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 daurril library: daurril: My Life and Times: April 10th 2017 '10-day Notice of Noncompliance ....'


My Life and Times (January - April 2017)


Prologue. On Wednesday January 25th 2017 I found a '10-day Notice of Noncompliance ....', attached to the outside of apartment 909’s door. It tells that “during a routine Pest Control visit on January 19th 2017 management has determined on (sic) that you have general housekeeping and clutter in your apartment home that has not been addressed …” Further, “You have 10 days to discuss this notice with the landlord.” Gratuitously & pontifically, “if you request a meeting, we will meet with you.” Somehow, in the same period of time, and without the benefit of specifications, I am expected to remedy the situation “or (my) lease shall be deemed terminated.”


Earlier that month I found an “Annual Recertification: First Reminder Notice”, dated 1/04/2017 and similarly delivered, advising me of Candice Burns’ availability for the suggested interview sometime between the 10th and the 30th – (hopefully) “during normal business hours.” I presume this issue is in abeyance until that of January 25th is resolved.


I certainly look forward to learning what features of my housekeeping distress her, but remain curious as to how discoveries on the 19th failed to prompt any effort on her part to repair the source of significant flooding in my bathroom. It is refreshing that both of our attention might now be directed to a problem of no little concern to me over the last six years.


Following preliminary contact in February 2003, and some delay waiting for a vacancy to open on the south side of the building above the 5th floor, I was ready to sign my first lease on May 19th. Always interested in accommodating my fairly vast collection of computer equipment and books with a minimum of free-standing furniture, I hoped to simply bolt sufficient shelving to the walls. Jill’s managerial response was that “it was my home, do whatever I wanted.” So I did. My east wall handled my data processing needs, and the west wall would contain a well-lit whiteboard & lots of books.



Thus I lived happily until Debbie’s acquisition of, and SP Three’s decision o/a 2011 to renovate, the building. It took about a month to do each of the 14 floors. Tenants and their possessions were temporarily relocated – in my case to the space in apartment 309. Recalling my own military experience, the relocation and reinstallation of our goods was well done, with hardly a loss of anything. What I came back to, however, was appalling. Although there was some possibility that they might have been left alone, all of the structures to accommodate my collections were taken down. Appearing now as rubble along the shell SP Three prefers to call our housing.



Requiring me to work for the next several years out of the boxes, plainly marked ‘309’, that contain my transported possessions. Of course there are many religious texts, which suggest that among the characteristics of a human being is our tendency to create a universe around us reminiscent of what we think is our place in the world. Not perhaps an interpretation of life allowed to Burns’ former clientele.


Graphics on the right define the present objectionable appearance of my principle living space. The top photo shows the new look of my devastated computer space. In the middle we have a view looking south toward my windows; below that looks north toward my kitchen. Partially released from their cardboard containment, plus a few subsequent acquisitions, I have about 250 stacked books. In addition, there are about a 100 each of purchased DVDs, T-120 video tapes, + periodicals.


Among my other apartment ‘clutter,’ one might find in my bedroom the VA-provided BiPap equipment which sustains my life at night. A machine which produces supplemental O2 is on the other side of my bed. Nearby is my land-line supporting 911 back-up, as well as several bottles of ambulatory O2. Hospitalized for several days a year ago with both A-fib & congestive heart failure, my daily intake of blood thinners assures I will not survive any serious bleeding. Also under the personal care of one of TGH’s principle cardiologists, my primary assures my regular consumption of every known medication to control blood pressure


Therefore I might suggest I have a certain difficulty performing tasks not affecting folk in less than their eightieth year of life. A handy cane anticipates failure of my 4-year old left knee replacement. I am fortunate enough to have regular free parking in the only marked handicap spot within the 1-block radius of my ability to walk.


A proposed solution set:


The optimum solution to Ms. Burns’ concerns would be to reinstate some of my wall-borne shelving. I understand only maintenance would be allowed to mount the standards. Rebuilding the whiteboard area may be avoided, as I do not remember how to do it. Alternately, I might be allowed use of some of the storage space behind the elevators on almost every floor of this building. As is, for instance, resident Kyle Campfield – our management-appointed activity coordinator. I would need space for about twenty-five 13x13x16.5” boxes stacked 4 high, & some of the longer shelving hardware. Boxes, when containing books, weigh about 50 lbs each.


As we are talking about possessions of considerable value, If there is no in-house storage solution, I would need to see if nearby Christian institutions might help. Just across the street, for instance, we have a UMC haven called the Portico.



If none of these opportunities are feasible, I have no other financial choice but to put a lot of my things into the building’s trash – blessed at least in that I might not have to pay for them to be hauled away. Certainly an unfortunate footnote to my 13-year residency.


Seeking according to her instruction to obtain mutual satisfaction, I made an appointment thru Assistant Manager Maria to see Burns at 2 PM on February 2nd. At the appointed time, a paper clock on the door told me the Office would continue to be closed until 3:30. Although still closed, shortly after that time I obtained Maria’s attention long enough to learn, in the friendliest way, that these notices were nothing more than housekeeping’s way of assuring improved appearance in advance of their monthly visit.


The next day, following my customary Friday noon meeting with my Biblical associates across the street at the Portico campus of Hyde Park Methodist Church, I happened to notice Maria actually in her office. Offering her the last of their Café’s cupcakes (declined), I sought to go a little further into any issues left outstanding from yesterday’s conversation. Her instant response was that we should visit the scene of the alleged crime. There I described the alternate storage solution mentioned above. She seemed to understand it, and we parted in good spirits. Nothing, of course, came of the conversation. Despite the total lack of resolution, housekeeping appeared not to notice any irregularities in my apartment in February or March.



For the next 2 months, life at Vista engendered no further stress. I was eventually convinced that the flooding in my bathroom had not been addressed by our visiting management team, and that never worked. On Wednesday February 8th  I used the emergency number 516-7084 to call Maintenance. He was here in 5 minutes, and changed my tank’s $150 Flushmate unit – mentioning incidentally that he swaps out one or two of these somewhere in the building every day. Further investigation revealed that earlier models of this unit were known to explode, driving toilet debris into the occupant’s body.


On Monday 2/27/17 I met with Candice to negotiate May’s lease renewal. Two weeks later (TU 3/14/17 1542) it was signed.


On March 21st Management told us that “due to a noticeably (sic) increase in water consumption over the last couple of months, we will be entering all units to do a full audit.” I would think Maintenance could have answered her question at any time. The team that came around was not what we expected.


Also toward the end of March the general population was informed that a 100% no-smoking policy, anywhere (including previously designated permissive areas) on the property would be enforced, with citation starting in April. Smokers took that to be an instant imperative, and relocated themselves along the curb across from the front door. Management seized on that interpretation, and began a series of reinforcement called “Friendly Reminders.” This included a new rule that offensive furniture should not be placed in the trash area behind the building.


Some time before April 13th residents were treated to a memo describing a tenant’s alternatives to ‘friendly,’ as follows: “If any individual resident objects to the new non-smoking, tobacco free policy, Management will be happy to explain how to terminate their occupancy. Please contact the office to discuss breaking your lease agreement.” I’m not sure how this exit would be considered a breach originating at the tenant’s initiative.



On April 10th 2017 I was provided another '10-day Notice of Noncompliance ....' This time “routine Pest Control visit on January 19th 2017” is replaced by a nondescript “routine inspection”, providing no information on the time or circumstance of discovery, and again no specifications. Neither notice shows a phone with direct access to Burns. In January a responder might talk to Marie, in April (813-443-5863) he talks to the front door.


As of the date of the notice, there had been no pest control visits that month on the 9th floor. So I presume this rather tardy notice is meant to invite the conversation “with the landlord” she avoided in connection with the January notice.


I would seek that appointment, recalling for Burns the conversation I had with her assistant in February. Not easily, since a sign on the door the day after Easter tells us the office will be closed from April 17th thru the 19th, leaving only the 20th to obtain specifications.


It seems I would not be the only one facing the week after Easter with some trepidation. On Good Friday the general population was advised that whatever else they had planned for Easter Sunday, preparation for a potentially crippling home-denying inspection the following week need be among them.


We may wonder what might have promoted housekeeping’s concern over “clutter” in our homes, since those personnel contribute nothing to their interior appearance and have no legitimate reason to navigate its objects. Turns out the new notice runs an anomalous flag called “quality housing.” Whatever personal convenience housekeeping wants to read into the word, “quality” has an entirely different meaning for the elderly trying to establish a home in SP3’s allotted space. Quality I had before they took over – chaos now.


I am reminded of a wonderful plot element in 1965’s The Loved One. In the movie, the Blessed Reverend sees little profit in Whispering Glades’ cemetery once all the plots are filled. Inspired by his brother’s (also played by Jonathan Winters) discovery of rocketry, he intends to put all his “stiffs” in orbit, freeing his land for the construction of a retirement home.


Seniors I know at Vista reasonably suspect that that is close to what SP3, thru JMG Realty, sees as fulfilling its promise to us – outer space being wherever homelessness takes us.



Joe Daurril



Last update on 20-April-2017 at 9:19 PM.