amorous neighbors. (Yeah, just get up and hide in the kitchen until they’re quiet.)
Here are the lyrics:

"There’s been some hard feelings here 
About some words that were said 
Been some hard feelings here 
And what is more 
It’s just apartment house rules 
So all you ‘partment house fools
 Remember: one man’s ceiling Is another man’s floor 
One man’s ceiling Is another man’s floor 

And there’s an alley In the back of my building 
Where some people congregate in shame" 

(and now that we have security cams on that alleyway, that has no longer happens. Yippee!)

"I'm Alright" written by Phil Vassar. 

This one popped into my head after some interminable drama made everyone miserable. These lyrics made my day sooo much easier!

"I'm alright and nobody worry 'bout me 
Why you got to gimme a fight, can't you just let it be? 
I'm alright don't nobody worry 'bout me 
You got to gimme a fight, why don't you just let me be? … 

Gotta catch you later, no, no, cannonball it right away 
Some Cinderella kid 
Get it up and get you a job"

(Last line is really good advice for people with way too much time on their hands to complain about every last little hangnail!)

Can’t leave out Billy Joel belting out “My Life”

"Got a call from an old friend 
We used to be real close 
Said he couldn't go on the American way 
Closed the shop, sold the house 
Bought a ticket to the West Coast 
Now he gives them a stand-up routine in L.A. 

I don't need you to worry for me cause I'm alright
I don't want you to tell me it's time to come home
I don't care what you say anymore, this is my life 
Go ahead with your own life and leave me alone 
I never said you had to offer me a second chance 
I never said I was a victim of circumstance
I still belong, don't get me wrong 
And you can speak you mind But not on my time"

"Dead Skunk" by Loudon Wainwright III

In my younger days, the singer at the old RE's Plum in Bogota, NJ would belt this song out and the crowd would sing the chorus. It's just a song to make you laugh! Enjoy it.

"Crossing the highway late last night
He shoulda looked left and he shoulda looked right
He didn't see the station wagon car
The skunk got squashed and there you are

You got your dead skunk in the middle of the road
Dead skunk in the middle of the road
Dead skunk in the middle of the road
Stinking to high heaven"

When life gets too stressful, just play this one LOUD!

And this song has gotten me, and so many others, through the toughest days.

“Amazing Grace” 

"Amazing grace! How sweet the sound 
That saved a wretch like me! 
I once was lost, but now am found; 
Was blind, but now I see. 
’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, 
And grace my fears relieved; 
How precious did that grace appear 
The hour I first believed. 
Through many dangers, toils and snares, I have already come; 
’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
 And grace will lead me home. 
The Lord has promised good to me, 
His Word my hope secures; 
He will my Shield and Portion be, 
As long as life endures. 
Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail, 
And mortal life shall cease, 
I shall possess, within the veil, A life of joy and peace. 
The earth shall soon dissolve like snow, 
The sun forbear to shine; 
But God, who called me here below, Will be forever mine. 
When we’ve been there ten thousand years, Bright shining as the sun, 
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise Than when we’d first begun"

No, I DON’T Want to Get High!?!

Can’t make this stuff up. Oh, and forgive the double-negative in the heading.

Let describe the scene: It is the dumpster enclosure, pictured above. Oversized with room for dumpster and cans of recyclables that are collected weekly.

I have discovered the remains of ‘picnic lunches’ eaten inside: Someone sat on the plastic milk crate and enjoyed a private meal of MacDonald’s take-out. They also left scattered on the ground ketchup packets, French fries and the bags the gourmet meal came in. Wow! The ambience they must have enjoyed.

And I suspect that sometimes people have hidden inside to escape from police.

But I digress:

A tenant called me, alerting me that there was a women sitting inside the dumpster enclosure. I flew down the stairs to investigate.

I passed one of our manly tenants (big guy) and said: “Please don’t move!”

In case I screamed, he would be a good backup.

I discovered behind the dumpster, in the alley between the buildings, three women sitting on the grass, shaded by the dumpster fence, a large transformer and an overgrown bush.

Not my first choice if I was looking for a shady nook to relax with my girlfriends: NEXT TO A DUMPSTER?! Were you guys raised by wolves?

Strange Lady, upon seeing me staring at them: “Oh, it was so hot on the beach, we thought we would cool off here.”

Me thinking: There’s a million billion gallons of nice cool salt water in that ocean, did you try that?

Strange Lady, reached out her pipe and asked: “Do you want a hit?”

It was a FRIGGING Hash Pipe.

Me: “NO! I don’t want to get high!” and stared at them.

At that, they calmly stood up and left.

WT heck?

So sorry I had not grab my cell phone on the way downstairs, local guys in blue could’ve used an easy bust and good laugh.

Big guy in parking was stunned, but had a good laugh.

Shared this story with everyone, including Facebook.

This is why I write this blog, we all need the laugh.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Prospective Tenants: A Bit Ballsy & a Tad Twitchy

‘Twas just after dinner, a pair of tenants knocked at the door and we waved them in. As they stepped forward, I spied a couple turning the corner on the stairs, looking through our door, then yank it open and boldly walked thru: without knocking or even attempting to look at me through the door as if to ask, “if it was ok to walk in.”

The first couple turned around, looked at them, looked at us: clearly, they didn’t know them.

I stepped past them, blocked the rude couple and stated: “People KNOCK before just walking into my home.”

Rude Dude, without apology or explanation of why they just walked in stated: “We want to look at a model apartment.”

Me: “We don’t have any models or empties to show you, we are fully occupied.”

Rude Dude, with attitude stated: “Your sign outside says, ‘Vacancy.’ ”

Me, thinking: Oh you are such a lying idiot! I wrote, designed and ordered those signs on the side of the building! The word ‘VACANCY’ DOES NOT EXIST. The sign is a standard “For Rent” with the apartments’ description and contact information.

Me: “Excuse you, it says ‘For Rent’ and we do not have any vacancies. (nor EVER will have one for you two.)

Then I got a good look at them: Well dressed, uptown clothes, pressed, good haircuts; however, wife was a little disheveled and a bit twitchy.

Twitchy is exactly how crack-heads move, even when they are standing still. Sadly, I have seen a few over the years and they are NOT welcomed here.

I didn’t offer them an application, and firmly bid them farewell.

We all got a good look at their car, a late model Lincoln Towncar!? Are you Kidding ME?! They were looking for a summer rental, a room for the night or simply a place to get high?

The really great tenants that were standing in the living room when all this began, got a taste of some of the crazies that I deal with, and how quickly I weed out undesirable prospective neighbors. They did commend me and we had a good laugh. Whew!

Hey, these apartments are our homes and we all enjoy our little “Peace of Heaven” on the Jersey Shore. Big Smiles.

Murphy’s Law and the Domino Effect

Most women, when they learn that they will have the home to themselves for a few hours, don’t always dream of luxurious bubble baths, some of us think, “Great! I can get the cleaning done without anyone underfoot!"

I had hopes of not just vacuuming and straightening up, but of scrubbing the kitchen cabinets.

Exciting, I know!!

But, this is stuff that actually needs to be done every now and then, and it is easier to do with no one underfoot.

Murphy’s Law

Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.

  1. Emptied all the trash
  2. Gathered up the bags
  3. Stuffed them into the larger kitchen trash bag
  4. Carried kitchen trash out the front door onto the deck
Domino Effect
  • Crap! On the deck, oozing out from the trash bag, a large smelly pool of goo.
  • Look back through front door…trail of goo on carpet, trail of goo on kitchen floor.
  • Run to grab another trash bag to stuff first leaky bag into
  • Fill a pitcher of water and suds, and grab a broom to wash goo off deck. Pray that NO ONE is walking under the deck boards as they will get an unwanted shower.
  • Exam the trail thru living room and kitchen.
  • Pull out carpet shampooer and floor steamer.

It was like slow moving dominos toppling: My easy morning slipped away and was replaced by some damn hard work! Unfair!

When shampooing a rug, you just can’t do one dirty section: the entire rug must be done. And the “Domino Effect” worked its way down the hall and into the bedroom.

Hours later, the place looked and smelled great, but as I was sitting in my clean kitchen, the kitchen cabinets were laughing at me and demanding, “When was their turn for a thorough cleaning?”

Ha! Not anytime soon.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Formidable Gladiator-Style Hub Caps

We drove into Manhattan a few weeks ago and we were working our way through the cross-streets to the East Side. Traffic was heavy, but moving.

Then I spotted these coming at me. By the time I grabbed the cell phone and flipped to camera, the truck had passed, but these rear-view shots are still impressive.

I gotta ask, Are Those Spikes Street Legal?!

Yikes! Worthy of Mel Gibson’s Mad Max movies or a Roman chariot race.