Monday, January 03, 2011


Most of what I know about my new neighbors is based on inference; I've met only three or four face to face, in a building with ten apartments and what I presume to be more than two occupants in most of them. What I've inferred is based on bits and pieces of data; I generally have little idea which neighbor might be producing which datum, and I sometimes wonder what my neighbors think of me as I pace back and forth over their heads and leave the building at odd hours. What I've discovered thus far:

1. The neighbors in the apartment with which I share a wall have fought on occasion, and now they, too, seem either to be dog-sitting, or to have acquired a very, very large mixed-breed puppy. I pet the puppy today, after hearing him barking lustily for a good part of the afternoon; his name is Zeus. He's a beautiful dog, part Husky, but I look forward to his being trained. I still don't know my neighbors' names.

2. One of my neighbors on the third floor likes to eat candy-- generally Tootsie rolls, but sometimes other types of candy as well. The stairs between the second and third floors are occasionally littered with candy wrappers, as if the neighbor couldn't be bothered to carry the wrapper the rest of the way to their apartment to throw it away. I'm the new guy in town, so I'd feel awkward leaving a general announcement posted at the stairwell about not littering. Up to now, I've quietly picked up the wrappers whenever I've noticed them... which may make me an enabler.

3. The lady directly below me likes to slam her doors, which causes my floor to vibrate ponderously from the change in air pressure. I have no idea whether she does this out of anger or frustration, or whether the doors themselves are somehow built to slam. I doubt the latter possibility: if my neighbor's doors are anything like mine, then they're all made of very light wood, i.e., slamming them would require force. At the same time, the former possibility seems unlikely; can someone really be that consistently, routinely angry? At this point, I conclude I'm missing some vital information that prevents me from understanding the situation. At a guess: the lady had her regular doors replaced with heavier doors. I'd hate to discover that she was just a natural-born slammer.

4. Someone on the second floor is very, very stinky. As in "haven't showered for a week" stinky. I shudder to think what his or her (probably his) apartment smells like.

I'm guessing my neighbors see me as the quiet oddball who paces heavily inside his apartment and likes talking to himself. I try to step lightly, but there's no preventing the floor from creaking, especially as I pass by the kitchen. I also try to keep myself from talking when it's after 11PM.

At some point, I'd actually like to throw a party and invite my neighbors (even the stinky one) to chow down on some Kevin-made victuals. I've got the tables, for sure, but I have no chairs yet, which makes a party problematic. Things won't be truly settled until I've got everything set up the way I want it, which means furniture, teaching equipment (white board, markers, erasers, etc.), hanging racks for the doors, and so on. I've got several months before that can happen, though; finances are still in the process of stabilizing. But sometime before summer, I'd like to get to know my neighbors better. Hey, if they're Presbyterian, I can save myself some work by telling everyone that it's a potluck dinner.



hahnak said...

we close our doors with force but our doors seem to be crappy here. not sure if theyre not hung right or what. but we slam slam slam. and sometimes they doors still dont shut. (we have to worry about cats and babies having access to places they shouldnt have access.)

also. you talk to yourself! do you replay conversations that youve had in the past? do you make commentary on things as the are happening? or...?

the tootsie roll wrappers: seriously? just tosses the wrappers? just like that? crazy. lazy. lazy.

SJHoneywell said...

As someone who entertained several times in the past week, I have made a cooking discovery: bread pudding is delicious, crowd pleasing, and ungodly easy to make. It has my seal of approval.

Kevin Kim said...


I've long enjoyed bread pudding, but have never made it. A restaurant chain called Famous Dave's BBQ makes a great bread pudding, and they don't skimp on the portion size. But maybe it's time for ol' Uncle Kevin to try making some of his own. I appreciate the suggestion.


Yeah, I talk to myself all the time, and sometimes wonder whether it disturbs the neighbors. I don't sing or shout, but I've caught myself giving speeches to the bathroom mirror, and that's a room where my voice takes on a much greater resonance (and likely penetrates walls).

I sometimes wish I had developed the habit of keeping a voice recorder around for those moments when my brain is dumping through my mouth. Some of my one-liners deserve to be blogged. But since I'm not in the habit of recording myself, I've lost who-knows-how-many gems in the relentless flush of history's time-stream.