Wednesday
Sep152004

« The Landlord That Ate My Father »

Um, well, yes it has been a little irregular here at TAPKAE central. Obviously there is the post-wedding afterglow, then there is having to prep the house for some new roommates, clean up in general, and even repainting our bedroom in the midst of this. Oh, and we have our day jobs too. We have thank you notes to write and send, a shitload of pictures to file through and decide what to do with, and we want to write some stuff in our wedding book. But some of that just has to wait. It has been pretty hot here, and sometimes, it's just too much to just sit around!

It has been nice to have no roommates for a couple weeks, and just the right couple of weeks at that. But we need to get back on track. The old man is getting pissy now, and wants us to pay at least $900 of rent which I elected not to pay in recent months because I needed it for my wedding. Well, he gave me no particular details on any consequences I would face, but did sort of say that he would get me back somehow. Well, now that I am in more debt, and two of his tenants have left here, he decides to cash in on this outstanding back rent. Oh, and he didn't bother to come to my wedding at all for some reason. He tells me he wanted to stay out of my way because supposedly it would be too stressful for me to see him there. Well, you know, he was WAYYYYYYY conspicuous in his absence, and there were plenty of people who asked about it, some more discreetly than others. Well, his loss. But mine too. I guess he has decided he wants to be landlord more than father. He had gotten a number of invitations and nudgings, but had made up his mind even before we officially sent invitations and reminders. So it was his decision and his alone.

So therefore, NOT ONE blood relative of mine bothered to show up. The list was short as it was, but damn. My step mom nearly didn't show up. I had to BEG her to show up, but she did. So the ONE relative of mine who bothered to come to my wedding is not even technically related to me except by a marriage that ended in divorce! My dad's parental contribution to my adult life is in the form of giving me a big break on rent here. For that I can appreciate his "sacrifice." What I can't appreciate is that he ended up inheriting the place when in fact my grandmother had expressed a desire for me to get the house. And now that he got it for absolutely nothing but yearly tax and maintenance, he still wants to charge me. Roommates I can settle on, but he refuses to honor her wish that I would be able to have at least a joint ownership in the house.

Now, I know I pay way too little, and nearly every time he comes over, he gives me a report of how much the house would rent for, and how good I have things, and I should just keep on with this and not do things to jeopardize it. Well, okay. So he gets what he wants—a steady income from me and some others, but he can't be bothered to even be vaguely parental or supportive in what must be the second most important day of my life, after getting born? Not a card, a gift, a well-wish? Maybe I thought he would have kicked down for some expenses or even lent a hand. Nope. Nothing but a belligerent passive-aggressive stab at me, saying he just figured he wasn't wanted there.

Lots of great opportunities for psychologists here! Hey, I appreciate not having to pay out the nose to live in my hometown. And I do a lot of work here to make myself useful, but hey, lay off the bullshit, mister. Kelli wanted to know if she could rent one more room for some additional space to do her book making work, and to have more personal space. He didn't even give her an answer. Well, only four months ago we had three people living here, but since Kelli moved in, he took the opportunity to ask for more rent. The thing is, her presence here doesn't do ONE DAMNED thing to affect his cost of business. She is living in a space that I lived in for three years, and now he decided it was all of a sudden worth three times the rate I paid. But it doesn't cost him shit to have her here! And now she wants another room, which if it were to happen, would mean we had three people living here instead of four, but she hasn't gotten an answer. Now, would he revert to being content with what he got for three people for the first few years? Or would he try to keep four people here so that he could get the better rate but disadvantage Kelli and I?

There is a lot of suggestions I get that say I should just move from here so I can dodge all this mess. And intellectually I know and agree with that. But I can't see it unless something changes. Kelli and I can barely afford to live in this town on our wages. I would like to move to a more rural setting, smallish town, in part because I believe in that sort of living arrangment. But some stubborn part of me doesn't want to let go of my "inheritance" and for a guy who has only lived in three places, and this place for over six years now, I don't like the idea of pulling up and going somewhere that costs so much more and isn't as nice as what I have. So the question really is do I want to put up with this shit forever? He does speak like he is committed to providing me with a place, but it seems that he utterly ceases to be anything resembling parental. Of course, there is no guarantee that he would be if I were able to pay enough all the time to keep him at bay, or to even move out and be done with the whole deal. It's just hard for me to imagine what I would do with all that stuff I have—house full of furniture, life stuff, and a room full of musical gear. And that doesn't include Kelli's stuff! I dont know. I just can't see doing the two bedroom apartment thing.

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