Tuesday, May 25, 2004

resident of the week

As some of you may already know, I've taken a second, weekend job at the rental office of my apartment building. It's been a while since I've been in customer service, and I like to think I've acquired a certain Zenlike detachment from the rest of humanity. Armed with that, I am endlessly amused at the tragedy that is human intelligence.

I think I'm going to start cataloguing the more interesting encounters here.

This week, we have two stories, because I suspect I'll be hearing more about this second guy.

Helpless Resident of the Week: Called to inform us that there was a dead mouse in the middle of her kitchen, and wanted me to sent the maintenance man to remove it. Now, our maintenance guy is on-call for emergencies on Sundays, but I doubted he would be ready, willing, or able to rouse himself for a dead mouse. I implied that Pat was tied up with emergency air conditioner fixings and suggested that she scoop up the corpse with a dustpan or piece of cardboard and throw it in the trash. She wasn't happy about it.

Creepy Resident of the Week:
There's a guy; we'll call him Barry. He's a very low-grade con artist who's been living scot-free in our complex for about two months now. He claims to be a psychic. He claims to be a lot of things. So far he has:

  • Swindled a free apartment out of the leasing manager by promising free advertising for the complex;
  • Told each of the women in the office (other than me) something "shocking" and "private" about themselves which he supposedly divined via his psychic ability;
  • Charged at least two of my new co-workers $100 for a "private reading" session during which he "hypnotized" them and "took them back to a past life."
  • Has failed to follow up on the ad thing (big surprise) and then got defensive and bullying when the manager tried to call him on it.
  • Has solicited my weekend co-worker, Crystal (the name tells you everything you need to know about her--she's a sweet girl but as brittle as spun sugar) about being in a "limosine commercial," and tried to get her to go out with him, despite the 20-year age difference and the fact that he has no money, no car, no job, and is generally pretty creepy.

Now, all of these things except the last happened before I came to work there. This weekend, Barry came in on Sunday afternoon and tried to engage Crystal in conversation about the limo commercial. He pretended to make a couple of phone calls, making loud plans about filming said commercial, asking Crystal what size dress she wore, talking about cameras and locations, etc. Crystal and I both knew he was talking to dead air. The first time he tried to dial, he accidentally dialed into the office main line and it rang the intercom at my desk. Oops, dialed the wrong number, he said. Then he said, "Well, I'm off to detail a Ferrari," and left.

I am just dying for him to tell me some shocking and private thing about myself. I bet Crystal five bucks he wouldn't even come near me. That type never does.

If he comes in and starts tying up the phones and making himself a nuisance like that again, I'm going to throw him out. I've done it a couple of times before, at the title company. Been awhile.

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