Random Art: A Minor Cure For Some Major Madness…

A Bit To The Left 

Well, I was going to post more pictures yesterday of the kitchen, which has been partially painted despite a rather glaring repair omission that sticks out like two sore thumbs thanks to that fresh coat of paint. But this whole mess of ass-backward insanity that should have taken maybe a week or less according to This Old House rules has sucked up too much of my energy and is affecting my workload. Blech. Anyway, I’ll probably post some pictures in a few days, but here’s something to look at in the meantime. My poor mind is boggling over how such a straightforward job anyone else would do or have done in a specific order has gotten so surreal. Thursday should be interesting, as it’s when we see if the next guy who shows up to do some work actually figures out what the hell it is he’s supposed to do and gets it right the first time.

Random Films: Robo Vampire Makes My Monday More Tolerable…

(thanks, andybluefox!) 

Well, the plasterer is at lunch for an hour (yes, he left before noon!), so there’s a pause in today’s nightmare. In the meantime, after taking some more pinup photos of the wreckage in the kitchen, to keep my sanity level somewhere close to normal I’ve been catching up on some bad movies. Godfrey Ho’s 1988 howler Robo Vampire made my morning thanks to it being even worse (and much funnier) than its title suggests. Swiping badly from Paul Verhoeven’s stellar Robocop is bad enough to dismiss this without even watching it. But toss in hopping ghosts (wait, how does a cyborg fight ghosts outside of some seven-year old kid’s notebook scribbles?), mercenaries, long water torture scenes and slow, dull “chases” and editing that makes the film seem like three or four movies spliced together and you get an instant classic. Well, “classic” in that “How the hell did this ever get made?” manner. Seriously. I’ve seen student films with better quality EVERYTHING than this clunker.

Ah well. Everything exists for a reason, I suppose. This crazy flick just kept me laughing through the continuing (and seemingly never ending) mess that is my apartment. I suppose I should thank Mill Creek Entertainment somewhere in all this because I’m too lazy and busy to seek out and download all those public domain flicks I paid ten bucks for and still consider that a steal because that’s time and bandwidth money I didn’t need to waste. Back in a bit…

Kitchen Nightmares, Part Whatever: Everything AND The Kitchen Sink?

kitchen sink 001 (Custom) 

Wait, what? Hold on a minute. When last we left the nightmare, the inspector was here and mumbled something at the end of a long bit of other information about the ancient, sturdy and fairly indestructible sink (that’s been in the apartment since the complex was built back in 1939-40) needing to “come out.” My eyebrow went up, but nothing further was said about it and no one from the office called and told us to be prepared to maybe move stuff from the drawers and cabinet next to the sink, as it’s a big deal removal job. Guess what happened this morning?

kitchen sink 002 (Custom) 

Yep, a bunch of guys roll in here (as in everyone that SHOULD have in the first place), and some start banging away at the old wooden counter top next to the sink and another guy gets under that sink and start in on the pipes. Of course, I’m happy to see people working in that kitchen who seem to know what they’re doing. However… it would have been nice to know I should have l should have moved everything that’s not covered in plaster dust, tiny bits of wood, well-aged insect egg sacs and who knows what else. Wonderful, and unless there’s a new sink in and working by the end of the day, stuff will need to get gently dumped into the bathtub to be cleaned.

kitchen sink 003 (Custom)

Oh, and what’s this? They decided to remove the wooden counter ACROSS from the sink for some reason? Great. Now all my tableware and whatever else is in the cabinet below are covered in that crap as well. Which is doubly annoying because I cleaned out those drawers and washed everything about two or so weeks back. Yeah, it’s going to be a looooooong day, ladies and gents. On one hand, I shouldn’t be mad at all this because it’s all getting done. But the whole not being told what’s being done until it’s happening with no time to move stuff is kind of a pain in the ass.

Well, so much for a two day job. That and the place still needs a paint job. And the leak in the pipe in the back is back. And the bathroom needs to be done now that they’ve finally noticed the cracks in the wall that have been pointed out to them last year have gotten a bit longer. And so forth, and so on… Gyaaaaah.

Kitchen Nightmares VI: Wood Work and More Oddball Occurrences…

Now It's Dark, tooSo, they sent a carpenter today instead of a plasterer… but that was actually a good thing. It turns out that most of the fault lies in the overall incompetence, laziness and just not listening to what tenants are saying folks who answer the phones in the management office. According to the carpenter, they pretty much just sit around and talk about reality TV for the bulk of the day and those work orders they write up from half listening are often incorrect.

Which of course means workers showing up to do jobs with the wrong equipment or being thrown under the bus by the office because they have to deal with irate tenants who’ve been sitting around waiting for scheduled appointments that can’t be completed. There are also a bunch of newer maintenance guys and gals who aren’t very good at what they do because they’re still being trained, but there seems to be not enough of the old guard around to walk them through what they need to know. That’s how we get painted leaves and some sketchy plastering and painting jobs around here.

There’s a lot of other crap going on as well, but it all boils down to the folks who run this place wanting to keep making a profit even at the cost of current renters being given the shaft. There are also politics involved and a lot of it the usual dumb stuff that always results in the bad apples being rousted and roasted in public once their plans are foiled and the truth rises to the top. Noe of which I care much about because I just want my damn kitchen back to 100%. That carpenter made up a short list of stuff he saw that needed to be done as we chatted for about 20 minutes or so before leaving. Another call was placed to the office and they’re supposed to send what seems like the sole inspector they have in the complex here in a few days (Thursday) so he can take another look around. Yep, the notes I left are still up and will stay up so he can see what needs fixing. Hopefully this time stuff gets done right, but we’ll see. At this point, I’d be happy for at least an acknowledgement that the place is clearly in worse shape after what’s been going on, but again, we shall see…

Kitchen Nightmares V: Doing the Limbo for No Good Reason…

Let There (Not) Be LightBelieve it or not, my kitchen STILL isn’t done and for the life of me I can’t figure out why. Well, other than the management here in Parkchester being incredibly insensitive and frankly, virtually shiftless in responding to the basic needs of renters. Being put on hold or hung up on after a time, then being put back in line for repairs that should have been done right the first time around is bad enough. But having to reschedule appointments because the workers didn’t even do the job they were contracted to to correctly is just insanity. What’s the definition of insanity, folks?

Yeah, you know the rest…

Based on the slapdash work done in the kitchen and other rooms here, it almost seems as if they’re telling the maintenance folks to do as little as possible and pass this off as actual quality work because it’s become a common thing over time and a few management transitions. Do they really want this nice three-bedroom top floor corner apartment that’s been in the family since oh, about 1976 or ’77 SO badly that they’re willing to make it look worse to the point the current tenants flee in frustration? It sure as hell seems like it. Hmmm, I guess Yelp can be trusted for fair reviews after all? If this is even the tiniest bit true about what’s taking place in this apartment, it’s wrong, inhumane and needs to stop before someone gets sued and loses somewhat badly in court.

Or at least the court of public opinion. With all the stories I have to tell about this apartment alone, I’d hate to be doing PR for a place that claims “comfort and convenience are the hallmarks of every 1, 2 and 3 bedroom Parkchester home”. Given that no one could drop by for Thanksgiving this year and this Christmas may be a bust for company as well thanks to this nonsense, my own “comfort and convenience” levels are fully drained to the point of glaring laser eyes at every maintenance guy or gal I see walking around this place smiling and laughing away… Continue reading

Kitchen Nightmares IV: Now, I Need to Get Plastered!

(Thanks, WilliamClaudeFields!)

So, between the driving rain outside driving me batty and the insanely awful job the plasterers did in the kitchen. Photos to come, but as a call was placed to bitch about the work, I’m holding out for a redo before I rant about the job here and elsewhere. In a nutshell, the trim around the kitchen ceiling was ripped out during the asbestos abatement, but the plasterers didn’t bother to fill in the gaps around about 3/4 of the kitchen, so there’s a noticeable gap AND some hideous exposed wood even a blind man could see. Not to mention assorted small holes that were missed, a LARGE chunk of the wall under the sink that was knocked out during phase one that no one bothered to fix and a small spot under a cabinet where there’s now a loose piece of plaster mice can pop into. It’s like a little doggie door in my damn wall! Yaaaaaaah.

All I ask for is people who know how to do a job and do it well. What do I get? More stress I really don’t need. Well, that won’t stand, folks. Back in a bit once I get something to eat and perhaps a nap or two. It’s been a loooooong day and I despise incompetence.

Tuesday Means Furniture Tetris and Other “Thrilling” Things…

(Thanks, Cameron Lightfoot!)

Today was a nicely dull but annoying yet slightly productive one. My mood is shifting a bit restlessly with all this deconstruction and reconstruction going on. Moving some stuff around for the work to be done on Friday, vacuuming the kitchen again thanks to a busted Pyrex measuring cup (I didn’t do it, but I’ll miss that thing, as it was an old one that served me well over the many years I had it) and making a short list of gripes to discuss with the management here took up a lot of energy. In the midst of this, I completed Alphadia Genesis on the Wii U, unlocking what’s looking like a bonus chapter to the story in the process (nice!). That needs to be reviewed this week as well as a few other things, but we’ll see where I am tomorrow.

Okay, off to hunt for dinner – I just got some fun news in my inbox, but perhaps I’ll save it for tomorrow… we’ll see.

Kitchen Nightmares III: Holding Patterns (and Who Can I Sue If I Drop Dead of Starvation?)…


So, the kitchen here still hasn’t been returned to its normal state, but the work is set to begin on December 5th. The stove can still be used, but once the sun goes down, you’re taking your life in your hands if you try to chop anything in the kitchen. Sure, I can sit in the living room and get all rustic with a cutting board in my lap or on the coffee table, but there’s something so odd about doing this (and yeah, one slip means I’ll be adding a body part to whatever I’m cooking). I’ll have to bug the management here about some sort of cooking/meal solution once the repair/rebuilding work gets underway. Once it starts, the kitchen will be off limits for at least four days straight and then a few days more after a weekend break. Bleh. I hope to hell they don’t think I’ll be ordering out or eating fast food for all that time, as that’s not a good idea for me for a few reasons.

(Thanks, SeriouslyDead!)

Feh, at this point I just want this long national nightmare to be over so I can go back to living like a normal person. Maybe I’ll slap on some zombie makeup and start groaning at the workmen when they show up to spur them to get the job done faster. Then again, the lack of craftsmanship and care here is pretty shocking. The team that removed the asbestos from the kitchen had a fat guy who busted the burners on the stove AND chipped the paint on the stove because he stood on them when he was doing the ceiling. Gyahhh. I despise that sort of idiocy. Okay, let me go lie down before I bust something.