The elevator in my building looks much more modern than the art deco sculpting on the outside, or that horrible cheesy-looking Ming-dynasty inspired lobby; however this thing averages a speed of half a kilometre a day. That is, if you don't include the 30 seconds it takes to open the doors, the other 30 seconds for them to close, then 10 seconds it takes for the fan to turn itself on, the extra 5 seconds as it figures out what floor you are going to. Then, repeat the above backwards, when it arrives to your floor. And since I live on the second floor (or first, if you come from the other side), it seems kind of stupid to take the elevator and linger in the sexiest lobby in the world.
So I usually take the stairs.
Taking the stairs involves going in front of apartment 111.
As I am going by, I see the superintendent busy working on the lock. "Hi Ken" I go "what's up?"
I know the super really well because I've been bribing him for months now with any type of computer game we get at work that revolves around fishing or hunting. He loves that shit and I get premium service when something breaks in my apartment.
"Oh hi there," says Ken, "just trying to free this lock. Someone put a match into the lock and the tenant can't get back in"
"That's horrible," I say, "who would do such a thing?"
I knew exactly who did it, actually. It was I.
I hear constantly from co-workers or friends how they hate this or that neighbour, may it be from the loud Micheal Bolton (who sings like a man in the process of being castrated by a surgeon with a dull knife) playing or that timed banging sound against the wall, served with loud sex moans at 4 AM. But do they do anything about it? No.
I hated my neighbour for one simple reason: everytime I'd walk by to go to the stairs, her apartment door would be open, the TV blaring, and the awful smell of garlic, onions and raw fish would infest my lungs. Repeat this for several months. I began to question if that's all she ate.
If that weren't enough, if you dared to look in her apartment (which was impossible not to do since if you looked ahead of you, her door was right in front of you), she'd give you the dirtiest look ever. I'd smile and wave. She'd slam the door on my face and swear at me. I had had enough.
I decided she had lived in this building for too long.
I began by doing simple stuff. First of all, the door that leads to the stairs, when opened, blocks her door. I armed myself with a small triangular piece of wood, opened the door, and jammed it every morning before heading for work. Sometimes if I woke up in the middle of the night, I'd go and jam it open again.
A few weeks later I got tired of this and went to the local hardware store to see what they had. They have amazing stuff there; you should check it out. Plus it's legal to carry 99% of this stuff under your trenchcoat.
Two compound glue proved to be my best friend. I went down in the lobby, located her mailbox and with the aid of a thin piece of wood, I glued the little door shut.
Then I waited for her to leave to go to work, and I proceeded to put a match into her lock, and drench it in Crazy glue. Crazy glue is great because thanks to the capillary nature of the product, it seeps in the keyhole like a charm.
Yesterday morning she finished loading the last box out of her apartment and on into the truck. Never to be seen again. Ken said she was frustrated and extremely angry about the abuse she received. I listened totally mesmerised and shocked about some of the things that had been done to her. Two-compound glue on the door hinges? Silicone all around her door? High-viscosity oil on the door handle? Who would dare? Meanwhile today I enjoyed going up and down the stairs without the smell of garlic, onion, raw fish or having the door slammed in my face while being sworn at.
Two doors down however, someone new moved in. She has a dog. The moment you blow a fart in the corridor, that little bitch starts barking. Maybe I should go see what the hardware store has in special this week.