Mendicancy

by Channie Greenberg


Friends:

The upshot of my coming move is that I am ill with poverty.

The apartment into which my landlord wanted me to relocate needs a bit of work. There’s a leak in the ceiling from which silverfish sprout, cockroaches have taken up residence in the lone kitchen cabinet, and a colony of miniature, gelatinous wildebeests from Planet Nine stampede twice daily along its floorboards.

At present, I still dwell contently in my ground floor unit. If I moved — beyond having to contend with the pests sighted on my walkthrough — I would, as well, have to carry all of my books and CD’s up three flights; the promised domicile is located at the top of my building. I shudder to think what such lifting would do to my liver, to my spleen, and especially to my colon. Having the runs is rather inconvenient.

Only because I’m a bit short of funds does the owner want me to switch. He pledges that the leak will get fixed when the maintenance guy gets to it. He tells me that the bottoms of my shoes will suffice for the bugs. He does not believe that I actually detected aliens, but promised me a housewarming gift of MD 20/20, anyway.

I counter-offered, nonetheless, suggesting that my landlord give me, instead, his maintenance guy’s office and that he move his fix-it dude to the penthouse. The apartment manager, who participated in our meeting, liked my proposal. She’s come face to face with the ghosts that float in the boiler room. She is also tired of hearing the repair guy rant about his lack of a view. Since I care nothing for observing trees, birds, flashers, and petty looters, a space with just a ceiling hatch suits me. Besides, I’d get to carry my things down, not up, if we made that exchange.

My problem is the unit’s excessive space. The boiler room opens into a sort of lounge. All I own is a bed, a dresser, my books and my CD’s. My new apartment would be much too empty to be comfortable. I don’t have the cash for salvage and the local bins are usually picked clean by the folks to whom I sell my compounds. Whereas I gladly and regularly eat what the cats drag in; they’re too small to bag a sofa or an end-table.

So, how about a five, a ten or a twenty? I can access PayPal at the public library. Until then, I’ll have to make do with Thunderbird, with Wild Irish Rose, and with the company of the leprechaun who chides me to move away from this building.

I know you’ll help.

Much love,

Stu


Copyright © 2012 by Channie Greenberg

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