I just couldn’t help it. I decided to wait. The strange thing is, that I was so comfortable with living in the same apartment complex that I didn’t bother to look at the one I’d be moving into. I had seen quite a few two bedrooms here, no need to have a viewing. They’re all the same.
What wasn’t the same though, was the neighbors. Now I’ve take huge strides in not making snap judgements about people, but there is just some shit I never, ever want to deal with. As I strolled past my would-be new apartment there were two middle aged black women sitting there on the steps barring the entrance to all four doors of the building. There was a kid on a scooter riding back and forth in front of them yelling and gesturing rudely in a way that said “hey, I’m not mentally disabled, I’m just a dick with no home training.” There was some childish graffiti on the brick next to wear the number of my apartment should have been. Basically, with a little help from my imagination I had walked a block away into Frankford.
The thing is, the most troublesome part for me was the two women who sat there grimacing at me. When I said hello they scowled more deeply. I thought they would hiss if I got closer. They looked at Cass dog as if she were a rat on a leash. Those two women with tight faces would give me more trouble than I’m worth. I knew them, unfortunately.
They were waiting for me to step foot on their turf so they could give me the run down of laws that regulate their space. Their space meaning my door and the shared porch area as well. Even though we were thirty feet apart, they were primed to say “get your dog!” Whatever the hell that’s supposed to mean. They were waiting for me, who undoubtedly looks like someone’s grandson that they know, to move in there so that they could tell me to keep the noise down before I made it. To explain to me that they were my elders and that I need to respect (see obey) them. To tell me when and where exactly I would be allowed to use my grill. To tell me what times of day and where I would be permitted to walk the dog. To politely hand me church pamphlets with subliminal judgements. To let their own ill-behaved children and grandchildren plague my AO as if they owned the land it sat on.
So I declined the whole thing. And I probably judged the hell out of them and the whole situation, but the risk was far too great.