My Summer “Break” – by Anne Zeiler
Hello? Helloooooo?? Anyone out there still?
I know, I know. It’s been an ENTIRE SEASON since I last blogged, so I thought I’d do a good ol’ school-style summer report for all of the people who probably no longer check my blog. So get your popcorn, Mike & Ike’s and Snuggies ready – this is gonna be a whopper.
Let’s start with WHY it has taken me this long to blog again. The answer is simple – it’s because I’ve been having SO MUCH FUN!
Oh wait, no, that’s not exactly it…
Where to start… how about where I left off? Sound good? Perfect.
So, on May 1st we moved as planned into our new pad directly next door. But not before Kyle managed to break his hand into several pieces just one week before what was supposed to be the easiest move ever. Incidentally, ONLY Kyle could shatter his hand falling from the second rung of a ladder (yes, I’m working on building him a impenetrable bubble).
Anyway, his boss helped us move, so between me, the bossman, and a team of uninjured movers we managed to get everything into the new house (all whilst watching Kyle’s uninsured ER bills build up). We left our old house (and psychopathic landlord) behind and awaited the return of our deposit so we could give it to the new landlord.
Despite the unfortunate timing (and never-ending bills) of Kyle’s hand debacle, I really like the house. It’s considerably bigger and set up much better for a family of our size (i.e., the kids rooms are on the opposite side of the house from ours, meaning I no longer have to see the disaster areas they call “rooms” on the way to and from my own room, and I finally have a “big girl” bathroom). I like it. A lot.
Anyway, we continued to wait somewhat patiently for the return of the deposit, which we KNEW we would be getting back since we were told the old house looked great on the walk-through (done just moments before the new tenants moved in) and we’d be getting our deposit back ASAP.
So we waited. And waited.
Two weeks passed in the new house, and something started to seem, well, off with Kyle’s job… like the fact that he didn’t get a paycheck on the 15th as he should have. Oh, wait, what’s that? The business is folding and we’re up shit creek in a house you just helped us move into two weeks ago?? Super. Thanks, asshole.
Hey, landlord, where’s that deposit again? Ahhh, certified mail, this has gotta be it! Yay!
Wait, no… What the…
Holy shit – so lemme get this straight. Not only are you NOT giving us our $1750 deposit back, the one our new landlord is waiting for, but you are suing us for almost EIGHT THOUSAND DOLLARS?!?!? (enter sound of my heart failing, my hair turning gray and lots and LOTS of crying, cursing the world and throwing things).
Fast forward to the court date. We sit in court for HOURS listening to a gaggle of white trash idiot relatives arguing over who stole who’s toaster, who ruined who’s clothing, and who gave who bed bugs (enter sound of us both itching and moving as far as possible from them).
We finally get our turn after four hours of listening to other people’s meaningless problems, and the psycho hands me what appeared to be a novel in a three-ring binder. My heart DROPPED. I broke out in a cold sweat. What could he possibly have in this GIANT binder?
In his summons, he stated we basically ruined his entire house, forcing him to (hopefully) perform a full Extreme Home Makeover courtesy of us. Sinks? Totally ruined (how exactly DO you “ruin” a sink, anyway?). Carpet? Completely destroyed. That banister that sent Kyle plummeting to the bottom of the basement stairs the prior Christmas? Yeah, we made that happen too (cause everyone knows banisters that lead to a cement basement floor are clearly for aesthetic purposes only – no holding them allowed). I’m still not sure how he got to a figure of just under $7500, but I’m guessing it has something to do with $7500 being the small claims court limit.
Thankfully, he is as dumb as he is psychotic. He had pictures alright! TONS of pictures. Pictures of things like…. perfect looking sinks. The underside of rolled up carpet (the same rolls that lived in our basement for two years). Dirt behind the oven (cause everyone pulls out ovens to clean behind them… especially with a broken hand). And a very helpful property manager that admitted the pictures were taken two days prior to the court hearing (complete with the new tenant’s stuff in the pictures, since they’d moved in moments after we left).
But he still had one more ace in his pocket, the creme de la creme, a big finale meant to bury us and get him that home makeover he’d been dreaming of…
He had a picture of (drum roll, please) – CARPET FRESH. Yes, Carpet Fresh. That stuff you sprinkle on carpet? Yeah. That stuff. Because, you see, the name in and of itself suggests that it is NOT intended for carpet.
The douchebag actually put me on the stand and had me read the instructions aloud for his big, “A Few Good Men” moment – the instructions that read “For best results, sprinkle on liberally each time you vacuum.” I could barely read it with a straight face. It sent the judge (and property manager) into hysterical laughter, and it wasn’t the first time.
*IMPORTANT NOTE TO MY READERS: Carpet Fresh is NOT meant for carpet. Got it? Good.*
Needless to say, the judge dropped his entire case, we won our entire deposit back and also got the rare pleasure of watching the dickwad waddle out of the courtroom with only what was left of his pride. The best part is he enclosed a note with the check that read (and I quote) “Please take this deposit, go on with your lives and please let me go on with mine!” Wait, whaaaat? Who sued WHO here, jackhole?!?
At any rate, the win was bittersweet. There were still those two preceding months of extreme douchebag-induced heartache and worry (and stress-related wrinkles I’m certain weren’t there before). But hey, a win is a win.
In the meantime, pre-summons and pre-Kyle’s job loss, I’d planned a trip to CA with Emma to visit with the family and friends I hadn’t seen in ages (and hopefully stalk out my hero Lin-Manuel Miranda after I took Grams to see him perform at “In The Heights” at the Pantages).
After all, I had worked six days a week for the past two years, Emma had never had a summer vacation, stress at our house was UBER high, and I knew Grams could use some company after losing David, her partner of 35 years.
So I had booked the time off, bought the plane and show tickets, and got ready for an epic CA vacation.
Wait, what’s that? My account is going to voice recognition? Now we’re BOTH unemployed?!? FUCK ME.
At any rate, we proceeded as planned, which turned out to be the right decision (not to mention, everything was non-refundable). The trip proved that the ENTIRE summer wasn’t gonna suck. Emma and I had a GREAT time in CA, and I was able to hang out with old friends, new friends, family and (gasp) just myself. It was just what the doctor ordered. You can check out the pictures here!
Other things that didn’t suck over the summer were….
After a long battle with The Art Institute, I finally received my diploma. AND I ended up being on the Deans List! Booyah!
My “baby” Jack turned 4…
My beautiful girl Emma turned 8 in the company of her closest friend…
And she went back to school as a third grader…
…which has only been possible with a little help from our friends.
Oh, and I turned (gulp) 35. But we’re talking about stuff that didn’t suck, so let’s move on.
My bestie got Grams and I a room at the Hollywood Hotel, which was amazing.
We stayed two nights… and renamed the pagoda there “Penis Pagoda,” after witnessing a large naked man on his porch, looking at us and… well, you can guess the rest.
That night I saw In the Heights with Grams, and it was everything I hoped it could be. The show was totally amazing (yeah, that’s three times for me now), and my incessant obsessing, plotting, planning, fantasizing, subway riding and quasi-stalking (okay, maybe just flat out stalking) resulted in me actually meeting Lin-Manuel Miranda not once but twice. Kyle said I’m the only one he knows who can obsess about something so much that it actually happens (*note to self – obsess upon being filthy, stinking rich*).
Then, the post-show pics….
I also met the rest of the cast (again, since I had met most of them in Denver), but you can never get enough of these awesome people! Rogelio Douglas Jr even remembered Emma and I from the Denver show (swoon, swoon).
But why did you meet him twice, you ask? Because after floating over to the show with grams, floating backstage and actually meeting him I later realized, holy crap, I forgot to bring the picture I drew of him to get it signed. DOH!
So what did I do? The next night while still in the Hollywood Hotel and kicking myself for the majority of the day, I hopped on a subway (alone), ventured BACK to the Pantages theater, hung around the back gate and then plead my case to the security guard, who sweetly allowed me to wait (at the front of the line, thanks!). Mission accomplished. And once my computer decides it’s not gonna die at the mere thought of Windows Movie Maker, there WILL be an accompanying video.
And finally, last but DEFINITELY not least, two days ago Kyle finally started a new job. Not that we aren’t still in a black sucking hole of poverty thanks to the last three months of neither of us working, but at least there appears to be light at the end of the tunnel, and I won’t have to figure out how to decorate my new cardboard box on the corner. Besides, as much as I adore losing weight, the whole Poverty Diet thing is pretty overrated.
So stay tuned, kiddos. Turns out being depressed and destitute didn’t lend itself well to blogging, but I’m gonna start on that plan of obsessing about being filthy stinking rich now and keep you all in the loop as I do it. Thanks for reading this novel – now go pee! Oh wait, that’s me…. <3