i’m considering expanding upon an earlier blog post as a performance, which may or may not be a good idea. and I have no idea how anyone could memorize this for the stage. I guess there are probably some people who are very good at memorizing. it feels impossible to me.
I feel rather… be-leaguered tonight. I can’t blame it on the weather. I’ve looked at maybe 93 apartments today in just about every neighborhood in this city.
- I’ve seen closet sized studios in resplendent neighborhoods,
- I’ve seen 3000 square foot lofts in with ceilings higher than the heavens in desolate neighborhoods,
- I’ve seen duplexes, tri-plexes, garden apartments far beneath the core of the earth
- I’ve seen bedrooms under stairwells, bedrooms with closets larger than entire apartments
- I’ve seen kitchens inside of bedrooms with new granite countertops and stainless steel appliances
- I’ve seen kitchens outside of bedrooms made entirely of particle board
- I’ve buildings that don’t allow pets or plants
- I’ve seen buildings that don’t allow children, or people who may have been children at one time
I can’t really tell what I’ve looked at anymore. They all kind of blur together. Which means I’m considering all of them. I’m just one of those people who is completely open to all possibilities. I can see myself living anywhere. Like literally anywhere. Landlords and leasing agents show me these places, and they ask me for immediate decisions and I’m at a complete loss for what to tell them.
And then they warn me that there are people waiting in line for these apartments. That it’s an owner’s market, not a renter’s market… Or maybe I have that in reverse. Or maybe it’s a squatter’s market. But they tell me if don’t act now, the apartments will be gone forever because there are more apartment seekers than there are apartments.
And I tell them, “Well, if that’s the case, maybe all of us apartment seekers should live together in the last remaining apartment in the city.
And they say, “Well we should warn you that it’s a small studio.”
And I say, “Small? Compared to what?”
Then… they give me these blank stares before they say, “So out of the 67 places we’ve shown you today, what are your top choices?”
And I say, “I don’t know. Where do you see me living?”
And they say, “We don’t think we really know you that well.”
And I say, “Well, from what you do know of me so far, where do you think I’d feel happiest?”
And they say, “Gosh, That’s a close call. It’s really up to you.”
And I say, “I think you’re asking an awful lot from me.”
And they say, “Well, if we offered you our advice, that would be unfair to you in the long-run because we’d essentially be short-changing you of this opportunity to learn how to make your own decisions. And we wonder if you act this way with other leasing agents, or if you act this way only with us?”
And I say, “What are you suggesting?”
And they say, “We’re not really suggesting anything. It’s just that we’ve noticed some patterns here that are characteristic of people who have never quite learned to take responsibility for their lives.”
And I say, “How could you even say a thing like that? You barely even know me.”
And they said, “We’re just trying to be helpful.”
And I say, “I don’t have time to learn how to take responsibility for my own life and make own decisions!”
And they say, “Sometimes you have to make time. What are your priorities right now? Maybe you should journal about this. Thinking about what you like and don’t like about each apartment might help. Let’s try this now.”
And I say, “Yes, that might be helpful. (walks to desk?). (While scribbling in journal, speaks the words aloud).
February 1, 2015. I may have found the ideal apartment in Ravenswood Manor. It’s really spacious and the floors look like wood and the layout is perfect for me. The only drawback is that the balcony is directly above the Burger King parking lot. But then again, I’m really not much of a cook, so maybe that isn’t a drawback at all. I just wish it weren’t so far from the train. But how many times do I actually take the train? Maybe if I took the train more, I’d save money on gas or shoe repairs or air for my bicycle tires… and then I could actually afford the bigger apartment above it. But a bigger apartment would take longer to clean, and, thinking realistically, do I really have any time to clean? And then i add up all of that extra money I’d be spending on floor wax. I guess it’s possible I might be getting a raise, so that might not be such a big issue. But I shouldn’t really take that into account because I can’t stand my job, and if I signed the lease, I couldn’t afford to quit for at least another year. Another year of putting up with these fucking mandatory company bowling parties. Why did I even take this job? I should have accepted that job offer in Wisconsin or wherever the hell it was. I guess it felt a little too close to home, which didn’t really make sense because I’ve never really had a home.” (Looks up from journal). “So how was that?” I ask the leasing agents
And they say, “OK. Let’s put away the journal for now. What’s your gut telling you?”
And I say, “My gut? My gut doesn’t even know I’m here. Maybe it doesn’t even matter where I live. Maybe what really matters is when I live, like I’ve always wondered if I was born in the wrong century. Do you ever think about that?”
And they say, “To some extent. We think you can live just about anywhere and you never know what your life will be like until you actually live there. Trust us, you’ll know when you get there. But if you’d like to fill out an application with a check for the security deposit and first and last month’s rent, we can hold the apartment for you.”
And I say, “OK. But which one?”
And they say, “Gee, that’s such a tough call. Would you mind if we thought about that?”
And I say, “Of course not, take all the time you need.”
And they say, “Are you really sure about this? If we’re inconveniencing you, you’d tell us, right?”
And I say, “Well, I can’t imagine that ever happening.”