Posts tagged rain

Realizing the rules have changed

First, I need to set the scene. I’m wearing a cardigan with multi-colored stripes. So multi-colored that I will only name three: olive green, salmon and sky blue. And I’m wearing a long jean skirt with sandals.

It is raining outside, so I’m carrying an umbrella. It’s the umbrella I got free from Vogue when I signed up for a subscription. It is a pretty royal blue-red-cream plaid pattern. While quite chic, it does not match my outfit.

I feel I look pretty clownish. Not a big deal, but worth noting.

It is September 2nd. I realize I’ve forgotten to pay my rent. Luckily, I have until noon on the 2nd day of the month to get my rent check in. I leave work early for lunch.

In some careful maneuvering, I get out of my car, jean skirt, umbrella, sandals and all, and walk up to the rent drop-off. I see a sign that says, “Your rent is now late. Please add $40 to your check. Thanks!”

I know this isn’t true because it’s only about 11:40 a.m. I figure they put the sign out early, and head inside to state my case.

“The sign says my rent is late, but it’s not because I have until noon on the 2nd day of the month,” I say.

The girl behind the desk says, “What?”

“My rent isn’t late yet.”

“You have to pay it on the first,” she says.

“No, the sign on the wall says I have until noon on the second.”

“What sign?” says girl in the next room, but with a major glassless window-like opening.

“The sign on the wall says we have until noon on the second of the month. It’s the second, and it’s not noon,” I plead. Then I realize. It was probably a year ago since I saw that sign. The rules have changed.

“Per your lease, rent is due on the first of the month. It’s the same for everybody,” next room girl says.

I am just livid. I don’t have my lease with me at that moment. My rent check is already written out. My purse is in my car. It’s raining outside. My umbrella is perched on my shoulder, surely framing my face like a halo.

Here’s what’s going through my head, “If I swear at them right now, if I really go off, can they call the police? Could they get me for harrassment? What if I just don’t pay the $40? What if I refuse to pay? What would happen?”

I take my check, and slam it down on the desk. “I am so…” and muffle the rest, as I turn. (It was going to be ‘flipping peed off,’ for the curious.)

As I open the door, girl in the next room sings out, “Have a nice day!” Smiley face, smiley face.

That’s when my umbrella gets caught in the door. I keep walking forward in the rain, refusing to turn around, as my arm reaches back over my shoulder, my umbrella holding me back. I shake it free, in grand form.

In discussing with friends later, I told them I now realize how Steven Slater-like incidents happen.

They change the rules, and don’t put up a new sign. How is that okay?

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