Thursday, September 14, 2006


so last night, around 11:15, i was winding down from the day, drinking a beer, and decided to have a cigarette on my back porch. i live on the second floor and share a porch with an insane 85-year-old woman named carol who is a pack rat and wears pajamas and a crooked wig every day. our back porch is fucking disgusting. it contains, i shit you not, at least five plastic lawn chairs, a cloth dining room chair, a kids school desk, end tables, statues, plants, cleaning supplies (ironic), a ratty stuffed animal, fake flowers, garbage cans, books . . . it's so repulsive i find myself smoking in my apartment so that i don't have to deal with it back there. oh, and pigeons roost back there and shit on all of her stuff - to make a sick situation even worse. before i moved in it was even worse - i told her that she had to clean it up (which she did - the list above is what it looks like when it's tidy). she put all of the magazines and phone books and stacks of papers that were on the porch into her apartment - sort of. "sort of" because there is now a three-foot-high stack of oldass ratty nasty papers in between her screen door and her kitchen door. if we ever had a fire she would die for sure. the porch is all wood and leads down to a gated area that separates us from the alley.

so anyway, i am enjoying my cig and beer and i hear a weird rustling coming from the porch below mine. the apartment directly below mine is a guy named frank, and the apartment next to his, under carol's, is larry's. except larry died over a year ago, and carol, who is his aunt, still pays the rent so that it can stay just as it was, full of all of his stuff. recipe for disaster. so i hear something weird, and i look down over the steps, and some guy wearing a bright orange t-shirt is climbing the side of the steps. ummm, stairs are constructed in such a way that you could use them to go up a flight without having to climb . . . anyway, it made no sense. crackhead. i knew he was up to no good. i stood up and said, pissed off, "dude - what are you doing?" he looked at me and i suddenly realized how fucked up the whole situation was, and as i ran into my apartment he was shouting "no no no - sorry!!!" i locked the door and called my brother (who of course told me to call 911).

the chicago police department are awesome - three officers were in my back yard in 5 minutes and they were totally cool to me. they were excited to hear that he was wearing an orange shirt, since a guy with the same physique and bad fashion sense i described was lurking around in my neighborhood up to no good earlier. they also pointed out to me that the back gate was unlocked, and one cop pointed to carol's back door and said "that's just asking for trouble." GREAT. it's so awesome that i live next door to an elderly woman who is basically on a suicide mission, and that all sorts of crazed freakshows can access my porch.

i need to get a baseball bat.


Orhan Kahn said...

Dude, that is alot of shit on your porch. I don't think I even have that much crap in my whole apartment.

I'm thankful we don't have crackheads in Australia, though I still keep a baseball bat handy. That has nothing to do with lurking drug addicts but rather an offensive deterrent against the early morning grounds keeper of my building. Lets just say, there was no need to put cow shit in the garden next to my window. NO NEED!

Must admit I'm quite envious of the poilce response.

singleton said...

Your prowler in orange reminds me of my peeping Tom...the dog was raising Satan and I looked out the window to see HIM looking in! I called 911 and when they asked me to describe him and I looked out the other window for a keener view, he was getting on his rusty ole bicycle and riding into the moonlight! Quick getaway! And not hard to find at 2 A.M.! Your ramblings are delightful, although your porch sounds awful!