Monday, November 4, 2013

To the Pot-Smoking, Wife-Beating, Drug Dealer on the Top Floor: Vol. 2

The pot-smoking, wife-beating, drug dealer on my top floor...has left the building. After being burglarized a second time, he and his pregnant wife moved out within 72 hrs. I received a frantic series of text from the landlord about a burglary over the weekend while "Defacing Michael Jackson" premiered at Nuyorican Poets Cafe. I wasn't extremely concerned because I don't really have anything worth taking. My roommate shrugged his shoulders: what could they take, the old small TV, the fish tank, food from our fridge. We both figured these burglars knew what they were looking for: a drug dealer's cash stash. Apparently they found it by scaling the wall and climbing up to the 3rd floor of our dubious neighbor.

The thieves went into action the moment the dealer left his apartment. They were watching and waiting. Neighbors across the street said they watched it happen. I don't know if they called the police or if they just observed the incident go down.

There are no winners: the wife, the baby, him. Granted we, the residents, are no longer inconvenienced with loud music and pot smoke, but it feels like something was left unfinished. What's most sad is if their lives continue uninterrupted in its downward spiral with a child in tow. He and his wife will not be missed or remembered fondly. Another NY story with loose ends.

At the same time an Indian family moved out across the street.  My roommate took their 'broken' washing machine because he figured it might be worth something. On Sunday a junkyard collector stopped by and asked if he could haul the washing machine for scrap metal. My roommate said no and immediately went to work. He opened up the machine and found a huge clump of pillow stuffing in the pump. That's why this brand-new machine was 'broken.' A simple clog that took a few seconds. Once the pump was cleaned, he filled the machine with water from a hose while mixing in vinegar and baking soda. Then he put the machine on rinse and de-clogged the basket. After a few cycles, everything was running smoothly. This was an expensive GE washing machine that someone was going to throw out because of a simple clog. And then someone was going turn it into scrap metal. I think about all the objects and machines people throw out every day that just require a simple cleaning.

At the end of bringing the 'broken' washing machine back to life, the drug dealer popped up in my head. What's going to happen to him, his wife, his kid? It's so easy to dismiss people and throw them away. But some times the things that seem broken only require a little cleaning and someone willing to put in the work. 

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