Saturday, September 30, 2006
Prejudice. Wrote a song about it. Here it go.
So rogray and I have been in the midst of a great apartment hunt. When we first pulled into Brooklyn we immediately looked at 2 apartments. One was really nice – a touch up renovation for $1350 by Ft. Hamilton Pkwy. It just wasn’t really our neighborhood. The second was on 20th and 6th Ave next to 2 really cute looking restaurants (what’s happening down there – gentrification slows for nobody) and was priced at $1400 – again done quite nicely but was quite small. They were trying to sell it to us as a 1.5 bedroom but the .5 part looked like what the rest of us would call a large closet – or a “cloom” as koogs put it.
Day 2 we walked up and down 7th ave. in the slope and people looked at us like we were very poor, misguided souls. All the realtors said that this was a terrible time to look for places. One woman said she had an apartment for November 1 and as much as mo and the tweak loves us, I don’t think they want us living with them for a month. Another guy said he flat out had nothing in our price range anywhere. So we walked down and into a realtors office that mo had said had some listings in our range. We went in, sat down and began our spiel about how we just moved back here after a year in la la and blah blah blah get us something big for $1400 or less in a neighborhood where I can at least pretend I am close to my friends and also a nice kitchen would be great.
This is where we meet “the racist.” This guy is so fucking racist I don’t even know how to do him justice – first off he was wearing a shirt circa 1987 and his hair looked like his barber was a flowbee . At first he was just saying confusing things and telling us about apartments that he knew we wouldn’t want but just wanted to give us an idea of how slim the pickings were out there. Somewhere along the way he tossed in some line about “the orientals.” I immediately squeezed rogray’s arm which is the international symbol for “oh my god. Did you just hear him say orientals? Did that just happen. I’m pinching you instead of laughing or looking horrified.”
Things got worse from there: 1st – any person he referenced he made sure to include a one-word description of their ethnicity like “if you like spicy food this place is where the Spaniards go to eat.” The Spaniards? Like the conquistadors? Next: when we arrived at the building there was a group of black tenants who were moving out who had apparently had interactions with the racist. One of them *jokingly acted* like he was terrified of the racist which I thought was funny. . .and then we got in the elevator with the racist he said “he acted that way because he’s used to being in the jungle.”
WHAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTT?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!? The fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck?
So then we got into the apartment and much to our horror it was great. Cheap, big, laundry in the building, close enough to the train and heat, water and gas included. Crap. Because now are we going to rent from a racist – who at first we thought just didn’t know he was racist but perhaps totally knows he’s racist. Well, yes. It’s a nightmare – either we take the as perfect as we’re going to find apartment and give a racist our $$ or we are going to pass on it and get something slightly larger than a hamster cage for thousands of dollars and hope that we can make it month 2 month.