Monday, May 30, 2016

Car vs. New Place

In the Ongoing Saga of Making over 40K Per Year But Still Not Being Able to Afford Both a Car AND a Better Apartment (AKA, "Austin Sucks: Because of this and because of my 3 dead cats being buried underneath bars now")...

Today (Sunday) had to return something to Old Navy. A 15-minute car trip, but a 30-minute bus trip, plus the walking-a-mile in 90-degree-weather to the bus stop and the waiting at the bus stop (both before and after). Most people don't have to be sweaty in order to go to a store.

I also have a penchant for Target's generic Woolite and face cleanser; the Target's to/from the Old Navy route, and I halfway meant to stop there, too. But I left my home at 11:15am; by the time the bus arrived after I was finished with Old Navy, it was near 2:30 pm. I was tired. Had I hopped off the bus at the Target, I would have added another hour-and-a-half to my final return time home.

Good argument for getting a car!

But here's an argument for leaving my current apartment (aside from the ongoing loud guy downstairs):

Saturday night around 11pm, the biker guy (who makes a point of revving his bike every time he either leaves or departs the complex) had a couple of chicks over. He's usually, aside from his bike, pretty quiet, but this time his guests obviously inspired him: Hootin' and hollerin' aplenty! After a half-hour of countless "Whoooo-hoooooo"s and "Fuckin' [this and that]," I finally jerked open my door and stood out on my stoop staring over at the "party" going on across the way. They stopped whoo-hooing and stared back.

Now, at 50, and after years of being in apartments, I'd finally learned that the way was NOT to start yelling. Here's the key: "Hi! Can I ask a favor?" (Kind of like making eye contact with the person in the car next to you on the highway and waving/smiling when you're trying to cut in, rather than just edging in and cutting them off.)

So I stepped out and called over, "Hi! Can I ask a favor?" Silence and stares. Me: "Can you not yell?" Silence. Then, "Sure." Me: "Thanks, I appreciate it."

I didn't even want to learn the results of my request, so I retreated to the bedroom at the back of my apartment to read the latest Ted Hughes bio that I'd abandoned months ago because of its boring-ness but that I'd felt guilty about not finishing... I'd made the "shut-up request" around 11pm, ventured back into the front of my apartment around 1am (to make some popcorn to accompany my book but also to see what was going on out front)... The "party" was still going on on the stoop, albeit slightly more toned down, although I could still hear "fuckin'" this/that... I made the popcorn, retreated again.

I just don't think I should have to do the stereotypical school-marmish "you kids keep it down/you kids stay off my lawn" shit. Yes, grown people in an apartment complex should pretty much know how to act, how not to be hootin' and hollerin' at midnight. But on the other hand, I, with a Master's degree, and an editor's job, and at age 50, should also not be living in proximity with people who don't know how to act --- but I simply don't have the income to escape those types of people.

It's frustrating. I feel like I've done everything in the world to better myself, but I can't seem to better myself. I'm still stuck living around the same types of people that I lived around when I was a student and in my 20s and early 30s. Yahoos screaming at midnight aren't "interesting" or "cool" any more.

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