Taking my cue from those folks who move in next door to a disco, wait a week to be decent about it, and then start complaining about the noise, i’ve been here in Venn on Market for the requisite week, so now i have my litany of shrill complaints.
Well, not that the place isn’t perfectly situated for me, what with much better access to public transit and being closer to most places i go. And not that it isn’t a very handsome building with a lovely fifth floor lounge/kitchen with wifi access as well a gorgeous rooftop garden complete with gas grills for barbecues. And not that the apartments don’t feature a host of amenities. And not that the employees aren’t all friendly and totally competent. And yes, each floor has a trash room with three chutes for compostables, recyclables, and trash. And yes, there’s a gym down in the lowest basement that turned out to be good enough that i immediately canceled the extra benefits package in my medical insurance because i no longer need no steenkeng 24 Hour Fitness.
But still, a few glitches.
Like for example that the kitchen sink is equipped with that appliance of the devil, a garbage disposal that i suspect most tenants use to grind up kitchen waste to unnecessarily consume electricity and precious water in order to overburden our municipal sewerage and waste treatment facilities. But of course i don’t use it since i can put my kitchen waste down the compostables chute, where it can do some good for society when it becomes compost. So this one’s not a problem for me.
On the other hand, i was frankly shocked at the absence of an exhaust fan in the bathroom to suck all that steamy air out of the room after my shower. However, this is partially mitigated by a vent in the ceiling that i tested with a piece of paper to determine that it at least has negative pressure sufficient to hold the piece of paper to it, which means that if i remember to almost close the door, the steamy air will very gradually escape and not turn my whole apartment into a greenhouse.
And i’m just crushed that there are only three windows in my apartment that will open, one about three feet square in the bedroom that, if you remove the screen, will permit you to actually stick your head out. The other two, in the living room, are the kind that have a hinge at the top so that you can push the bottom out four whole inches to get a trickle of air.
I discovered the worst problem yesterday when i was unpacking and found my laundry detergent, which i immediately put to use on the pile of dirty clothes using the little apartment-size washing machine, and then threw the load in the dryer only to find that the damn thing isn’t vented. Oh no, the hot, wet air just fills the laundry closet and pours out into the apartment which has the additional feature of making the dryer run three times as long since it’s sucking in all the wet air that it just emitted. What the hell was the architect thinking? Yes, over the oven there’s a hood, and when you push “Vent” it makes a lot of noise and sucks the greasy cooking steam in and then spews it out into the room at the top of the hood, and that was awful enough but nowhere near the problem of the unvented dryer.
In my youth there was a nationally syndicated cartoonist named Hatlo who drew a series of imaginative punishments that those guilty of minor but annoying crimes would suffer in hell. I want the architect who saved a few bucks by leaving the building’s dryers unvented to spend Eternity chained in my laundry closet.
And hey, the bottom line is that i still love the place, and all i have to do is buy twenty feet of that expandable flexible exhaust tubing and run it from the laundry closet up and across my bedroom ceiling and then down in front of the window so that i can stick it out the window when i’m drying my clothes.
Either that or collude with the apartment directly across the courtyard to string one of those clotheslines on pulleys between our apartments so we can air dry our clothes.
As i explore my new neighborhood i’m finding the closest of a variety of establishments, a little convenience grocery store across the street on Market up near Laguna at the end of the block, a little no-frills, plain old American food restaurant directly across the street on Market, and the nearest bar just a couple of blocks down 14th Street. It pre-qualifies the clientele.