Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens . . .

Bright shiny clean kitchen and walls free of push-pins
Brown paper moving boxes tied up with string
Dirty Artie's moving day is one of my favorite things.

Even now, three years later, the thought of Dirty Artie's moving day still causes me to spontaneously burst into song.  No more bills paid 3 months late, no more nauseating after-shave (I would have to either close the door to the bathroom or leave the living room entirely right after he put it on), and no more filth in the next bedroom!  Of course, moving out (which I am clearly an expert in) takes some logistical prowess, so the days leading up to Dirty Artie's move weren't without strife.

As you know, Artie had two TVs in the living room and one in his bedroom.  Each one of those TVs had a cable box. Andrea, who was moving from the little room to Artie's room, had decided to keep the cable box in there.  Neither of us saw any reason to have two TVs or two cable boxes in the living room.  More than a week before Artie's move out date, in response to him about something unrelated, I also mentioned that we needed to switch over the names on the cable and electric bills.  Andrea and I, however, were unwilling to switch either of these things into our names until Artie took care of the overdue electric bill and got rid of and canceled the extra cable box.  I worded it a little more diplomatically than that, but I was very clear.

Fast-forward one week, to the Thursday before moving day.  Artie comes up to me at 11:30 at night in the living room with the cable company form saying that all I needed to do was sign the form switching the account into my name and call the cable company and arrange a pick-up of the cable box and they would take it away.  I was not amused.  I said that I would not sign the form until the cable box was gone, that's what I told him last week.  He looked at me funny and said, "You can't make one simple phone call?"  I replied, "Why can't you?"  He replied that he's never around, which is a valid reason why it might be difficult for him to be home for the cable guy, but not a reasonable explanation as to why this was becoming my problem.  Also, we had a doorman, or he could have asked me earlier if I could be around for the pickup, or he could have taken it to Time Warner himself.  In fact, there are many different paths he could have chosen that did not involve passing the buck . . . and I basically told him as much.  Eventually I told him that he could sign the form now, before he moved, and leave it with us.  I would then sign it and mail it in when the cable box got picked up.  As he protested, I said, "It's your cable box and your  responsibility."  He said "fine, do what you want."

I was sure, even after being firmly bitchy, that I was going to end up having to take care of it anyway, but it gave me great pleasure to feel like I'd made Artie's irresponsibility HIS problem for once.  Old roommates running up the cable bill in your name because you never switched it over?  "Lost" cable box billed to Artie Evinton?  The possibilities for roommate revenge abound, but to my surprise, Artie got up early the next morning and dropped the box off at Time Warner on his way to work.  I then happily signed the form and sent it in.  It seems that I finally figured out the key to handling Dirty Artie . . . the last time I ever saw him.

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