edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (werk)
This will be a short one but I have to try and get this out.

At 7:15 PM on Saturday I was lazily getting read to go to a gay bar in Grand Rapids, House was on in the other room, and I was in my room dawdling around. I suddenly smelled something really smoky and immediately thought "Fuck, did I leave the oven on or something?" I left the room and realized there was a thin haze of smoke in my kitchen. I think, "Man, the oven must be on," and when I look and see that neither the oven nor the stove are on, I get confused. So then I look at the far wall beside the refrigerator and realize there is a hazy cloud of smoke coming from that wall. At first I go over thinking something got caught in the heater vent behind the fridge and it might be on fire, but as soon as I reach the far wall I realize that THAT much smoke can't possibly be just from something n the heater and there must be a fire. At this point I panic. I run out into the living room and turn off the TV (because heaven forbid you should die and the TV is running, good thinking in a crisis there, Lillian) and throw on the first pair of shoes I see (which happen to be dress shoes with a 2 inch heel...again, good thinking there) and I grab my phone because I think I'll have to call 911 but my keys are buried in a desk drawer and there's no time to grab anything else, not any of my possessions, so I run into the hallway, thinking I might dart back into my apartment and grab the fire extinguisher and try to help my neighbors, because they have kids and we need to keep the kids from getting hurt, but the horror show that I see in the outside hallway changes my mind. People are running out of their apartments holding blankets over their kids' faces and screaming "Get out, there's a fire!" so I close my door and run through a thick cloud of black smoke down two flights of stairs to the bottom back door and out into a snowbank. I'm panicking and shocked from the cold, but I think, "Call 911 now!" so I dial 911 (those numbers are hard to find when your heart is beating 100 miles a minute) and I tell the dispatcher "I'm in Appleridge apartments in building 1127 and there's a fire, there's black smoke and people are running out screaming" which for those of you who know me, I'm pretty proud that in a crisis I'm able to piece together a sentence like that with that much information. The dispatcher asks "Do you know which apartment the fire is in?" I bite my tongue to keep "Just come here and find out yourself" from coming out and say "No, I don't know, I just know it's in building 1127," so she says "Ok, we'll have fire trucks there right away." Now I realize she HAD to ask that question, I'm not faulting her, I just understand better now why people yell at the cops in crisis situations when it seems stupid to do so...they're in shock, we're all in shock.

So I plow through a snow bank and some people pull into the driveway and look at me like I'm an insane freak for climbing up a hill through a snow bank in heels, and I have time to process the scene I saw in my outside hallway. One of my neighbors pulled down the fire alarm in the outside hallway and then he ran from apartment to apartment banging on doors and telling people to get out. As much as I bitch about my neighbors, that guy was pretty fucking brave to do that. I sure as shit was getting my ass out of there as fast as I could. I get through the snow and onto the sidewalk and see my neighbors slowly gathered outside. At this point, I hear one of them say "Should one of us call the fire department?" I say "I just called 911." To which the guy replies, "Yeah, but this is a FIRE." I know I just got done saying how proud I was because my neighbors were brave, but that guy needs to bury his head in the snow for awhile. Of course, I turned off my TV and grabbed 2 inch heels before running out the door, so who am I to talk about brain cells or the lack thereof? We mill around awhile seeing black smoke billowing at which point I look down at myself, my freezing feet, and think "This is it, this is all you'll have to take with you, everything else is in that apartment, you lost everything." Tears spill down my face, but fuck it, I'm alive, and as much as I don't want to be alive most days, it beats drowning in flames and that acrid stench I had filling my lungs while I was running down those stairs. The volunteer firemen get to the building first and I don't recognize them because they're in regular looking white pickup trucks (dude, where's the cool, big red one?) and they start donning their gear and shooing us away to the opposite buildings to wait out of the snow. The big red firetrucks show up and suddenly I feel better. I let a girl in a red sweatshirt use my phone and soon learn that her name is Tabitha, she's in the apartment where the fire started, and her two year old son just happened to be sleeping in a neighbor's apartment. She calls her babydaddy who is at work and tells them about the fire (and I can hear her arguing with them on the phone "well tell him there's a FIRE burning down my APARTMENT and he needs to GET HERE as soon as possible." You gotta love the businesses in Big Rapids with their compassionate hearts). And no, I'm not being racist or anything using the term "babydaddy," she's white and that's what she calls him...a lot of us use that word all the time around here, I've recently been told it's a racist term, but I don't see why, so there you have it.

We all gather in the opposite entryways watching the firemen rush into and out of our apartment building. I call my friend Jenn and my friend Michelle and leave them messages saying my apartment building is burning and I'm in the parking lot and I don't know what will happen but I'm kind of scared, then I think to call my church and ask them to pray for me but mostly to pray for Tabitha, since her apartment will probably be the most damaged. It occurs to me that I might not be able to update my LJ and tell you all what happened if my computers burn up but I'll have to worry about that later, and then I wonder how I will write my reviews for my boss's website if my computer burns up but I figure I'll have to worry about that later, too (it's amazing the shit that goes through your mind at a time like this). The police get involved and ask us which apartments we're all from and they tell us it will be awhile before we get to see the inside of our building again, but we'll all receive very minor damage except for Tabitha. Tabitha's mom and babydaddy arrive, both yelling at Tabitha and making me want to string them up and beat them (yes, she needs you screaming at her right now, that's very helpful to us all) and we learn that she left her apartment and thought she blew out the candles but apparently one was still burning and it fell over, so she walks around like a zombie sobbing and saying "I'm sorry...I'm sorry, all of you...I'm sorry" which really just makes me want to stab her mom and babydaddy more. I finally say "Hon, it's not your fault your apartment burned down, none of us blame you." I don't know if that helps any but SOMEONE needed to fucking say it, JESUS. My friend Michelle calls back panicking and asks if I'm ok, I tell her what's going on and she arranges an emergency sitter to watch her 2 year old so she can rush over and sit with me until I can go back to my apartment. It occurs to me that Aiden's pictures might burn up now, but at least I have some posted and stored online, and at least I'm still alive to see him again ad perhaps take more. I mill around talking to my neighbors and discover I like some of them; they seem pretty cool. A second later they tell us we can go back to our apartments and the Red Cross shows up and tells Tabitha they can put her up in a hotel for 3 nights (and no shitty rat motels either, she gets the Holiday Inn...plus they start filling out paperwork so that if her clothes are too burned up, she gets vouchers for $200 per person in her family--3, her, babydaddy, and her son--to Meijer or WalMart for replacement clothing...I know, it's not as nice as not having your apartment be burned, but you know...nice gesture...I see Red Cross commercials all the time asking for donations but I never exactly had a clear picture of where that money goes, and let me tell you now, DONATE TO THEM. THEY HELP PEOPLE. SRSLY. I slowly tiptoe up to my apartment, and wouldn't you know it, my door is locked. The fireman is like, "Um...we always lock the doors when we leave...we don't want to be responsible for any of your stuff if it gets stolen..." and I understand that and it's not his fault, but my toes are so cold at this point that several of them are purple and I can't feel any of them anymore. The apartment maintenance guy shows up, and he was at dinner with his girlfriend (his girlfriend...look, he's like, 65...go John, right?) so he doesn't have his car or his keys so he has to call a backup guy to come with a master key to unlock my door, and I start crying saying "I can't pay for your gas money..." because there's a sign up in our hallway saying that if we need to be let back into our apartments we need to pay for John's gas, and it doesn't occur to me that this sign doesn't apply to cases of HUGE BILLOWY FIRE, so John just kind of shakes his head at me with this longsuffering look that shows weariness that he has to manage an apartment full of geniuses who wear two inch heels to a fire rescue, and he unlocks the door. I go back in, and my apartment has the pleasant smoky smell of campfire and burning plastic. I see some minor smoke damage, some boxed foods and books and DVDs and posters that were right by the air vents are crispy, sooty critters and have to be thrown out (which I do right away, because they can spontaneously burst BACK into flame and ignite your house again, right?) My Michael Myers mask is also a little raggedy and on the floor stomped and pummeled, but for the most part the rest of my possessions are doing ok. I must try to scrape up the $30 a month that Assurant wants to charge me for renter's insurance (this is the cheapest plan for the coverage I want, and I don't know how feasible it will be considering that I can't always buy food, but I feel that I need SOMETHING now). I'm wandering around in a daze when Michelle comes into the apartment and runs to me and we hug and start blubbering. She just lost her dad suddenly a little over a month ago and she was like "I could have lost my best friend too." Which of course sets me off too, as the floodgates are now broken. We blubber for awhile and then we wander downstairs and she tells Tabitha she can donate a crib and a lot of baby clothes since Aiden is about 3 months older than her son. Tabitha is dazed but she agrees to let Michelle know if she needs anything, so I'm going to keep a lookout and see if I see her in the next few days so I can make good on the offer of help. I can only imagine what it's like to find that everything, not just the food and DVDs and the few books and posters that I lost, but EVERYTHING in your apartment was gutted and gone. It's one of my worst nightmares, and she has to have it come true. I feel so bad for her.

Things settle back down again. Michelle leaves, my friends show up and by now all the fire trucks are gone so they have to be told why my hands are all sooty and I'm shaky and bedraggled looking. I don't know if they believe me. I'm not sure I believe me. So I went to the gay bar and now I'm back in my smoky apartment surveying the fun. I have a few pictures of my sooty walls and the fire trucks, but they were taken with my phone since I didn't have a camera out there, so you can't really tell what's going on in the pics, and they will have to be uploaded later. For now I'm snuggling under my blankets just glad to be here. Singed, but alive. If you all could keep Tabitha in your thoughts and prayers, I'd appreciate it. Me too. I'm scared now that fire will come and eat me (which I know isn't any more likely than it was before and I'm lucky and I'm grateful, but still...scary).


Nov. 3rd, 2008 01:40 am
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (viva la vie boheme)
More Christmas fun, and the last Halloween Hurrah )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (suicide)
I know I haven't said anything about this and you guys know I haven't had the best luck with roommates in the past, but I have high hopes for this and I didn't want anyone to discourage me or give me advice or make me any more nervous than I already am...I have two new roommates now and I'm hoping the three of us can get along and learn to live peacefully together.

Pictures! )


Aug. 12th, 2008 11:21 am
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (empty wallet)
This is for [livejournal.com profile] bohemianeditor who posted a link to a website full of these types of pics. I saw this while stocking Sunday night at work and had to take a picture with my phone so I could make this pic (yes, I live my entire life on the internet. No, I don't have a problem with that).

I love the crew in receiving at my store. They follow directions so well.

Will you shut the fuck up about your apartment already? Jesus )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (viva la vie boheme)
I took a trip to Big Lots today because I got the decorating bug. I wanted to get a few things to tie my apartment together, and I ended up making things look pretty nice IMHOWISHAAAO.

I can't stop buying decor )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (viva la vie boheme)
Well, the kind people at Domestications shipped my bed in a bag a week ago, and then it ended up in Kentucky for a godawful amount of time, and then they delivered it on Saturday while I was sleeping, so I stayed up all night last night doing laundry, cleaning all my old bedding, which caused a cleaning bug to crawl up my ass because I finally got the motivation to clean the hundreds of old plastic grocery bags and other miscellaneous crap off the top of my fridge and out of the cupboard over my stove, then I scrubbed the hell out of the stove itself, which took an hour because the stove was covered in hardened yet still slimy and sticky grease (don't ask me how that combination of contradictory textures could coexist in one substance, it just did) and lugged my four loads of laundry back up to my apartment, and then took a cab this morning at 9 to pick up my new bedding from the post office (shut up, it was raining and the package was heavy and I don't have friends with cars, no way was I going to walk and carry that package) so I finally made my bed, and my room looks fantabulous, or so I think in my totally biased opinion.

Peektures! )

I'm exhausted for some reason. :-p I think I'm going to go read while lying on my new bedding (someone on the domestications website was complaining about one of their bed in a bag sets, saying "This comforter was scratchy when I first got it." ...As far as I know, comforters are ALWAYS scratchy when you first get them, you have to break them in (at least every one I have gotten is that way).


Jul. 27th, 2008 11:28 am
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (viva la vie boheme)
This is a website you should check out: http://www.shuttercal.com if you love to take pictures try it out. it's basically an online calendar where you upload a new pic for each day, so basically you take a picture documenting your life for each day of the year and upload it for everyone to see. It's fun when you can see what other people upload for their pics, and if you get stumped wondering what picture to take, the administrators of the website post a weekly blog and in the blog they discuss things and there's a weekly theme they post in the blog, basically saying "hey, take a picture of LIGHT this week" and so it's fun seeing how other people interpret the instruction to take a picture of light, and trying to figure out how to creatively interpret that instruction yourself. The best thing about this website is that it's FREE. Personally, I love it...if you decide to join, add me on there so we can check out each other's pictures...my name is edwardnortonfan. I know some of you have done the "take a picture a day for a year" challenge, but this is a whole website built around that, and I like the look of the site and the idea of having a video diary for my life. I often see it passing and wonder how to capture the time before it slips away so I always remember how I felt and what happened...it's something I think about a lot and with this website, it's fun looking back on the months and seeing a pic of what you did each day!

My first picture is of my new sofa. Well, my old sofa which I covered with a full sheet set I bought on clearance today, so instead of being icky brown, it's now black and it looks really cool in my living room (all you people getting home decor are inspiring me...I'm looking at YOU [livejournal.com profile] peskipiksi).

I have to turn in my paperwork for my new job on Wednesday. I'm stressing about losing my apartment. Before you pooh pooh that, remember that this is the eleventy bazillionth time I've almost lost this place due to fucked up paperwork. My landlords are degenerate cunts who care for no one but themselves. I'm really worried about how I will make ends meet with my new higher rent (so why did I buy a sheet set? Fuck you, I spent ten bucks, and all my bills are paid...)
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (werk)
Looks like I owe god one. Looks like I'm setting my alarm for 7 AM and going to church on Sunday. Kill me now.

The office was fiercely pissed at me. But at least they weren't only pissed at me. I don't know if I mentioned this to you guys, but the office has been going through a lot of upheaval in the past 6 months or so, with apartment managers leaving and other people filling in, and it was in the midst of this that I filled out my paperwork for certification and gave all my information about my job and pay and such (when I moved in I was unemployed and I didn't get a job until June 1st). I filled out paperwork, it was misplaced, filled out more and that was misplaced, then they found the lost paperwork but I filled out more because I'm making more hours at my job. Well because of all the lost paperwork and mismanagement that happened last year, none of the residents had their certification sent in on time and the big office was pissed at how the situation wasn't handled well and came storming in here, so when Lorrie called and left my message, she was snappy and authoritative both because she's been getting her ass chewed for things that weren't her fault because they happened before she was here, and because the big bosses are here now reviewing paperwork and they needed everyone to know it was a serious situation and they had to scare everyone when they called to make sure everyone would be terrified enough to come in. When the big boss talked to me she yelled at me. You guys want to know why she yelled at me? She wanted to know why we had three sets of paperwork on me, I told her because it got lost and because my income had changed, and she yelled at me. 20 hours a week isn't that much more than 11 hours a week, it isn't enough to raise my income to the point where I needed to pay more in rent (according to her) so I shouldn't have "wasted their time" by filling out three different sets of paperwork. Never mind that I was told by the office to do this and it's not my fault, never mind that. so I signed some stuff, she snapped at me, and I had to give copies of my monthly bills to prove that my utilities are indeed as high as they are. Then I was sent home. I wasn't in danger of eviction and they basically just wanted to yell at people because they're in pissy moods. The higher-up lady? She's a total cunt. I hope she breaks a heel stomping around the apartment grounds and falls on her ass down the stairs. She needs to be knocked down a couple thousand notches. I understand that some people in low-income housing are lazy, and some people take it for granted, and some people won't come in to the office if they get a nice message on their machine, so I understand why they wanted to freak people out, but I'm not like that, I always come in when I'm asked and I don't think they treated me right in this. but at least I won't be living in a box. Until whatever tragedy that might happen in the future comes, I should be ok. I hope. But now I have to go to church. I'm going to shoot myself.

I have almost 30,000 words in my book. Hee. It's exciting.

In GLWTFBBQ news, the meeting went well. I saw my friend Kenny there, so he's both taking initiative to come on his own and he's ok (I haven't seen him in a few weeks and I become afraid that my friends are dead if I don't hear from them in awhile, especially if they're planning to go out at night and slash tires. Jen's threatened to get some of her friends to beat him before, I have no doubt they'd do it if she asked).

50 Book Challenge Updates

3. "The Broken Bridge" by Phillip Pullman This book I got for Christmas from my friend Barb. It starts off kinda terrible but it gets really good if you give it about 100 pages.

4. "Following Foo" by B. D. Wong This book is adorable. It's about what happened when B. D. Wong (Dr. Wong from the movie "The Ref," Dr. George Huang from "Law & Order: SVU) and his husband decided to have a baby. For those who don't know (ddly enough I read the story first in a magazine while I was waiting for an appointment from my Christian Therapist that His House sent me to) their twin sons were born premature and one died and the other was in the hospital for three months. This book is sad and funny and overall adorable. You should all read it, especially if you have kids. It really got me thinking too, especially the afterword. Wong is actually a good writer, very poetic and pretentious in just the right ways.

I'm ok right now. Contemplating going to bed and trying to decipher Clive Barker for awhile before trying to sleep (probably not a good idea). If this migraine would just fuck the fuck off I'd be great. I used the last of my migraine medicine today so I want to shoot myself. I'll have to trudge through the snow tomorrow to walmart to buy some since they're the only place that sells it (speaking of trudging through the snow, it snowed up the ass tonight and it's cold as fuck and I have to walk to work tomorrow. thanks god, you bastard).
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (idontcare)
Work sucked. Sucked ass with a spoon. I ended up staying 4 extra hours yesterday and today to help out, and they treated me like shit, snapping at me and saying I was worthless. I was furious. And I'm done with staying and helping (I tell myself, until the next time they need me, I'm a fucking pushover, I swear). I don't want to work 7 days a week, and because they wouldn't tell me my work schedule, I scheduled my doctor's appointment for 3 PM on Tuesday and if they have problems they can eat me, they wouldn't give me my schedule so it's their fucking fault. I hate people. But after I got home, I went out for drinks with my friends Allison and Randy. Sweet Tarts are awesome (even better when someone is buying them for you) and I have a nice buzz and I'm all calm and shit...nice).

I have decided I have to talk about this in here, since I've been keeping it a secret and I need to let it out and be honest with all of you...this is my life, and I talk about everything in it in here, for better or worse, so here it is.

New man in my life )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (idontcare)
Uh-oh )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (inspiration)
shhh, don't tell my landlords )
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (suicide)
My Apartment is Cooler than YOUR Apartment )

Also, don't foeget to try your luck at my movie quotes quiz: http://malakijr.livejournal.com/338717.html
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (Default)
Well I'm here. The apartments are laid out really nicely, and there's a lot of space. Too bad all my shit won't unpack itself. But it's getting there. I went for 5 days without sleep, so I totally crashed last night and 8 hours never felt so good. Thanks to some generous friends, I have shampoo, conditioner, and cleaning supplies as well as some pots and pans. Still need a couch though, and a towel (I dried off after my bath with a dirty shirt). Speaking of dirty clothes, there's laundry here, so I don't have to trudge down to the laundry mat. It's a little pricy ($1.25 a load) but it's better than nothing, and I don't have to walk far to do it. Plus I went to check out the laundry room last night and someone had left a whole bottle of detergent down there but taken their clothes, so being the good little klepto I am I got the detergent. And I can steal internet here so I don't have to pay for it. So I'm pretty stoked. There's a lot of good things. I just need a job and...that little light thing from the Men in Black movies that will make me forget everything.
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (empty wallet)
I got NO sleep today. I applied for some more jobs all night, and then I got up at 8 AM and applied for assistance today and got a Bridge card. Every month I'll have $155 for food now. I talked to the apartment, and I have to put a security deposit down, but I still have the apartment and since I don't have any income the rent will be free. That's a big weight off my shoulders. My move in date is May 25th. I wrote to John today and asked him if I could stay until then...I hope it's ok. I want to be out of his hair as soon as possible.

I also hope I can relax, now that my life should be more drama-free.
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (empty wallet)
Filled out more applications today. Picked up an application for assistance from the Department of Human Services and have an appointment tomorrow at 8:30 AM to see if they can help me with medical care, rent, food stamps...anything. Also tomorrow have to call back and follow up with lawyers to get a "Cease and Desist" order to keep Papa John's from slandering me all over town. I checked with the lawyer, and what they have now consists of evidence that might look bad for me but it also looks bad for anyone who touched the till during the shifts when the money disappeared, and I know it looks bad for me but since I know I'm innocent but can't prove it and Michigan is an "At Will Hire" state, I can't do anything about the fact that they fired me, but I can take steps to prevent them from discussing the details of the termination the way they have been doing. I'll take that...I can't make anyone believe my side of the story, especially since I know no one will be stupid enough to steal again now that someone got fired for it, but I CAN try and make sure I get another job...I was on the phone with Legal Aid and Lawyers from Grand Rapids for hours today and tomorrow will be no different. Then I have to go to the apartment and work out with them what rent will be since I only have $286 to my name right now.

Tonight...I'll wait until 3rd shift at Crankers (when I actually still HAVE a good name) and ask about a job there. Then I'll try to sleep...try not to freak out and cry and hang myself.

It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok It will be ok
edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (empty wallet)
I got a call back from Appleridge about a rent subsidized apartment! One is available, so they're running my criminal records check and my credit check right now. I'm really worried about the credit check since I don't have any credit, but I hope they realize the circumstances of why and how I'm trying to pay my debt off...anyway, prayers and good thoughts and such would be greatly appreciated.


edgarallenfrog: various pics of harvey milk (Default)

May 2009

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