You know that gut feeling that guides you in 90% of your decisions? Never, ever ignore it. For real. So every few months I have to have a random Craigslist casting call to see what complete stranger is next coming into my life… New York has changed a bit. There used to be people lining up left and right to rent my space, sometimes offering well above what I am asking. Now people say “I’ll get back to you… whaaa?” That is interesting since the rent is pretty damn cheap and I am in a PRIME hood”…
So I was having one of my casting calls, trying to find a replacement for a room mate I had to give the boot too…she was basically bouncing checks, taking trips to Mexico, coming home really late and leaving really early so I wouldn’t get to confront her about the rent. Oi.
I was having a Craigslist casting to replace her.. this man with a very nervous energy walked in. My first gut feeling was “OH HELL FUCKING NO WAY WILL HE LIVE HERE”. His first words were “I’ll take it”. FYI the guy who looked at the room BEFORE him was off his rocker too… Sensing my apprehension, Demon boy said “what can I do to convince you to rent this room to me?”. I started talking to him about my reservations and how room mates had hurt me in the past. He proceeded to tell me about his own room mate horror stories and slowly gained my trust after chatting for an hour. I offered him a beer. “Maybe he isn’t so bad”, I thought.
"I can give you cash, right now", he said. He talked me into it.
People, do not ignore your gut instinct. Ever.
He was beyond awesome at first. Buying me coffee in the morning. Cleaning. Offering his food. By week 3 he was talking about how his mom “tapped his phone”. By week 5 he was clearly snorting mountains of coke.
Sidenote: If you ever rent from me, my number one rule is “NO coke in my house”. If people want to do coke fine. But they have no place in my home life or in my inner circle.
By Week 12, Demon Boy started noticing that “his money was missing”. I wasn’t in a place to even remotely acknowledge this horse shit. “No One stole your money” I said. His paranoid skitzo act was getting to be a bit much for me. I knew it was going to be time to evict him soon.
So as the weeks passed he was becoming progressively more moody… staying up at all hours of the day. Searching for imaginary things in his room that didn’t exist.
Oi. Here is this coke head in my apartment that blew a couple hundred bucks… I so don’t have time for this. I need to get rid of this punk. So the day I confronted him, I told him I thought it was best he moved out.
"Well I got something to talk to you about", said demon boy. I was prepared for a conversation about how I don’t clean the bathroom. Or how I am paying the same rent, but have a bigger room.
"I have video footage of you coming into my room and stealing my money. You’ve taken about $5000 from me. This is grand larceny!"
For the record, I never entered his room. Once.
And with that, I dialed 911.
So folks, if you ever have a bat shit crazy room mate… here is my advice:
You need to move out of your own house until they GET THE FUCK OUT. But make sure to be JUST AS CRAZY AS THEY ARE, so they will want to. The authorities informed me that it would be best to go through the proper channels, instead of just booting his ass, throwing him out and changing the locks. Best to dot the T’s and cross the i’s they said. Go by the book.
And with that I took my cat and moved into an office of a bar. For four days. I eventually decided to him on a heart to heart level. I told him I knew he was going through a tough time with his family and he was using me as a scapegoat. And that I knew he met his ex girlfriend Geri in rehab.
For the record, that was Geri Haliwell aka Ginger Spice. Yes, it wasn’t until he had threatened my life that I decided to Google him. He had met Geri in rehab. She was in there for an eating disorder. He, for drugs. Yes, as it got to the point where I was living in a bar, I thought I would google him to see if there was any public criminal activity in the press. And this was what I got. I knew he had dated a celebrity, but he never said which one.
So for the next four days I called on all my male friends to escort me into my house. I refused to go in alone until he was out. Did I mention at one point he threw groceries in front of his door? FML.
Anyway at the end of the day, he did some good. I was able to trace his presence in my life to a psychological issue… where I tend to keep someone who is dark in nature at arms length at all times… traces back to my childhood. Once I was able to identify the issue, I was also able to break it.
But I didn’t rent that room for a whole month. I was too scarred.
And that kids, is my lecture. Don’t ignore your gut. Ever.