Archive for True crime

Through the sands of time…

So, I looked at houses every week. Sometimes, it seemed one house for every day of the week. So many I lost count.

On the night of that football game, I had looked at a real heartbreaker. Well within my price range, nice big backyard, inside all redone, with nice floors and walls and windows, there was even central air. But I kept looking out the front window. It sat on third street, near downtown. This is not a good thing in my town. There were several rentals across the street. It just broke my heart. There was no way I’d be happy living across the street from rentals. The master bedroom faced that direction.

So, I kept looking. I put offers down on three houses. Turns out, I’m pretty happy I didn’t get the first house I tried for. It had great bones, a huge backyard, but was totally a blast from the 1970s. It would’ve been a lot of work, and someone else was willing to pay more than I was for it.

The other house I didn’t get was nice but the basement was really musty. I knew it was listed at a good price for the location, so I had to try. Also, its address put it right next to my supervisor’s house. It would’ve been fine, but obviously it wasn’t meant to be.

The house I did nail down was a tough one. I put offers on it three times, I think. The previous owners had priced it too dang high for the amount of work that needed to be done. They refused to budge. When I put my next offer out there, it was lower than where I was willing to compromise the first time. Still, they wouldn’t take it.

Finally, the woman of the couple (they were divorcing) agreed to my lowest offer. I’m so grateful I was able to remain strong in this. I have more stories to tell about them in the future.

I closed on the house at the end of December. From my bank, I got a bottle of wine, two wine glasses, a cheese cutting board and a basket. From my realtor, I got a clock.

clock from realtor

Yup, you can sort of see me in the reflection.

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Disgusting discovery beneath the snow

I’ve chosed the category “True crime” for this post because littering is a crime.

The view out my window on December 27, 2009.

A couple days after the Christmas Blizzard of 2009, the wind slowed and the air temperature warmed.

I had a pretty big snow bank on my balcony. I decided to fetch the snow shovel from my garage and move the snow off my balcony.

As you already know from this post, I first had to move the snow from the front of my garage. I was sweating pretty good. But it was a good feeling, to get moving after being locked inside for days.

The snow on my balcony was dense: each shovelful was like lifting a barley-filled pillow instead of lifting a feather pillow.

When I got down to the bare boards of my balcony, I couldn’t believe it. A cigarette butt. I do not smoke and nobody who visits me smokes. As long as I have lived in this apartment, nobody has ever smoked on my balcony.

I didn’t find just one cigarette butt. I found three. I believe my next door neighbors have been throwing their butts onto my balcony! It wouldn’t have happened by accident. I only regret I didn’t take a picture.

So I purposely threw several shovelfuls of snow onto their balcony. Happy New Year!

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Right in front of my eyes

Last night was quite comical in addition to being quite frustrating.

My next door neighbors were cranking the tunes all weekend. Last night, they made friends with some chicks in the building next to us who were also cranking the tunes. These girls looked like modern day Joan Jetts.

The guys were flirting with the cute girls across balconies. The girls who were with the idiot guys were making friends. (One exchange: “Oh my God! My name is Katelyn too! Out of curiosity, how do you spell your name?” “K-A-T-E-L-I-N.” “Oh, I’m L-Y-N.”)

I was ready to let it slide. But then I heard them making plans.

Cute chicks in the next building: “Hey, come on over!”

Idiot guys in my building: “Okay, we’ll be right over!”

So I called the cops and told them there was a party going on in the next building, second floor, facing the street, in the balcony below the orange lights. (Halloween lights, not Christmas.)

And I watched. A cop car came down the street and went behind the building. No one was the wiser. The cute girls apartment cranked the tunes with abandon. I heard some guys leave my apartment. They brazenly walked down the sidewalk, carrying cases of beer and holding beer cans, lifting them up for a swig every now and then. I thought for sure the cops would see this.

Just then, the phone rang. It was 12:24 a.m. It was dispatch, wondering if I could buzz the cops in. I told them I wasn’t in that building. “But,” I said emphatically, “there are two guys walking down the sidewalk RIGHT NOW carrying beer!” I thought we had them.

But no. A minute after they were in the building, another cop drove up the street, stopping about a block away. He came walking up. All the while, the tunes continue cranking.

A couple more guys came into my building, and went into the next door neighbors’ apartment.

Suddenly, I heard the music stop. I looked out my window. The kids were abandoning that apartment like rats off a sinking ship. They were loudly whispering, “Cops! Cops!”

A couple guys jumped down first, while others handed the beer to them. I saw about 12 people leave, each one of them carrying a case of beer! Each one!

The guys on the balcony next to me were laughing and taunting. One of the girls who was carrying a case of beer made it to the sidewalk before her case broke and beer cans rolled in all directions. She laughed and they laughed as she picked them up. The entire dozen kids, each carrying alcohol, made it to the apartment complex two blocks away. The cops never even noticed.

I heard the guys on the balcony next to me say they made it to the busted apartment just as the cops did, and turned away to avoid arrest.

Well, just five minutes later, five more people come out of that apartment onto the balcony, laughing about how the cops were now gone. They even had beers in their hands at that very moment. They tossed beer cans to the guys in my building. (“You gotta alley-HOOP it! Don’t throw it! Alley-HOOP it!”)

All this as the cop who had parked down the street came driving up the street to leave. They were alley-HOOPing beer as a cop drove by.

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Think she got fired later on

In the middle of last month, I had something happen to me that was so crazy and perfect that I can’t even believe it.

First, a little background information. My apartment managers decided to finally get the the parking lot fixed. Finally! However, that meant a few of us wouldn’t be able to use our garages (that we pay $50/month for) for “at least” two weeks. Just as the work was starting, I asked my apartment managers if I could pay half the garage rent ($25) for that month, since I wouldn’t be able to use my garage for half the month. The snotty little girl said, “I can ask, but I’m pretty sure my boss will say no. But I can ask.” I left my work number with her to give me the answer. Of course, she called me at home to leave a message on my answering machine to tell me no.

The work on the parking lot took longer than two weeks, of course. It was at the end of three weeks when my apartment people put up a sign saying we could start using our garages on Saturday.
(Note the ridiculous use of exclamation points. These people are idiots.)

The sign about the parking lot

On that fateful Saturday, my car was parked in the street from the night before.

Parking in the street for three weeks was no picnic, mind you. There are a lot of cars to park in very few spots on stupidly curved streets. One night during those three weeks, I just barely wedged myself into a too-small spot. I waited on my balcony for close to an hour for someone else to leave, so I could take their more suitable spot. When I saw someone leave, I raced to my car. But someone else got there before. So I drove around the block for another 10 minutes before someone else left.

So, as I was saying, my car was parked on the street that Saturday. When I left that day to run to the local Starbucks, it was about 2:00 p.m. I came right home, and parked in my garage for the first time in weeks! It was great! Of course, my apartment people hadn’t moved the barricades into the parking lot, but someone had pushed them to the side just far enough so vehicles could get through.

I stayed home until supper time, when I went to the grocery store. I had bought the makings for knepfla soup. When I got to my car and opened the driver side door, I noticed a note.

A little freaked out, I got in, locked the doors, and read it. It said, “We saw someone hit your car at 12:45 p.m. on Sept. 12. If they don’t leave a note, please call us,” and listed their phone number. My blood was boiling! I got out to survey the damage.

The front driver side bumper.

The front driver side bumper.

So the damage wasn’t horrible, but still! This was my first newer car, a real prize to me!

I got home, and called the number. I said, “Do you live around here?”

She said, “No, we were there looking at an apartment to rent. We live in Fargo.”

I said, “Did you see who it was? Could you give me a description of the vehicle?”

She said, “It was the apartment manager! We were there, waiting for her to show up to show us the apartment. She pulled up, and swiped right past your car! When she got out, my husband said, ‘How much damage did you do there?’ She said, ‘Oh, did you see that?'”

I couldn’t believe it!! My own apartment manager hit-and-runned my car!

I called the cops. The officer met me at my garage, after driving around the barricades. He took my report and looked at the damage. He called the wonderful lady who left the note. He said the lady also told him that the apartment manager said, “Oh, that’ll buff right out.” The officer said the damage wouldn’t buff right out, since it was through the paint and down to the plastic.

While the officer was there, the crotchety apartment maintenance man came over to tell the cop he shouldn’t be parking there because the concrete wasn’t ready yet. The officer told him there was a note hanging in the apartment saying he could drive on the concrete. After circling for a minute or so, the old man finally left. Can you believe it? Lecturing an officer.

The officer was able to eventually get a hold of the apartment manager. She told him that she didn’t have time right then and there to leave a note (to which the officer was snarky with, “You were with the people you needed to be with. You had time.”) So, she was charged and her insurance is paying for my damages.

Haven’t seen her working in the office lately. Serves her right.

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It’s never worth it

To set the stage: I’m coming from my brother’s wedding this past Friday. It was a great day – sure, it snowed and was very cold, but it was a good day nonetheless. I’m coming home at about 1:00 a.m.

Witness to the crime: As I’m getting to the second floor of my apartment building, there is a strong scent of pot. My neighbors’ door is open, and I’m hearing an unmistakeable party inside.

Being a good citizen: I call the cops. These particular neighbors had been partying for two nights prior to this night. I’d called the cops about a week ago, and they weren’t able to break up the party somehow, so I hadn’t called again until this night.

The disappointment: The cops show up. I let them in, and wait to hear their knock at the next door. I hear it, then nothing. I look out my bedroom window (where I won’t be detected). Sure enough, the cops left because my neighbors didn’t answer their door. I hear them standing on their balcony as usual.

A small victory: The cops do ticket a pickup truck that’s parked in front of the fire hydrant.

Missed opportunity: At the same time both cops are involved in ticketing that pickup, two men come home in an SUV. They’re obviously having a tough time parking. They get out, and neither can walk in a straight line they’re so drunk. The cops do not notice.

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