I should have known what was coming when The Teacher not only knocked on my door one Thursday evening a few weeks ago, but also tried my doorknob.
I mean what’s so urgent that you have to try the knob to your neighbor’s door?
Especially during Ugly Betty.
I thought there might have been an emergency.
But by the time I got to the door no one was there.
“Odd.” I thought.
I proceeded to call my first floor neighbor while I knocked on The Teacher’s door.
I wanted to make sure everything was alright.
That’s when my neighbor, The Teacher, lost her fucking mind.
I have never---not even once----attempted to shirk my fiscal or personal responsibility to my condo association.
For her to accuse me of “being a bad neighbor” is absolutely ridiculous.
Moreover, it’s completely unfounded.
An employment and cash flow hiccup---well perhaps we can call it a burp as I was unemployed for 11 months---cannot compare to the benefits MY efforts have brought to this association and our neighborhood.
So apparently she didn’t consider that while she was bumpin her gums attempting to bully me into paying money I don’t have.
But I tend to call that the Janet Jackson consciousness---The “What Have You Done For Me Lately” attitude.
Furthermore her husband, our association treasurer, fell derelict in his duties by letting so many owners get so far behind in their assessments.
And when I say behind, I mean to the tune of almost $10,000.
That’s ten grand. Ten large. Or to put it another way, a dime to those of you who speak Soprano.
So I wonder what it was about the mounting arrearage that didn’t set off the alarms in his head.
One may never know.
But I do know that the both of them have been lobbying for some time to be paid for their efforts.
Then of course I performed my contributions to our associations while working two jobs. Never asking for, nor expecting one thin dime for my quantifiable results.
Nonetheless, I was the recipient of The Teacher’s rage that fine Thursday evening.
Despite my efforts to make this a civil conversation I was called and or told the following:
I am a bad neighbor.
I am a deadbeat.
I’m hurting the association.
But the last three comments in this bitch session were priceless.
This woman had the stones to question me about the packages that were being delivered to me. Her inference was that I had money to buy things so I must be able to pay my back assessments.
Not that it was any of her business but I did celebrate a milestone birthday in late August and decided to use some of the gift cards that I had received.
You know---the ones you can’t turn in for cash.
Oh, but she wasn’t done by a long shot.
“You know if I had a storage room full of things in the basement, I would sell them----sell anything I had not to be in debt.”
I looked at her like she had just spoken to me in Klingon.
I remember thinking that she had to have been smoking something to come up with that one.
Can you believe the audacity?
No doubt she saved the best for last.
After all of this (and missing the first 10 minutes of Ugly Betty) I asked her a simple question: “Do you think I’m the type of person who would leave my neighbors in a lurch? Do you really think that I would leave you guys holding the bag?”
Without missing a beat she said “Yes.”
Well there it is.
All I was initially seeking was an accurate accounting of my back assessments. Instead of our treasurer sitting down with me and making me understand his numbers he left his duties up to his wife.
What more was there to say?
I bid The Teacher and her husband good night. I turned on my heel and went back to my program.
Yes there was another knock at the door and yes I saw my treasurer on my doorstep. The association’s books in his hand, but I had more pressing matters at hand.
Betty was trying to figure out who pushed her best friend down the stairs.
I was done.
Absolutely, positively done.